The arrival of the new Hyundai Elantra was a bit long overdue, but believe me it was worth the wait.
Hyundai has decided to also expand the range as follow.
First up is 1.6-litre naturally aspirated petrol engine which produce 94kW and 154Nm, available in Manual and Auto. The manual returns a claimed average of 6.5 litres per 100km, and the auto is a bit thirstier at 6.9l/100km.
Next in the lineup is a 2-litre naturally aspirated petrol (Also used in other Hyundai/KIA products) with an output of 115kW and 195Nm. This one is a bit thirsty compared to the other engine options and returns a claimed 8.3l/100km. On the positive side the 2-litre is available in a higher spec level than the 1.6 which is the Elite spec level.
The top of the range is the 1.6-litre Turbo Petrol with delivers a very healthy 150kW/265Nm, mated to the same seven-speed dual-clutch paddle shifter available in the Tucson and Veloster. Acceleration is claimed at 0-100km/h in only 7.7seconds, it is no slouch. Fuel economy is claimed at 7.9 litres per 100km.
All the Elantras are well specced, as we came to expect from the Koreans. The base Executives spec a hi-res colour touchscreens including navigation, Bluetooth phone pairing, aux and USB inputs, and six speakers. This 20.3cm display can also mirror smartphone screens via HDMI input, but a separate adapter will be required. They’re also equipped with man-made leather seats, cruise control, six airbags, remote central locking, rear parking sensors and manual air conditioning, but upper Elites add rain-sensing wipers, automatic climate control, rear air vents, keyless start and electronic stability control (no ESC in Executives).
The top Turbo Elite also gets a different suspension configuration with a multi-link independent setup at the back axle, instead of the torsion beam type in all other models.
All the Elantra models right through the ranges drive quite well. The steering is well weighted and reasonably precise, the suspension is compliant over most surfaces and it feels sure-footed through the bends – up to a point. But there are either sportier or more comfortable alternatives out there.
Interior quality is good with a slightly more modern style. The dash layout is simple and easy to use.
The interior is more spacious than the previous-generation Elantra with increased shoulder room (7mm for front seat occupants and 12mm for those in the back), 4mm more head room and a significant 59mm extra legroom in the rear seat – making for a comfortable car capable of accommodating four adults without too much stress. The 458L boot is generous enough to swallow enough luggage for four and will easily cope with the daily commutes and family life.
In my opinion the Elantra’s exterior design looks so much better than the competitors compared to the likes of the Toyota Corolla, VW Jetta, Mazda 3 and Ford Focus.
- Elantra 1.6 Executive
- Elantra 1.6 Executive auto
- Elantra 2.0 Elite auto
- Elantra 1.6 Turbo Elite Red (7spd DCT Auto)
- Elantra 1.6 Turbo Elite Black (7spd DCT Auto)
Prices include a five-year/150 000km warranty (plus an additional two-year/50 000km powertrain warranty) and a five-year/90 000km service plan.
While most of the consumers these days opt for SUV’s, the Elantra is a competent, conservative and affordable alternative that offers just as much useable space as an SUV.
While it doesn’t set any new benchmarks for safety, economy or dynamics it isn’t far behind the best small sedans either. If you are in the market for a family sedan, you definitely need to consider the Elantra.