Hyundai Accent: A Top Gear PH Review

Top Gear PH's observations through the years
by | Sep 30, 2018
PHOTO: Top Gear PH

This is what the Top Gear PH has said about the venerable Hyundai Accent through the years. Here's a quick breakdown of our observations from our reviews. 

  • The Accent CRDi is a three-star car with a five-star motor.
  • The E variant sedan is as bare as can be. While a Spartan four-speaker stereo, central locking, power windows and mirrors, and hydraulic power steering come as standard, there's little else. Not even an adjustable steering column.
  • To cope with the extra weight of the diesel motor, the CRDi comes with a much stiffer suspension than the old 1.6-liter gasoline variant.
  • Boost comes on at just over 1,500rpm, and doesn't run out of breath till it's past 4,000rpm. Thanks to short gearing, the rush only starts to peter out at over, oh, 160kph. But as those speeds are illegal outside of a racetrack, that's not an issue, is it?
  • The dark-colored nylon-fabric seats are wash-and-wear sensible. Cabin space is still at the sharp end of the class, and only the Nissan Almera and the Honda City have more. Surprisingly, this "bare" unit gets power windows and power-adjustable side mirrors, as well as central locking. Not bad for a taxi, huh?
  • There's a deep bin under the console big enough for a camera bag, as well as multiple-cupholders and an extra shelf under the 1DIN audio head unit.
  • The Accent's bulldog stance and fluidic styling have never been as sexy as its Kia Rio stablemate or even the new Toyota Vios, but it's not an embarrassing car to be seen in.
  • The Accent's bulldog stance and fluidic styling have never been as sexy as its Kia Rio stablemate or even the new Toyota Vios, but it's not an embarrassing car to be seen in.

  • Compared to Hyundai’s own 1,400cc Accent sedan, which is also available with either one of the two transmissions, the hatchback represents a P150,000 to P160,000

    premium. Meanwhile, compared to the top-of-the-line 1,600cc automatic-transmission sedan, the diesel automatic hatchback costs only P40,000 more.

  • Informal testing reveals that the engine in the sixspeed manual-transmission GL variant can deliver about 15km/L without even trying.

  • On the side of the 1,493cc DOHC common-rail direct-injection diesel engine that resides under the hood of this Accent hangs a desirable variable-geometry turbocharger. To a gearhead, it’s one of the most sought-after components in the

    entire automotive kingdom since it allows for a wide engine power band, thereby increasing the responsiveness and fuel efficiency of the engine.

  • The Accent is one of the best-kept secrets in the subcompact category. Its superb fuel efficiency, fun-to-drive factor, interior that’s bigger than it looks, and the split-folding rear seat work together in delivering a good car that’s easy on the pocket for the prospective used-car buyer.

  • If the exterior is distinctive, the interior is rather conventional. The trim is in all-black, with bits of metallic silver to relieve some of the monotony. The gauges are traditional large round analog units that indicate engine and vehicle speed, with digital bar graphs for fuel and coolant temperature. The trip computer data is displayed in the middle, with an “eco” indicator lighting up whenever you drive efficiently.

  • The Accent diesel uses either a six-speed manual or a four-speed automatic. We sampled the automatic, and it did a fine job of delivering the enormous torque. Shifts were quick and unobtrusive. The transmission is there just to make the car go faster. There’s hardly any need to downshift for more acceleration.

  • The Accent is powered by a common-rail diesel engine—just like what you’d find in a hulking pickup or SUV, but right-sized for application in a subcompact hatchback.

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PHOTO: Top Gear PH
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