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slefain
slefain Dork
6/15/09 8:23 a.m.

And I liked it!

What the heck is wrong with me? I rented an Accent and drove it through the rolling prairie of Missouri over the weekend. On the highway it was quieter than my Passat, it had a nice overdrive gear that kept revs down, the seats were comfy, the ride was nice, and the trunk was huge. I tested the 6,500 RPM redline a few times and found the little engine eager to rev. I held the A/T shifter in gear to get full use of each gear for an highway on-ramp merge test. That little car scooted up to 70 mph in a respectable time. The short wheelbase made frost heaves a little fun, and the rear shocks were already toast at 28k, but overall I was impressed with the car. I actually went home and priced on out online, a whopping $13.5k with all the options.

What the heck is wrong with me? Shouldn't I have been cursing being saddled with a tiny pedal car by the rental company? The car didn't have any frills or stupid gadgets, it was just a good little transporter that I thought could be fun on a course with the right tires & wheels.

I think I'll go home tonight and crank my '69 Olds Delta 88 and listen to the 455 cubic inches to see if I snap out of it.

Per Schroeder
Per Schroeder Technical Editor/Advertising Director
6/15/09 9:07 a.m.

I dunno, I loved the Kia Rio that I had as a rental car recently. I just wish there was an aftermarket for them so I could justify one as a project car.

4cylndrfury
4cylndrfury HalfDork
6/15/09 9:16 a.m.

I think theres room to actually like one of these...like was said in the "cars other people fawn over" thread, any car can be fun in the right circumstances. Tuned well and driven in anger, one of these could be a fun DD that slips between the cones well enough...

MiatarPowar
MiatarPowar HalfDork
6/15/09 9:27 a.m.

I think that the 3-door Accent is one of the best looking new cars on the market.

There. I said it.

Greg Voth
Greg Voth Associate Publisher
6/15/09 9:31 a.m.

So I am not alone. Around 2400 lbs and 110hp. Sounds like the starting point for a lot of cars we play with.

Per Schroeder
Per Schroeder Technical Editor/Advertising Director
6/15/09 9:35 a.m.

Yep. Sounds a lot like a 1986 Gti.

93celicaGT2
93celicaGT2 Dork
6/15/09 9:39 a.m.

Sounds like a weaker, more expensive Escort GT to me. But if i really wanted that warranty and working A/C, i'd definitely consider one.

That silver one looks GREAT.

griffin729
griffin729 New Reader
6/15/09 9:48 a.m.

Had one as a rental for a few weeks around Thanksgiving '07, while my Subie was in the body shop. The only complaints I had with the car probably would've been fully cured by tires and a third pedal.

Greg Voth
Greg Voth Associate Publisher
6/15/09 9:57 a.m.

That cash for clunkers bill would make this a brand new car for about 7k. With a ten year warranty.

Automobile magazine made the car look fun. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D4Nfr-RgkSQ

petegossett
petegossett Dork
6/15/09 10:44 a.m.

Yep, I really liked the Accent SE & was considering one. But then I looked at depreciation on a Fit vs. an Accent.

Seriously though, a used Accent SE would make a fun cheap car, that I would expect to be pretty reliable. But the stock shifter would need upgraded ASAP.

aircooled
aircooled SuperDork
6/15/09 10:50 a.m.
MiatarPowar wrote: I think that the 3-door Accent is one of the best looking new cars on the market. There. I said it.

I agree. I saw one the other day and thought "you know, that is what a Honda is supposed to look like"

Reminded me of the cars Honda used to make. It's nice to see that they are turning the corner on cars that "look" Korean.

mw
mw Reader
6/15/09 10:54 a.m.

I like them too. I think a DD/ Autox project car on one of the 3 doors would be great.

jstein77
jstein77 HalfDork
6/15/09 12:34 p.m.

When I first saw those a few years ago, my first thought was "Wow, that would look cool with 4WD, a turbo, and fat flairs - you know, ala WRC?"

Joe Gearin
Joe Gearin Associate Publisher
6/15/09 1:20 p.m.

It seems like every time we have a new Hyundai around the office, it exceeds expectations. From the Accent, to the Genesis Sedan, to the Elantra.... they are all better than you would expect them to be.

After driving cars loaded with every non-essential do-hickey imaginable, it is a lot of fun to drive a stripper. It always is.

wherethefmi
wherethefmi HalfDork
6/15/09 1:45 p.m.

13.5k is about right and there's a local dealer offering 5k cash back!!! Though this car doesn't interest me, I loved the comfort and GREAT gas mileage of my 06 Sonata, I was getting 32 highway, and about 25 city. Only thing I would have liked was a manual, but the wife refuses to learn to drive one

Chris_V
Chris_V SuperDork
6/15/09 2:12 p.m.
MiatarPowar wrote: I think that the 3-door Accent is one of the best looking new cars on the market. There. I said it.

I'll agree that it's one of the best looking small cars on the market, for sure. Especially with the 5 spoke alloys.

Too bad they are about to ruin it with this face:

Bobzilla
Bobzilla HalfDork
6/15/09 2:14 p.m.

I still haven't driven a 5-spd SE. Drove the Auto 3dr SE and the suspension was tight and the 16's were responsive for a crappy All Season tire. I think with a 5-spd it would have been a great DD.

subrew
subrew New Reader
6/15/09 11:10 p.m.

We've enjoyed our '08 Accent quite a bit. Wife's daily driver. FWIW, i like it better than my parents Fit.

Chris H.

Luke
Luke Dork
6/15/09 11:14 p.m.

Are those MINI wheels?

Whatever they are, they look great on it!

Lesley
Lesley SuperDork
6/15/09 11:58 p.m.

I got the E36 M3 kicked out of me on Truth About Cars for saying I like those. The one I had wore extra large bling-bling rims... it was really cute.

ddavidv
ddavidv SuperDork
6/16/09 6:21 a.m.
Per Schroeder wrote: I dunno, I loved the Kia Rio that I had as a rental car recently. I just wish there was an aftermarket for them so I could justify one as a project car.

C'mon Per, that should never stop you.

It is a vicious cycle. Nobody makes aftermarket stuff for cars like this (or do they in Asia?) so nobody buys them to 'play' with. And because nobody buys them to play with, the aftermarket ignores them.

I think you should take up the challenge. Find out what will fit. Adapt some parts. Have a sway bar or two made. Get creative. Get out of that comfy mail-order zone. It can't be any harder or more frustrating than dealing with Saab B motor water pumps.

petegossett
petegossett Dork
6/16/09 7:18 a.m.

I looked under the Accent. I'm 99.99%-sure you could find struts from another application that would bolt-in. Other than that, everything else is pretty easy suspension/exhaust/intake wise.

I agree it would make a great GRM series, especially something like this where you're kind of on your own & breaking ground!

Per Schroeder
Per Schroeder Technical Editor/Advertising Director
6/16/09 7:50 a.m.

Ok, maybe when the current generation hits 3k or less. That won't be long, as I'm already seeing them at 5-7k.

Stuc
Stuc HalfDork
6/16/09 8:15 a.m.

I know the previous generation (which I own and prefer the profile of) had adjustable front and rear sway bars, front and rear strut bars, and reputable coilovers. No bolt-in big brake kits though.

Bobzilla
Bobzilla HalfDork
6/16/09 8:37 a.m.

The part I do not like with the current Accent when compared to the previous gen is they dropped the Macstruts in the rear and went weird on us. I know I can still find frt/rr sway bars, strut bars and coilovers fairly easy. Durable cars (our 00 has 165k hard miles and runs great) and I think they would do well as a double duty car.

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