Published on July 16th, 2018 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
The Sedan You Never Knew You Wanted
We’re more than a month into our tax-holiday here in Malaysia and things have changed quite a bit. Some already-popular brands are at the point where they can no longer take orders. Anyone who hesitated in the first couple of weeks has probably missed out on the car they want. It’s a little unfair as many Malaysians are in genuine need of a practical family sedan, but are left with no choice but to wait until SST returns.
But we have a solution: broaden your horizons. Yes, you may have something Malaysian or Japanese in mind, but there are many great alternatives out there and a car we tested earlier this year immediately came to mind – the 2-litre Elantra. Now, before you write off this Korean 4-door, take a moment to consider the boxes it ticks.
Premium Design Cues
We’ll admit, the Elantra isn’t a breakthrough design. It feels like Hyundai have just sharpened up the design from the previous generation. But we really like the way it looks despite being more of an ‘evolution’ than a ‘revolution’. It shows real maturity, constraint and tastefulness. The front is sharp and aggressive looking with a wide chrome grille up front. The silhouette is shaped by the Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 design language and the rims are just the right size. The interior is covered in faux-suede, you get LED DRLs and taillights with really cool LED graphics – all boxes ticked.
All the Right Amenities
It’s difficult to make a purchase unless you’re offered all the right equipment. Hyundai have managed to get things right here. Rear aircon vents, power sockets, 4 cup holders, keyless entry and push-to-start, and a 7” infotainment unit with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto all come with this 2-litre car.
A Proven, Modern Powertrain
There is a turbocharged option for those looking for some thrills, but the 2-litre to us is the safer option. Why? Well, both the engine and gearbox here are proven, reliable and sufficiently modern. They’re simpler pieces of engineering that are under less stress and will therefore go through less wear and tear than the turbocharged, dual-clutch powertrain found in the Elantra Sport. Sure, it’s not quite as punchy but 150 hp and 192 Nm of torque is more than sufficient for the highway for something weighing less than 1300kg. In fact, we found ourselves really enjoying the drive of this sedan. Coupled Torsion Beam Suspension (CBTA) rear suspension lends exceptional compliance characteristics to the Elantra, giving it the feel of independent suspension. The NVH dampening in the car is also rather exceptional – the thing feels as quiet and smooth as a typical D-segment car.
You may have noticed our ‘Sight & Sounds’ video series on Instagram and Facebook. These videos focus on the raw sensory experience that owners will go through living with these cars. You know what car inspired us to start the series? The 2-litre Hyundai Elantra. It was the first time a car costing so little felt better put together than something twice its price. You have to check it out yourself, or watch the 2 Sight & Sounds videos we did on the Elantra and save yourself a trip to the showroom.
Industry-Leading Warranty and Service Package
Recent J.D. Power surveys indicate that Hyundai’s at the top of their game in terms of quality and reliability. As incredible as that sounds, the peace of mind brought on by a good warranty package is invaluable to all buyers. Hyundai’s current package includes a 5-years/300,000km long manufacturer warranty and they’ll even throw in 3 years/50,000km of free service. What’s more, if you hurry, the Elantra is currently offered with an RM10,000 discount. With 0% GST, the on-the-road price without insurance is just RM99,800, definitely worth taking a look at.
Hyundai Elantra 2.0L Specifications
Engine: 4-cylinder Nu
Power : 152bhp @ 6200rpm
Torque: 192Nm @ 4000rpm
Transmission: 6-speed Auto
Top Speed: NA