The 2018 model year introduces the fifth generation of the sub-compact Hyundai Accent
—only, with increased interior space, it’s now classified as a compact. The new model features improved dynamics, a quieter ride, attractive exterior, and a high-tech interior, Hyundai
says. The new model’s key feature is advanced high-strength steel, which composes 54.5% of the vehicle: up 13 percentage points from the fourth generation. Hyundai also points out that the Accent’s torsional rigidity improves by 32%.
Exterior FeaturesThe 2018 Hyundai Accent is wider than the previous generation by 1.2 in., and the overall length has increased by 0.6 in., while height remains unchanged. The wheelbase has also increased by 0.4 in., pushing the wheels farther to the corners and improving interior roominess.
The 2018 Accent’s more rigid chassis improves noise isolation and overall driving dynamics, according to Hyundai. The new exterior design features Hyundai’s cascading grille—a visual signature integral to the company’s identity—flanked by wraparound headlights and available LED signature daytime running lights. The sweeping roof profile and sharp character lines run the length of the car, meeting available slim LED wraparound taillights. The new Accent features standard 17-in. alloy wheels and side mirror LED turn signal indicators. The underside of the car is sculpted for aerodynamics, and Hyundai points to a new front-lip spoiler and lower ride height as contributors to the Accent’s efficient design.The driver-friendly interior layout features improved roominess, intuitive controls, and premium soft-touch materials. Technology features include a wide instrument panel that features a standard reversing camera system with a 5-in. or optional 7-in. color TFT LCD display. Beneath the screen, the control panel features a horizontal layout, with buttons and controls logically grouped by function. The lightweight but strong seat frame helps to keep occupants steady in collisions. Heated front seats are available. The standard rear seats fold with a 60/40 split. Total interior volume is 103.9 cu. ft.
Optional FeaturesAvailable features on the 2018 Accent include projector headlights with LED DRLs; power sunroof; fog lights; 6-speed automatic transmission; larger touch screen; Blue Link Connected Services with 3 years of standard complimentary service, including remote start; hands-free smart trunk release; dual USB charging; heated front seats; proximity push-button start and automatic temperature control; and forward-collision avoidance assist.
Under the HoodFor 2018, the new Accent receives an updated standard powertrain that includes a 1.6-liter gasoline direct-injection (GDI) engine, which produces 130 horsepower and 119 lb.-ft. of torque. Compared with the previous-generation Accent, Hyundai says, the engine’s powerband has improved, with increased low-end torque to make drivability easier. A 6-speed manual transmission is standard; an automatic transmission is optional. The automatic transmission includes the company’s Drive Mode Select feature to adjust both powertrain performance and steering calibration, allowing the driver to customize the driving character by selecting two modes—Normal or Sport—by touching a button on the center console.
Fuel EconomyFuel efficiency has also been improved by an estimated 7% overall, Hyundai claims. According to the EPA, the 2018 Hyundai Accent returns 28 mpg in the city, 38 mpg on the highway, and 32 mpg combined with the automatic transmission, and 28/37/31 mpg with the standard manual transmission.
SafetyThe 2018 Accent features several collision-protection improvements. The front crumple zones have been increased; front side air bags have been upgraded; and reinforcements have been added to improve the car’s collision-energy management performance, especially in small overlap crashes. The greater proportion of high-strength steel also improves collision-energy management without adding weight, Hyundai says.
New for 2018 and for the segment, the new Accent offers available forward collision-avoidance assist that employs a front forward-facing radar to detect a vehicle and warn the driver of a potential collision. If the driver does not react to avoid the impact, the system will automatically apply emergency braking.
Improved ride comfort, handling, and stability are achieved through key developments in the suspension. The standard Motor-Driven Power Steering (MDPS) system instantly adjusts to changing driving conditions for greater precision and steering feel while improving fuel economy, Hyundai says. The new Accent offers a proximity key with push-button start, so drivers never need to pull out a key from their pocket or purse. The optional 7-in. touch screen features both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto for seamless and intuitive operation of the most commonly used smartphone functions, including app-based navigation, streaming audio, and voice-controlled search capabilities. Blue Link integrations for Amazon Alexa and Google Home allow remote start and climate control.