2021 Hyundai Accent

2021 Hyundai Accent Review: A Well-Rounded Sedan

The Hyundai Accent is a car that often flies under the radar in the subcompact segment. Quietly rolling into 2021 without any changes, this means you get a subcompact sedan that still comes in with an asking price well under $20K and enough features and ability to keep most commuters more than happy. The Accent won't turn any heads or thrill in the bends, but it does everything relatively well, from using small amounts of fuel to keeping its occupants safe in the event of a crash. This little Korean sedan is a well-rounded piece of equipment. Under the hood lies a 1.6-liter engine producing 120 horsepower. All that power is not sent to a 4WD system, but rather the front wheels via a six-speed manual in the base model or a continuously variable automatic in the SEL and Limited. The Accent's specs don't read like a Mercedes-Benz, but there's enough to keep most happy against rivals like the Kia Rio and Nissan Versa.

2021 Hyundai Accent Changes: 🚙What’s the difference vs 2020 Accent?

There are no new changes for Hyundai Accent models for 2021. Hyundai has, however, added New Forge Gray to the Accent sedan options list while trimming two of the older color options.

Pros and Cons

  • Mature looks
  • Unexpected handling dynamics
  • Good build quality
  • Capable infotainment system
  • Cheap to run
  • Small cargo area
  • It's not the most powerful
  • Tight rear seats

Best Deals on Accent

2021 Hyundai Accent Trims

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
SE
1.6L Inline-4 Gas
6-Speed Manual
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
$15,395
SEL
1.6L Inline-4 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
$17,750
Limited
1.6L Inline-4 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
$19,500

Hyundai Accent Sedan Exterior

The Hyundai Accent 4-door is a handsome looking thing but will fly under most radars, making it the perfect car to avoid the interests of just about anyone when driving around. The base model features a chrome grille and power-adjustable wing mirrors. The SEL adds fog lights, auto headlight control, heated exterior mirrors, and chrome window belt moldings. The top of the range Limited four-door vehicle includes a hands-free trunk, LED headlights and taillights, and a power tilt and slide sunroof, amongst others.

2021 Hyundai Accent Front View Hyundai
2021 Hyundai Accent Rear View Hyundai
2021 Hyundai Accent Three Quarter Front Right Side View Hyundai
See All 2021 Hyundai Accent Exterior Photos

Dimensions

The Accent is classified as a subcompact sedan, and its dimensions measure up to those of competitors such as the Nissan Versa. All three Accent trim levels share the same exterior dimensions, which means a wheelbase of 101.6 inches and a total length of 172.6 inches - 4.4 inches shorter than the Versa Sedan. The full width is 68.1 inches, and it is 57.1 inches tall. The base model's curb weight with the manual transmission is 2,502 lbs, while automatic variants tip the scales at 2,679 pounds.

  • Length 172.6 in
  • Wheelbase 101.6 in
  • Height 57.1 in
  • Max Width 68.1 in
  • Front Width 59.3 in
  • Rear Width 59.5 in

Exterior Colors

Hyundai offers the Accent in your choice of six different colors. Considering its low asking price, it doesn't come as a surprise that Hyundai only provides a limited number of colors, but thankfully its mature yet handsome exterior styling makes any of the available colors look good. The choices on offer are Olympus Silver, Absolute Black, Admiral Blue, Pomegranate Red, Frost White Pearl and the new-for-2021 Forge Gray. If we had a say in the matter, we would go with the striking Forge Gray, which adds a bit of sporting appeal to an otherwise restrained body design, but if you were a fan of 2020's Urban Gray and Linen Beige, both have been discontinued.

