Has Hyundai Set The Bar With Affordable Luxury With The Elantra?
I had the keys to this Elantra for a week. Here are my thoughts.
For years Hyundai was known as a brand that was all about just getting from A to B with nothing much more than a bunch of metal with four wheels and some sort of sound system to get by. As the years have gone by, Hyundai increased the options to bring on to attract more customers. After seeing the Sonata and what it has to offer Hyundai gave me the keys to the Elantra. So, the question has to be asked: can the Elantra be that new standard to raise the bar in affordable luxury? Well let's find out, shall we?
The exterior of the Elantra is elegantly beautiful. The curves and edges are refined and offer such charm to the looker. Design cues seem to be taken from an Audi from the rear panel towards the back. Looking directly at the front, it looks very aggressive like an angry bulldog with how the headlights, grille, and chin are designed. Altogether, the Elantra always calls for a double take to bask in its beauty.
The interior of the Elantra is the main highlight of the entire car. Yes, the seats are comfortable. The cluster is beautiful. The trim blends well together like the instruments in Beethoven's symphonies. All of this would not be at all possible without the attention to detail of those who went into designing not just the big things, but the little things as well. Take a look at the turn signal and the windshield wiper lever. Do you see the dials? Magnificent! It might not be much, but this is what separates the Elantra from the competition. Also, the ambient lighting and colors that come with the Elantra add the cherry on top to what makes the interior so delightfully splendid. My only issue is the location of the cupholder that is closest to the shifter. Any drinks that occupy that spot obstruct a comfortable and easy gear change.
Pricing and Options
So, how much does this Elantra cost? After adding everything up, the total price comes to just $26,600. What does that get a potential owner? Well, for safety the Elantra comes with forwarding collision-avoidance assist with pedestrian detection, cyclist and junction turning detection, parking distance warning for reverse, parking collision-avoidance assist for reverse, blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control (with stop and go), lane keep assist, and lane following assist, highway driving assist, and a rearview camera with dynamic guidelines. For comfort and convenience, the Elantra comes with Bose premium audio with a subwoofer, infotainment system with Bluetooth connectivity, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay capabilities, wireless charging pad, Hyundai Digital key, heated front seats with the driver seats being powered, and dynamic voice recognition.
The 2.0L four-cylinder under the hood of the Elantra only produces 147 horsepower and 132 foot-pounds of torque to the front wheels. That is all fine because with my driving habits I was able to achieve 30 miles to the gallon. The ride comfort is the cherry on top. The suspension not only keeps everything nice and tidy but it offers the support (added with the comfortable seats) that is needed for a long drive or even journey. The steering stays nice and light as well as sharp when needed to make quick turns. As far as braking goes, the Elantra can almost stop on a dime from 60-0 miles per hour.
So, does this Elantra set the bar for affordable luxury? In short, yes it really does. The people at Hyundai really outdid themselves when it comes to a car that people will buy because they will really want to. Not because they want a car to just get them from A to B. Those days are finally behind the manufacturer with the Elantra. Not only that but the Elantra, like almost all other Hyundai models, comes with the 10-year/100,000-mile warranty for the powertrain. Who still offers that? A better future is among all of us for this. For that, I have to give thanks to Hyundai.
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