The sporty offshoot of Hyundai's popular compact sedan, the Elantra GT provides heightened performance and style along with hatchback utility. You also get access to some of the most advanced technology available in this price class.

Pricing and Equipment

The Elantra GT is offered in a single trim level with two comprehensive option packages:

  • Starting at $18,800, the GT carries a 2-liter four-cylinder engine and your choice of a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission (a $1,000 upcharge). You get plenty of features for the price, including heated front seats, satellite radio and a cooled glovebox.
  • The available Style package ($1,975) adds a sport-tuned suspension and 17-inch wheels, plus a leather interior, keyless ignition, and Hyundai's BlueLink telematics system.
  • Models equipped with the Style package and automatic transmission are eligible for the Tech package ($3,950), an impressive bundle that includes navigation, a rearview camera, a panoramic sunroof, ventilated front seats and numerous infotainment upgrades. With all this aboard, the GT comes in at $25,725.

Note that there are no individual factory options for the GT, although the usual dealer-installed accessories are available.

Performance Pros

Every GT gets a 2-liter four-cylinder with 173 horsepower, which is only available on Sport versions of the standard Elantra coupe and sedan. Output is comfortably above average for a standard engine in a compact.

Performance highlights include:

  • Transmissions: The six-speed manual gives you ample latitude to draw out power, which makes the GT objectively more fun. But you won't be disappointed by the smooth-shifting automatic if that's what you're accustomed to.
  • Handling/steering: The standard adjustable steering modes (Normal, Comfort, Sport) are an unexpected bonus in this class. Even in Normal mode, the GT represents well enough in tight cornering. The Style package's firmer suspension provides more grip, but we didn't find it necessary to enjoy driving the car.
  • Fuel Efficiency: You can expect 27 mpg in combined driving with either transmission. You can do as well as 33 mpg on the highway, although city efficiency is just average at 24 mpg.

Performance Cons

  • The Elantra GT is not to be confused with high-flyers in the hot hatchback segment like the Ford Focus ST and VW GTI. Those cars are altogether more serious about performance and priced accordingly.
  • Forgive us for being frank, Hyundai, but the GT suffix is probably an overstatement affixed to what is essentially a sport-flavored compact.

Interior Pros

  • The GT distances itself from the workaday Elantra with a more mature dashboard design and no-nonsense info displays—closer to what you would expect in a performance car.
  • We applaud the GT's crossover-like 51 cubic feet of cargo space. There's even a storage compartment hidden under the load floor for unmentionables.

The Most Pleasant Surprise

The standard suspension provides a remarkably smooth ride. We might even call it plush. That makes the GT a fine long-distance cruiser for two. Who knew?

The Least Pleasant Surprise

We can accept that the Tech package costs $3,950 given its sophisticated contents. What rankles us is having to spend $2,975 on other options before getting the privilege to buy it.

The Bottom Line

If dull manners or lack of features have scared you away from compacts, you can safely enter the Elantra GT.