The Hyundai Elantra and Elantra GT have both received attention over the last little while in order to keep them fresh. Content-wise, they remain as value-packed as always.
In under a decade, the Hyundai Elantra has gone from potential candidate in a second round of shopping to a list-topper. The last few generations of the compact Elantra sedan and Elantra GT hatchback blended styling along with impressive levels of kit.
For 2019, the sedan gets a facelift that we’re far from set on. The Elantra GT, new for 2018 on the other hand, carries on as handsome as ever with a dash of European flair that make it one of the more attractive in the segment.
If we were to shop an Elantra, you might have guessed that we’d skip the sedan and start with the GT.
Right from the onset, the $20,449 GT GL provides all of the good stuff, namely a 162-horsepower 2.0L 4-cylinder engine (sedan gets 147-horsepower), a 6-speed manual transmission, heated front seats and steering wheel, blind Spot detection with rear cross-traffic alert, an 8.0-inch touchscreen with Android Auto & Apple CarPlay and mush more.
An extra $2,400 for the GLS manual throws in 17-wheels, a panoramic sunroof, proximity key entry system with push-button start and dual-climate controls. While we’re not all about sunroofs, we’d still go with this version if mostly for the proximity key setup.
Having said that, the first version we’d actually shop would the Sport manual, which retails for $26,999.
The Sport is powered by a turbocharged 201- horsepower 1.6-litre 4-cylinder engine which transforms the little-old Elantra GT into a bonified VW GTI fighter. The included 6-speed manual is fun but the $1,500 7-speed dual-clutch is fine operator. Truth be told, both transmissions are not the most pleasant or refined of their kind. For this reason, we’d save $1,500 and skip the DCT.
Fuel economy numbers with the 1.6T are less than stellar. With the manual transmission, a combined average of just under 10L/100km is to be expected. The DCT considerably lowers the amount to just over 8L/100km. With the base 2.0L engine, fuel numbers hover just over the DCT’s.
Despite the fuel consumption penalty, we’d still get the 1.6T for the power and performance.
We’ve become partial to shades of orange, red and blue. We’d love Phoenix Orange in a non-turbo version but we like the idea of a two-tone gray and black cabin over a mostly mundane all-black one. For this reason, Star Gazing Blue would win our vote.
Our selected Sport Manual would be Phoenix Orange as all interiors are black leather with red accents.
Lease or Finance?
First things first here: do NOT fall for an extended financing period! By extended, we mean any duration over 60 months for a finance. The reason is simple: More than likely, you’ll owe more on the car than its actual worth only about half-way through your payments. This negative equity will haunt you for years to come, this we promise you.
Now, a 60-month finance of the Sport, based on a $28,981.50 retail price with fees including $1,705 for delivery and destination would work to just under $560 with taxes at 0.99% interest. These amounts are calculated without a down-payment or equivalent trade-in
The standard no-cost 5-year/100,000 KM Comprehensive Limited Warranty makes a 60-month lease less risky than typically and reduces monthly payments by almost $60. The going rate is 1.99% and with a 20,000km a year allowance, the amounts are $423.20 x 60 or $481.47 x 48. Whatever the choice, do make sure you do NOT purchase the car at the end of the lease.
We would finance the car with an initial $3,500 down-payment to drop the monthly instalments to just shy of $500 and save on a little on interest.
2019 Hyundai Elantra Images