CleanMPG Reviews the 2012 Hyundai Accent

Discussion in 'Reviews' started by xcel, Feb 5, 2012.

  1. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    [​IMG]Hyundai’s 3rd 40_mpg rated automobile and for a price anyone can afford.

    [fimg=right][/fimg]Wayne Gerdes - CleanMPG - Feb. 5, 2012

    2012 Hyundai Accent – $12,545 to start and rated at 30/40 mpgUS city/highway. With a little Cinnamon on top for her own first review ;)

    Beginning with the release of the current generation Hyundai Sonata in 2011 and followed soon after with the just recently awarded 2012 North American Car of the Year winner in the form of the Elantra, Hyundai’s Fluidic Sculpture design language is setting the mid-size and compact sales charts on fire. The now famous design creates a sense of motion even when standing still and it was only a matter of time before Hyundai instilled the same award winning design language into their subcompact Accent.

    Meet the 2012 Hyundai Accent

    The all new, fourth-generation Accent is not only defined by its eye catching design, it is the first in its class to include a powerful direct injected 1.6L engine, a size above voluminous interior, Hyundai’s excellent 5-year/60,000 mile basic warranty, 10 years/100,000 mile powertrain warranty, 5-years/unlimited mileage roadside assistance warranty and a price the rest of the B-segment simply cannot match.

    Adding, a high level of content including such niceties as a sliding center console armrest, overhead sunglass holder, sewn cloth like textured headliner, 60/40 split fold down rear seats, damped glove box, front door map pockets and bottle holder, 6-way adjustable front seats, drivers seat rear pockets, cloth door inserts and an interior fuel fill door open lever are standard.

    2012 Hyundai Accent Highlights

    Sewn cloth like textured headliner, sunglass holder and dual map lights.​

    Most of the above is unusually high end content for a B-segment automobile and unheard of from the $16,765 (incl D&H) as tested 2012 Hyundai Accent SE.

    2012 Hyundai Accent Specifications

    The 2012 Hyundai Accent is available in three trim levels, the 4-door GLS and 5-door GS and SE. Complete specifications, pricing, standard and optional equipment for the SE can be found on the 2012 Hyundai Accent SE – Specifications page.

    2012 Hyundai Accent Exterior

    The new Accent appearance can be described in one word, "Sharp".

    Hyundai's Fluidic Sculpture


    From the front, it is the aggressively swept wraparound headlight lenses and optional fog lamp cutouts that grabs ones attention. Moving to the silhouette, the fluidic sculpture begins in force with its rising and extended beltline through the door handles and sculpted lower cutout. Moving to the rear, the large vertical taillamps and roof mounted rear spoiler give the impression of speed and size beyond its actual capability.

    On the aerodynamic front, wheels that are set deep up in the wheel wells and an engine underbody cover help the Accent achieve a 0.30 Cd.

    2012 Hyundai Accent Interior

    The all new Accent is larger, more versatile and far more modern than its predecessor. While the interior plastics are a bit simplistic, not uncommon for the segment, it makes up for it with the previously mentioned textured headliner, sliding armrest, and numerous storage locations. With 90.1 and 21.2 cu. ft. of passenger and cargo volume respectively, the passenger space is as large as the 2012 Ford Focus!


    The top trim SE arrives with steering wheel mounted audio and Bluetooth hands free controls, leather wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, all standard.

    The control knobs and switches and the fonts describing each are of medium size with a higher quality feel than some of its competitors. The central MFD between the tach and speedometer is classic Hyundai with white alphanumerics on a black background. While small, it is legible with a glance.

    The only failings I have experienced so far is the lack of a telescopic wheel has me reaching for the wheel, the dash plastics look inexpensive, the cloth seat material does not feel robust and installing a Scangauge requires removal of a lower dash plastic Fuse/OBD cover.

    Sightlines to the front are excellent but you cannot see the hood or front corners. To the rear, the C-pillar is in the way and the rear window is a bit small for a full view directly to the rear.

    2012 Hyundai Accent SE 5-Door Hatch

    Versatility indeed.​

    NVH? The 2012 Accent has been quieted in an attempt to beat its B-segment rivals which it does. When compared to the larger C and D-Segment brethren however, it has a level of noise intrusion that could be bothersome at 65 + or for hours on end behind the wheel.

