Two months after its unveil in its home market, where it is sold under the Avante nameplate, the Korean automaker unveiled the 2017 Elantra for the US market .
The compact sedan is one of Hyundai’s best-sellers ever and is now in its sixth generation. According to the company, “it distinguishes itself from the compact car class with the addition of segment-first premium convenience and safety technologies and is expected to receive a Top Safety Pick+ rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and a 5-Star Safety Rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Compared to the Korean version, the US-spec Elantra differs in the chromed grille and the LED daytime running lights. The front fascia integrates front wheel “air curtains” to minimize drag and turbulence and, along with underbody cladding and the shape of the bodywork, result in a pretty low 0.27 drag coefficient.
The 2017 Elantra is 179.9 inches (4,569 mm) long, 70.9 inches (1,800 mm) wide, 56.5 inches (1,435 mm) tall and has a 106.3-inch (2,692 mm) long wheelbase. This makes it 0.8 inches (2.0 mm) longer and 1.0 inch (2.54 mm) wider than the outgoing model, while height and wheelbase are the same.
High-strength steel accounts for 53 percent of the chassis construction, more than double compared to the 2016 car’s 21 percent. This has improved torsional rigidity by 29.5 percent and bending strength by 25.3 percent, improving ride and handling and reducing NVH.
The 2017 Elantra will be offered with two new engines. The first is 2.0-liter with 147 HP and 132 lb-ft (179 Nm) of torque that operates on the Atkinson cycle, which makes it the only car in its segment to combine this with multi-port injection. The base SE trim is available with a six-speed manual gearbox and the Limited with the new automatic six-speeder.
The Elantra Eco is powered by a turbocharged 1.4-liter Kappa GDI that has an output of 128 HP and 156 lb-ft (211 Nm) of torque from 1,400-3,700 rpm. It is paired to a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission and Hyundai expects a 35 mpg (6.7 lt/100 km) combined fuel consumption.
Standard safety equipment includes seven airbags (including a new driver’s knee one), Electronic Stability Control, Vehicle Stability Management, Traction Control, ABS and a Tire Pressure Monitoring System. Additionally, Automatic Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection, Lane Keep Assist, Blind Spot Detection and Lane Change Assist are on the options list.
All versions of the new Elantra come standard with iPhone, USB and AUX connectivity. Two infotainment systems, with either a 7.0- or 8-inch touchscreen, rear camera, navigation system and Android Auto, SiriusXM and iOS Siri integration are also available, along with an Infinity eight-speaker audio system.
The 2017 MY Elantra will be assembled both in Hyundai’s US plant in Alabama and its South Korean one in Ulsan.