Recent Drive: 2009 Hyundai Accent GS

By Editors on June 26, 2009 6:35 AM
Given the low entry price of the Hyundai Accent -- which is about $10,700 including destination charge -- it's actually easy to ignore that two typical features are missing: air conditioning and a radio. The cheap price tag isn't the only factor that helps us shrug off those details, as the Accent is actually really fun to drive. The peppy 110-horsepower engine is coupled with a five-speed manual transmission that has some surprisingly short gear ratios, making accelerating and passing a quick and easy task. The interior is pretty spacious, providing a good amount of head and legroom -- at least for the front-seat occupants -- and the ride quality feels very refined for a compact economy car. Compared to the base-trim Nissan Versa, which carries an almost-identical price tag, the Accent has a better warranty and sportier characteristics, but that's not to say that the Versa isn't a bargain for those looking for more rear-seat space. In any case, a radio isn't included in either the Accent of Versa, so those in the market for either of these two economy cars will have to get used to the Zen-like driving experiences they provide.