2017 Hyundai Elantra Sport Review

The compact sedan gets a sporty new look and power upgrade

Rating

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Type

Compact sedan

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Engine
1.6-litre turbocharged 4-cylinder
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Fuel economy
8.9L/100 km city, 7.0L/100 km hwy (1.6-litre, dual-clutch automatic)
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Power
201 hp
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Drivetrain
Front-wheel drive
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Transmission
Six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch automatic

Competition

Honda Civic Si, Ford Focus ST, Volkswagen Jetta GLI

Best For

Customers who want the proven reliability and safety of the Elantra, but also a fun driving experience with a little extra kick under the hood.

When the sixth-generation 2017 Elantra was originally announced, the big talking points were that it had better handling and was safer and quieter than previous versions—largely due to its “SuperStructure” chassis, comprised of advanced high-strength steel. Now, with the manufacturer introducing the first turbocharged Sport model, add  “fastest” to that list as well.

The Sport’s formula goes something like this: take the Elantra’s already sleek look and add a more aggressive front end with a blacked-out grille, front lip splitter, body-colour side skirts and a built-in rear bumper diffuser housing twin chrome muffler tips. Throw on a set of 18-inch alloy wheels wrapped in performance all-season rubber, and call it a day for the exterior.

Inside, the racy theme continues thanks to the leather-trimmed bolstered seats, flat-bottomed steering wheel (and paddle shifters on automatics), unique instrument cluster and alloy pedal covers. And what would a sporty car be without red stitching? There’s plenty of that throughout the cabin.

Turn on the vehicle, and one of my favourite features is revealed: the exhaust emits a little rumble to remind drivers that this is no regular Elantra. Engineers paid special attention when designing the muffler to give a growl under acceleration, while not causing too much unwanted noise to enter the interior.

Hyundai says the new Elantra has 29.5 per cent more torsional rigidity—how much the frame flexes under load—than the outgoing one, which doesn’t really show until you have the opportunity to take it out on some twists and turns, or, in our case, a parking lot slalom. With its independent multi-link rear suspension, the vehicle simply dances around the cones, the only protest coming from a slight squeal of the tires.

The 2017 Hyundai Elantra will be available by the end of this year and only comes in two trim levels: Standard and Tech, with the latter adding navigation, an upgraded Infinity stereo, a and dual-zone climate control. Prices start at $24,999.

 

 

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