Toronto 2017: Hyundai Will Introduce All-New 2018 Accent Where It Counts

Timothy Cain
by Timothy Cain

The first complete sighting of the new, fifth-generation, 2018 Hyundai Accent will take place next week at the Canadian International Auto Show in Toronto, Canada.

While not exactly Geneva, Tokyo, Shanghai, New York, or Detroit, Toronto is the biggest city in a market where the Accent has historically dominated the subcompact segment.

But it wasn’t easy for Hyundai Canada to land the global reveal.

“In order to secure the debut, our global headquarters took an R&D development mule and made it auto show ready,” says Chad Heard, Hyundai Canada’s senior public relations manager told TTAC earlier today. “That took a couple of weeks and the car landed (eye-wateringly) early this morning in Toronto.”

It’s not difficult to decipher from Hyundai’s teaser video that the new Accent will be every inch a mini-Elantra. The pronounced “cascading” grille and a chunky character line that cuts across the doors just above the door handles are joined to a chip-off-the-old-block silhouette to make the Accent’s familiar resemblance unmistakable.

In the U.S., Accent sales reached record levels in 2016 despite a move away from cars in general and a 3-percent drop in overall market subcompact volume. The Accent plays second fiddle to the Nissan Versa in the United States.

In Canada, where this new Accent debut will occur one week from now on Thursday, February 16, the Accent outsold its two nearest rivals combined in 2016. While subcompact volume slid 13 percent, Accent volume fell just 1 percent, year-over-year.

Yet Hyundai Canada has enjoyed even greater Accent success in the past. Sales in 2016 fell to a three-year low and were down 35 percent compared with the heights achieved in 2008.

The remedy: an all-new design.

Whither the hatchback? Upon its debut six years ago, the fourth-gen Accent was first shown in sedan guise only. Hyundai revealed the hatchback shortly thereafter, in Montreal, which is in Quebec, which is in Canada.

Hyundai’s Chad Heard offered no timeline for the fifth-gen Accent hatchback’s arrival, but did confirm, “There will be a 5-door.”

Timothy Cain is the founder of, which obsesses over the free and frequent publication of U.S. and Canadian auto sales figures. Follow on Twitter @goodcarbadcar and on Facebook.

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  • Bikegoesbaa Bikegoesbaa on Feb 09, 2017

    All the numbers I can find say that Toronto is more of a "major city" than Detroit is.

    • See 1 previous
    • FreedMike FreedMike on Feb 09, 2017

      "All the numbers I can find say that Toronto is more of a “major city” than Detroit is." ...amazingly enough, this now includes the NHL. Now, who the hell ever thought the Leafs would ever be ahead of the Red Wings?

  • Pig Hater Pig Hater on Feb 10, 2017

    No way I'm sold on a car that can survive easily without a 10 year 10K warranty in the form of a Honda subcompact.

  • Varezhka I have still yet to see a Malibu on the road that didn't have a rental sticker. So yeah, GM probably lost money on every one they sold but kept it to boost their CAFE numbers.I'm personally happy that I no longer have to dread being "upgraded" to a Maxima or a Malibu anymore. And thankfully Altima is also on its way out.
  • Tassos Under incompetent, affirmative action hire Mary Barra, GM has been shooting itself in the foot on a daily basis.Whether the Malibu cancellation has been one of these shootings is NOT obvious at all.GM should be run as a PROFITABLE BUSINESS and NOT as an outfit that satisfies everybody and his mother in law's pet preferences.IF the Malibu was UNPROFITABLE, it SHOULD be canceled.More generally, if its SEGMENT is Unprofitable, and HALF the makers cancel their midsize sedans, not only will it lead to the SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST ones, but the survivors will obviously be more profitable if the LOSERS were kept being produced and the SMALL PIE of midsize sedans would yield slim pickings for every participant.SO NO, I APPROVE of the demise of the unprofitable Malibu, and hope Nissan does the same to the Altima, Hyundai with the SOnata, Mazda with the Mazda 6, and as many others as it takes to make the REMAINING players, like the Excellent, sporty Accord and the Bulletproof Reliable, cheap to maintain CAMRY, more profitable and affordable.
  • GregLocock Car companies can only really sell cars that people who are new car buyers will pay a profitable price for. As it turns out fewer and fewer new car buyers want sedans. Large sedans can be nice to drive, certainly, but the number of new car buyers (the only ones that matter in this discussion) are prepared to sacrifice steering and handling for more obvious things like passenger and cargo space, or even some attempt at off roading. We know US new car buyers don't really care about handling because they fell for FWD in large cars.
  • Slavuta Why is everybody sweating? Like sedans? - go buy one. Better - 2. Let CRV/RAV rust on the dealer lot. I have 3 sedans on the driveway. My neighbor - 2. Neighbors on each of our other side - 8 SUVs.
  • Theflyersfan With sedans, especially, I wonder how many of those sales are to rental fleets. With the exception of the Civic and Accord, there are still rows of sedans mixed in with the RAV4s at every airport rental lot. I doubt the breakdown in sales is publicly published, so who knows... GM isn't out of the sedan business - Cadillac exists and I can't believe I'm typing this but they are actually decent - and I think they are making a huge mistake, especially if there's an extended oil price hike (cough...Iran...cough) and people want smaller and hybrids. But if one is only tied to the quarterly shareholder reports and not trends and the big picture, bad decisions like this get made.