    2012 Hyundai Accent Infotainment

    There are two Audio systems including a base system that provides an AM/FM/Satellite Radio/CD/MP3 audio system with tweeters and iPod/USB auxiliary input jacks. There is an optional 172 W AM/FM/XM/CD/MP3 audio system with six speakers, iPod/USB/auxiliary input jacks.

    In action, Bluetooth connectivity has been solid and basic voice control is satisfactory but not exemplary as sound quality is only average. Stereo output is similar with a decent output but nothing extraordinary.

    2012 Hyundai Accent Drivetrain

    The true highlight of the all-new Accent is its all aluminum, offset crank and direct-injected 1.6L I4 with a DOHC controlling both the intake and exhaust valves. Not only does the 138 HP and 123 lb-ft. of torque 1.6L provide the lightweight Accent the best power to weight ratio in the B-Segment, when mated to either the all-new 6-speed AT or MT it achieves a 30/40 mpgUS city/highway rating.

    In practice, the powerful 1.6L has far more than enough power to get out of its way and when running at 1,500 to 2,050 RPM at 80 to 98% load during any acceleration will provide fantastic fuel economy. The Accent's 6-speed MT is a quick and a very smooth shifter from gear to gear but has a touch of notchiness. Enough so you can actually hear it move from gate to gate.

    Ride and Handling

    The 2012 Accent was provided with an almost 22% increase in rigidity compared to its predecessor thanks to 59% High Strength Steel construction, a reinforced front shock absorber housing, strengthened center pillar structure for added roof support and protection and a straightened connection between the rear spring mounting and vertical member. All come together to make for a decent corner carver. Turn in is a bit vague and the suspension is a bit soft but when pushed, it breaks loose predictably. That said, with pressed up tires, the suspension lacks the sophistication and isolation of some of its competitors.

    Rain grooved section of I-94 just north of the IL/WI border.​

    A true highlight and a surprising one at that was the Accent did not tramline even a little. It was as solid as many midsize automobiles and was completely unexpected.

    2012 Hyundai Accent Safety

    IIHS Crash Test Ratings


    The Accent brings to the table the standard front, side and side airbags. In addition, the front seats incorporate active head restraints.

    On the active side of the fence, 4-wheel disc brakes, ABS, Electronic stability control (ESC), Traction control (TRAC), Brake Assist (BA), Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBFD), and Hill-Start Assist (HSA) on the AT.

    The 2012 Accent has not yet been tested by the NHTSA and given the Average rating on the IIHS side impact crash tests, it is doubtful the 2012 Accent will earn a 5-star rating.

    2012 Hyundai Accent Fuel Economy Results

    Initial and final top off. Notice the Accent’s gas cap holder? Few still offer this feature.​

    [fimg=left][/fimg]99.2 actual miles from Speedway in Gurnee, IL to downtown Milwaukee and back.

    Weather was just ok with dry but cold conditions. Temps ranged from 31 to 36 degrees F with 5 to 10 mph winds out of the ENE on the North-South route between the Gurnee, IL Speedway to Milwaukee, WI and back. In other words it was not exactly conducive to great fuel economy. Traffic was unusually heavy for a Saturday evening with upwards of 2-miles of stop and crawl just prior to reaching downtown Milwaukee. The congestion however was the type that was rolling between 5 and 30 mph so applying an anti wave P&G, it actually added another 1 mpg over those 2-miles prior to turning around vs. harmed the overall.

    I was expecting to barely touch 60 mpg when throwing the book at it given the conditions and oh boy was I wrong ;)

    Final calcs: 99.2 miles/1.415 gallons = 70.106 mpgUS.

    While I still have to complete the steady state fuel economy results and a non-advanced aFCD offset calibration, Hyundai has yet another winner in its 40 mpgUS highway stable.

    On the initial top off, I could only add another 1.3 gallons before the top off occurred after first click so I am estimating the 12 Accent’s actual tank capacity is approximately 13 gallons vs. the 11.4 gallon tank spec.

    2012 Hyundai Accent Early Conclusions

    Since this is Chicago Auto Show Week, I will be taking the Accent downtown at least three times with Step Child, Bestmapman and Msirach and they will add their own commentary.

    Ride is a bit rougher than I expected yet handling has so far proven itself to be better. Braking is a bit soft initially but linear and strong once past the first few mm.

