The 2014 Hyundai Azera blends a seductive outer skin with a lush interior filled with premium amenities usually reserved for cars costing tens of thousands more. The Azera is powerful yet relatively fuel-efficient, and although we wish it exhibited a bit more athleticism in the corners, we can't complain about the smooth and well-regulated ride. Positioned against the Toyota Avalon and Nissan Maxima, the Azera's standard content list is impressive, as are its comfortable seats, intuitive electronics and well-appointed interior. As driving tastes can vary, we advise taking the Azera for a good long test drive to judge for yourself, but those looking for comfort over performance will likely enjoy the experience.
You'll Like This Car If...
If you're seeking a roomy, stylish sedan as impressive in features as it is price, the 2014 Hyundai Azera should move to the top of your shopping list. Hyundai's 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty comes at no extra charge.
You May Not Like This Car If...
If you think the Azera's sleek and stylish exterior promises equally impressive ability in the corners, be prepared for a letdown. While the ride is smooth and comfortable around town, it's not as much fun to drive as the Nissan Maxima, Chevrolet Impala or Chrysler 300.
For 2014, Hyundai drops the Azera's price by nearly $1,300, reconfigures some of its content, and adds a new base model that includes a 6-inch color LCD audio display, a rearview camera and a driver's blind-spot mirror. The Limited trim gains a new 8-inch navigation system and power-folding side mirrors.
Driving the Azera
You'll get no argument from us that the Azera's 293-horsepower V6 is a formidable engine, or that its 6-speed automatic is one of the most competent transmissions we've tested. However,...
... when it comes to the Azera's overall ride and handling, things are not so rosy. Hyundai's electric power steering lacks feel and the Azera's suspension, while comfortable over smooth surfaces, is easily unsettled over rough or choppy pavement. Toss in the 19-inch wheels that come standard with the Premium Package and the Azera's ride goes from acceptable to harsh, but with no return of improved grip or cornering.
STANDARD EQUIPMENT Even with its reconfigured content this year, for the money, the 2014 Hyundai Azera offers a staggeringly rich standard content bundle.
CLIMATE-CONTROLLED SEATING Heated front seats are still an option on some sedans, but they're standard on the Azera, with the Limited trim adding ventilated cooling front seats and heated rear seats.
2014 Hyundai Azera Details
Especially when upgraded with the Premium Package, the 2014 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, comfortable front seats for both driver and passenger (not a Hyundai trademark) and nine airbags including a driver's knee airbag. The Premium Package adds a panoramic moonroof, a power rear sunshade and manual side-window sunshades.
Hyundai calls its current styling theme "Fluidic Sculpture," and the rakish 2014 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 2014 Hyundai Azera has one of the category's higher starting sticker prices – $31,895 with destination – but also boasts the most impressive list of standard equipment. Highlights include keyless entry and push-button start, automatic climate control, rearview camera, auto headlights, 18-inch alloy wheels, heated front seats, leather seating, BlueLink telematics with OnStar-like safety and convenience services, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, plus iPod/USB and auxiliary audio ports. The Limited adds navigation, 14-speaker Infinity audio, heated and cooling front seats, heated rear seats, 10-way power driver's seat, power tilt/telescoping steering wheel and power folding side mirrors.
We're big fans of simplified pricing structures, and the 2014 Hyundai Azera's is about as simple as they come. Do you want the Limited trim's Premium Package? That's the only question, as all the available options are bundled into that one group. For another $2,150 you add a panoramic moonroof, 19-inch wheels, a power rear sunshade, manual side window sunshades, and rear park assistance.
Under the Hood
The 2014 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.
The Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) for the 2014 Hyundai Azera starts at $31,895. The Limited trim starts at $35,645 with the $2,150 Premium Package as the sole option. Check KBB.com's Fair Purchase Price to see what Hyundai Azera buyers are paying in your area. For a while, even well after the vehicles became good, Hyundais suffered from poor residual values but those days are largely gone. The 2014 Hyundai Azera is projected to hold its resale value well, about even with the Nissan Maxima, slightly behind the Ford Taurus, and a little ahead of the Toyota Avalon.
Pros: "A lot of car for the money, a bargain at any price"
Cons: "None so far."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I looked at several cars in this segment, Kia Cadenza, Toyota Avalon, etc.. The base Azera came with more standard equipment than the rest of them for far less money. I almost got the Limited but didn't want a panorama roof. I gave up very little else. I've had the car for 6 weeks and put almost 5K miles on it already. The highway fuel economy is much better than the EPA ratings. I've seen 34 mpg with no traffic consistently. Very quiet ride and smooth ride. Lots of room (I'm 6'4"). Adult size people can sit behind me in comfort. Plenty of power on tap at any time. I'm still getting used to all the features. The low fuel light came on and the car asked me if I'd like to find the nearest gas station! Amazing. I trade cars in every 18-24 months, but I think I'll hang onto this one a lot longer. You don't see many on the road so it's fairly exclusive. Looks and drives like cars that cost a lot more. It's the same car as the Kia Cadenza but looks bigger and more expensive. Hyundai should advertise them more. Resale isn't so good, but the discounts you can get on a new one will make up for it."
"This is the best auto I have owned even though it is about $3500 lesser cost compared to previous makes I have owned. There have always been a couple of changes I would have recommended in prior sedans I have owned. I would not have a single one to make on this vehicle. 1-2 mpg above stated expected mileage. Greater interior room for all passengers. Larger trunk space. Extremely quite motor as well as road noise. What more could one ask for? I have the Limited model."
"I purchased this car after a fuel pump failure on my previous car based on the reliability of my wife's Hyundai Elantra. So help me I have looked for something wrong or something negative about this car and after two years it remains a solid, reliable performer, with zero problems of any kind. I'm a nit picker so that's saying something!! The only engineering change I would recommend is after gearing down to slow the vehicle it remains in 1st gear rather than return to drive. That's it! Great car!~!!"