By KBB.com Editors
KBB Expert Rating: 7.7
Inside and out, the all-new-last-year Hyundai Azera is, in 2013, arguably the best-looking car in the large-sedan class. It's also among the most powerful and most fuel-efficient. It offers the best features (many of them standard) and still qualifies as a terrific value. If only it drove better. The Azera's appearance moves it toward the sportier side of the category but makes promises its chassis can't keep, with ride and handling that are average at best. That may or may not be a problem for any given shopper, and it just makes a good case for taking a long and critical test drive before buying. It if feels okay to you, great, because from a bang-for-the-buck perspective, the 2013 Azera is untouchable.
It's stylish, powerful and fuel-efficient, yet the 2013 Hyundai Azera's strongest competitive advantage is its unique combination of features and value. If you like modern goodies and saving a buck, start your large-sedan search here.
The new Azera doesn't have the floaty, uncontrolled ride that afflicted its predecessor, but the suspension remains a weak point. If you demand a highway ride that is controlled and well-damped, you'll probably want to look elsewhere.
The Azera was completely reinvented just last year, and for 2013, there are no changes except for a 1-mpg improvement in the car's EPA highway rating, to 29 mpg.
Driving Impressions There's no question the big Hyundai Azera is comfortable and its 293-horsepower V6 engine and 6-speed automatic transmission are smooth and responsive. But depending on your expectations, overall ride and...handling may be an issue. The electric power steering lacks feel and the suspension is not completely poised over rough surfaces. The 19-inch wheels and tires that come in the otherwise desirable Technology Package add some harshness without a big payback in grip. Do these shortcomings amount to deal breakers? Not for most buyers, but be sure to take a good long test drive.
One of our favorite features is actually a collection of many: The Azera's roster of standard features is really quite striking.
Heated front seats are increasingly common across all segments, but the 2013 Hyundai Azera's ventilated, cooled front seats and its even rarer heated rear seats are nice touches.
Especially when upgraded with the Technology Package, the 2013 Hyundai Azera's passenger cabin pretty much tops its class and even puts pressure on some well-established luxury cars. It offers more convenience and infotainment technologies than any of its competitors, good front seats (not a Hyundai trademark) and nine airbags including a driver's knee airbag that helps keep the driver seated upright and properly positioned in case of impact. The Technology package adds a moonroof, memory for the driver's seat (plus outside mirrors and steering column), a 14-speaker Infinity audio system and rear sunshades.
Hyundai calls its current styling theme "Fluidic Sculpture," and the rakish 2013 Azera is a fine example. Aggressive sheetmetal with bold character lines in the flanks, integrated exhaust outlets and crisp LED lighting all around – daytime running lights, taillights and side-mirror-integrated turn indicators – contribute to the Azera's sporty, class-above charisma.
The 2013 Hyundai Azera has one of the category's higher starting sticker prices – $33,125 with destination – but also boasts the most impressive list of standard equipment. Highlights include a navigation system with 7-inch screen and rearview camera, keyless entry and push-button start, front and rear heated leather seats, BlueLink telematics with OnStar-like safety and convenience services, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, plus iPod/USB and auxiliary audio ports.
We're big fans of simplified pricing structures, and the 2013 Hyundai Azera's is about as simple as they come. Do you want the Technology Package? That's the only question, as all the available options are bundled into that one group. For another $4,000 – a grand total of $37,125 – you add a panoramic moonroof, ventilated (cooling) front seats, Infinity premium sound system, xenon headlights, sunshades for all three rear windows, power driver's-seat cushion extension (added thigh support for longer legs), seat-position memory with power-adjustable steering wheel, rear parking sensors, and 19-inch wheels.
The 2013 Hyundai Azera features a strong and efficient 3.3-liter V6 engine that sends power to the front wheels via a 6-speed automatic transmission with a manual shift mode. It's among the category's more impressive powertrains, and one of the most efficient; that EPA highway estimate of 29 mpg, in particular, is notable considering the power of the engine and the size of the car it has to move.
