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2017 Hyundai Elantra Sport: A small sedan that leaves a big impression Featured

Apr 25, 2017 Hit: 762 Written by 
The 2017 Hyundai Elantra Sport's performance is a bit surprising, in a good way.
The 2017 Hyundai Elantra Sport's performance is a bit surprising, in a good way. Photo by Matt Myftiu/

Hyundai has come a long way over the years to get the American public to respect its brand as reliable and a strong option to consider when purchasing a vehicle.

Now, it wants to show us its fun side. Enter the 2017 Hyundai Elantra Sport, a compact sedan with a big personality. I recently spent some time in one, and here are five things you need to know about the Elantra Sport if you’re in the market for a compact sedan.

1. Bigger than it looks

As far as sedans go, it’s pretty attractive by comparison, but not overly distinctive (few vehicles are these days).
The bladed front grille does stand out some, you get a decent amount of trunk space, and unlike some compact sedans rear space impresses.

You can sit three people in back and they’ll actual feel pretty comfortable for the most part (though I wouldn’t take it on a long road trip with that setup). Getting people around town is possible in this vehicle, unlike some other vehicles where the back seat is pretty useless.



2. Lots of fun in a small package

This is the crux of the argument for buying an Elantra Sport: What’s under the hood.

The Sport comes with a 1.6-liter turbo four-cylinder engine; with either manual or automatic transmission offered. The numbers on this powerplant are 201 horsepower and 195 lb.-ft. of torque, and it’s a front-wheel drive ride.

Often when I test something labeled as Sport, it’s a bit of a misnomer. I’m happy to report that wasn’t the case here. You can opt in and out of sport mode, but you’ll want to keep it on. Unlike the standard Elantra, which offers your standard driving experience and limits the fun, the Sport variety is one you’ll look forward to driving. Given the right conditions you can really put it to the test, and you’ll find a responsive, punchy driving experience that lets you maneuver efficiently and features quick throttle response (aka acceleration). It’s like the Mr. Hyde to the regular Elantra’s Dr. Jekyll. (and there’s even an Elantra Eco if you want a really mellow Dr. Jekyll).

The rear suspension gets a big makeover this year, with the implementation of a fully independent multilink suspension with stabilizer bar (and not the standard Elantra’s torsion-beam rear axle setup.)

3. So-so fuel mileage

One area where the Hyundai Elantra Sport does not shine vs. its competition is fuel mileage. Both the manual and automatic varieties have numbers that are easily topped by vehicles from competitors including Mazda and Honda. Official numbers on the automatic version I tested are 26 city/33 highway/29 combined. Manual transmission is even lower (22 city/30 highway).

To be fair, though, the driving experience is more fun in this Elantra than much of the competition, and that’s what many buyers will have more in mind when choosing a ride.

4. It’s affordable

If you opt for the six-speed manual transmission, the Elantra Sport has starting price of $21,650. Choosing the automatic transmission will have you start at $22,750.
One addition many buyers will want is the Premium package, which gives you navigation, a sunroof and a better sound system, along with the excellent BlueLink telematics system.

On the other side of the spectrum, If the base Elantra is enough for you, it starts out at $17,150; a genuinely low price. But you’ll miss out on the sportiness of the model I tested.

5. Bottom line

If you’re looking for a fun little ride, the 2017 Hyundai Elantra Sport fits the bill quite well. There’s some decent competition in the category, but this upstart entry from Hyundai puts up a strong fight and has some solid pep in its step. It’s a must for your testing list if you are in the mood for something in this segment. can be found on Twitter @AutoTechReview, or stay updated at the AutoTechReviews Facebook page.

Last modified on Tuesday, 25 April 2017 05:44
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Matt Myftiu

Matt Myftiu has been a journalist for two decades with a focus on technology, NASCAR and autos.

Website: Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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