We rank the 2019 Hyundai Elantra in the middle of the pack of compact cars on the market. However, as is usually the case with Hyundai's vehicles, it has a very competitive price point with the array of features that come standard.
The current generation is inching closer to complete redesign (its larger sibling, the Sonata, is all new for 2020). Still, there are subtle refinements that make the Elantra a solid commuter or first car.
The SE trim is the least expensive 2019 Hyundai Elantra with a starting MSRP of $17,200. It's a great choice for drivers on a budget. It has some features that you may not find in similar sedans of the same price point, including Bluetooth. However, it lacks many of the frills you'll find in the more expensive models. With cloth seats and air conditioning, the Elantra SE does have the basics, but it lacks a strong feature set to encourage more buyers.
The Elantra SE is equipped with a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine which produces 147 horsepower. With its fairly small engine, this trim delivers an estimated 26 mpg in the city and 38 mpg on the highway when choosing the automatic transmission. It’s worth noting, though, that the Elantra SE’s standard transmission is a 6-speed manual. Drivers can upgrade to an automatic for an extra $1,000.
The 2019 Hyundai Elantra SEL begins at $19,500. What the Elantra SE lacks, the higher SEL trim provides. It includes a number of quality features to convince buyers to pay a little more. The first thing drivers will notice is a seven-inch display that includes Android Auto and Apple CarPlay capabilities.
While the multimedia system is great, what really makes the Elantra SEL better than the lowest trim is the addition of safety features. These include a Blind Spot Detection system with Rear Cross Traffic Alerts and Lane Change Assist. It also has a rearview camera with dynamic guidelines. The fuel economy increases on the Elantra SEL to 28 mpg in the city and 37 mpg on the highway.
The 2019 Hyundai Elantra Value Edition starts at $20,500 and is a much better option for those looking for an affordable trim offering. The Elantra Value Edition offers a well-curated collection of features that drivers may want, without charging them for features they could live without. Some of the highlights include a hands-free smart trunk, heated side mirrors, a power sunroof, and heated front seats. These features, plus the ones found in the Elantra SEL, make this middle trim a great choice for someone who wants a little more convenience without paying thousands.
The 2019 Hyundai Elantra also has an Eco trim available for $21,050. The Elantra Eco gets much better fuel economy than any other trim. The 1.4-liter turbocharged GDI four-cylinder engine also delivers 128-horsepower. This engine helps it get up to 32 mpg on the highway and 40 mpg on the highway. The Elantra Eco removes some of the standard offerings from the Elantra Value Edition, including the sunroof and auto-dimming rearview mirror. Apart from those omissions, it includes all the features of previous trims.
The 2019 Hyundai Elantra Sport starts at $22,600 and has one huge appeal: speed. This trim has a 1.6-liter turbocharged GDI four-cylinder engine, which is capable of 201 horsepower. Despite the engine upgrade, it doesn’t suffer from poor fuel economy. The Elantra Sport gets up to 22 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on the highway. Those are great numbers for a sporty vehicle!
The Elantra Sport keeps Blind Spot Detection with Rear Cross-traffic Alert and Lane Change Assist from previous trims. In addition to the safety focus, the Elantra Sport also adds side mirrors with turn-signal indicators and some significant cosmetic changes. Finally, this trim includes leather seating for a more luxurious feel.
The 2019 Hyundai Elantra Limited is the most expensive trim at $22,700. This trim closely resembles the Elantra Value Edition, especially since it uses the 2.0-liter engine with 147-horsepower. If safety is your concern, the Elantra Limited is the only trim that allows the driver to add further safety features, though at an additional cost. These optional features include forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, and smart cruise control.
There aren’t many exterior changes on the Elantra Limited, as most of the upgrades happen on the inside. The biggest change to the exterior is HID headlights with Dynamic Bending Light. The interior adds a power driver seat with power lumbar support and three months of complimentary Blue Link Connected Care. Ultimately, the Elantra Value Edition may be the better value for some drivers, unless they are looking for a leather interior.
(Featured image via Facebook.)