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2009 Hyundai Accent

Overview
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2009 Hyundai Accent Review

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Introduced in 1994, the Hyundai Accent led U.S. entry-level car sales from 2000-2005, mostly due to its value for the money and an aggressive warranty. Now that fluctuating high fuel prices have this segment heating up, Hyundai's third-generation Accent will have tough new competition for 2009 – Korean partner Kia's Rio, Honda's Fit, Nissan's Versa, Toyota's Yaris and Chevrolet's upgraded Aveo – but it still should continue to be up to the task.

You'll Like This Car If...

If an ultra-practical and affordable subcompact is your next vehicle purchase, you'll appreciate the 2009 Hyundai Accent's value, which includes numerous safety features, a long warranty and unusual availability of accessories. If your driving aspirations are bigger than your budget, you should also appreciate the SE three-door's sporty look, astonishingly responsive handling and cornering capability.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you want something a bit more expressive, especially in a four-door sedan, or prefer a Japanese or domestic brand, you should take a good look at the Honda Fit, Toyota Yaris, Nissan Versa and the surprisingly competitive Chevy Aveo.

What's New for 2009

For 2009, cruise control is added to the Popular Equipment Package, and the SE Premium Package now includes a power sunroof. Those with an eye on pump prices and their wallet will be happy to know that fuel economy estimates are up over those for last year's model.

Driving the Accent

Driving Impressions Hyundai's 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine generates 110 horsepower, but it's hardly a strong performer. Driving the optional four-speed automatic in our test GLS sedan, it managed zero-to-60 mph acceleration in a...

bit over 13 seconds. By today's standards, that's on the slow side. The SE three-door with the manual five-speed transmission can do it in about 11 seconds. Also, like most small engines in inexpensive cars, it's a bit noisy and thrashy at high rpm. Otherwise, our GLS rode and drove fairly well and scooted through turns with surprising response. Despite its eight manual adjustments, the driver's seat did not provide a really comfortable position for us, and its rearward adjustment was insufficient for our longish legs. The cloth-lined trunk is relatively roomy and the rear-seat pass-through is handy, but rear roominess is just par for the class.

GLS Handling
We were pleasantly surprised with the steering and handling of our Premium Package-equipped test GLS on its available 15-inch tires and alloy wheels, and the sports-oriented SE three-door does even better on its 16-inch tire-and-wheel package.

Hyundai Warranty
An extra-long warranty is one thing an automaker can offer to improve buyer confidence and Hyundai's is one of the best, with five-year/60,000-mile bumper-to-bumper and 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain coverage that's matched with impressive quality improvements.

2009 Hyundai Accent Details
2009 Hyundai Accent photo Interior

The Accent's interior materials are consistent with its price: Generally inexpensive but with attractive textures and two-tone trim. Among the least-appealing items is the central swing-open bin that's shaped like an ashtray but isn't; the actual ashtray is an odd removable cup that sits atop the console. The radio is an easy-to-use unit with large knobs for volume and tuning, while the three-dial HVAC controls are attractive and have a quality feel – except for a too-stiff temperature dial.

Exterior

While the SE three-door is sporty and expressive, we think the Accent sedan is pretty plain vanilla. Its design is clean, functional and fairly aerodynamic, but hardly exciting. The best part is probably up front, with large wide-eyed headlamps, a full-width lower air intake and distinctive grilles – a body-color bar across the three-door models, a black-out pattern on the four-door. One nice touch is a body-color protective molding along each side to fend off shopping carts and help prevent door dings.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The modest GS standard-equipment list includes power steering, tilt steering column, eight-way manually-adjustable driver's seat, 60/40-split rear seat, cabin air filtration, tachometer, variable intermittent wipers and a rear spoiler. The SE adds air conditioning, power windows, locks and mirrors, 172-watt six-speaker audio system with CD player and XM Satellite Radio, remote keyless entry with alarm and panic alert, fog lights, sport suspension, four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes (ABS), Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) and 16-inch alloy wheels. The GLS Sedan has base GS equipment plus air conditioning, but needs an optional equipment packages to get ABS brakes, auxiliary input jack, 172-watt CD player and the power items. All models boast extensive standard safety equipment, including seat-mounted side airbags and roof-mounted side-curtain airbags, in addition to advanced front airbags.

Optional Equipment

Optional on the SE are a power sunroof, cruise control and ground effects kit. A Popular Equipment Package for the GLS includes ABS, a 172-watt six-speaker CD audio system, auxiliary input jack and tilt steering wheel, while an available Premium Package adds all that plus 15-inch alloy wheels, power windows, locks and mirrors, remote keyless entry and cruise control. A four-speed automatic transmission is available on all three models, and there's a long list of (mostly sports-oriented) port- and dealer-installed accessories.

