New transmission bumps 2020 Hyundai Accent to EPA-rated 41 mpg on the highway

The 2020 Hyundai Elantra will add a fuel-saving continuously variable transmission (CVT) for the new year, according to certification data posted to the EPA’s website last week. The new transmission bumps the 2020 Accent’s fuel economy to 33 mpg city, 41 highway, 36 combined, up considerably from the 28/38/32 mpg rating with last year’s 6-speed automatic transmission. 

However, the new Accent will keep a 6-speed manual transmission as standard, which is estimated by the EPA to return 29/39/33 mpg, a 2 mpg combined bump over last year’s model. 

Hyundai did not immediately respond to a request for comment.  

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News of the Accent gaining the CVT is hardly a surprise as Hyundai and sister-brand Kia move from conventional automatic transmissions to CVTs in the pursuit of improved fuel economy. The 2019 Kia Forte compact car debuted the CVT for the two automakers and Hyundai confirmed earlier this year that its similar 2020 Elantra will be built with the fuel-saving transmission. 

EPA certification revealed that the Elantra will also be estimated to return at least 40 mpg on the highway—a noticeable improvements over the 2019 model year when it employed a 6-speed automatic transmission.

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The Accent shares its 1.6-liter inline-4 with the 2020 Hyundai Venue crossover SUV that bowed at the 2019 New York auto show last month with the CVT.