2011 Accent New Car Test Drive
The Hyundai Accent is roomy, comfortable, well-appointed and practical. Beyond those qualities, it is also commendably fuel-efficient and offered at a very attractive price. For the buyer looking for a strong value for the money in an economical small car, it would be hard to beat the Accent.
Power for the Accent comes from a clean and sophisticated 1.6-liter double overhead-cam engine, featuring variable valve timing and delivering 110 horsepower and 106 pound-feet of torque; it is available with either a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission. Perhaps more important, the Accent offers EPA-rated fuel economy numbers of 28 mpg City/34 mpg Highway with the manual transmission, and 27/36 mpg with the automatic.
At the same time, the Accent offers a generous list of safety features. Six airbags (front, seat-mounted side-impact, and side-curtain) are standard on all models; antilock brakes with electronic brake-force distribution are optional on the sedan and standard on the sporty SE coupe. The Accent is one of the least expensive cars on the market with these important safety features.
For 2010, Hyundai Accent offers some worthwhile changes and enhancements. All 2010 models have notably improved fuel economy. A new Blue edition, offering a lower price and even better fuel economy, is added to the line. Standard equipment now includes iPod/USB ports and blue backlit gauges; and steering-wheel audio controls, cruise control and sunroof on the SE trim level. There is also the availability of steering-wheel audio controls on the GLS and ABS on the GS.
We think people in the market for a small, practical, and thrifty car should consider the Hyundai Accent alongside the best from the Japanese name brands. A generous five-year/60,000-mile basic warranty with roadside assistance and a 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty make the Accent a particularly good deal for anyone who does not want to buy a used car and intends to keep the vehicle for an extended period of time.
The 2010 Hyundai Accent is available in two body styles and four trim levels: A basic GS coupe, a nicer GLS four-door sedan, a sporty SE coupe, and the value-priced and more economical Blue coupe. A 110-horsepower 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine powers all models. A five-speed manual transmission is standard, a four-speed automatic transmission is optional.
The Accent GS coupe ($11,995) comes with cloth upholstery, six-way adjustable driver's seat, fold-down driver's armrest, center console with two cupholders, a recline feature for its split-folding (60/40) rear seat, a tilting steering column, tachometer, digital clock, two 12-volt power outlets, cabin air filtration, two-speed plus variable-intermittent windshield wipers, rear-window defroster, power steering, and P175/70R14 tires on steel wheels. There's no radio, but the GS does come with four speakers, so installing an aftermarket unit is relatively easy. It is also available with an automatic transmission ($12,995).
Air conditioning is available as an option ($1,000). There is also a Premium Equipment Package ($1,550) that includes a six-speaker, AM/FM/XM/CD/MP3 stereo with an auxiliary input jack, power windows, power mirrors, power door locks with remote keyless entry, anti-lock brakes (ABS), and dual illuminated visor vanity mirrors.
The Accent GLS sedan ($13,645) comes with air conditioning and the six-speaker stereo, along with illuminated vanity mirrors and 185/65R14 tires on 14-inch steel wheels. It is also available with the automatic ($14,645). The sedan's Premium Equipment Package ($1,050) adds anti-lock brakes with electronic brake-force distribution, power windows with driver's auto-down, power mirrors, power door locks, remote keyless entry, tilt wheel, cruise control, steering-wheel audio controls and an alarm with panic alert.
The Accent SE coupe ($16,195) comes with a sport-tuned suspension, ABS with EBD, rear spoiler and wiper/washer, P205/45VR16 tires on five-spoke aluminum wheels, a sunroof, fog lights, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, metallic interior accents, power windows with express-down for the driver's-side window, seat-back pockets, and illuminated vanity mirrors. It is also available with the automatic transmission ($16,995).
The value-priced Blue trim level is available only as a coupe ($9,970); the automatic transmission is not available. Air conditioning is optional ($1,000). The Blue coupe not only has a very low price, but also delivers the higher fuel economy numbers of 27 mpg/36 mpg City/Highway. The Blue edition has one of the highest MPG-per-dollar-of-price ratios in the industry, and it will be identified with unique Blue badging.
In addition, Hyundai offers numerous port or dealer-installed accessories, including a cargo mat ($80), floor mats ($95), iPod cable ($35), mudguards ($85), and several other features and accessories.
Safety features for all Accents include front seatbelt pre-tensioners along with six airbags: dual frontal, front-seat side-impact, and full-coverage side curtain. Head restraints are adjustable at all five seating positions, unusual for this price class.