My wife has a 2008 Accent. I have an 88 Ford Festiva which was a Kia car with a Mazda engine. Kia made a better cars than Hyundai back then. That's why Hyundai bought Kia, & is one of the reasons Hyundai is pretty good right now.
With 8400 miles my wife's Accent has no squeaks, creaks or rattles. With bad stop & go, city, country & highway driving, she is averaging 32.4 MPG. With more highway driving on some tanks, her MPG is 35+MPG. I drove her car up to Mt. Rainier & 5500 foot Chinook Pass & back, getting 42.6 MPG! Yes, drive it easy & Accent will treat your pocketbook easy.
The Hyundai isn't as good as Honda or Toyota? Buck for buck tho, Hyundai may have an edge on H & T. While Honda Fits sell for $14,000+? & stripped Toyota Yaris's sell for $13,000, 6 airbag Hyundai Accents have been sold for $9000 with almost a 3 times longer warranty.
Two Yaris owners reported getting 48MPG & some Honda Fit owners almost got ~45MPG. Really thought the Accent was less efficient. But I took my wife's 2008 Accent up to Mt. Rainier & 5500 foot Chinook Pass from sea level & back, getting 42.6 MPG. It should get higher MPG on a flat highway. So Accent isn't v. far behind T & H, if at all.
Toyota and Honda = mainstream/respected manufacturers - innovators/leading the way, strong retained values, desirable cars.
Hyundai= budget/second rate manufacturer, more dated engineering technology, following the leaders, poorer retained values, weaker brand equity.
20:20 How are you getting 42 mpg out of an Accent? I just bought an '08, standard shift hatchback, which is their most gas efficient car, I even put a K&N air filter in it, I drive it pretty easy, I'm carrying no weight, going at or close to the speed limit, not accelerating fast, and I haven't seen anything above 35 yet. Not that I'm complaining; that's above EPA estimates, but still, I find 42 hard to believe. Mine has 2000 miles on it now, so it should be mostly broken in. It seems to be a really nice little car.
Well, 22:20. If you don't believe my 42.6MPG (you didn't mention that it was up 5500 foot Chinook Pass), you won't believe my next reports.
On the next tank of gas I went for a drive thru low valleys, but included one 1400 low mountain pass & two 600 foot hills. I got 45.1 MPG.
On the next tank after that, I climbed 4000 foot & 3000 foot mountain passes & several coulees in 101 degree heat at quicker than my normal pace. I got 41.5 MPG.
My last three cars have overall averaged 42, 45 & 31.4MPG (this last car averaging 4.4MPG over the EPA highway). Highway highs have been 50, 53 & 35.6MPG (this last car averaging 8+MPG over the EPA highway).
My old motorcycle would go to 110MPH & keep accelerating, but averaged 68 MPG with some tanks over 75MPG.
I've had extraordinary luck with MPG with my vehicles.
I strongly disagree with the comment stating that these cars have second rate engineering. They may have been second rate in the past, but now, especially with the "world engine" (a engine designed by Hyundai, Chrysler Corp., and Mitsubishi in a collaboration) people only say this because they believe the stigmas of the past are still apllicable to the products of today. Times have changed, and people are beginning to realize that the overall value of Hyundai products is exceeding that of the, yes still slightly lower quality Honda and Toyota (key word is SLIGHTLY, this gap has been closing at an exponential rate) the overall value is the fact that you get 110 h.p. out of a 10000 dollar car and put 300,000 kms on it, the same as a Honda or Toyota for much more.
00:59 It wasn't that I was calling your comment false, I just wondered HOW you can possibly be getting over 42 mpg out of an Accent, when I also drive it easy, have a premium air filter, and a standard shift.
I'm wondering if driving it at those higher elevations makes the difference? Are you using regular 87 or whatever octane gasoline, or something more expensive? I'd LOVE to see even 40 mpg, and looking for any tips that I can get to do so.
Hi 16:20...Yes, I've had extraordinary luck with high MPG vehicles. Here are some reasons. First, I love to travel & see the sights the Earth has to give. Obviously, slowing down which boosts MPG, I get to see those sights longer. Second, take time to accelerate. Accelerating fast like the other cars is no excuse to throw MPG away. Third, I take hills properly. Hills will take lots of MPG away, unless you think & approach hills carefully. Taking hills right will not add to your MPG. But it will keep you from losing lots of MPG. Fourth, remember, that engines burn fuel continually when operating. So you must think continually to save that fuel. Fifth, I have no cruise-control. I think I can get better MPG than cruise-control with the many hills & mountains that I have here in Washington state.
I have no reservations about Hyundais. If I could I would go out and get one of the newer ones today. The high mileage is merely a lack of an overdrive gear. My Ford Escort has the same problem. It, too, hits 3200-3500 on the highway. These cars are still efficient because of the small engine size and light weight. To compare a Hyundai Accent to a Toyota Corolla is to do it a disservice. When you compare it within it's class and price range, you find a pleasant car that has only the high engine speed and resultant lower fuel economy to drag it down. They could make the interior a little bit bigger, and should probably offer a diesel and a (station wagon) version, but right now, it's a good bargain, and a worthwhile competitor.
Toyota Yaris: drives more like a Ford Crown Vic than this.
Honda Fit: perfect in every way but price.
Chevrolet Aveo: the clothes don't make the car reliable, and the fuel economy is worse.
There's the competition, in a nutshell.
I drive a 2008 Accent and commonly get 32-33 mpg with "spirited" mixed driving (mostly city). I find the car very fun to drive and extremely comfortable for the price point.
My best friend has an Aveo, which immediately hurts my back as soon as I get in (not to mention the numerous problems he has that my accent has never had) Also, this car with CVVT (yes, unlike the famed v-tec is CONTINUOUS, and does not just happen at a certain rpm) has more than enough torque to drive without ever going over 3000 rpm (in auto at least).
Overall, after A LOT of research, this car has proven itself to me at least to be the best sub compact available aside from the fit. Also, notice SUB compact, unlike the Mazda 3 that is a compact and therefore competition for the Elantra...
I was seriously considering a Accent GS hatchback to replace my Mercury Tracer, but opted instead for a Kia Optima. They were roughly the same price used with the same mileage. The Optima is a lot larger and nicer in so many ways. I got a 5-spd manual, and surprisingly, I've gotten up to 34mpg, which seems to be about the best Accent owners are getting. Rather shocking considering the huge difference in size, weight, and engines. Glad I got the comfort and safety of the Optima instead.