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2021 Hyundai Elantra Review - Prices, Specs, Performance, MPG, And Rivals Comparison

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Pranav Gupta

Content Writer July 08, 2020 at 11:00 AM
The Hyundai Elantra evolves for 2021 with larger dimensions, new feature-rich infotainment, and sporty looks. The parametric design matches the upscale interiors which are loaded with updated tech. Hyundai is set to charge forward with all-guns-blazing to rule the compact car segment and at large aims to take down all of its competitors, all the while with just a marginal price bump and starting from $20,000 (Expected).

Hyundai Elantra, also known as Avante in some parts of the world, is a four-door compact sedan. The 2021 Elantra is a part of the seventh generation showcasing Hyundai’s latest ambitions, vastly improving on the outgoing 2020 Elantra, Hyundai provides the 2021 sedan with the exciting driving dynamics and the most progressive in-car experience in its class.


Read on more about the Hyundai Elantra:


In 2019, around 175,094 units of the Hyundai Elantra were sold in the U.S., which drastically reduced to 33,281 units in 2020. However, with the redesigned 2021 model, it is believed that the sales figures of Elantra will again rise as it shall take on the likes of Nissan Sentra, Toyota Corolla, and Kia Forte among others quite easily.

What are the expected pricing and new features of the 2021 Hyundai Elantra?

Pricing of the 2021 Elantra is not yet announced but we don't expect the seventh-generation Elantra's price to greatly differ from the outgoing generation, which started at just below $20,000. The trims of the 2021 Elantra are yet to be revealed but we expect the same trim lineup of the outgoing model to creep its way into the 2021 model year as well: SE, SEL, and Limited other than the hybrid and the N Line model.

The 2021 Elantra will differ largely when it comes to creature comforts and standard technology features and this new generation will reshuffle all of its trims to provide for a more immersive line-up. However, resonating with earlier trends, we can very well expect the 2021 Hyundai Elantra to be crowned as the new compact sedan segment leader. Various new features in the 2021 Hyundai Elantra are:

  • Introduction of a new platform - Longer wheelbase, wider stance, lower roofline. 
  • A complete redesign with more advanced interior and exterior features. 
  • First-ever Hybrid model (1.6 L 4-cylinder Atkinson cycle engine paired with an electric motor) expected to offer a combined mileage of 50 MPGe.
  • New 10.3-inch infotainment system with more technology features standard inside. 
  • A performance N-Line variant on the cards, later in 2021

What are the engine and gearbox updates for the 2021 Hyundai Elantra?

As in the outgoing Elantra, Hyundai offers a standard 2.0L 4-cylinder engine under the hood of the 2021 model lineup, but only for the SE, SEL, and the Limited trims. All these trims get maximum power of 147 hp and a maximum torque of 132 lb-ft driving the front-wheels through Intelligent Variable Transmission or commonly referred to as CVT. 

For the first time, Hyundai is adding a hybrid powertrain and a performance-based N-Line trim to the 2021 Elantra line-up. A 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine combined with the electric motor in Elantra Hybrid is expected to deliver a total system output of 139 horsepower and up to 195 lb-ft of torque. This engine mates with Hyundai’s quick-shifting, six-speed, dual-clutch transmission - differentiating Elantra Hybrid from its key competitors because of its more dynamic and engaging driving experience. As for the N Line version, there have no reports regarding its powertrain setup, although we expect the turbocharged 1.6L unit to make its way into this version.

Model

2021 Hyundai Elantra (Expected)

2020 Nissan Sentra

2020 Toyota Corolla

2020 Kia Forte

MSRP

$20,000 

$19,090

$19,600

$18,790

Engine

2.0L Naturally Aspirated Inline-4 

2.0L Naturally Aspirated Inline-4  1.8L Naturally Aspirated Inline-4  2.0L Naturally Aspirated Inline-4 

Drivetrain

FWD

FWD

FWD

FWD

Transmission

CVT

CVT 

CVT CVT

Power

147 hp @ 6200 RPM

149 hp @ 6,400 RPM

139 hp @ 6,100 RPM

147 hp @ 6,200 RPM

Torque 

132 lb-ft @ 4500 RPM

146 lb-ft @ 4,400 RPM

126 lb-ft @ 3, 900 RPM

132 lb-ft @ 4,500 RPM

0-60 MPH 

9.0 secs

9.2 secs

9.8 secs

8.5 secs

Quarter Mile 

16.2 secs

16.5 secs

17.4 secs

16.0 secs

Top Speed

130 MPH

130 MPH

120 MPH

129 MPH

The engine specs of Elantra are respectable in this compact car segment. The 2021 Hyundai Elantra gets the best performance owing to the mechanical overhaul. However, the Nissan Sentra has slightly better performance figures owing to its much more refined unit in its base variant. Also, it offers an Xtronic CVT which is way better than the rest for a controlled driving experience.