  • Absolute Black
  • Frost White Pearl
  • Forge Gray
  • Olympus Silver
  • Admiral Blue
  • Pomegranate Red

Hyundai Accent Performance

It should be noted from the start that the 2021 Hyundai Accent has not been built for performance driving, not by a long shot. Hyundai has bestowed just enough power for the Accent to competently complete all the basics expected from a car in this price bracket and class. With a small capacity four-cylinder engine under the hood, things don't seem too promising, and stomping on the gas pedal reveals the car's lack of power. Still, if you're only after a daily commuter that will do the A to B run without complaint while using a sliver of fuel, then this will work perfectly for you. All trim levels share the same powertrain, which levels the playing field. Hyundai doesn't provide a 0 to 60 time or top speed figure, but we expect the base model SE with a six-speed manual transmission and low curb weight to be the quickest of the bunch. You won't find any AWD option here; the Accent is strictly an FWD car and offers similar performance to the Kia Rio and Nissan Versa.

2021 Hyundai Accent Front View 1 Hyundai
2021 Hyundai Accent Rear View 1 Hyundai
2021 Hyundai Accent Engine Hyundai

Engine and Transmission

Those looking for strong performance should look elsewhere. The Hyundai Accent sedan comes fitted with a small 1.6-liter naturally-aspirated four-cylinder engine that delivers the bare necessities. You won't find the low down torque of a diesel or turbo car here. All three trim levels share the same engine, which develops 120 hp and 113 lb-ft of torque high up in the rev range, which means that this car will have to live high up in the rev range to get anywhere with convincing urgency. The Accent does well in the city and feels nippy enough to keep up with traffic, but it is on the highway where things fall apart. Accelerating up to highway cruising speeds takes longer than we would like, and once up to speed, it becomes difficult to perform any sort of brisk overtaking maneuver. You'll have to push the little engine, which in turn creates an unrefined and coarse protestation. Power is sent exclusively to the front wheels via a six-speed manual in the base model, or a CVT automatic in the SEL and Limited. The manual transmission isn't incredibly engaging, so we would go for the smooth and efficient CVT.

  • Engine
    1.6L Inline-4 Gas
  • Transmissions
    6-Speed Manual, Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
  • Drivetrain
    FWD

Handling and Driving Impressions

There's no mistaking the Accent for anything other than a budget sedan, which usually means safe and predictable handling, and the majority of drivers will never push this little sedan to its limits or hear the tires squeal around a set of track corners. The Accent delivers a predictable and comfortable driving experience that fits in with the rest of the car's mature and responsible feel. It is clear from the word go that comfort takes priority over dynamic driving capability. The Accent is a comfortable and compliant car to drive and soaks up bumps with ease around town. The steering is light and precise, making city maneuvers as easy as pie. What is noticeable from the start is the lack of steering feedback and a lack of communication from the tires. This shouldn't pose a problem for most, but it is worth noting the numbness and general lack of feel. Pushing the Accent reveals a car with a surprising amount of grip. You'll be surprised at how far you can push the little sedan, but once again, a lack of feel limits the fun factor. The brake pedal feel is firm and predictable but fails to impress in terms of stopping distance.

Accent Gas Mileage

With a small capacity four-cylinder engine and a low curb weight, the commuter vehicle known as the Accent is the perfect candidate for low gas mileage figures. This lightweight Korean impresses with best mpg figures of 33/41/36 mpg city/highway/combined. Those are for the CVT automatic, though. The base model, fitted with the six-speed manual transmission, is capable of a slightly less impressive 29/39/33 mpg. The Nissan Versa, by comparison, will achieve best figures of 32/40/35 mpg. The 2021 Hyundai Accent is fitted with an 11.9-gallon fuel tank, which should give it a maximum range of between 392.7 and 428.4 miles.

  • Fuel Tank Capacity
    11.9 Gallons
  • Fuel Economy
    City/Hwy: 29/39 mpg
* 2021 Hyundai Accent SE Sedan Manual

Hyundai Accent Interior

On the inside, the Accent offers a very business-like cabin that features a simple but refined interior design and quality materials, but it can't match the funky and fun design of its cousin, the Kia Rio. The all-black interior lends itself to the serious nature of the rest of the car. The front seats are comfortable if not a tad unsupportive, and the overall space is acceptable, although competitors such as the now-extinct-in-the-US Honda Fit offer miles more space in the rear. We appreciate the infotainment system's easy-to-use nature, but standard features on the base model are scarce. The base models feature manually adjustable cloth seats, air conditioning, cruise control, and push-button start, amongst others, but higher grade derivatives introduce more niceties.

