2012 Hyundai Azera Sedan Base (3.3L V6 6-speed Automatic)
Driven On 2/21/2012
This rating has been carried forward from a prior year because the newer model has no substantial differences.
The Azera trades function for style, and the result isn't universally successful. However, its engine is punchy and feature availability is excellent. A bit more work on the details would go a long way.
ComfortRide quality is generally good, though the seats are oddly shaped. Plenty of luxury items to soothe, however.
Headrest protrudes forward awkwardly. Unusually difficult to find a comfortable seating position despite the usual battery of adjustments available.
Definitely tuned to be less floaty than previous versions and firmer than its Lexus rival. A good balance between control and comfort.
Engine noise is essentially nonexistent when cruising or during gentle acceleration. Road and wind noise not quite as well isolated, though not excessive.
InteriorPlenty of space inside, though the panoramic sunroof eats up headroom.
The center stack controls fall victim to style and symmetry. It is button-y when knobs would have worked better. Our tester was equipped with the Technology Package.
Wide-opening doors and modest seat bolstering facilitate ease of use.
Lots of legroom front and rear. The heavily styled dashboard eats into the perception (if not the reality) of roominess, and backseat headroom is snug for six-footers.
Large C-pillars, a tall deck and high cowl make outward visibility less panoramic than it could be.
Ample cargo volume. Goodneck hinges are concealed so as to not smash objects placed in the trunk.
PerformanceIts powertrain is very effective, and the suspension does a pretty good job of balancing ride with precision. The steering needs help, though.
The V6 is gutsy and moves the big sedan around with authority. The six-speed automatic may not shift especially quickly, but it does so with uncommon smoothness.
Good response at the pedal. Braking distances about average for the class.
Numb, nonlinear and has an annoying stiction when the wheel's moved from a fixed position. A poor example of electric power steering.
Fairly precise, not ponderous despite the car's ample dimensions.
Throttle calibration is overly jumpy from a standstill, making it difficult to be smooth in slow-and-go traffic.
ValueThe Azera has a laundry list of features that will satisfy nearly everyone. Its cabin is not consistently the model of luxury when it comes to material choice, though it does cost a bit less than the Lexus ES.
Build Quality (vs. $)
Some cheap plastics in the cabin. The leather wrapped steering wheel has very coarse stitching. Aside from a mystery rattle in the interior, apparent build quality is good.
In typical Hyundai style, the Azera is absolutely loaded with features that would only have found on top-flight luxury cars of five years ago.
Competitive in its class, though Hyundai's own Sonata puts up a strong case against the Azera.
EPA ratings of 20/29 city/highway are pretty solid for the class. As always, real world results may vary from these numbers.
Hyundai's basic warranty is 5 yrs/60,000 miles and the powertrain is covered for 10 yrs/100,000 miles. There's 7 yrs/unlimted miles of corrosion coverage.
You also get 5 yrs/unlimited miles of 24/7 roadside assistance should you run out of gas, have a flat, or need a tow. Scheduled maintenance costs are about average.
Fun To DriveThough not a fun car in the traditional sense of the word, buyers will likely be satisfied with the way the Azera drives. Except for the steering, which is annoying.
Perfectly pleasant but not the kind of car that will have you seeking out back roads.
This car tries to fade into the background and is moderately successful in doing so.