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Hyundai Accent HS

Broadcast date : 14th January 2007

Although South Africanís have only been exposed to Hyundai's for the past decade, this is the sixth-generation Accent, and it builds on a time-honoured Hyundai formula Ė plenty of equipment and strong performance at a reasonable price.

Hyundai prices, it has to be said, have crept up in line with other manufacturers over the past decade, to a point where they are no longer bargain-bin items.

But it should also be pointed out that the latest Hyundai cars can stand head-to-head with any competitors in terms of quality.

Millimetre perfect panel fit and shut lines are now a hallmark of the typical Hyundai product.

Thereís nothing jazzy or avant-garde about the conservative three-box looks, but the Accentís freshly-pressed appearance builds confidence in the same way that Japanese cars did in the 1970ís.

Itís a feather in the Korean motor industryís cap, as a whole, that these cars are rated by both customers and motoring journalists alike as able to go-head-to-head with top European and Japanese offerings Ė despite their straight-laced looks. Hence its appearance as a Car of the Year finalist for 2007.

The all-new 1,6 litre CVVT motor Ė constantly-variable valve timing Ė is a little gem, with a robust 82 kiloWatt output giving it punchy performance for both city driving and open road hauling.

A top speed just shy of 190 is claimed, along with a 10-second 0-100 time, while economy is in the 8 litres per hundred range. Not bad at a price of R132 900.

The cloth seat upholstery is beautifully trimmed, and every panel is of good-quality plastic.

The cabin styling manages to be just interesting enough to make you feel at home, without any attempt at faddishness. Dual tones for the instrument panel and dash have the effect of brightening the cabin up, adding to an airy feel.

Itís not only in the assembly department that the Hyundai scores. The Korean engineers have paid lots of attention to evolving a fine mix of useable power, impeccable road manners and ease of operation targeted at Mr or Ms Average Motorist. You could say itís a masterpiece of compromise.

Hyundai Accent HS

  • Engine: four-cylinder petrol 1 499 cc
  • Power: 82 kW @ 6 000 rpm
  • Torque: 145 Nm @ 4 500 rpm
  • Transmission: Five-speed manual, front-wheel-drive
  • 0-100 km/h: 10,6 seconds (Car Magazine)
  • Top speed: 189 km/h (Car Magazine)
  • Fuel consumption: 8,0 litres/100 km (Car Magazine)
  • Price: R132 900

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