2021 Hyundai Accent Infotainment System Hyundai
2021 Hyundai Accent Gear Shifter Hyundai
2021 Hyundai Accent Infotainment System 1 Hyundai
See All 2021 Hyundai Accent Interior Photos

Seating and Interior Space

This subcompact 4-door will fit five smaller adults in relative comfort. Seating in the front is comfortable, and access is easy. Once inside, the driving position feels good, and visibility out the front is sufficient. Those in the rear also have an easy time getting in and out of the car. When it comes to interior space, those in the front will have the best time. Hyundai has provided ample front legroom, more than enough for six-footers and above, but those in the rear will struggle with only 33.5 inches of legroom. The headroom is ample both in the front and in the rear. All trim levels come with six-way manually-adjustable cloth seats that offer middling support but should prove comfortable on longer journeys.

  • Seating capacity
    5-seater
  • Front Leg Room 42.1 in
  • Front Head Room 38.9 in
  • Rear Leg Room 33.5 in
  • Rear Head Room 37.3 in

Interior Colors and Materials

You won't find any fancy interior options here: Hyundai has kept things as simple as possible, and at the cost of the Hyundai Accent, it feels of good quality. All three trim levels come equipped with a black interior, including the seats, which feature a two-tone black and dark gray upholstery, although certain paint colors avail beige upholstery. The rest of the cabin is filled with dark plastics that feel impressively premium, but you're still able to find hard plastics scattered around the cabin. The dash, gear knob surround, and air vents feature brushed aluminum-feel trimmings. When all is said and done, the Accent offers impressive build quality, despite its dark and somewhat business-like appearance, and leatherette upholstery would have been a welcome addition on higher trim levels.

Hyundai Accent Trunk and Cargo Space

People interested in the Accent won't be expecting SUV-levels of storage space; after all, this is a subcompact sedan, which puts it at a disadvantage to everything from small SUVs to hatchbacks - the latter no longer offered by the Accent. Still, the Accent offers a respectable amount of trunk and overall cargo space, but the competition offers more. Behind the rear seats, the Accent provides 13.7 cubic feet of space. That is enough for a couple of large items of luggage, or a decent run to the grocery store. Hyundai has thought it good to include a 60/40 split fold-down rear seatback, which adds even more space.

Small items can be stored in the front glovebox, front and rear door pockets, and front cupholders. There's also a little storage nook in front of the gear lever. SEL and Limited trims get a driver's sliding armrest storage box and passenger-side seatback pockets. An optional cargo package adds a rear cargo tray, cargo net, and cargo blocks for $185.

2021 Hyundai Accent Infotainment System 2 Hyundai
2021 Hyundai Accent Rear Passenger Seats Hyundai
2021 Hyundai Accent Second Row Seat Folded Hyundai
  • Trunk Volume
    13.7 ft³

Accent Infotainment and Features

Features

Being a budget-friendly car means you get budget-friendly features, which is not necessarily a bad thing, but don't expect the world from the 2021 Hyundai Accent. All models feature standard manually-adjustable cloth seats, single-zone air conditioning, cruise control, steering-wheel-mounted audio controls, and remote keyless entry. A rearview camera rounds out the base model features. Going with the mid-range SEL will bag you features such as a passenger-side seatback pocket, a driver's side auto-up window, and dual USB charging. The top of the range Limited trim adds LED headlights, a power sunroof, heated front seats, single-zone automatic climate control, and a proximity key with push-button start. The Limited also adds forward collision avoidance.

Infotainment

Hyundai has kept things simple regarding the infotainment system on the 2021 Hyundai Accent Sedan, which is not a bad thing by any means. The base model is equipped with a Bluetooth hands-free system, an AM/FM/CD/MP3-capable audio system with a five-inch color screen, and a four-speaker sound system. You also get a USB and auxiliary input jack. The interface of the display is easy to navigate and responsive enough to the surrounding buttons. Unfortunately, the base model does not come with Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. Stepping up to the SEL and Limited bags you a larger seven-inch touchscreen display with SiriusXM satellite radio, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, and an improved six-speaker audio system. The upper two trims also get dual USB charging ports.

