One wouldn’t think technology of automobiles change so much in 12 years but I’m still finding things about my 2005 Hyundai that surprise me. I knew and appreciated the good things about the Ford Probe I drove for 180,000 miles and it didn’t take 12 years to discover them, however, what is interesting about my Hyundai Accent are features I wouldn’t think need to be there. Why beep to warn me my seat belt is still fastened after the engine stops? I figure that out when I can’t get out of the car. I can’t insert the key (yes it still has a physical key not high tech remote) into the ignition unless the driver’s door is shut. Why? The door locks aren’t as automatic as the Probe – I could push those locks down with a simple hand swipe as I closed the door – locking the ignition key inside. When I step out of the Accent with my key in my hand I must insert the key in the lock and manually turn it to lock the door. I could turn the lock on the inside but if I do before I open the door, I can’t open the door to get out. So there. I’m not as likely to lock myself out of the car.
I like the little icons that light up as information or warnings. So far the only ones that stay on long enough for me to identify are the gas tank empty warning and the door open. Since I’m alone in the car the door open icon is on every time I get in or out and the passenger door hasn’t been tested yet. I tested the gas tank warning several times and in conjunction with that I’ve checked to see what my mileage per gallon comes to. On one trip I held the speed down to 65 mph or the limit and with windows closed, no a/c and very few stops and starts so in 399 miles I logged 39 mpg. Just to compare other conditions I drove with windows down,60 mph or the limit and kept up with the traffic at all times in heavy traffic (way over limit) no a/c and also very few stops and starts and came up with 29.3 mpg. On the last fill I meticulously kept the rpm below 2700, windows closed, a/c on when needed (at 100 degrees in this area, that was frequent) and made stops and starts every 30 miles (that’s my best in-town driving) and got 37 mpg. Hyundai claims 24 mpg in town and 35 mpg on trips so I think the car is doing fine. Experienced drivers tell me mileage gets better as the engine gets broken in. I hope the mileage goes up faster than price of the gas.