Hyundai appears to have dropped the 6-speed automatic for 2020.
Like them or not for their lack of dynamism, fitting a CVT to a small car does tend to help its fuel economy. Case in point: the 2020 Hyundai Accent. Thanks to a new CVT option in the brand’s smallest car, it now manages over 40 mpg on the highway.
While the car doesn’t appear to have changed much otherwise, here’s how the 2019 model stacked up. With a six-speed manual transmission, the 2019 Accent managed 28 City / 37 Highway / 31 Combined mpg. The six-speed automatic, on the other hand, offered up 28 City / 38 Highway / 32 Combined mpg.
Now, the Hyundai Accent manages much better with the CVT. According to EPA figures, it gets 33 City / 41 Highway / 36 Combined mpg. Here’s the kicker, though: the six-speed manual transmission also sees an improvement in fuel economy. The manual 2020 Hyundai Accent achieves 29 City / 39 Highway / 33 Combined mpg.
That works out to a 12 percent fuel economy jump with the CVT, and an 8 percent improvement for the manual. Since both are much better than the 2019 model, we can’t help but wonder if Hyundai revised the engine for the 2020 Hyundai Accent as well.
The current 2019 model uses a 1.6-liter engine making 130 horsepower and 119 lb-ft of torque. The 2020 model also uses a 1.6-liter engine. However, Hyundai announced its tiny Venue crossover would use a 1.6-liter “Gamma II” engine. That implies it is an updated version of the Gamma unit used across the company’s lineup.
Still, the 2020 Hyundai Accent managed an impressive bump in fuel economy. Even if it’s no more powerful than the 2019 model, it is currently the most efficient non-hybrid car in America, according to EPA ratings. We’ll know more when Hyundai announces official details for the 2020 Accent.