Published on August 27th, 2017 | by Subhash Nair0
Hyundai Elantra 2.0 Dynamic Review: Uncomplicated, Pleasant Motoring
It’s pretty amazing how far Hyundai have come. Not a decade ago, they had to compete solely on value to attract customers, but today things are different. Their cars are beautiful, build quality is consistent and high, and they drive really well too. These qualities perfectly describe the new Elantra 2.0, but there are definitely a few unexpected traits in here too to justify its RM120,000 price tag.
This new Elantra is fantastic to look at. We’ve had a couple of comments asking if this was a facelift, and we can see why one might assume it is. The silhouette and proportions have largely gone unchanged, but this new Elantra is clearly a Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 product. The curves are still there, but they’re subdued and the car looks very appointed as a result. The daytime running lights and 17” rims are both really top notch on this variant.
Whether you’re looking at it from a distance or zooming into the details, the new Elantra looks more European than Korean, more matured than boyish. There’s nothing gawdy or out of place. This kind of design work takes a lot of experience. Hyundai should feel proud they have a product line that are punching pretty close in the looks department to Volkswagen and Ford.
The Elantra comes in a large number of colour choices, including Blazing Yellow, Iron Grey, Phantom Black, Polar White, Fiery Red, Marina Blue, and Platinum Silver Metallic.
The interior is not quite as stunning, but again, the maturity here is very evident. And what it lacks in pizzazz, it more than makes up for in construction quality and surprise use of material. That’s right, there’s actually suede in this variant of the Elantra. Quite a lot of it too.
The door cards and seats are all draped in this lovely feeling material, along with some black leather. And like we said, the few plastic pieces that do go in the Elantra fit together well and don’t feel bad at all. In this price bracket, this is about as good as material selection comes.
Under the hood, you’ll find a pretty bog standard 2-litre naturally aspirated engine. It’s clear that this variant of the Elantra is for more conservative buyers, and there’s nothing wrong with that. In fact, many road goers are still looking for simple, mechanically straight-forward machines that won’t be a headache to keep for a decade. Yet, with a double overhead camshaft and variable valve timing, there’s nothing in this engine that spells cost cutting.
Is it economical? The official figure of 7.2 litre per 100km says so. During our testing, we found the Elantra to be as efficient as its other naturally aspirated peers. Most cars with dual clutch or CVT transmissions tend to perform better in this regard, but suffer in other areas.
As with many Korean makes, there’s a ‘Drive Mode’ selector. This essentially changes the shift pattern and throttle response. It probably also changes how often the air cond compressor kicks in on Eco mode, but this difference is negligible. We found it performed well enough on its default setting and most owners will probably feel the same too.
The 6-speed automatic in the Elantra also comes with tiptronic, but there’s really no need to engage this mode unless you know you’re in for some mountainous terrain.
This new Elantra is pretty big on safety too. 6 airbags can be found in this model, as well as liberal use of Advanced High Strength Steel – a kind of steel that’s cheaper to produce than Hot press formed steel, but tougher than standard High Strength steel. This means you have yourself a reasonably priced car with a very rigid skeleton.
This lends to the Elantra’s decent handling characteristics, but should be thought of as more of a passive safety feature. Of course, there are electronic safety aids present as well like ABS, EBD, and stability control.
And hey, if you think ‘Space Saver’ spare tyres are a possible safety issue, you’ll be happy to note that Hyundai includes a full-sized tyre in the boot.
Another surprise is the number of convenience features included. In 2017, it’s common to find keyless start and entry, so of course, you find it here too. But Hyundai’s version of this includes contactless boot opening. So if you have your hands full of groceries, you can just stand behind the car and wait a few seconds. After 5 seconds and a few audio-visual cues, the boot will pop itself open.
Step inside and you’ll find a 7” touchscreen with FM, CD/MP3, Bluetooth and USB connectivity options. What’s more, this unit comes equipped with Apple Carplay and Android Auto support. The setup is connected to 6 speakers.
On top of that, the driver is also treated to a load of parking sensors, a reverse camera, a power adjustable seat, hill start assist, a well tuned electric power steering and all round disc brakes.
The Hyundai Elantra 2.0 Dynamic isn’t quite as ‘Dynamic’ as the name suggests, but there’s a turbocharged variant that is. Instead, it’s best to think of this car as a great all rounder with enough features to keep most customers with small families happy. We really liked that there were no areas where the car fell behind. Of course, most buyers in this segment will be aware there are cheaper alternatives. Even the Ioniq is a little cheaper. But really, this version of the Elantra has its own strengths, particularly with its use of suede and the mature overall look.
Also, if you’ve watched our Sights & Sounds video on the Facebook page, you’ll note that there’s nothing in the car that sounds cheap. Everything opens and shuts with satisfying ‘clicks’ and ‘thuds’. And if that’s not enough to inspire confidence, the warranty period runs for 5 years/300,000km and maintainance is free for the first 3 years/50,000km.
Hyundai Elantra 2.0 Dynamic Specifications
Engine: Inline 4-cylinder DOHC VVT
Gearbox: 6-speed Automatic with Tiptronic
Max power: 150hp @ 6200rpm
Max torque: 192Nm @ 4000rpm