2019 Hyundai Elantra Review
  • Car Review

2019 Hyundai Elantra Review

By Autolist Staff | January 18, 2020

Summary

In production since 1990, the 2019 Hyundai Elantra was updated fairly substantially both inside and out. Part of the sixth generation of the car which debuted in 2017, this year's Elantra received praise from reviewers for its technology, smooth ride, and a lengthy and comprehensive warranty. Some reviewers felt lackluster performance to be a key reason to consider other compact sedans.

Some important new standard features added this year include a rearview camera and 5-inch infotainment display screen. This year's Elantra can be upgraded to include a wireless charging system and a driver drowsiness alert system.

In 2018, the Elantra GT Hatchback trim was updated to include an additional 4 feet of cargo space as well as an engine with slightly less power than the previous versions. Despite losing 12 HP, that renewed engine is still the second most potent option across all trims of the Elantra.

The Elantra was comprehensively redesigned in 2017. That update added a new engine for the base trim with similar HP and fuel efficiency when compared to the previous motor. The car also received significant technology and safety updates, including Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, blind spot monitoring, automatic emergency braking, lane keep assist, adaptive cruise control, and forward collision warning.

Those shopping for a used Elantra may be able to save substantially, but models produced before 2017 will not offer the same array of modern features and updates.

A compact sedan, the Elantra finds itself competing against the Toyota Corolla, Mazda 3, and Honda Civic.

The Honda Civic and Hyundai Elantra are somewhat similar cars, but some key differences stand out to help decide which is a better fit. Those interested in a high-performance variant might be attracted by the 306-horsepower Civic Type-R, which does not have a rival from Hyundai. The Elantra is less expensive than the Civic, though its cargo space, driver assistance and safety technology are similar. The Elantra has slightly better safety and reliability ratings than a Honda Civic.

Though the Toyota Corolla has long been a popular choice in the compact category, there are some clear reasons why the Elantra may be a better choice. An Elantra is less expensive than a Corolla, though the Toyota does come with a variety of additional standard safety features. These same features add to the base price of an Elantra. Both are available as hatchbacks for 2019. Many reviewers feel the 2019 Elantra is a slightly better value than a Toyota Corolla.

A Mazda3 is one of the top performing compact cars available. It is more expensive but also has a more refined interior when compared to this year's Elantra. While Apple CarPlay is available on most versions of the 3 and the Elantra, Android Auto is unavailable on the Mazda. Many reviewers favored the Mazda if the higher base price is not an issue.

Exterior

In 2019, the Hyundai Elantra saw significant changes to its exterior design. Critical updates to the Elantra's exterior include changes to the headlights which are now more triangular and reconfigured tail lights.

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Fifteen-inch steel wheels with covers are a standard feature on the base level trim. The Eco trim features 15-inch alloy wheels with narrow, low rolling resistance tires. Higher trims receive 16-inch alloy wheels with additional design options. The Elantra Sport trim is the only one to feature 17-inch alloy wheels.

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Interior Quality and Comfort

Most reviewers felt the Hyundai Elantra's interior to be of a sufficient quality that places it among the upper half of the best compact cars available. High-end materials, passenger comfort, and cargo space are key high points for the interior of this car.

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This year's Elantra comfortably sits five passengers in cloth upholstered seats. Upgrades like leather seats, a power adjusted driver's seats, as well as heated and ventilated front seats are possible for additional fees.

Reviewers cited the Elantra's driving position to offer good visibility and found the interior to be quiet while driving in the city or on the highway. The front seats are considered spacious and comfortable though taller passengers may wish for more headroom.

The backseats, which can carry up to five passengers, are a bit cramped and will be tough for a car packed with full-size adults to ride comfortably. Some reviewers felt competitors like the Honda Civic and Nissan Sentra have more space.

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The backseat of the Elantra features two sets of LATCH car seat connectors. Reviewers felt they were easy to find and operate.

Utility & Practicality

Providing 14.4 cubic feet of space in its trunk, the 2019 Hyundai Elantra offers a lot of cargo capacity for a compact sedan. The GT trim adds an additional 24.9 cubic feet of space behind rear seats and over 55.1 cubic feet with the back seats folded down. Split folding rear seats are a standard option on all trim levels.

Inside the cabin, the Elantra is loaded with storage capacity. A variety of bins and storage spaces are found throughout the car.

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The Hyundai Elantra has a five-year/60,000-mile warranty and a 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty. This kind of coverage is exceptional when compared to other compact cars in this class. J.D. Power and Associates gave the Elantra a predicted reliability rating of 4 out of 5 stars, better than the average for compact cars, which is 3 out of 5 stars.

Reviewers felt features like rear seats which fold totally flat and a hands-free trunk lid opener to be helpful additions that help to improve the utility and practicality of this car.

Technology & Infotainment

The Hyundai Elantra can be packed with a variety of high-quality technology and infotainment features which help it to stand out against a crowded pack of small cars. This year's Elantra comes standard with a rearview camera, a six-speaker stereo system, Bluetooth, an infotainment system with a 5-inch screen, and a USB port.

Some available upgrades include dual-zone climate control, a sunroof, push-button start capability, wireless charging stations, navigation, a 7 or 8 inch touch screen, additional USB ports, an 8 inch Infinity stereo system, satellite radio, HD radio, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, Clari Fi music restoration technology, and Hyundai's Blue Link system.

