2021 Hyundai Elantra

absolutely AUTO REVIEW | By Steve Kursar –

The 2021 Hyundai Elantra is all-new for this model year.  While American automakers are drifting away from manufacturing cars, the Korean automaker is doubling down with this exciting sixth generation of their popular compact car. It is impressive enough to have won the North American Car of the Year award for 2021.

There was a time when compact cars were boring, barren little square boxes with little in the way of luxuries. You’d be lucky to get anything more than a radio, roll-down windows (remember those?) and optional air conditioning. Those days are long gone with automakers vying for that compact car buyer with stylish cars that are loaded with the types of features that you used to see only in luxury vehicles.  It’s a good time to be in the market for a small car.

The new base Elantra has an MSRP price tag of $19,850 and it’s powered by a 147 hp, 2.0 liter four-cyclinder engine mated to a continuous variable transmission (CVT). EPA estimated fuel economy ratings are 31 mpg in the city and 41 mpg on the highway. For about $4,000 more, you can pick up the gasoline/electric Elantra Hybrid that gets really impressive gas economy of 53 mpg/city and 56 mpg/highway.

And then there is the sporty Elantra N, which is a whole new take on the compact sedan. The N Line offers two powerful four-cylinder engines: a 201 hp, 1.6 liter turbo and a 276 hp, 2.0 liter. Both N trims bring a more aggressive design along with bigger brakes, a stiffer suspension and an optional manual transmission to make driving more exciting.  The new N will be in dealer showrooms shortly.

The 2021 Elantra features a roomy interior with more interior passenger volume many popular compact crossovers. There’s also a host of standard features including an eight-inch display, HD radio and wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.  Upgrade to a higher trims and you get a segment-largest 10.25” fully digital LCD instrument cluster along with a 10.25” Wide Screen Navigation System. The Elantra also features Hyundai Digital Key, which allows it to be unlocked, started, and driven without a physical key via a compatible Android smartphone device.

This is one compact car loaded with upgrades that you normally only find on luxury vehicles.  With few sedans available in dealer showrooms, the Elantra is sure to win over more shoppers.