    The Kumho Solus KH25 (Grand Touring All-Season) 195/50R16 tires do not roll worth a damn. One of these days, Hyundai is going to let loose and install some Ecopia EP20’s or Assurance FuelMax’s on their 40 mpg vehicles and then look out ;)

    The 12 Accent EPS’s On-center feel is better than the “lack of” Elantra GLS and overly synthetic Elantra Limited’s. It is actually quite nice and on the rain grooved section of I-94 just across the IL/WI border (WI side), the short wheelbase Accent did not even flinch as if it were traveling on smooth asphalt. A non-issue for everyone.

    All in, if you are in the market for a B-segment, you had better not skip this one as it offers so much for so little and Hyundai backs it up with their new Trade In Assurance program let alone the over the top warranty.
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2012
  2. jcp123

    jcp123 Caliente!

    Very nice! Excellent numbers, sounds like a very, VERY solid choice in its segment, especially when you keep that warrantee in mind. How would you say it stacks up vs. its Rio brother?
  3. ALS

    ALS Super Moderator Staff Member

    I'm going to sound like a broken record. Every car Hyundai seems to be putting out over the last two years keeps raising the bar either with combinations of fuel mileage, warranty as well quality above and beyond their competitors.
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2012
  4. jcp123

    jcp123 Caliente!

    I've been saying the same thing too. They are doing a great job, and are getting noticed for it.
  5. SoSlo

    SoSlo Well-Known Member

    Anti-wave p&g, double rhythm p&g? Please explain.
  6. seftonm

    seftonm Veteran Staff Member

    I like the look of the Rio better, but the Accent seems to have it easily beat in passenger and cargo space. I'd like to try those two to see how they compare to the Fiesta that I got so familiar with :p
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 6, 2012
  7. WriConsult

    WriConsult Super Moderator

    Not sure what double rhythm p&g is, but I'll take a stab at anti-wave p&g. Since it was mentioned along with traffic congestion, I'm guessing Wayne was timing his pulses and glides to help break up (as well as avoid) the standing waves that often develop in stop/go or slow/go traffic.

    I did take cargo floor length measurements of the Accent, Fiesta and Rio at our local auto show last weekend. Accent=30" long, Rio=28" long, Fiesta=27" long.
  8. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Jcp123:

    IMHO, the 12 Rio had nicer interior styling, the interior plastics were a grade above those included in the Accent and the Rio SX included a telescopic wheel. The Accent appeared to have more standup cargo cap or "quality space" available because its hatch is not as "chopped off".

    On the FE front, I think the Rio may have been at a disadvantage due to its tires but I was driving an AT and could only use basic and intermediate techniques while in Austin, TX late last year. Pricing wise, the Accent buries the entire B-Segment. It is not available with all of the amenities of the Rio SX with the top of the line option package but it includes so many niceties for the < $17K price (that included D&H) that make it such an attractive offering. The only thing I would have wanted to see added is Hyundai’s Blue Link and a telescopic wheel.

    Dan, you are dead on with the Anti-wave P&G.

    SoSlo, double rhythm P&G was a particular technique to avoid a bad FAS trait associated with the new 2012 Civics and especially the stick.

  9. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi All:

    I completed the ICE-On aFCD calibration offset RT drive and here are the details.

    Fuel Economy round trip Segment aFCD calibration: Topped off at the Gurnee, IL Speedway, drove to 7-Mile Road in WI and back for the final top off.

    2012 Hyundai Accent SE

    Initial Top off and final displayed results of Trip A/B: 63.1 miles and aFCD = 54.9 mpg.

    Strong winds out of the West at 15 to 20 mph.

    Second and final top off with 1.095 gallons consumed.​

    After what I thought was going to be the final top off including bouncing the rear of the car up and down for about 15-seconds between four fills and top offs which is my standard procedure, I got back in the car and did some quick calcs showing a preliminary result of 63.1 miles/1.074 gallons = 58.75 mpgUS. I thought that is way too high compared to the displayed 54.9 mpgUS and knowing the odometer is probably showing low compared to actual like all the other Hyundai’s we have driven in the past, I was skeptical :confused: To make sure, I got back out of the car, shook the hell out of the Accent, opened up the fuel filler door and cap and restarted the pump for a second fill top off fill. I could only add another $0.07 worth of fuel.

    Google Map actual miles = 64.5 miles

    Actual gallons filled: 1.095 gallons

    64.5 miles/1.095 gallons = 58.904 mpgUS.