Under the Hood

Hyundai's 1.6-liter four has dual overhead camshafts, four valves per cylinder and CVVT (continuously Variable Valve Timing) on the intake side. It generates 110 horsepower and provides a very respectable – and wallet-friendly – 26/35 EPA miles per gallon when teamed with the optional automatic in the GLS sedan.

1.6-liter in-line 4
110 horsepower @ 6000 rpm
106 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 27/33 (manual), 26/35 (automatic)

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Buying this car?

2009 Hyundai Accent Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.2
Out of 10

Based on 289 Ratings for the 2006 - 2011 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.7/10
    Quality
    8.3/10
  • Reliability
    8.9/10
    Performance
    8.1/10
  • Comfort
    8.1/10
    Styling
    8.2/10

Would buy again

By on Thursday, July 03, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 95,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "No repairs needed, exceptional value"

Cons: "Interior rattles"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Warranty fixed one thing free otherwise no problems in 95,000 miles. Great on gas. Handles well except ride becomes poor with three or more passengers. Not a speed demon but good enough even with the air on. Interior is holding up well, sound system is great! Only problem is interior rattles otherwise a sound investment."

2 people out of 3 found this review helpful

Reliable, convenient little car!

By on Tuesday, June 24, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 68,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Affordable, reliable, fits anywhere, great storage"

Cons: "Interior isn't glamorous, mpg could improve (~26)"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I live in a congested urban area and his car is GREAT! It's reliable and can fit into the tiniest parking spot downtown. I always park in the spots regular cars and suvs have to pass up. In the three years I've owned it I have not had a major, costly service needed - so I would consider it as reliable as my old Toyota I had! Lastly, I'd say it has SURPRISING packing room. If you lay down the seats it can fit a LOT of stuff, and even furniture. A hatchback is great that way. I'm only going to sell mine when I get pregnant since 2-door is impossible with babies. Otherwise, I'd probably keep it another 10 years. Very surprised I loved my Hyundai as much as I do, but a hatchback in the city cannot be beat."

8 people out of 13 found this review helpful

so dissappointed

By on Friday, June 13, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 108,520

10 3.0
overall rating 3 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
3/10
Value
6/10
Reliability
7/10
Quality
3/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "nicer looking car great options handles excellent"

Cons: "constant issues not reliable"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"I loved my 1999 accent drove it until 238000 miles cried when had to retire it this 2008 although more options and nicer looking is dreadful in the last year put over three thousand in repairs and service . I finally hit the 100,000 mark and told needs $approx. 1800.00 in work feel like this is a money pit. I can assure everyone will be the last Hyundai in my driveway ever."

3 people out of 5 found this review helpful

my 2nd accent -- a great little car

By on Thursday, June 12, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 65,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "super reliable"

Cons: "mpg could be better"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This is the 2nd accent I have owned. The first i bought used, a 2005 2 door hatchback, this one i bought new. The 2010 is better quality, the 2005 had some rust issues. The only points about the car that I don't like is that I wish the mileage were better, i get about 30 mph with almost exclusive highway driving, though I do drive faster than I ought (would it get better mileage if I kept at or lower than 55 mpg? don't know). The other issue is that it's not super comfortable especially for long drives. But everything else is tip top! It's really reliable, i've only had to change the oil and brakes and other routine maintenance, no problems."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

Basic reliable transportation

By on Saturday, June 07, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 81,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "mileage, reliability"

Cons: "no frills. You get what you pay for."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"For the money, a solid car without frills or hassle. Dependable transportation with very good mpg and a comfortable ride."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

This car is very dependable

By on Thursday, June 05, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 92,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"In 2010 I decided to buy a low mileage Hyundai accent car for $17,400 It had 4 year or 50,000 warranty It came from Las Vegas with heavy stink of that nasty tobacco which I change cabin air filter it was gone. It has A/C, automatic transmission, power steering, power brakes, air bags. It gets this for Gas mileage 32-36 Highway-city. In 3 1/2 years driving everyday. Only ONE problem that did not leave me stranded and this was last year. It was engine malfunction light came on so I took it to dealer they reprogram computer cost me $160 dollars. Engine was and is in excellent condition . This car is the best I ever owned. It now has 92000 miles running strong I keep up with the maintenance schedules every 3 months so this car should last a long long time. Mahalo!"

1 person out of 3 found this review helpful

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