What we're driving - Hyundai Elantra Sport

  • 26-Sep-2017 07:34 EDT
elantra sport.jpg

Look ma, no bulges: kudos to Hyundai for erring on the mature side with the Elantra Sport's bodywork (image: Hyundai).

It’s become a rarity for automakers to put manual-transmission models in their press-evaluation fleets, but the Elantra Sport’s direct (if light) lever action and skillfully-weighted clutch pedal made it all the more pleasing to manual-shift for a week.

Although the Sport has a unique, assertively-styled grille and other panels that differentiate it from the rest of the Elantra lineup, it’s not an appearance job—there’s something going here: don’t forget, Hyundai hired BMW’s former M-division engineering boss a couple years ago. There’s a useful 201 hp from the turbocharged, direct-injected 1.6-L 4-cylinder and scant lag. With the 6-speed manual, the Sport’s just on the civil side of truly fast—once moving, this car’s a treat to hustle around in the middle gears.

Handling leans modestly towards the “pushy” side of neutral, while the flat-bottom steering wheel and well-considered power steering collaborate to bring the Elantra Sport to a place more engaging than a Toyota Corolla, roughly on par with an equivalent Honda Civic Sport (Hyundai’s manual is better) and without the reputation of a Volkswagen GTI to haul around. Maybe you’d call that a “sleeper.”

In addition to the sparkling turbocharged four, the Elantra Sport fronts a wealth of premium content for the money. The $25000 as-tested price brings a big 8-in. touchscreen with navigation, leather seats, blind-spot warning, hands-free trunk opening, 18-inch alloys and Hyundai’s 5-year/60000-mile warranty. And excellent front seats, I’ve gotta add.

It may not project "sporty," to everyone, but I'm okay with the Elantra Sport's tight creases and refrain from bulgy bodywork. It all seems to appropriate for this discreet—and inexpensive—light-performance sedan.

2017 Hyundai Elantra Sport

  • Base price:    $21,650
  • As tested:      $25,010
  • Highs:            Refined drivetrain; excellent seats; excellent value
  • Lows:            A few chintzy interior pieces; can’t expect Honda resale
  • Takeaway:     Maybe better than a standard Civic.
HTML for Linking to Page
Page URL
Rate It
4.00 Avg. Rating

Read More Articles On

Electric-vehicle startup Lucid Motors unveils its proposed first production model, the Air luxury sedan, adding to the roster of companies seeking to loosen Tesla's grip on the luxury-electric market.
The 7th generation 5 Series, known internally as the G30, focuses on power, torque, mass and aero-drag reduction and refinement.
The visually captivating Lexus LC coupe debuts Toyota's GA-L architecture and features the new Aisin 10-speed, lightweight construction and a new hybrid powertrain.
Maruti Suzuki India Limited announced that its Smart Hybrid vehicles, the Ciaz SHVS and the Ertiga SHVS, have crossed cumulative sales of 100,000 units in February.

Related Items

Training / Education
Technical Paper / Journal Article
Training / Education