By KBB.com Editors
KBB Expert Rating: 6.9
In recent years, Hyundai has made an impact on the automotive industry by introducing new nameplates and revising existing ones. Long gone is the bland styling that once plagued its lineup and here to stay is a new progressive design, outlook and strategy that could further cement the brand in the minds of consumers. The 2012 Hyundai Accent is no exception. All-new for 2012, the Accent has a new look, a new engine and even a versatile 5-door design that is poised to deliver some formidable competition to such as the Honda Fit, Ford Fiesta and Nissan Versa. While many consumers never would have thought to even look at an Accent, this revised version could have them doing double-takes.
With superb fuel economy, ample passenger space and an impressive list of available features, the 2012 Hyundai Accent is arguably the best value in its class.
While it is practical and fuel-efficient, the Accent is lacking in the fun-to-drive factor of its sub-compact rivals; specifically the Ford Fiesta and Mazda2.
The 2012 Hyundai Accent is completely updated from the model it replaces, boasting a new look, new engine and a host of standard and available features. Also, a new 5-door version joins the line-up.
Driving Impressions We were fortunate enough to drive the 2012 Hyundai Accent on an extended driving trip which consisted of over four hours of highway driving with some city driving mixed in....Over the course of the drive, we were delighted that the on-board fuel mileage readout continuously showed a reading between 40 and 41 mpg. Gas mileage aside, we also couldn't help but notice how quiet and stable the car is at speed. The transmission shifts smoothly and the engine responds quickly, and even after our extensive time behind the wheel we found the seats to be quite comfortable. We must say, though, that the Accent's driving dynamics are rather sedate. And, while this works well for some, it doesn't necessarily put the same kinds of smiles on our faces that the Fiesta and Fit do, because it lacks their sporty driving characteristics.
1.6-liter Gamma Engine
An engine that provides more horsepower and better fuel economy than those found in the Fit and Mazda2? We'll take it!
Fluidic Sculpture styling
While it isn't an exactly a feature, we really like the how the 2012 Hyundai Accent looks. The wavy, futuristic design sets the car apart from its competitors and even further apart from how it used to look.
While it doesn't have the same the funky, futuristic feel as the Honda Fit and Ford Fiesta, the 2012 Hyundai Accent does have a decidedly refined interior for a car in its class. Using bold shapes and semi-metallic finishes, the Accent's looks on the inside complement its looks on the outside rather handsomely. We especially like the backlit buttons and knobs.
Using the same "fluidic sculpture" design language incorporated in other models in Hyundai's lineup, the 2012 Accent wears dynamic and sculptural lines that give the car an upscale look. Wraparound head and taillamps, a high beltline and sculpted hood creases that flank the signature grille up front accentuate the car's aerodynamic look, giving it a sleek profile. Depending on the trim, the Accent has either 14- or 16-inch wheels as standard.
The 4-door Accent is available in the GLS trim level and the 5-door is labeled GS for the base trim and SE for the sporty and more highly-equipped version. Regardless of the trim level, all Accents come standard with a 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine, a 6-speed manual transmission and 14-inch wheels with wheel covers. The 5-door, however, has a few more standard features, including power windows, air conditioning and a 172-watt AM/FM/Satellite radio audio system with six speakers. The higher-trim SE 5-door adds to this list with more even more equipment, including steering wheel-mounted audio controls, Bluetooth, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, 16-inch alloy wheels and a roof spoiler.
The only options available for the 2012 Hyundai Accent are for the 4-door version; they are basically the same features that come standard on the 5-door. The more notable of these features are a 172-watt AM/FM/Satellite Radio, power windows, air conditioning, cruise control, Bluetooth and 16-inch wheels and tires.
The 2012 Hyundai Accent is powered by a new 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine that produces 138 horsepower and achieves up to 40 mpg on the highway. Hyundai used an aluminum design for this engine, as opposed to its predecessor's cast-iron block, in order to save weight and also incorporated gasoline direct injection (GDI), which is mostly responsible for the bump in power and fuel economy.
1.6-liter in-line 4
138 horsepower @ 6,300 rpm
123 lb-ft of torque @ 4,850 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 28/37
By Mike on Tuesday, March 10, 2015
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 5,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "Plenty of room in the front and rear. Great drive."
Cons: "Bigger gas tank. The 24 hour clock."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"First of all this is an economy compact car. With that in mind there are things you expect to get and things you don't expect to get from a vehicle like this. My rating reflects how well my expectations were met with this brand new off the lot purchase. I find the power ample. I don't have a lead foot, but when I need some extra power it is there to be had.I like the interior and have had no problems driving long distances with back discomfort. The interior seems as though it is built to last and I appreciate the cup holders front and rear. This is a quiet ride too. Sometimes at idle it is hard to know if the engine is running or not. Gear changes on my automatic is very smooth. I love the fuel economy. I average about 36 to the gallon between fill ups. On an interstate at about 65 mph with cruise control on and just me in the car, I can average over 42 mpg. Mine's a sedan, not a hatch back. Rear storage has been ample in every situation so far. I like the look better too. I enjoy the blue tooth for hand free phone calls and have found they system to work very well. It is not often I buy a new car. It is a big decision. So far no regrets."
6 people out of 7 found this review helpful
By Landon C on Monday, February 23, 2015
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 19,500overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8
"I have driven almost 20,000 miles in one year and have enjoyed this Hyundai Accent Hatchback. While the power does seem a little low it definitely makes up for it in gas mileage. I find that I average from 37-42 mpg on my road trips and from about 36-38 mpg commuting to work and back. The interior is a little cheap and so is the paint job, but the feeling of all power windows, doors, mirror is worth it for the price."
6 people out of 9 found this review helpful
By El stucko! on Wednesday, January 28, 2015
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 53,000overall rating 8 of 10rating details
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 6
"The seating material and/or color is not desireable......shows dirt, even water spots. The anti skid is not user friendly. Other than that, this car would be great for someone who does not eat or drink in it, and who does not live where country roads will be a problem in the winter."
18 people out of 31 found this review helpful
By gramps on Friday, January 23, 2015
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 45,083overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "great highway milage,excellant city millage"
Cons: "pickup is not as fast as my turbo Sante fe"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I bought this car in Albany NY and it was good in the snow. I retired to Edmond Ok. and it is better here."
16 people out of 26 found this review helpful
By Flogdog on Monday, December 15, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 45,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "Nimble, plenty of extras"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"Acceleration is surprisingly good for such a small engine. Seating is comfortable. My Accent has a lot of features and is painted a pretty light blue color. My only complaint is that the front air dam is too low to the ground and I have to stay back from curbs."
27 people out of 41 found this review helpful
By ScottyB on Monday, December 01, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 35,000overall rating 8 of 10rating details
Pros: "gas mileage, affordable"
Cons: "speakers are terrible"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 5
"There are more things that I like than those that I don't. It's a relatively spacious small sedan with decent acceleration and great gas mileage, but the speakers leave a lot to be desired. If you're a big music fan, this probably isn't the best vehicle for you."
13 people out of 22 found this review helpful