With dramatically improved styling, impressive features and competitive pricing the new Hyundai Elantra is placed in a very competitive position in its segment.
Design and styling:
Hyundai have definitely raised the bar with each new product that this successful Korean manufacturer has introduced into the South African market. The recent launch of the new Hyundai Elantra follows this progression perfectly.
Taking a vehicle like the previous Elantra that we have come to know as being conservative and ordinary, and transforming it into what can only been described as a striking and invigorating vehicle has been an impressive feat. The phrase: 'Out with the old and in with the new' has seldom been so appropriate.
Hyundai Automotive South Africa chose not to preview the new Elantra at Auto Africa 2006, and it has been worth the wait. Purely based on its exterior appearance, the Elantra is set to make significant strides within its segment. The Elantra's design philosophy was born from the harmonizing of opposites, taking sharp modern styling, and soft, contoured curves, to craft a character full of passion and personality.
Its interior promises a mobile habitat with the design, comfort and ergonomic sophistication to impress and pamper all occupants.
Front hip room and shoulder room has been expanded by 32mm and 22mm respectively, with front head room and leg room increased by 9mm and 8mm. Rear shoulder room has gained an additional 40mm. A 35mm lift in front -seat height improves visibility and eases entry and egress.
The six speaker audio system with steering mounted controls will assist the driver in creating the perfect in-car atmosphere.
The fully automatic climate control, which is standard in all Elantra derivatives, ensures that occupants are kept comfortable, regardless of the outside weather conditions.
Remote keyless entry and the remote boot release affords the driver safe and easy access.
The fact that its looks are backed by solid performance and quality will ensure the new Elantra has lasting appeal. The Elantra offers a choice of two modern petrol engines, and in a market segment that often places economy before power, both engines exhibit Hyundai engineering expertise, reliability, longevity, refinement, as well as performance.
The 1.6 litre 16 valve twin-cam engine adds CVVT (Constantly Variable Valve Timing) to optimize economy and cut emissions. Its peak power is 89 kW at 6200r/min and it provides an impressive torque figure of 153 Nm at 4200r/min. It is also available in both 5-speed manual and 4-speed automatic transmissions.
Compared to the previous model the new 1.6 CVVT engine provides 13kW more power and 10Nm more torque.
The engine's durability has also been improved with the introduction of a CAM-chain which replaces the CAM-belt. This adds to the overall reduction of engine noise and vibration throughout the vehicle.
The potent 2.0 litre 16 valve twin-cam CVVT engine boasts maximum power of 105 kW and maximum torque of 186 Nm at 4600r/min. Despite being linked with power overall gearing for more sprightly acceleration, it improves fuel economy over the prior model.
Safety has been the primary focal point in the design of the new Elantra. Motor driven power steering provides tremendous responsiveness and combines well with the anti-lock braking system, which incorporates electronic brake force distribution to ensure that the driver has more control in adverse conditions.
Structural safety has been improved by optimizing the crumple zones and load diffusing paths as well as reinforcing the bulkheads, pillars and side impact structures.
Speed sensing door lock and impact sensing door unlock ensures the occupants are kept safe inside the Elantra's redesigned safety cell, but are also able to exit the vehicle in the event of a collision.
Dual airbags with seatbelt pretentioners complete an overall impressive array of safety features.
Such is the superior safety of the new Elantra that it received a five star NCAP rating in the United States for frontal impact on the driver and passenger side.
In all, the new Elantra is an elegantly styled, high quality, mid-size sedan that provides a secure, comfortable, confident and enjoyable driving experience, with strong performance and fuel frugality, in a spacious and affordable package.
All new Elantra derivatives come standard with a 3 year /100&nbsop;000 km full factory warranty and a 3 year/60 000 km full maintenance plan.