2012 Accent to be unveiled in New York in April
Chris Bernius - CleanMPG
- Feb 16, 2011
2012 Hyundai Accent at Hyundai's "Area 51" Secret Test Facility in the Desert Southwest somewhere.
Hyundai will reveal the 2012 Accent at the New York International Auto Show (NYIAS) in April, and CleanMPG will be there "front-n-center" to provide all the details of this promising new generation B-segment model. Until then, let's take a peek behind the curtain and get an idea of what we will see in person in late April.
Pulse and Glide may be a proven technique for increasing fuel economy, but it definitely does not describe the product rollout and marketing philosophy of Hyundai Motor America! Like a world champion boxer delivering blow after blow to an opponent, the new Accent will arrive in the not-too-distant future to provide some serious competition in its market segment. Selling in the hotly contested subcompact market against the established Honda Fit, Ford Fiesta, Mazda 2, and arriving just before Chevy's new Corsa-based Sonic and Toyota's new Yaris, Hyundai knows the next Accent must have the credentials to arrive in showrooms already at the top of the class. What we have so far is information on the Accent offered in other markets (where it is sold as the Verna), and projections and quotes - both on and off the record - to piece together a preview of what will be unveiled in late April.
The next Accent will be available in two body styles - a four door sedan and a five door hatchback. Although the 3 door model will no longer be available, it's cousin - the Kia Rio - will offer a 3 door hatch. My guess? The Veloster will fit the bill for those coming to Hyundai showrooms looking for the sporty style of a coupe, while the Accent will offer 4 and 5 door configurations for full access to the rear seat to maximize practicality and utility.
Suspension will be handled by MacPherson struts up front and a Coupled Torsion Beam Axle ("CTBA") in the rear. It is the most common setup for the B-segment because of its combination of low cost, space efficiency, durability, and competent handling / comfy ride tunability. Hyundai has given the Elantra an excellent ride/handling blend, and there is no reason to doubt they will impress us with the new Accent.
2012 Hyundai Accent Sedan and Hatch
The 16" alloys on the hatch really make the Accent stand out
The engine powering the next Accent will likely be the 1.6L Gamma inline four with CVVT. Direct injection is offered in other markets, in 1.4L and 1.6L displacements. Considering the Elantra arrived late last year with multiport fuel injection (a cost saving measure), the Accent's new Gamma engine may also arrive with MPFI as well. We will know for sure in April.
Transmission options are expected to be six speeds for both the manual and automatic. John Krafcik, President and CEO of Hyundai Motor America, has been heard to say that buyers can expect EPA estimates of 30 city and 40 highway, whether they choose the manual or automatic. Although this does not expand much on the already impressive 29/40 of the hot selling 2011 Elantra, it does offer a significant improvement over the 2011 Accent, which rates 28/34 with 4AT and 27/36 with 5MT.
|Dimension||Front in. (mm)||Rear in. (mm)|
|Legroom F/R||41.8 (1062)||33.3 (846) |
|Headroom F/R||39.9 (1014)||37.2 (946) |
|Shoulder F/R||53.7 (1364)||53.4 (1356) |
|Hip room F/R||51.3 (1304)||47.2 (1198)|
What to expect - A generous helping of style and good material quality and fit & finish, as we have seen in the 2011 Sonata and Elantra. The "Supervision Cluster" LCD panel between the tach on the left and speedometer on the right seems to carry over from the new Elantra. It offers trip odometers, switchable Eco Mode driving, and fuel consumption averages. We have to wait until April to find out the details on trim and options offered. Bluetooth wireless and steering wheel controls, USB and iPod connectivity, and XM radio should appear in the list, likely as options on all but the top-tier trim level. Some more upscale options appear in other markets but probably won't make it to North America: Smart key with pushbutton start, moonroof, leather seating, park assist sensors, fog lights, side mirror repeater lights, and more.
2012 Hyundai Accent
The pretty side
2012 Accent 4 door sedan (...vs 2011 Accent 4 door sedan, for comparison)
|Dimension||2012 Accent sedan (in.) (mm)||2011 Accent sedan (in.) (mm)|
|Wheelbase||101.2 (2570)||98.4 (2500) |
|Length||172.0 (4370)||168.5 (4280) |
|Width||66.9 (1700)||66.7 (1694) |
|Height||57.4 (1457)||57.9 (1471)|
Numbers for the 5 door hatch haven't leaked out yet, but when they do, we'll find 'em.
There are no numbers available for weight, even in markets outside the US. The US-spec 2011 Accent weighs between 2365 (5MT) and 2403 (4AT) pounds, so we should expect the 2012 Accent to weigh up to roughly 2400 pounds.
What to expect - Hyundai Fluidic Sculpture styling scales down to the B-segment better than expected, and offers fresh and attractive styling to an entry-level model. The lowest priced car in the lineup is one you can be proud to own. A wide variety of colors will be available, from the conservative Sleek Silver and Carbon Gray to the vivid Ocean Blue, Green Apple, and Veloster Red.
Quick test: The 2012 Accent shown above is:
- The 2012 Accent base model; all equipment not shown is available at extra cost.
- A 2012 Accent left alongside the Cross Bronx Expressway for more than 20 minutes.
- The chassis structure of the new 2012 Accent, which features a collision load dispersal system to direct crash forces along three paths to protect the occupants.
Along with the robust new body shell, we can expect six airbags (dual front, and seat-mounted side and roof-mounted curtains), ABS and stability control, and seat belt pretensioners.
No conclusions to draw yet, since nothing is written in stone until that day in late April when the facts are provided along with all the fanfare and applause. But let's give it a try anyway.
The 2012 Accent appears to be incrementally longer in length and wheelbase, and about the same in height and width, and probably about the same weight.
The powertrain will be much more fuel efficient than that of the 2011 Accent.
And, of course, pricing and equipment levels are certain to make the competition break out in a cold sweat. The Accent appears poised to offer fuel economy ratings near best in class along with a price tag well within reach of younger buyers, who will also appreciate the added security of Hyundai Assurance.
Stay tuned, because it's only another two months before we will see the Accent on the stage and headed for showrooms.