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Josh Rosenberg By Josh Rosenberg
Updated April 30, 2024



Have Older Hyundai Accent Models Aged Well? Their Reliability, Possible Mechanical Problem Issues, And Overall Pros And Cons

Related: How To Get The Lowest Price On A "Brand New" Hyundai

2012 Hyundai Accent Hatchback

While historically high new and used car prices have forced many buyers to look for "older" vehicles that have aged well as a way of saving money, the issues of reliability and dependability have become even more crucial.

So, how has the Hyundai Accent fared? Have well-maintained older models aged well? And by "older", I'm generally referring to Accents that are approaching or a little over 10-years-old, so those from its fourth generation, produced for the 2012 - 2017 model years.

Therefore, here, ...

- First, we'll look at the reliability and durability factors that have earned this version of the Hyundai Accent a generally above average reputation.

- We'll then do an overview of the fourth generation Hyundai Accent, specifically those produced for the 2012 - 2017 model years.

- Then we'll list possible mechanical issues that have been reported by some owners so they can be checked before buying one today.

- And then we'll summarize the overall pros and cons of an older Hyundai Accent worth consideration for potential buyers today.


But first, and very importantly ...

Things To Do When Considering An "Older" Accent

Locate Lower Mileage Vehicles: They are certainly out there to be found with careful and patient shopping. Be willing to drive a distance if you have to.

Vehicle History and Maintenance: Ask for the vehicle history report (CarFax or AutoCheck) as well as documented maintenance and repair records. If not provided by the Dealer or private seller, it's usually best to move on.

Pre-Purchase Inspection: Have the vehicle independently inspected before making a final decision. This usually will cost in the $150-$200 range but is well worth it given the potentially thousands in savings over the long term.

And My #1 Price Tip: It's important to get online price quotes at auto sites such as Edmunds.com and CarsDirect.com (both, actually), whether looking for a new or used car. Competition among dealers for your business is what gets you a lower price, and it's very easy.

And quickly, while we're at it, my #2 Tip is to always know the up-to-date trade-in value of your current car. You can get a quick and surprisingly accurate one at Edmund's Trade-In Quotes.

It's free and just takes a couple of minutes. I think what helps its accuracy is the inputs will include either your plate# or VIN# followed by many simple, but specific, yes/no questions. It really focuses in on the detail of the specific vehicle.


2012 - 2017 Hyundai Accent Reliability

Several factors contribute to the Accent's generally good reputation for reliability and durability from this production run:

Solid Build Quality: This Accent is known for its solid construction and robust build quality, which has contributed to its longevity and durability on the road.

Proven Powertrain: The 1.6-liter inline-four-cylinder engine used in this Accent has been well-regarded for its reliability and efficiency, providing a nice balance of performance and fuel economy.

Minimal Recalls: Throughout its production run, the Accent had relatively few recalls compared to other vehicles in its class.

Positive Owner Feedback: Many owners of this version have reported high levels of satisfaction with their vehicles, praising their reliability, durability, and overall value for the money.

Minimal Common Issues: While no vehicle is entirely free from problems, the 2012-2017 Accent has had fewer reported common issues compared to many vehicles in its class, indicating a relatively low incidence of major mechanical problems.

Resale Value: The Accent's strong reputation for reliability and durability has been reflected in it retaining its value better than many vehicles in its class.


2012 - 2017 Hyundai Accent Overview

The fourth generation Accent marked a significant evolution for the Accent, solidifying its position as a top contender in its class. Let's delve into what made this iteration stand out.

Design and Styling: With the 2012 redesign, Hyundai introduced a fresh and modern look for the Accent. Embracing the brand's "Fluidic Sculpture" design philosophy, the exterior featured sleek lines and bold accents, giving the car a dynamic and sophisticated appearance.

The sculpted hood, distinctive grille, and swept-back headlights contributed to its sporty aesthetic, while the aerodynamic shape enhanced efficiency and performance.

Performance and Efficiency: Under the hood, this version offered a spirited driving experience combined with impressive fuel efficiency. Powering the lineup was a 1.6-liter inline-four-cylinder engine, delivering lively acceleration and responsive handling. Fuel economy is an EPA-rated 28/37 mpg city/highway, whether automatic or manual.

Whether navigating city streets or cruising on the highway, the Accent excelled in providing a balanced blend of performance and economy, making it appropriate option for daily commuters and weekend adventurers alike.

2012 Hyundai Accent interior

Interior Comfort and Technology: Inside the cabin, the Accent boasts a well-appointed and ergonomic design, providing ample space for passengers and cargo. The higher-quality materials, thoughtful layout, and attention to detail creates a comfortable and inviting environment. Despite its compact footprint, the Accent also offers surprising roominess.

In terms of technology, this Accent is equipped with an array of modern features to enhance convenience, connectivity, and entertainment. Depending on the trim level, drivers can find amenities such as a touchscreen infotainment system, Bluetooth® connectivity, smartphone integration, and available navigation.

Safety and Reliability: Standard safety equipment includes antilock disc brakes with brake assist, electronic stability control, traction control, active front head restraints, front seat side-impact airbags, and side curtain airbags.

Market Impact and Legacy: During this production run, the Accent earned fairly widespread acclaim as well as commercial success in the crowded compact segment, garnering accolades for its combination of affordability, efficiency, and features.


