A Closer Look at Hyundai’s Sporty Compact
The 2017 Hyundai Elantra Sport offers plenty of value for the money, confident handling, and a smooth ride. Even in its most expensive form, the Elantra Sport is a bargain, and what you get is a compact car that’s entertaining yet refined enough to drive daily. Here are the seven key features that elevate the Elantra Sport above other Elantras and make it worth considering.
A Totally Reworked Suspension
A sport-tuned suspension with a fully independent multilink rear setup is the 2017 Elantra pièce de résistance. It gives the Elantra Sport excellent handling when the road gets twisty, making it a willing companion for those weekend back road blasts or even an autocross day. The stiffer, more aggressive suspension setup doesn’t come at the cost of comfort because the ride is still compliant even over less-than-perfect road surfaces.
A 201-hp 1.6-liter turbo-four with 195 lb-ft of torque is standard in the 2017 Elantra Sport, and it delivers its power with minimal turbo lag, giving you plenty of low- and mid-range grunt. It’s not as powerful as the Volkswagen Golf GTI and Ford Focus ST, but there’s plenty to work with—there’s no drama when you need to pass or merge on the highway nor when you’re climbing hills.
Slick Transmission Choices
Standard on the 2017 Elantra Sport is a six-speed manual transmission that features a smooth shifter and a clutch that’s light and easy to use and modulate. This makes the Elantra Sport an excellent choice as the first car for people new to manual transmissions because it’s friendly and easy to operate with well-defined gates and great shifter action.
In case you don’t want to row your own gears, the automaker’s seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox is also available. We recently sampled this transmission in the 2017 Kia Soul Turbo and found that it shifts quickly and works well with the 201-hp 1.6-liter turbo-four. Regardless of your transmission choice, the Elantra Sport is easy to drive whether you’re commuting or attacking winding roads.
An Attention-Grabbing Exhaust Note
Perhaps the most unexpected feature of the 2017 Hyundai Elantra Sport is the sound coming from its twin exhaust tips. Raspy and angry are the best ways to describe it, and it comes with the requisite pops and burbles that will cause people’s heads to turn in surprise, though you don’t hear too much of it from inside the cabin.
More Stopping Power
As part of its transformation into a sportier, more driver-focused compact car, the 2017 Elantra Sport gains larger front brake pads. Measuring 12 inches in diameter, these brakes provide more stopping power and continued to do so despite being put through two days of attacking winding roads in Los Angeles.
A Hatchback is Coming
For those who think a sedan is too common or not utilitarian enough, you’ll be able to get yourself a more practical Elantra Sport soon when Hyundai releases the 2018 Elantra GT Sport alongside the standard Elantra GT hatchback.
Read about the 2018 Elantra GT hatch here.
Bang for Your Buck
Priced well under $30,000 even when fully loaded, the 2017 Elantra Sport is a bargain among sporty compact cars. The only option is the Premium package that adds everything from an 8.0-inch touchscreen and navigation to an Infinity premium audio system and blind-spot warning with rear cross-traffic alert. Add to that the well-balanced performance and handling it offers, and you’ve got a solid proposition that’s strong in value and has a high fun factor.