Hyundai Accent Sedan Problems and Reliability

You will struggle to find a car more reliable than the Hyundai Accent in its class. This vehicle has suffered no recalls in recent memory, and J.D. Power's review has awarded the 2020 model with a reliability rating of 90 out of a possible hundred. The basic four-pot motor and minimal features surely contribute to this. To top it all off, Hyundai offers the Accent with an excellent five-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, as well as a ten-year/unlimited-mile drivetrain warranty, and five years of roadside assistance.

Warranty

  • Basic:
    5 Years \ 60,000 Miles
  • Drivetrain:
    10 Years \ 100,000 Miles
  • Corrosion:
    7 Years \ Unlimited Miles
  • Roadside Assistance:
    5 Years \ Unlimited Miles
  • Maintenance:
    3 Years \ 36,000 Miles

Hyundai Accent Safety

In the 2021 review of the Hyundai Accent, the IIHS awarded five top scores of Good, but the small front overlap on the passenger side yielded only an Acceptable score. The NHTSA granted an overall score of four stars in its review, but warned that rear passengers may be exerted to excess forces in a side impact.

US NHTSA crash test result

  • Overall Rating
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
  • Side Crash Rating
  • Rollover Rating

Key Safety Features

Each and every 2021 Hyundai Accent comes equipped with stability and traction management, four airbags, including side-impact bags, a tire pressure monitoring system, and a LATCH anchor system for the rear seats. There are no standard driver assistance features on the base model besides a rearview camera, cruise control, and hill start assist on CVT transmission cars. SEL and Limited models get a driver's blind spot mirror, and Limited models add forward collision avoidance assist.

Verdict: 🏁Is the 2021 Hyundai Accent a good car?

The Hyundai Accent in the USA enters 2021 with no significant changes, which means you still get a no-nonsense car that offers good value for money, decent levels of safety, and excellent fuel economy. Starting from only $15,395, the Accent is a no-nonsense subcompact sedan that will impress, rather than disappoint. The exterior styling looks as good as ever and now comes with a tasty new color named Forge Gray. The interior might be dark, but it is definitely not dreary and offers an impressive level of build quality and solid materials for the price of the Accent. The rear could provide more space, but the overall experience inside the cabin is a positive one. On the road, the Accent isn't the most exhilarating to drive with its 1.6-liter engine barely providing enough power, but it is still a capable handling car and is comfortable on the open road. It comes with minimal features in base form, but that is to be expected in this price range. The overall experience here is a "cheap and cheerful" one, and we would recommend the Accent to anyone looking for a budget-friendly sedan.

🚘What's the Price of the 2021 Hyundai Accent?

Hyundai has struck a good balance between affordability and quality here, and what impresses most is the Accent's build quality and comfortable;e ride quality, which is hard to beat at its price point. The price of the new Hyundai Accent starts at an MSRP of $15,395 for the base model SE, with the price increasing by $1,100 when you go with the CVT transmission. The midrange SEL costs $17,750, and the range-topping Limited will still come in under $20k at $19,500. These prices exclude tax, registration, and a handling fee of $995. Looking or something even cheaper? A low-mileage used model could be a great deal, with a number to be found for sale across the USA.

2021 Hyundai Accent Models

There are three trim levels on offer for 2021 in the US: the SE, SEL, and Limited. All three share the same 1.6-liter naturally-aspirated four-banger developing 120 hp and 113 lb-ft of torque. Power is sent to the front wheels via a six-speed manual transmission in the base model, or a CVT automatic in the SEL and Limited.

The base model includes features such as manually-adjustable cloth seats, air conditioning, cruise control, Bluetooth streaming, and a five-inch infotainment display with four speakers. Remote keyless entry with a panic alert and a rearview camera are also included.

