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2016 Hyundai Elantra GT Review By John Heilig

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2016 Hyundai Elantra GT

By John Heilig
Senior Editor
Mid-Atlantic Bureau
The Auto Channel

MODEL: 2016 Hyundai Elantra GT
ENGINE: 2.0-liter I-4
TRANSMISSION: 6-speed automatic
HORSEPOWER/TORQUE: 173 hp @ 6,500 rpm/154 lb.-ft. @ 4,700 rpm
WHEELBASE: 104.5 in.
LENGTH X WIDTH X HEIGHT: 169.5 x 70.1 x 57.9 in.
TIRES: P215/45R17
CARGO: 23.0/51.0 cu. ft. (rear seats up/down)
ECONOMY: 24 mpg city/33 mpg highway/26.8 mpg test
FUEL TANK: 13.2 gal.
CURB WEIGHT: 2,976-3,053 lbs.
STICKER: $26,675 (includes $825 delivery, $6,050 options)

BOTTOM LINE: Officially a mid-size sedan, the Hyundai Elantra is at the lower end of the segment regarding size. Perhaps a better classification would be as a compact or small wagon. Nevertheless, it’s a good driver and rider with halfway decent performance.         

Size is a big issue with the Hyundai Elantra GT. Environmental Protection Agency numbers classify it as a mid-size sedan, but in reality it’s a compact hatchback. The hatch gives the Elantra GT the extra passenger and cargo capacity to nudge it over the edge from compact to mid-size. Its competitive class includes the Mazda3, Ford Focus, Subaru Impreza and VW Golf, none of which can honestly pass for a mid-size.          

Hyundai stylists have extended their fluidic sculpture philosophy to the Elantra GT, which has a revised front grille.          

Size issues aside, the Elantra GT does its job well. It has decent power at 173 horsepower from its 2.0-liter four, even if the engine seems buzzy at times. The heated and ventilated front seats are comfortable and offer some side support. The flat rear seats offer good legroom. There’s also a flat floor hump so a third passenger could ride back there in a pinch.          

Cargo capacity is about average for a compact, and I had to fold down the rear seat back to get my golf bag in the back. The rear seats fold flat if you first fold the seat cushion forward. There is a handy tray below the cargo floor that is good for flat objects. Anything works to keep things out of the way of people who shouldn’t be looking anyway.          

The busy wheel has audio, cruise, phone and trip computer controls on it. The Elantra GT has three selectable steering modes – comfort, normal and sport – to enhance the driving experience. The audio system is good, with the standard array of choices. Equally good, the HVAC system did its job in some excessive heat.

A feature I have always liked about Elantras is that all controls are within easy reach of the driver. All interior surfaces are soft to the touch and black, with brushed aluminum accents.          

In the middle of the dash is a clear infotainment scree. The default mode is a split screen, with a map on the left and audio choices on the right. This can be changed easily.          

Interior storage includes a large cubby at the base of the center stack with USB, AUX and two 12-volt plugs. This is accessible from both sides thanks to triangular openings in the side panels. The sliding center arm rest/console is small. Above all this is a large sliding sunroof that gives rear seat passengers a view of the sky.          

Overall, the Hyundai Elantra GT is a nice package, but it is definitely on the smaller end of the mid-size segment.

© 2015 The Auto Page Syndicate

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