The Accent comes in three trim levels -- the most expensive of which starts around $15,000. The GS hatchback is the bare-bones option, the SE hatchback is the most luxe, and the GLS four-door sedan is the happy medium. All three have a 1.6L 4-cylinder engine making 110 hp mated to a 5-speed manual, but a 4-speed automatic transmission is available as an option.
The GS is basic, but not stripped. Like all the Accents, it has advanced front airbags, side impact airbags, tire pressure monitoring and seatbelt pretensioners standard. The driver's seat can be manually adjusted six ways, plus the headrests are adjustable. The rear seat splits 60/40 and can be folded down for extra cargo space.
The GLS 4-door sedan adds standard body-colored mirrors, tinted glass, seatback pockets, a center armrest with cup holders, and illuminated vanity mirrors. Carpeted floor mats are an option across the model lineup, the GLS included.
The SE gets a bit sporty, with standard ABS and electronic brake force distribution, an option for the GLS that's not available on the GS. The SE also steps up to 16" alloy wheels, a sport-tuned suspension, and fog lights. Power outside mirrors and keyless entry are standard on the SE rather than optional, as they are on the other two models. The SE also gets the upgraded CD/XM/MP3 6-speaker stereo standard. It also has air conditioning, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, and metallic interior accents. If you want a sunroof to accent your Accent, the SE is the only variant with that option.
There are few changes to the Accent for 2009, but fun options like XM satellite radio and an MP3 jack are still available. Thanks to minor tweaks, the gas economy is a bit higher than last year, putting it at 27 mpg city, 35 mpg highway.