The SEL adds a driver's sliding armrest storage box, seatback pockets, and heated front seats to the interior, while the exterior gets foglights, automatic headlight control, heated exterior mirrors, and chrome touches. The infotainment system now gets voice recognition and a seven-inch touchscreen with SiriusXM radio, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto integration, and dual USB charging. In terms of safety, the SEL gets a driver's blind spot mirror.

Limited trim vehicles add forward-collision warning, a hands-free trunk, LED headlights and taillights, and a sunroof to the exterior. The interior features heated front seats, single-zone automatic climate control, and a proximity key with push-button start.

See All 2021 Hyundai Accent Trims and Specs

Additional Packages

The Accent comes as an all-inclusive package, and no major optional packages are available for this vehicle. If you're looking for added features, you'll have to look higher up in the trim range. The base model is offered with accessories such as a Cargo Package for $185 with a net and cargo tray, carpeted floor mats for $155, and dual USB chargers for $70.

🚗What 2021 Hyundai accent sedan Model Should I Buy?

You don't get much better in the budget four-door class than the Hyundai Accent. This little Korean grocery-getter is easy to live with and will certainly not break the bank, which is largely the point of this car: it is meant to be affordable yet capable. Seeing as all three trim levels come with the same 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine, it makes it easier to choose which one will suit your needs best. Starting at $15,395, the SE offers the most basic ownership experience, which might be a little too basic for some, but you still get a five-inch infotainment display and air conditioning. We would suggest opting for the mid-range SEL, which comes standard with an automatic transmission, which improves fuel economy and offers a more relaxing driving experience. Standard features on the SEL also include a much appreciated seven-inch infotainment system with SiriusXM and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. All this can be yours for only $17,750.

2021 Hyundai Accent Comparisons

Nissan Versa Sedan CarBuzz
Kia Rio Kia
CompetitorHorsepowerMPGPrice (MSRP)
Hyundai Accent120 hp29/39 mpg$15,395
Nissan Versa Sedan 122 hp27/35 mpg$14,830
Kia Rio 120 hp33/41 mpg$15,850

2021 Hyundai Accent vs Nissan Versa Sedan

The Versa is Nissan's smallest vehicle and has been credited as being one of America's cheapest new cars. This little sedan screams "rental" from any angle, but is it really that bad? The 2020 model saw a complete revamp which stepped things up dramatically with more power and better looks. We still think the Accent looks better, though. Under the hood lies a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine with outputs of 122 hp and 114 lb-ft, which is right in the Accent's ballpark. The Versa will manage 32/40/35 mpg city/highway/combined. On the road, the Versa is surprisingly capable as a city car and highway cruiser, and while we found the Accent to be more refined, the Versa comes in a close second. The interior of the Versa features contemporary styling and quality materials, which is equal to that of the Accent. In terms of features, both cars get a similar spread of tech. The Versa does offer more trunk space but suffers with small-item storage. At only $14,930 for the S, the Versa would be our budget sedan choice.

See Nissan Versa Sedan Review

2021 Hyundai Accent vs Kia Rio

The Kia Rio shares most of its bits with the Hyundai Accent, which means these two cars offer a near-identical driving experience, but there are some noteworthy differences, mainly in the looks and features department. The Kia Rio is arguably the fresher-looking car with a nose resembling the bigger Kia Stinger, particularly with the fresh 2021 update. Under the hood lies the same 1.6-liter engine and CVT transmission pairing, which means the Rio will perform similarly to the Accent. Gas mileage figures come in at 33/41/36 mpg, identical to that of the Accent. The Rio's cabin has a slightly more upmarket feel than the Accent, and for the new model year, an eight-inch touchscreen elevates it above the Accent. All panels feel well-fitted, and material quality is up to the same standards. Interior space is also similar, with both cars getting tight rear legroom space. The amount of features is also on par with the Hyundai with little separating the two. The Rio does ask a slight premium at $16,050 for the base model, and your choice will have to boil down to cost and looks. We would go with the Kia as it's the fresher model and worth the premium.

See Kia Rio Review

Hyundai Accent Popular Comparisons

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