    The aFCD is underreporting by an almost unheard of 6.8%. Way to go Hyundai as they are the first automobile manufacturer to give you the benefit of the doubt by a nice percentage instead of the aFCD “fibbing” to the average consumer! This result also closely matches the 4.6% underreport when running at 100% Advanced too! Either way, it is nice to see a company give its owners a better idea of reality plus some than the pre-2005 Honda’s, current GM and some recent generation Toyota aFCD’s which “lie” to its owners by up to 10%! :mad:

    Last edited: Feb 7, 2012
  10. Right Lane Cruiser

    Right Lane Cruiser Penguin of Notagascar

    That is very very good!!
  11. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi All:

    And about that fuel filler door release. While common in most C, D and E-Segment vehicles, the B-segment is showing signs of the cost cutting with the interior controlled fuel filler door release being removed for a simple open from inside and fill.

    In the bigger scheme of things, someone siphoning your fuel is pretty remote but Msirach did have his Insight-II’s fuel tank filled with a substance as a prank which costs hundreds of dollars to repair. A locked car with a remote fuel door release removes some of the craving of would be vandals to mess with it.

    Hyundai Accent SE

    Interior remote fuel door release.​

    Another item I thought was noteworthy is while some manufacturers are charging as much as $195 for a set of four floor mats (Toyota), Hyundai is still charging just $95 which imho is a decent deal for OEM mats.

    Hyundai does not appear to “pile on” as hard as the rest but instead provides a good solid value from the car itself to the options packages and accessories you want to purchase.

    Good for Hyundai and good for us too.

    Last edited: Feb 7, 2012
  12. PaleMelanesian

    PaleMelanesian Beat the System Staff Member

    I see some prominent floor mat hooks. That's a good thing. (Looking at you, Toyota)
  13. Windy there too. Was in that 20 ish mph wind out of the west as I left Montreal QC yesterday, ALL THE WAY home to MI. :(
  14. philmcneal

    philmcneal Has it been 10 years? Wow

    can you elaborate what a bad FAS is wayne? So the new cars get finiky when you FAS?
  15. ksstathead

    ksstathead Moderator

    My 03 Tacoma and my 10 Prius both had prominent hooks. I think my 90 Camry even had them. Like the Accent hooks pictured, you won't get a second set of mats hooked on top of the oem ones.
  16. PaleMelanesian

    PaleMelanesian Beat the System Staff Member

    Of course. My 96 honda has no hooks, but my '04 does. Now the real question is, why would you put another set of floor mats on top of the ones already in place?

    Sorry for the off-topic. Accent good, go zoom, save gas, ugh ugh. :p
  17. ksstathead

    ksstathead Moderator

    I wouldn't, but that apparently was where toyota got the trapped gas pedal problem.
  18. I got to ride in the back seat of he Accent on Tuesday on the ride out of Chicago. Mike driving, Wayne in shotgun seat and I was behind Wayne. I had plenty of room, and a decently comfy ride. Road noise was terrible (but that's coming from the guy who, just got out of my truck from a 1500 mile trip, and has stripped out the interior and insulated the whole cab). Still, not bad for what the car is.

    Wednesday we left Waynes, all 4 of us in the Accent for the drive into Chicago, with me driving. Driving the Accent I noticed good smooth acceleration, very easy to shift. Although, I did have a few times I was having a hard time starting out in 1st and was in 3rd instead, I think this wasnt a car issue but driver as the others didn't seem to do it when they were driving.

    Our drive into Chicago was similar driving style to how I drive my truck. Pretty much posted speed limit, or a hair below, trying to time the lights. I think there were only half a dozen kills of the ignition approaching traffic lights. Nothing too advanced like most of you guys drive.

    With 4 of us in the car I still was able to get over 50 mpg for the drive in, very impressive!

    The ride back Wednesday night I hopped in the back seat behind the driver, Jud grabbed the drivers seat and slid it back all most all the way. I didn't say anything, just wanted to see how it was for me. Cramped, and tight. No room to even move my legs. Asking Jud about his leg room the next day, he said he could have moved it up and still been ok. I also noticed a lot worse ride quality with the 4 of us while I was in the back seat. Thinking about that, we had to be near the max payload of that car. Anyone know what payload is?
  19. jcp123

    jcp123 Caliente!

    You know, now that you mention it, I can't find payload specs...
  20. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi All:

    Some more on the 2012 Hyundai Accent including some individual drive, some show specials and the basic 50, 60 and 70 mph steady state specs performed right after the 2012 Chicago Auto Show Press events completion yesterday...

    2012 Hyundai Accent Review

    Just one driver and 63.1 mpg displayed -- 66.1 mpgUS actual into Chicago's morning rush hour with 40 degree temps.​


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