2012 Hyundai Accent SE new car reviews

Yup, we corner-weighted this little guy. Our B-Spec Fiesta had just arrived, so we thought we'd see how they compared.

Better than: 1993 Hyundai Excel
But not as good as: World Challenge Kia Forte Coupe
GRM Bang For The Buck Index: 84.91

It's easy for an enthusiast to forget that Hyundais exist. Everybody talks about the typical sporting brands when compacts are up for discussion: Ford, Mazda, Honda. The carmaker formerly known for unreliable and uninspiring automobiles has turned an about-face on almost its entire lineup. This car is incredibly competitive for the class.

Its 1.6-liter engine is direct-injected and makes 138 horsepower. We were excited to get the stickshift: Unusual for the class, it has six forward speeds. The well-equipped SE trim has redundant stereo controls on the steering wheel, satellite radio, keyless entry, Bluetooth connectivity and 16-inch alloy wheels.

This blue one arrived in our parking lot just after our Ford Fiesta STF and B-Spec project car, so we were eager to compare them. This one weighs 2469 lbs. with 3/4 tank of fuel, after removing the floor mats. We would've removed the spare tire, but it doesn't have one—just a tire repair kit.

Corner weights (in lbs.):
LF: 800 RF: 703

LR: 407 RR: 484

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Other staff views

David S. Wallens David S. Wallens
Editorial Director

I didn't really drive this one. Then why am I reviewing it? I recently drove the Kia Rio sedan, this car's near twin. Quickie impressions: Wow, what a quiet, composed ride for a B-segment car.

Hyundai and Kia, congrats on coming so far so quickly.

Per Schroeder Per Schroeder
PowerDork

Wow, what a cool little car. 2460 pounds, 138 horsepower, 6-speed transmission--and it doesn't even handle that bad. To me, this car and its half-sister, the Kia Rio are two of the most interesting cars on the road. They're cheap, fun and feisty. Think of them as a modern day Volkswagen A2 Gti—with a Korean accent.

Alan Cesar FartSmeller69
SuperDork

This is probably the gutsiest base B-segment car on the road this side of a Fiat 500 Abarth. It's a looker, too. I dig Hyundai's styling direction lately, and have been impressed with the incredible value these cars and their Kia cousins offer. Frankly, it's a lot of car for sixteen grand.

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Comments
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Appleseed
Appleseed MegaDork
4/11/12 12:28 a.m.

The real question is will the aftermarket FINALLY make some go fast bits for these?

DaewooOfDeath
DaewooOfDeath Dork
4/14/12 3:14 a.m.

Just drove one around, an automatic base model. I have two pieces of advice. Avoid the 14 inch low friction tires at all cost. They are horrible. Avoid the auto. It slows the car down and won't allow you to rev the engine to redline.

Alan Cesar
Alan Cesar Dork
12/10/13 12:00 a.m.

It's easy for an enthusiast to forget that Hyundais exist. Everybody talks about the typical sporting brands when compacts are up for discussion: Ford, Mazda, Honda. The carmaker formerly known for unreliable and uninspiring automobiles has turned an about-face on almost its entire lineup. This car is incredibly competitive for the class.

Its 1.6-liter engine is direct-injected and makes 138 horsepower. We were excited to get the stickshift: Unusual for the class, it has six forward speeds. The well-equipped SE trim has redundant stereo controls on the steering wheel, satellite radio, keyless entry, Bluetooth connectivity and 16-inch alloy wheels.

This blue one arrived in our parking lot just after our Ford Fiesta STF and B-Spec project car, so we were eager to compare them. This one weighs 2469 lbs. with 3/4 tank of fuel, after removing the floor mats. We would've removed the spare tire, but it doesn't have one—just a tire repair kit.

Corner weights (in lbs.):
LF: 800 RF: 703

LR: 407 RR: 484

Like what you read here? You can get a whole magazine full of these types of articles delivered to your home or shop 8 times a year. Subscribe now!

Visit the Grassroots Motorsports online store for back issues.
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