2018 Hyundai Elantra GT – Test Drive, Review, Ratings, Specs

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The Fun and Affordable Hatch

There’s a things the Korean can learn from the Europeans, it will be the fact that hatchbacks are cool. As a matter of fact, Hyundai’s hatchback DNA originates over in the Euro continent and was finally carried over and bred to be made available in North America. In terms of flavors, you get to choose from the more conventional Elantra GT 2.0L, or the more fiesty GT Sport powered by a 1.6L Turbo for added horsepower bonus. That’s not to say the standard GT should be completely neglected, but the Sport model does get you 201 over 161 horsepower while sporting more advanced multi-link rear suspension setup for better handling.

On the inside, the Elantra GT is simple, but clean and functional. You get a decent leather grade quality while packing all the basic infotainment jazz accessible via its well laid out “” LCD screen. The driver’s cockpit seating is upright and sporty, but overhead visibility can be better to attain a more driver-focused position. And there’s a decently comfortable amount of legroom in the rear seats with the ability to fold down completely flat easily with the pull of a lever from the rear trunk to add cargo space. Looks aren’t bad on the outside either. It’s well defined body structure is streamlined and its well chiseled front and rear design offers a fresh and handsome look, and Hyundai tends to be on a roll with their design over the past few years. Its looks even resembles the highly appraised Mazda 3 hatchback.  There’s good things to be said about its overall aesthetics and the Elantra GT or Sport model doesn’t disappoint and has no barriers to compete with its hatchback rivals, namely the Mazda 3, Ford Focus, and the like. You even get an extended panoramic rooftop window to heighten the sense of luxury within.

The 1.6L Turbo engine punches out 201 horsepower and 191 lb.ft of torque. But the respectable numbers on paper doesn’t quite match the reality of expectation so to speak. Harnessing its power does take some time to build up its engine speed before it’s made available. And cornering does provide good positive feedback on the steering wheel, but lacks the quick agility and responsiveness found more prominent in some of its other competitors, in which the Mazda 3 seemed to have gotten a better grasp at. And if the two were to be compared against, the Elantra GT Sport would feel heavier than the other when driving. But the positive sides you get from the Elantra is a quieter cabin space and its sturdier structural quality can be felt.

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Choice of transmission boils down to either a 6 automatic transmission, or a 5 speed manual. The latter option will buy you more of a thrill factor, but that will cost you added fuel economy. The automatic transmission achieves 27 mpg in the city and 32 on the highway while the manual version achieves slightly less at 25 and 30.

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The Elantra GT comes with a surprisingly generous set of standard features. Even with the base GL model equipped with the 2.0L engine, you get heated front seats and a leather wrapped steering wheel, blind spot monitoring with cross-traffic alert system, a rear view camera, and an 8″ infotainment display system with Android Auto and Apple Airplay. All this for just $20,499. The base Sport Manual 1.6L Turbo will; however, set you back atleast $26,999 and comes pre-packaged with enlarged 18″ wheels, dual exhaust tips, leather seating and LED headlights. And if you have extra cash to spare, the upper Sport Ultimate DCT equipped with a 6 speed automatic transmission ups the game with ventilated front seats, lane keep alarm system, and an upgraded 7 speaker audio system that proves to have decent sound quality.

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The base Elantra GT is incredibly well priced given the standard features it comes with where as, the Elantra GT Sport price entry point does require shelling out a fair bit of extra coins from the bank. Still, there are good reasons to opt for the Sport GT model, and its overall quality and value doesn’t disappoint its price tag. Sure, the road handling and performance may not live up to par with other competitors, but if you’re looking for a comfortable and sturdy ride, the Elantra GT is a winner in our books.

Specifications

  • Vehicle : 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT
  • Model : Elantra GT sport
  • Vehicle Type: H atchback
  • Seating Capacity : 2+3
  • Powertrain Configuration : FWD
  • Engine : 1.6L 4 Cylindder DOHC
  • Transmission : 6 Speed Automatic / Manual Transmission

Pros

  • Fresh and original exterior design
  • Amazing set of standard features
  • Great fuel economy
  • Solid ride quality

Cons

  • Handling and Performance not quite up to par with its other competitors

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