Hyundai’s 2011 Elantra Mixes Economy with Efficiency at 40 MPG

December 15, 2010, 10:30 AM HST · Updated December 15, 10:30 AM
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While Hyundai has been relatively silent in the fully electric scene, it’s newest 2011 Elantra is earning rave reviews from critics for its economical price and impressive efficiency.

The biggest gift to Hyundai just may have been the automotive sales slowdown and shift in consumer preference that has put the automaker back on the map.  As American auto makers moved from larger SUVs, vans, and large engined and heavy sedans, Hyundai continued to fine-tune its mid-range auto while lowering prices and offering incentives.

The company famously offered job loss protection at the height of the downturn, promising to take back any car should its new buyer lose their job.  That offer, even if not immediately accepted, helped earn Hyundai a stable place in the American auto industry.

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The New Elantra

The newly refined 2011 Hyundai Elantra offers as much as 40 miles per gallon on the highway and 29 in the city.  But best of all, the new Elantra starts barebones at under $15,000.

The Elantra comes in two flavors: the Elantra GLS or the Elantra Limited, both of which are highly customizable.  In fact, in what hasn’t been seen for quite some time, the base Elantra GLS doesn’t  include air conditioning, though it can be added for around $1,200 on top of the $14,830 base price.  Other options include 360-watt speaker system, larger wheelbase, and a navigation system with a screen up to seven inches, just to name a few.

The Elantra Limited incorporates attractive features right at the start of its $19,980 price tag including a six-speed automatic, leather seats, all-around heated seats, fog lights, and cruise control.  Keyless entry, remote start, and other features are available as add-ons.  The Limited, unlike the GLS, is available only in a six-speed automatic.

Both models will share the 148 horsepower 1.8 liter engine that has become near standard on Hyundai’s light cars.  With either transmission variety—six speed automatic or manual–the car maintains the same impressive fuel efficiency ratings, beating most all other compact cars.

Hyundai is expected to push heavily the GLS with automatic transmission and other, near luxury features of usb input, heated mirrors, and satellite radio for $17,800.  For the most expensive, but most featured Elantra Limited, expect to pay $22,700.  A hybrid version of the Elantra is expected by 2012.

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