What is Australia’s Best Light Car for $20,000?
We have mentioned several vehicles in different class brackets as being winners of different categories. The results are a comprehensive testing and review program by website Australia’s Best Cars – you can find their website through another article on our site – here.
Hyundai Accent Active
The entry-level Active model now has a 1.4L engine (down from a 1.6L unit) and a new CVT automatic transmission.
- Indicative drive away price $20,066
- Fuel economy6.2
- Fuel typeULP
- ANCAP5 star
Along with a change of engine, Accent has also had a significant $2000 price cut. With an indicated drive-away price of $20,066, it is one of the cheapest cars in this category. Pricing and features have helped place this vehicle up there on the list as an outstanding value-for-money option in its class. Hyundai’s Lifetime Service Plan ensures owners know what they’ll pay for servicing over the whole ownership period. Not only does this provide peace of mind, but it also helps to give Accent best-in-class running and repair costs. Hyundai’s five-year/unlimited km warranty is a further incentive for owners. The 1.4L 4cyl petrol engine produces 74kW at 6000rpm and 133Nm at 3500rpm, which is adequate for around town use but struggles to keep up with the other finalists.
The new CVT transmission is a step up on the dated 4spd automatic fitted to the previous Accent. This combination of a smaller engine with a more flexible transmission has helped to reduce fuel consumption to a respectable 6.2L/100km. The accent is a great city car with good around-town behaviour and drivability. However, when the speed picks up, and the road gets windy, it starts to fall behind our other finalists in handling ability. While not impacting durability, the low-cost entry-level aspect of Accent is noticeable. The build and finish quality are not as good as the other finalists. The interior is clearly laid out but isn’t as sophisticated as its competitors. Cost savings are evident in less critical areas, for example, the Accent has steel wheels where most cars even in this class now have alloys.
However, it’s in the sectors that appeal to younger first-time car buyers where Accent shows its mettle. A five-inch touch-screen multimedia system has all of the connectivity features that current customers expect. The inclusion of Bluetooth, iPod connectivity and steering wheel controls is effectively a requirement in this field, and so while Accent’s standard features score overall isn’t high, it has the critical things. Many people buy light cars because that’s all they can afford, and any contender that has better-than-average space will do well. The accent is the biggest of our finalists, with a large luggage area and good rear leg room. It is not as big or practical as the class-leading Honda Jazz, but nevertheless, its size adds to Accent’s usability as a shopping hauler.
Despite a somewhat minimalist approach in some areas, Accent comes with a five-star ANCAP safety rating with mandatory ABS and ESC backed up by six airbags, and as a result, it ticks the box for the minimum level of protection we would expect to see in this category. Hyundai has streamlined its small car line-up by removing the i20, leaving the competent Accent as the entry point to the brand.
The Hyundai Accent Active is priced at $20,066 driveaway at the time of writing. Other cars in a similar price bracket include the Korean-made Kia Rio Si, which is a five-door, automatic priced at $24,500 and Renault Clio 5 door priced at $23,296, both at driveaway prices.
For additional reviews on the Accent, Active check out – Caradvice’s writeup.