The Car Connection is in sunny San Diego, fresh off a daylong drive of the new Elantra...and while we can't yet talk about the driving experience or how its features operate, we've been given the heads up to share some on-site pictures of the 2011 Elantra, which reaches dealerships later this month.
The new Elantra looks poised to up the competitive pressure in a segment that's long been stagnating.
And at a time when some automakers (Volkswagen, 2011 Jetta) are moving downmarket while others (Chevrolet, 2011 Cruze) are moving up, the vehicles at the top of your shopping list might be very different than last time around.
The all-new 2011 Hyundai Elantra is shaping up to be an even better pick than the current-generation car, which was introduced for 2007. With fresh new styling, a roomy interior, and astonishingly good feature set—including a class first, rear heated seats, and wide availability of Bluetooth and nav, and the tech features people are seeking—the Elantra looks is truly moving up. Factor in top ALG residual ratings and a low base price of just $14,630, and Hyundai hasn't lost track of the value factor that originally attracted buyers to the brand.
Hyundai has also confirmed EPA ratings of 29 mpg city, 40 highway for all of its Elantra variants—which, when added up, Hyundai points out in a new 'Save the Asterisks' spot, will put many more 40-mpg cars on the road than, say the 2011 Chevrolet Cruze (its 42-mpg rating is reserved for the Eco model, with a manual transmission, while other models get significantly lower figures).
Check back next week for a first drive report, as well as a full review of the 2011 Elantra.