2023 Hyunda Elantra Hybrid Limited - Review by Bruce Hotchkiss
A Hybrid To Consider
Special Correspondent, West Coast Bureau
THE AUTO CHANNEL
A woman I know, a long time Hyundai owner (she's owned 5 or 6), said she considered a hybrid but the cost of a replacement battery (almost $10-grand) scared her. Hyundai's hybrid battery warranty is 10 years or 100,000 miles so for most first owners the cost shouldn't be an issue. But for someone who buys a used hybrid, or someone who is older and a recent new car purchase might be their last purchase, it is a valid consideration. This holds true for any hybrid or EV.
I'm still a hybrid advocate but yes there are downsides. Each prospective purchaser has to decide if the positives (great operating economy) outweigh the negatives. Just like buying anything.
Moving on to the 2023 Elantra Hybrid Limited. The Elantra is 5-person vehicle, a Toyota Corolla size sedan, that seats two up front and three in the rear.
I found the Elantra a comfortable car. The interior materials looked nice but I would have preferred softer plastic trim. The only real negative with the interior was the cup holders; I usually get a small coffee and if I owned an Elantra I'd have to put a spacer at the bottom of the cup holder. Take a look -
As you can see only the lid is visible. Lifting up a full, hot cup of coffee by the lid is not recommended.
One of the things about hybrids (and EVs) that I've realized is that I tend to drive them slower than a gas powered vehicle. I'm not sure why, it seems to be an unconscious thing. I think I try to keep it in EV mode as long as possible. The up side to driving an hybrid like this is that the fuel economy is much better. The Limited version is rated at 49-mpg city and 52-mpg highway, while the Blue base version is better at 53 city and 56 highway.
Although I think that overall Hyundai's styling has improved drastically I'm still not a fan of the grill design, or the stylized "H" emblem. But that's just me. I do like the rear styling.
There is a fair amount of room in the trunk with 14.2 cubic inches of storage. If you have longer items, or need some addition room, the rear seat has a 60/40 split and folds down.
Sometimes it seems pointless to cite the power output of most cars, especially when they pale in comparison to performance models. Almost any vehicle out there can accelerate faster than many performance cars of the '80s and '90s. But I know you want to know "what's the horsepower?" The 1.6-liter, 4-cylinder puts out 104 h.p. and a total hybrid power output of 139 h.p. While that doesn't sound earthshattering it is enough to get from zero to 60 mph in around 8.5 seconds.
Now we come to the price. A base Hyundai Elantra Hybrid starts at $24,550. The Limited is $29,150. If you're in the market for a hybrid there is absolutely no reason you shouldn't consider the Elantra Hybrid.