Buyer's Guide

2021 Hyundai Elantra
Select a Different Model (8 Available): Limited Sedan
Zero to 60 $ 8.4 seconds
Fuel Economy 31 / 41 mpg
Horsepower 147@6,200
Torque 132@4,500
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2021 Hyundai Elantra MODEL OVERVIEW


  • Huge 10.3-inch touchscreen available
  • Responsive CVT automatic
  • Good ride/handling balance


  • Bolder styling isn't for everyone
  • Some cheap interior plastics
  • Hard to ignore the Honda Civic

The seventh-generation Hyundai Elantra marks the debut of the Korean brand's radical new design language. Slotting below the midsize Sonata, the compact Elantra remains one of Hyundai's most popular models, consistently selling more than 100,000 units per year.

What's New

  • All-new model rides on a new platform, giving the 2021 Elantra a longer wheelbase than its predecessor
  • The Elantra Hybrid joins the lineup as the first electrified Elantra
  • Performance-oriented N Line to join the lineup as a late addition

What We Think

This fully redesigned compact is a top-three contender in its segment, right off the bat. We sampled a CVT-equipped base-engine car and a manual Elantra N Line as part of our First Drive, and both variants impressed. The base car is notable for its well-tuned CVT which responds quickly to throttle inputs and avoids the lack of refinement we've experienced with other similar powertrains. Suspension is well-executed, too; few vibrations make it into the cabin and the car felt confident and planted on a tight canyon road.

Driving the Elantra N Line, we appreciated the additional performance, despite some lag from the 1.6-liter turbo-four. The N Line's upgraded multilink rear suspension and stiffened springs provide even more body control than the standard setup without sacrificing too much in terms of comfort. We can't wait to spend more time in the upcoming Elantra N.

Inside, the available 10.3-inch touchscreen infotainment display makes a strong first impression. Look a bit closer, though, and it's easy to find where Hyundai cut costs by implementing cheap, hard plastics. That said, there's plenty of space even for taller occupants. This is an excellent little compact.

Performance and Fuel Economy

The 2021 Hyundai Elantra is powered by a 2.0-liter I-4 with 147 hp and 132 lb-ft of torque. Hyundai's in-house-built CVT automatic is the only transmission available with the base engine. Both are carryovers from the previous generation Elantra and fuel economy numbers for 2021 read 31-33/41-43 mpg city/highway.

The 2021 Hyundai Elantra Hybrid borrows its powertrain from the Ioniq. That unit couples a 1.6-liter I-4 to a lithium-ion battery, an electric motor, and a six-speed dual-clutch automatic. Total system output is 139 hp and 195 lb-ft. Resultant fuel economy is excellent; the Elantra Hybrid is EPA-rated at 49-53/52-56 mpg.

For performance enthusiasts, Hyundai offers the Elantra N Line, sports 18-inch wheels and sporty aesthetics. An upgraded version of Hyundai's new 1.6-liter turbo-four making 201 hp and 195 lb-ft of torque is the sole engine option, and it returns 25-28/34-36 mpg depending on whether you opt for the six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch auto. An even more focused Elantra N is on the way for 2022.


The 2021 Elantra's standard SmartSense safety suite includes forward collision warning, pedestrian detection, front automatic emergency braking, lane keeping assist with centering function, driver attention warning, and automatic high beams. You can upgrade the suite with blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, rear automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, and highway driving assist (improves lane keeping assist's centering function when adaptive cruise control is active).


The base infotainment system in the 2021 Hyundai Elantra features an 8.0-inch touchscreen with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. On higher trims, you can upgrade to a fully digital layout with dual 10.3-inch displays, a faster processor, an eight-speaker Bose audio system, and wireless charging.  Hyundai upgraded the voice command system, allowing you to change everything from climate control settings to the heated front seats' intensity using natural speech. The digital key feature, which allows you to open the vehicle via a smartphone (Android-only for now) or a near field communications (NFC) key card, will also be available on the 2021 Elantra.

Key Competitors:


Engine Name
Engine: 4-Cyl 2.0 Liter
Transmission Name
Transmission, Smart Stream IVT Continuously Variable Automatic
Limited Sedan
Compact Passenger Car
Standard MPG
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Unleaded Regular
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IIHS Best Pick
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Amount Description Expiry Date
$0 2.9% Financing for a maximum term of 72 Months - Hyundai announces APR rates on select models. 07-06-2021
$500 Hyundai announces a Bonus Cash offer available to all service branches of the military including National Guard and Reserve branches, veterans and retirees. 12-31-2021
$400 Hyundai announces a Bonus Cash offer for College Graduates who finance through HMF. 12-31-2021
$500 Hyundai announces a Bonus Cash offer for standard rate customers through HMF. [Regional Incentive. See dealer for availability.] 07-06-2021
$0 0% Financing available for varying term lengths : 24, 36, 48, 60 Months - Hyundai announces APR rates on select models. 07-06-2021
$1000 Hyundai announces a Bonus Cash offer for customers who finance through HMF. [Regional Incentive. See dealer for availability.] 07-06-2021
$2000 Hyundai announces a Bonus Cash offer for standard rate retail sales only. 07-06-2021