What are the expected MPG figures for the 2021 Hyundai Elantra?

The EPA has not yet released estimates for the 2021 Elantra's MPG figures but Hyundai projects the 2021 Elantra to achieve the best-in-class combined fuel economy rating, an improvement over the last year, with the Intelligent Variable Transmission (IVT) playing a key role in this feat. We expect impressive figures, given the 2020 Elantra was rated as high as 41 MPG in the highway and 31 MPG in the city.

Moreover, if this isn't enough for you, Hyundai estimates that the new hybrid model will earn a combined rating of at least 50 MPG, well enough to challenge its closest rival the Honda Insight. Hyundai is seriously making strides with efficiency without compromising its performance. The availability of various driving modes also gives you the flexibility to utilize its performance only in times of need.

Model

2021 Hyundai Elantra (Expected)

2020 Nissan Sentra

2020 Toyota Corolla

2020 Kia Forte

MPG (City)

32

29

30

31

MPG (Highway)

42

39

38

41

MPG (Combined)

36

33

33

35

Fuel Capacity (gallons)

14.0

12.4

13.2

14.0

Range (City/ Highway/ Combined) (mi.)

462/ 574/ 504

369.6/ 483.6/ 409.2

409.2/ 528/ 448.8

396/ 528/ 448.8

Emissions (Tons/yr of CO2 Emissions @ 15k mi/yr)

3.8

4.0

3.9

3.9

The all-new 7th-generation Hyundai Elantra is expected to return the best MPG figures in this segment. However, Toyota Corolla and Nissan Sentra also offer decent figures, which would also see improvements for 2021. It will be an interesting face-off, with the introduction of hybrid powertrains, but for the time being, Hyundai Elantra leads and Nissan Sentra trails this pack.

What are the updates for the 2021 Hyundai Elantra interior?

The 2021 Hyundai Elantra gets a completely redesigned interior with driver-centric ergonomic cues. Moreover, the seating layout has been slightly improved in the 2021 model for the added comfort of the passengers. A sleek roofline typically compromises the headroom, but at 40.6 inches of front headroom and 37.3 inches of rear headroom, the 2021 Elantra has about the same as its predecessor, if not more.

The longer wheelbase is also expected to provide a best-in-class 38.0 inches of rear legroom and the wider track width means improved shoulder room as well. The new Elantra’s cabin is stretched out to overcome the previously disappointing space factor. The “immersive cocoon” interior layout envelops the driver to prove for a heightened driving experience.

Model

2021 Hyundai Elantra (Expected)

2020 Nissan Sentra

2020 Toyota Corolla

2020 Kia Forte

Seating Capacity

5

5

5

5

First Row (Head/ Shoulder/ Leg) (in.)

40.6/ 56.5/ 42.3

38.9/ 56.4/ 44.0

38.3/ 54.0/ 42.0

38.8/ 56.1/ 42.2

Second Row (Head/ Shoulder/ Leg) (in.)

37.3/ 55.6/ 38.0

36.7/ 54.5/ 34.7

37.1/ 51.7/ 34.8

37.5/ 55.3/ 35.7

Trunk Capacity (cu. ft.)

14.2

14.3

13.1

15.3

Even in the cargo front, the Elantra shines with 14.2 cu. ft. of trunk space. This will follow for 2021 as well with a slightly improved layout, giving it a marginal advantage over the Toyota Corolla. Having said that, the 2021 Hyundai Elantra, along with the redesigned interior, gets more standard features for comfort and convenience. Notable creature comfort features in the 2021 Hyundai Elantra are:

  • Customizable 64-color mood lighting
  • Unique cornering grab handle for the passenger
  • High center console completes the driver-oriented layout
  • Sporty low-placed inside handles
  • Two-toned melange emphasizes the driver-focused layout even on the door
  • Rearview camera with dynamic guidelines

What are the major updates for the infotainment system in the 2021 Elantra?

For 2021, Hyundai offers two futuristic 10.25-inch screens all under one piece of glass in the Elantra. This is coupled with seamless connectivity and innovative features for an intuitive driving experience. Wireless Apple Carplay and Android Auto connectivity will be the segment-first to come in as standard in the 2021 Elantra lineup.

The 2021 Elantra will come standard with a brand new dashboard and an 8.0-inch center display with analog gauges. The higher trims will get the optional 10.23-inch duo of screens. The BlueLink feature allows you to be seamlessly connected throughout the journey. Coming with 34 different features, it will surely make the experience worthwhile. Various infotainment features in the 2021 Hyundai Elantra are:

  • 8 inch HD Touch Audio Video Navigation & Telematics System
  • Available 10.3-inch touchscreen system
  • Bluetooth and steering wheel audio controls
  • Hyundai i-blue Audio Remote Application.
  • Infinity Premium Sound 8 speaker system.
  • Wireless Phone Charger.
  • Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.

What are the radical updates for the 2021 Hyundai Elantra exterior?

