Big on content, small in stature
2nd place - 2012 Hyundai Accent (82.2%)
Although in 2nd place in this test, the Accent remains a favorite for its styling, packaging and pricing. This car is truly a competitor from every stand point including desirability - for real.
At $13,599, the 2012 Hyundai Accent is the most affordable car of this test. What's more, at $18,399 or roughly $1,600 less than a fully loaded Yaris, the Accent GLS automatic eclipses the latter with a few thousand dollars worth of modern technology. Where real value is concerned, it is next to impossible to beat the Hyundai.
The two Koreans' looks sparked more than a few debates. We could not decide which car we preferred aesthetically but in the end, the Rio beat out the Accent by 0.3%. What impressed us most was the overall perceived quality of the car. As with the Rio, both cars, along with the Fiesta, could practically start their own luxury subcompact sub-segment.
Fit, finish, and ergonomics were excellent, all of it presented in a smart and modern layout. The firm seats provided decent support yet were not as comfortable as those in the Rio. The cabin was roomy, as was the cargo area.
Shortcomings include a non-telescoping steering column and exterior road noises permeating into the cabin. The gravel and sand-draped country roads we covered created a hailstorm of projectile noises indoors.
Unlike the two lowest-ranked cars of our group, the Accent, Fiesta and Rio never look "cheap." The Accent's fluidic sculpture design looked high-end. Our tested GLS car was shod with handsome 16" wheels, which further elevated the car's standing.
The 138-hp 1.6L 4-cylinder engine was a delightful, if somewhat buzzy, partner on our route. We enjoyed the 6-speed automatic transmission's willingness to make the drive interesting but it could never keep up with the Fiesta's autobox. Acceleration times were sportingly quick, as it clocked the 2nd lowest automatic 0-100 km/h time.
The Accent's comfortable handling and civil demeanor were only mildly hampered by overly heavy steering and brakes that failed to respond immediately to pedal inputs. Generally speaking, it performed very well.
Many people shopping in this category look for a tool, a means to get around. The Accent is that, but is far from being bland and is also a no-brainer. Despite consuming a few drops more fuel than the overall average, we will always recommend the Accent as a wise purchase.
Other Reviews Available For The 2012 Chevrolet Sonic
Auto journalist & Consumer Ratings
2012 Chevrolet Sonic Specifications
Similar to 2012 Chevrolet Sonic