293 horsepower @ 6,400 rpm
255 lb-ft of torque @ 5,200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/29 mpg
By azmtbbc on Tuesday, November 18, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 52,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "value, performance, features, comfort, space"
Cons: "no significant complaints"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"My comments come after owning the car for 2.5 years, putting over 50K miles on it, and are calibrated considering my buy-in price of just a little over 31K new (plus tax etc). All the good remarks about room, features, comfort etc are right on the money. It's hard to imagine a more stylish and feature packed car in this price range. I don't understand the complaints about the steering and handling. I've been a very spirited driver my whole life and have no complaints about the balance that Hyundai struck between ride comfort and handling composure during hard cornering. Lean is well controlled and the suspension is very well damped, almost a little too much at times as the car has a firm ride, but I like that. The steering feels solid and well connected, and I have never noticed mine wandering like some others complain of. In fact the car goes very straight hands-off. The OEM tires have limits that can be found quickly, but the car exhibits very benign understeer that is typical of front drivers and it never does anything unexpected even when pushed hard. I once found myself mixed up with a large group of Corvette owners doing a club run up a windy mountain road. After 20 or 30 miles of fun, I found that the lowly Hyundai sedan had left most of them in the dust and was only behind a handful of the better/faster drivers in the club. I was very impressed with the car in general but definitely wishing for some sticky tires. Obviously I'm not trying to say that the car is a sport car beater, but I thought it did quite well for a large family sedan. I've done many long trips with this car and never once found it tiring in any way; in fact, quite the opposite, always found it comfortable and capable. Some of my trips include long stretches of remote two lane at very elevated speeds. The car is composed and confidence inspiring even cruising at speeds between 100-120 (only done when alone and visibility allows of course). I've had zero problems with the car since new. I only have two nitpicks that have to do with the engine/transmission tuning. One is that it runs rich under heavy acceleration and often leaves some black residue around the exhaust tips. I've asked the dealer about this but there is no update available. The second is that the shift performance could be sharper. With the go pedal mashed, you can actually feel the acceleration taper off slightly between shifts, as if engine timing is being reduced to limit torque during the shift. I think the car would be noticeably quicker and more fun to drive if they would allow the transmission to shift harder and keep full power on through the shifts. Other than those two minor things, I have no complaints with the car. I typically get 25 in town and 29-30 on the highway running about 80. Obviously there are better cars out there, and if you want a true sports sedan you should be looking at RWD, but you will write a much bigger check for them. For what it is and in this price range, the Azera is a great car."
2 people out of 2 found this review helpful
By tost on Tuesday, November 18, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 44,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I wanted a BMW or Mercedes because of the looks and features, but this car has given me everything that those cars have except the badge. I love the looks and the features are unbelievable."
1 person out of 1 found this review helpful
By TJ on Monday, November 17, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 30,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"I bought my Azera in Aug 2012 new. I have not had one issue with it. Love the vented seats... lifesaver in the summer heat. It just rolled over 30,000 miles today and only been to the dealer once for a minor issue the tire light. My 3rd Hyundai and never had an issue with any of them. I would buy another one tomorrow."
2 people out of 4 found this review helpful
By j.b. on Wednesday, August 27, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 11,000overall rating 6 of 10rating details
Pros: "Car has a comparable look to an top end Mercedes."
Cons: "Drive it for a hundred miles and you are spent..."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1
"This is a flagship vehicle that has very poor performance. The most obvious is in the electric motor power steering. It is sluggish, wanders, must exert force to steering wheel to accomplish goal. Open highway demands an ever vigilant approach to driving because of the autos tendancy to float and wander. I've had it back to the dealership including a factory rep with the usual, "feels o.k. to me."To discover this issue at purchase I would of needed a much longer test period. We bought a car that looks great but performs terribly."
10 people out of 18 found this review helpful
By BillyC on Friday, August 01, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 15,600overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "Fair price, comfortable, and fun to drive"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"Hyundai Azera I own is a 2013 model fully loaded. It has been a great car and is as comfortable as any mid-size sedan I have ever ridden in. Going to be trading it in for 2015 Genesis. I have owned 6 Hyundai's and all have been outstanding vehicles."
9 people out of 14 found this review helpful
By Azeraowner on Wednesday, July 23, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 34,000overall rating 5 of 10rating details
Pros: "Like the styling and driving dynamics."
Cons: "Initial build quality, parts availability"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1
"Purchased this vehicle new in October 2012. Within the first 1,500 miles a body creak developed which took 5 or 6 visits to the dealer including a loaner vehicle 3 times to resolve. Eventually the dealer was able to resolve this issue. Life was good until 34,000 miles. At 34,000 miles the air conditioning failed. Brought the car to the dealer on 7/10/14 at which time we were told the compressor had failed and that the parts were not available and that they were on a national backorder. Within a few days word came that parts were scheduled to arrive at the Hyundai warehouse on 7/21/14 and that the part would be available within 1-2 days at the dealer. Now it is 7/23/14 and all the dealer can tell us is that the parts are not yet available. Hyundai does not give any more information than that. To date I have no idea when Hyundai might decide to fulfill their obligation to us and repair the vehicle. All that I hear from their consumer affairs people is how sorry they are for the inconvenience and they understand how I feel. I would much rather have a definitve date that the parts will arrive so that the vehicle can be repaired. Bottom line is that we really like this car, the problem that we have is that with both issues we've had the repair has taken too long and Hyundai has been very poor in responding to our needs. We came from a Toyota thinking that we would try something else, now we will be lifelong Toyota buyers."
3 people out of 4 found this review helpful