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The Elantra's technology and infotainment offerings help it to compete in the compact car category. Few compact cars offer a better array of technological features than the Elantra. Reviewers felt the Elantra's control systems and button layouts to be intuitive and easy for most passengers to operate.

Safety & Driving Assistance

The 2019 Hyundai Elantra was chosen as a Top Safety Pick+ by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the Elantra four out of a possible five stars for safety. The NHTSA cited a safety concern with the left rear door of the Elantra during its rigorous side impact crash testing.

This year's Elantra comes with a rearview camera as a standard feature. It features a wealth of safety and driver assistance technologies such as adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning, automatic emergency brakes, pedestrian warnings, driver drowsiness alerts, lane change assistance, rear cross traffic alert and safe exit assistance. A new safety feature, Safe Exit Assistance, informs Elantra passengers when it is safe to open doors in situations like exiting onto a busy city street.

Driving Experience

Most reviewers felt the driving experience of the Elantra to be far more utilitarian than thrilling. With engine options ranging from a 147 HP base up to a 201 HP turbo four, the Elantra is not a great choice if high performance is an important quality.

The Elantra was cited by most reviewers as handling very smooth and reliably. That said, many found that it could not keep pace with competitors such as the Mazda3 or Honda Civic when it comes to the driving experience.

Reviewers felt the Elantra's ride excelled at providing a smooth feeling on uneven roads. Large potholes do not feel as significant as they might in other cars. While the Elantra is not as sports orientated as competitors like the Honda Civic or Mazda Mazda3, it offers a smooth and reliable driving experience which is suitable for daily commutes.

Fuel efficiency

Capable of 28 miles per gallon in the city and 37 miles per gallon on the highway, the Elantra has a fuel efficiency that is about average for compact cars. The Elantra Eco trim receives the best fuel efficiency rating can manage 32 mpg in the city and 40 on the highway.

Pricing & Value

Most reviewers found the 2019 Hyundai Elantra to offer a tremendous value thanks to its lower-than-average starting price. With the possibility to add many technologies and safety features without reaching the base prices of competitors, the Elantra's value is worth noting.

Some reviewers felt that despite its lower than average price, the Elantra does not offer the performance or refinement found in other similar compact sedans. Still, with the possibility of driving an Elantra GT, drivers who crave a hatchback design with added cargo space to match will want to consider this car.

The Hyundai Elantra is available in eight possible trims that offer generous potential for customization and upgrade options. The sedan is available in the SE, SEL, Value Edition, Eco, Sport and Limited trims.

The Hatchback Elantra GT is available in the base and Sport trims.

The Elantra GT is the best choice for those looking for a bump in performance and cargo space.

Those interested in fuel economy will gravitate towards the Elantra Eco. Those looking for the most features will want to try an Elantra Limited.

Hyundai Elantra SE

The Elantra SE starts at an MSRP of $17,100. It features a 147 HP engine and a six-speed manual transmission. For an additional $1,000, the SE trim can be upgraded to a six-speed automatic transmission. This trim comes with cloth seats, an infotainment system with a 5-inch screen, a rearview camera, a six-speaker stereo system, Bluetooth and a USB port.

Hyundai Elantra SEL

Starting at $19,400, the Hyundai Elantra SEL trim comes with a six-speed automatic transmission as a standard feature. This trim level offers all the same features as the SE with the addition of a driver drowsiness alert system, blind spot monitoring, forward collision warning, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, rear cross traffic alert, and an upgraded infotainment system with a 7 inch touch screen, satellite radio, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Hyundai Elantra Eco

The Elantra Eco starts at $20,950. This trim offers a seven-speed dual clutch automatic transmission and a turbocharged 128 HP engine. The Eco trim also features a hands-free trunk release, two additional USB ports, heated front seats and dual-zone climate control. The Hyundai Eco trim is the most fuel-efficient trim available.

Hyundai Elantra Limited

Priced at $22,600, the Elantra Limited comes with a six-speed automatic transmission and 147 HP engine. It features leather seats, wireless device charging, power adjustable front seats, an eight-speaker Infinity stereo, ClarFi music restoration technology, and Hyundai's Blue Link telematics system as standard features. ClarFi restores the quality to compressed digital music files, such as those from satellite or streaming services. BlueLink offers a connected car experience which collects and shares data about the Elantra through an application. For an additional $3,350, the Elantra Limited Ultimate package adds adaptive cruise control, an upgraded infotainment system with an 8-inch touchscreen and navigation, automatic emergency braking, a sunroof, pedestrian detection, and safe exit assist. Safe Exit assist informs a passenger when it is safe to exit the vehicle.

Hyundai Elantra GT

The Elantra GT Hatchback starts at an MSRP of $20,000. The more powerful GT Sport starts at $24,000. The Elantra GT comes with a 162 HP four-cylinder engine. The GT Sport has a 201 HP turbo four. The GT Sport has a seven-speed automatic transmission. Each of these Elantra GT models have the same features and upgrades as the Elantra Limited trim with the addition of a substantial amount of cargo space. The GT trim adds an additional 24.9 cubic feet of space behind rear seats and over 55.1 cubic feet with the back seats folded down.

More Photos

See more 2019 Hyundai Elantra Photos.