Get ready to witness something truly special on this front. The 2021 Hyundai Elantra has utilized the automaker's new “Parametric dynamics” design philosophy- three lines meet at one point. With a completely new exterior design, the 2021 Elantra adorns a new four-door-coupe look.

Hyundai engineers have made the new 2021 model longer, lower, and wider compared to the sixth-generation model. Moreover, it just looks drop-dead gorgeous which has taken inspirations from the Hyundai Sonata. With highlighting features such as front grille, headlamps, and tail lamps, coupe-like roofline, the exterior that was already stunning becomes even more sumptuous.

Model

2021 Hyundai Elantra (Expected)

2020 Nissan Sentra

2020 Toyota Corolla

2020 Kia Forte

Curb Weight (lbs.)

2,800 

3,047

2,910

2,862

Length (in.)

184.1

182.7

182.3

182.7

Width (in.)

71.9

71.5

70.1

70.9

Height (in.)

55.7

56.9

56.5

56.5

Ground Clearance (in.)

5.3

4.8

5.1

5.3

Wheelbase (in.)

107.1

106.8

106.3

106.3

Although the 2020 Elantra felt a bit short of its competition dimension-wise, the 2021 Hyundai Elantra is all set to grow bigger and more mature than its predecessor. As a result, the Elantra is expected to get longer than the segment leader here - Nissan Sentra. Notable exterior features of the 2021 Hyundai Elantra are:

  • Dynamic LED Quad Projector Headlamps with LED DRLs.
  • Sharp muscular body lines on the hood and side profile
  • Parametric-jewel-pattern grille with turn-signal integration
  • Wide, cascading grille integrated with the headlamps
  • Available 15", 16", and 17"-wheel designs
  • Quirky “H-Tail Lamp” that creates a flying Hyundai logo
  • Two-Tone Rear Bumper.

What are the new safety features in the 2021 Hyundai Elantra?

The 2021 Hyundai Elantra’s new platform improves notably on the safety front. 2021 Elantra offers a new array of standard advanced safety features under the standard SmartSense safety technology package. Since the 2021 model is underpinned by a new platform, we expect it to do better than the older generation.

However, the crash test results of the 2020 Hyundai Elantra, as well as the list of safety equipment, can help us to assume that the 2021 model is going to pack quite the "safety" punch. Notable new safety features of the 2021 Hyundai Elantra are:

  • Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA) with Pedestrian Detection
  • Lane Keeping Assist (LKA)
  • Lane Following Assist (LFA)
  • High Beam Assist (HBA)
  • Driver Attention Warning (DAW) system
  • Rearview camera with dynamic guidelines

When will the 2021 Hyundai Elantra launch and is it worth the wait?

The 2021 Hyundai Elantra can be a very good buy in the compact sedan segment. Firstly, it will fare to be the most fuel-efficient car in this segment despite having a powerful engine, thanks to its upcoming hybrid setup. The experience will have to wait a bit longer as Hyundai will be releasing the 2021 Elantra around 2020-end.

Moreover, the drivetrain improvements along with the revamped suspension and braking setup will make it a desirable car to drive. Couple this layout to a radical and bold design language, Hyundai surely has a winner in its hands. The next-Gen Elantra has decided to break cover just in time, as the old Elantra was losing its charm. For the edgy and explosive package, it proposes to offer, the 2021 Elantra is worth the wait.

Also Read:

Should you prefer the Mazda 3 over the Hyundai Elantra?

Bentley Bentayga goes a tad bit sleeker for 2021.

2021 Hyundai Elantra FAQs

Is the Hyundai Elantra reliable?

The Korean manufacturers have had an excellent reliability rating for all their cars in the lineup, with Elantra probably enjoying a place at the top in terms of reliability quotient. Popular and trusted reliability sources have rated this car a full 4.5 out of 5, a pretty respectable number. Moreover, for an average annual repair cost of less than $500, it has excellent ownership costs too.

Has Hyundai fixed their engine problems?

Hyundai has had an abundance of complaints regarding their engines that fail to start or at instances do catch fire. There have been major recalls of the numbers of 6 million vehicles in the past 4-5 years conducted by Hyundai. The problem has since then been resolved majorly, although there are a few persistent cases.

What are the major problems with the Hyundai Elantra?

There have been quite a few problems with the Hyundai Elantra over the years, ranging from engine troubles, electrical complaints, and transmission issues, although nothing major.

Does the Hyundai Elantra have a turbocharged unit?

The Elantra is offered in two powertrain options. A base 2.0L Naturally Aspirated 4-cylinder engine and also a turbocharged 1.6L unit that punches out a maximum of 201 hp.

What are the cars that are most comparable to the Hyundai Elantra?

Among the high range jam-packed compact sedan segment, the Hyundai Elantra has a lot of competition ranging from Nissan Sentra, Honda Civic, Toyota Corolla, Volkswagen Jetta, etc.

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