Monday, May 22, 2017

2017 Hyundai Elantra Turbo Sport: A Compact Sedan Packing More Punch Than The Competition

Highlight: While the typical Elantra spurts out only 147 horsepower from its single tailpipe, this year’s new Sport model pumps out an astounding 201- horsepower from its dual tailpipe.

Test Vehicle’s MSRP: $23,585 (base model $22,485)

Seating Capacity: 5

Standard Safety Features:  ABS; airbags; a tire pressure monitoring system; a tire mobility repair kit; a hill start control system; and a traction control system

Standard Equipment: 18-inch wheels; a manual transmission; higher springs and damper rates; revised steering; upgraded brakes; alloy gas/brake pedals; heated leather front sport seats; a power driver’ seat; a leather flat-bottom steering wheel; Android/Apple CarPlay; keyless entry; a push button ignition starter; a sliding armrest; and a handsfree trunk release

Optional Features On Test Vehicle:  an automatic transmission; an AM/FM/HD; 8-inch infotainment touchscreen; a navigation system; an 8-speaker Infinity audio system; Hyundai’s version of OnStar (Blue Link); a blind spot detection system with a rear traffic alert system; an electronic lane changing system; a dual automatic temperature control system; and an automatic rearview mirror

Standard Audio On Test Vehicle: an AM/FM/HD

Bluetooth Connectivity: Yes

USB Connectivity: Yes
Bumper-to-Bumper Warranty: 5 years or 60,000 miles

Powertrain Warranty: 10 years or 100,000 miles

Standard Engine/Horsepower: 1.6-liter, 4-cylinder/201-hp

Recommended Fuel: Regular Unleaded

Standard Fuel Mileage:

What’s New:  The Elantra, which is the Korean automaker best-selling vehicle, receives a total makeover for the 2017 model year, while offering a choice of three new powertrains.

Why:  The Elantra has taken design cues from its larger sibling, the Sonata, dropping the curves for a more mature look. Ironically, based upon sales, this new design direction seems to work for the compact. More so, while the Elantra is classified as a compact, the roomy interior space of the cabin begs to differ. In fact, when the interior cabin is pitted against such confined cabins as the midsize Mazda6, it makes one question if the all-new Elantra should be moved up to compete in a different segment.

With that said, the all-new Elantra Sport, which is the new high performance version of the compact sedan, is wrapped in leather trim throughout the cabin. The bulkier and more bolstered front seats are embroidered with the Sport name. The instrument panel layout also mimics that of the Sonata and Genesis G80, which is formerly the Genesis sedan. Just like in the noted vehicles, all of the controls are interactive and easy to use.

As always, Hyundai has been known for offering loads of value in their vehicles. The all-new Sport is no different. This 2017 sedan standouts from a typical Elantra by adding larger wheels, an integrated rear spoiler and a turbo engine which has a rumble coming from the exhaust. This zippy four-cylinder compact unleashes 201 through the twin tailpipe, which is a first for any Elantra. Not only will this Elantra attract heavy foot drivers, seeking power, but the tuner crowd, too!

In addition to Hyundai upping the ante with this generation Elantra, as it relates to performance, buyers can also expect such features as an easy-to-use infotainment system, which is compatible with smartphones, a power sunroof, heated and ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, a smart trunk that opens without the use of a key, a radar activated cruise control system and a blind spot lane changing system.

But: We hate our test vehicle didn’t arrive with the standard manual transmission. Yes, an automatic with paddle shifters just doesn’t quite cut it for us.  And, being that Hyundai is one of the few automakers that severely limit the miles we require in order to adequately test the vehicle, we were unable to examine how the Elantra Sport interacted on the twisty country roads. This is something that both our drivers and the all-new Elantra Sport were counting on.

Furthermore, will Hyundai bring back an Elantra coupe? Honda is offering a coupe in the segment.

Verdict: With trims like the Sport model being added to the redesign Elantra, it’s no wonder why this is one of two compact vehicles so far this year in the segment that seemingly is outpacing last year sales. In fact, the Elantra sales have increased by a whopping 33 percent. As we noted earlier, Hyundai is known for providing a lot of value in their vehicles. It is quite evident that this compact outpaces its competitors in terms of interior volume, a best in class warranty, loads of safety amenities and choice of powertrains, too.

And as far the Sport trim, the Honda Civic Si, which was released to dealerships in May (2017), is the only compact that matches the Elantra Sport in terms of horsepower.

Competition Elantra Sport: Honda Civic Si, Mazda3 and Nissan Sentra SR Turbo

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