The N-Line to Hyundai is what M-Sport is to BMW. It’s not quite a hardcore performance variant, like the Veloster N, but it’s also not quite a base car either. So what makes this Elantra GT different than a standard Elantra GT? Read on…
Engine – While the standard Elantra GT is only available with a 2.0L naturally aspirated engine, this N-Line trim receives a turbocharged 1.6L. It produces 201hp and 195 lb-ft of torque, up by 40hp and 45 lb-ft over the 2.0L engine. The engine feels punchy enough during normal driving conditions. It is responsive with little to no turbo lag at lower engine speeds. For a car that tips the scales at just over 1,400kg, the Elantra feels peppy enough for most people’s needs. It’s not quite a hot hatch like the Volkswagen GTi or Ford Focus ST but you can still have some fun with the Elantra GT, especially if it has the manual transmission.
This automatic Elantra GT is rated for 9.7 L/100km (24.2 mpg) in a city and 7.4 L/100km (31.8 mpg) on a highway. During my time with it, I averaged 8.7 L/100km (27 mpg).
Transmission – As mentioned, you can get the Elantra GT N-Line as both a manual or an automatic. But it’s not a traditional automatic gearbox and instead it’s a 7-speed dual clutch automatic. For the most part it is quick to shift through the gears when left in normal drive mode. However, setting off from a stop is a bit more cumbersome because the transmission feels sluggish to get the car moving. As in, it doesn’t accelerate off the line as quickly as you’d expect unless you bury your foot on the throttle pedal.
Braking – The brakes on the Hyundai Elantra GT have a firm and uniform feel throughout. They have a good and strong initial bite but they’re easy to modulate. Forward collision alert with emergency automatic braking are standard features on this top trim N-Line.
Handling – For a hot hatch, the steering feel is good and is nicely weighted. At higher speeds it’s on the heavier side which aids in highway stability and it does become lighter when maneuvering at parking lot speeds. Overall though it is an enjoyable drive on twisty mountain roads or when taking the kids to school.
Ride Comfort – The suspension is a bit more firm than the standard Hyundai Elantra but it’s not harsh. Thankfully you don’t have to play Minesweeper with potholes like how you do in the Veloster N when the suspension is on its firmest setting.
Interior Space – There’s enough adjustability in the front seats and steering column that taller adults can find a comfortable driving position. There’s a good amount of head and leg room in the back seats but it all depends on who is sitting in the front. The rear seats can become very tight for adults with long legs.
Noise, Vibration, & Harshness – For the most part the Elantra GT is a relatively quiet and smooth driving hatchback. Hyundai’s of just 15 years ago would have squeaks and rattles from the trim pieces but today’s Hyundai vehicles are much better put together. The Elantra doesn’t suffer from any annoying rattles even over rough roads.
Odds and Ends
Gadgets – Things like lane departure warning, emergency automatic braking, and adaptive cruise control are all features that are available on the Elantra GT but only on this top N-Line trim which comes with a $30,699 CAD price tag with the automatic. What’s odd though is that the lower trim Elantra GTs receive blind spot sensors but this N-Line doesn’t.
The infotainment system is the same one used in other Hyundai vehicles and is easy to use. The best thing about it is the real time traffic feature on the navigation. If there’s congestion on the road ahead of you, it will highlight the road in red and during my week of driving the Elantra, it was always accurate.
Exterior Design – The 2018 redesign carries over to this 2019 model and is a fresh update from the previous Elantra hatchback. It has a bit of a European flare from the lines of the roof to the stubby rear end. It also has some funky touches on the outside like the grille design and headlights. Overall it is a good looking headturner.
Interior Design – The Hyundai Elantra hatchback has a European interior design. A simple to use 8” infotainment system is the predominant feature on the dashboard with also very simple to use climate controls just below it. It also has red accents with the red stitching and piping on the seats along with the red seat belts. It all goes well together with the red exterior paint.
Overall the 2019 Hyundai Elantra GT is a good all-round hatchback. One of its direct competitors is the Honda Civic Si which has the same features and same power but it is only available with a manual transmission and only as a sedan or coupe. Also the Elantra it’s less expensive than the CIvic Si if you opt for the manual transmission at $27,199 CAD vs $28,690 CAD for the Civic Si sedan. So that makes the decision very simple.