Older Hyundai Accent Possible Mechanical Problems

While this Accent version generally has a good reputation for reliability and durability, like any vehicle, it's not immune to potential mechanical issues. Here are some mechanical problems that some owners have reported which should therefore be included in an inspection before buying:

Transmission Issues: Some owners have experienced problems with the automatic transmission, such as rough shifting, hesitation, or slipping. These issues may require transmission fluid flushes, software updates, or in more severe cases, transmission component replacements.

Public Car Auction Database

Engine Knocking: A small number of owners have reported instances of engine knocking or ticking noises, which could be indicative of issues with the engine's components, such as the timing chain or valve train.

Brake Problems: Some owners have encountered premature wear of brake components, such as brake pads and rotors.

Suspension Concerns: A few owners have noted issues with the suspension system, including excessive noise or vibrations, uneven tire wear, or handling problems. Common culprits may include worn-out shocks or struts, bushings, or control arm components.

Electrical Gremlins: Some owners have reported intermittent electrical issues, such as malfunctioning power accessories, flickering lights, or electrical shorts.

Air Conditioning Problems: A few owners have experienced issues with the air conditioning system, such as inadequate cooling, intermittent operation, or compressor failures.

Exhaust System Concerns: Over time, components of the exhaust system, such as the muffler, catalytic converter, or exhaust manifold, may develop leaks or corrosion, leading to increased noise, decreased performance, or emissions-related problems.

It's important to note that while these issues have been reported by some owners, they do not affect every vehicle, and the vast majority have proven to be reliable and fairly trouble-free. Of course, regular maintenance, timely repairs, and attentive driving habits can help minimize the likelihood of experiencing mechanical problems with any vehicle.


Overall Pros And Cons Of An Older Hyundai Accent

2012 Hyundai Accent Sedan

Older Hyundai Accent Pros

Affordability: Older Accents generally have lower purchase prices compared to newer models, resulting in potentially significant upfront cost savings.

Depreciation: Older Accents have already experienced the majority of their depreciation, meaning they tend to retain their value better than newer cars, lowering the overall cost of ownership going forward.

Lower Insurance Costs: Insurance premiums for older cars are typically lower than those for newer models, potentially saving money on insurance premiums.

Proven Reliability: This Accent has been on the market for long enough for its reliability and durability to be established through real-world use.

Simpler Technology: Some buyers prefer the simplicity of older cars' technology features, which may be less complex and easier to understand and operate compared to the advanced technology found in newer models.

Fuel Efficiency: The Accent is known for its strong fuel economy, making it a cost-effective choice for drivers concerned about fuel expenses.

Modern Design: The Accent's exterior styling is still modern and attractive, featuring sleek lines and bold accents that give it a contemporary look.

Roomy Interior: Despite its compact size, the Accent offers a surprisingly spacious interior with ample legroom and cargo space, making it comfortable for passengers and practical for hauling cargo.

Standard Features: Even base trim levels come well-equipped with features such as a USB port, auxiliary input, air conditioning, and power windows and locks, providing a good value for the price.

Safety Features: The Accent comes with a suite of standard safety features, including advanced airbags, anti-lock brakes, electronic stability control, and traction control, helping to enhance occupant protection.


Older Hyundai Accent Cons

Higher Mileage and Wear: Older cars usually have higher mileage and more wear and tear compared to newer models, potentially requiring more frequent maintenance and repairs, possibly offsetting some or all of the upfront savings.

Outdated Features: Older cars may lack the latest features and technology advancements found in newer models, such as advanced safety features, infotainment systems, and driver-assistance technologies.

Find your next car, truck or SUV on Edmunds.com

Less Fuel Efficiency: Older cars may not be as fuel-efficient as newer models, as automotive technology advancements often result in improved fuel economy over time.

Safety Concerns: While the 2012-2017 Accent offers standard safety features, newer models may offer advanced safety technologies that provide enhanced protection for occupants and help prevent accidents.

Engine Performance: While adequate for daily commuting, the Accent's engine may feel underpowered during highway merging or passing maneuvers, especially when fully loaded.

Interior Materials: Some owners have noted that some interior materials can feel cheap or lacking in refinement compared to competitors in its class.

Road Noise: The Accent's cabin may experience higher levels of road and wind noise at highway speeds, detracting from overall comfort and refinement.

Ride Quality: The Accent's suspension tuning tends to prioritize fuel efficiency over ride comfort, resulting in a slightly firm ride that may feel harsh over rough pavement.


Lastly, Suggestions For Getting A Low Hyundai Accent Price

First of all, here's a Lowest Price Used Car Buying Guide that details a very effective method.

Here's another method that identifies Price-Distressed Cars Right On Dealer Lots. These are vehicles they are so desperate to unload they would welcome your wholesale offer.

In addition, you can also try the Public Car Auctions in your own geographic area. This article reviews what to expect at open-to-the-public car auctions and how to locate them.

And for those of you who might be interested in a "brand new" Hyundai if the price was really good, here's info on exactly How To Get The Best Price On A New Car. This works just phenomenally well.


Car Buying Tips:

Do This For The Best Trade-In Price

All About Wholesale And Trade-in Values

The Best Car Loan Choices

Best Used Cars For Reliability


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