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2011 Hyundai Elantra

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2011 Hyundai Elantra Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 7.5

For years Hyundai was dogged by a negative reputation for sub-par vehicles, but the Korean manufacturer has turned the corner and drastically improved its image by producing higher-quality and more appealing products like the 2011 Elantra. Often costing about a thousand dollars less than similarly equipped versions of the Honda Civic, Toyota Corolla and Nissan Sentra, the Elantra is an exceptional value with a host of standard features, one of the best warranties on the market and an EPA rating of 40 mpg on the highway. For 2011, the Elantra has been redesigned and sports a style that is sure to steal some attention away from the category leaders.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're looking for a compact sedan with a sporty design, excellent fuel economy and loads of safety and tech features at a lower cost than comparably-equipped competitors, then the Hyundai Elantra should be on your test-drive list.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you don't hang on to your vehicles for a long time, the Hyundai Elantra might not be the right choice for you. Although its 36-month residual value is on par with the gold-standard Honda Civic, the Elantra loses its value faster over time and falls behind the Civic after five years - meaning you will get less on your trade when it's time to buy a new car.

What's New for 2011

The 2011 Hyundai Elantra ups the ante in the compact-car segment by offering 40 mile-per-gallon fuel economy at a price lower than many of its competitors.

Driving the Elantra
Driving Impressions

The Hyundai Elantra may not be the sportiest car in its class, but it is still fun to drive. You can feel enough of a connection to the road that...

... you wouldn't mind putting it through the paces on a curvy weekend drive, but you also won't feel every pothole or road imperfection, making it a great daily commuter car. Steering is just right, and the turning radius is one of the best in its class - which helps in crowded parking lots. Our one caveat is that the engine can get a little buzzy when pushed on a grade or on the highway, but the shifts are smooth and the minor engine noise is a small price to pay for the savings you'll see at the gas pump.

Heated Rear Seats
The 2011 Hyundai Elantra Limited offers not only heated leather seats in front, but also in the rear - a feature practically unheard of in anything less than a luxury vehicle.

Navigation Package
It's true that with the onslaught of smart phones having a navigation system in your car is less of a priority, but Hyundai integrates the seven-inch screen so well into the Elantra's instrument panel (and includes a rearview camera) that we would spend the extra money to get the optional package.

2011 Hyundai Elantra Details
2011 Hyundai Elantra photo Interior

The Hyundai Elantra's interior is nicely appointed and, although plastic can be found on nearly every surface of the cabin, the style is functional and well-done. The Elantra's gauges and center-stack controls are very user-friendly and the integration of the optional navigation system is one of the best we've seen. The 2011 Hyundai Elantra also features 43.6 inches of front legroom, allowing even tall people to stretch their legs. In back, passengers have equally robust legroom, but headroom is a different story. Since the exterior design of the cabin roof slopes to the rear quite a bit, back-seat passengers over six feet tall might find themselves hitting the headliner. Trunk space is larger than most competitors (only bested by the Chevrolet Cruze) and 60/40 split-folding rear seats make it easy to transport bulky items.

Exterior
2011 Hyundai Elantra photo

The 2011 Hyundai Elantra looks sporty, with a sculptured fascia and an aggressively sweeping shoulder line. Competitors offer less-flashy styling, giving the Elantra sedan a leg up in terms of aesthetics. The GLS rides on 15-inch steel wheels while 16-inch alloys are optional. Moving up to the Limited adds athletic 17-inch alloy wheels, fog lamps and turn signals on the body-color heated power mirrors.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The 2011 Hyundai Elantra's base GLS trim level comes with the essentials and more, including a six-speed manual transmission, air conditioning, power accessories, tilt steering wheel, 60/40 split-folding rear seats and a six-speaker AM/FM/CD/MP3 sound system with Satellite radio and USB/auxiliary input jacks. The Elantra includes an impressive array of standard safety equipment, including six airbags, electronic stability and traction controls, Electronic Brake-force Distribution and a remote keyless entry anti-theft system with panic button.

Optional Equipment

Opting for the up-level Limited trim adds a six-speed automatic transmission with SHIFTRONIC, 17-inch alloy wheels, Bluetooth connectivity, steering wheel-mounted cruise and audio controls and leather seats. Packages available for the GLS include a Preferred Equipment Package, which adds Bluetooth, steering wheel-mounted audio controls and 16-inch alloy wheels; and a Navigation Package, which adds a seven-inch navigation screen, automatic headlamps and a rearview camera. The Limited can be equipped with the Premium Package, which features remote push-button start, navigation, a rearview camera and automatic headlamps.

Under the Hood

The only engine offered in the 2011 Hyundai Elantra is a 1.8-liter four-cylinder that produces 148 horsepower and 131 pound-feet of torque. It can be matched with either a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic with SHIFTRONIC for those drivers who want to shift their own gears on occasion. We had the opportunity to drive both the manual and automatic Elantras and found both drivetrains have their virtues. The manual transmission shifts smoothly and easily and would make a solid choice if you wanted to save the $2,000 premium that the automatic adds to the bottom line. The automatic provides sure shifts, and if you want to shift your own gears, the SHIFTRONIC system is easy to use.

1.8-liter in-line four cylinder
148 horsepower @ 6500 rpm
131 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4700 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 29/40 (manual), 29/40 (automatic)

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2011 Hyundai Elantra Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.1
Out of 10

Based on 382 Ratings for the 2011 - 2016 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.5/10
    Quality
    8.3/10
  • Reliability
    8.9/10
    Performance
    7.7/10
  • Comfort
    8.4/10
    Styling
    8.7/10

Not a safe winter driving car, otherwise nice car

By on Wednesday, July 20, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 48,000

10 6.0
overall rating 6 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
6/10
Value
Not Rated
Reliability
Not Rated
Quality
Not Rated
Performance
Not Rated
Styling
Not Rated
Comfort
Not Rated

Pros: "Roomy, great price, nice looking car."

Cons: "No traction in winter weather"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 5

"I love the look of my car, its roomy and overall its a nice car, unless you have to drive it in winter weather. You mention the word "snow" and it will slide sideways. After 3 winters we are trading it in for something safer."

Reliable

By on Friday, June 24, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 79,014

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "mechanically reliable"

Cons: "odometer replacing, chipped paint roof rails"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 5

"This is my second Hyundai. Former: 2005 Accent. Had 125K+ miles w/no problems. Someone totaled my car. :( but was awesome despite it being called "the beer can". And I could park it in the smallest spaces. So I bought the Hyundai Elantra Touring as a replacement. Not as happy. Pro: Don't get me wrong, mechanically it is very reliable. I've replaced the tires, brakes and I get it serviced like clockwork. Con: The lemon of an odometer. After my 3rd year, I've had to replace annually it because the heat/sun wipe it out. It's very frustrating because the odometer is not set with the last setting. So when I get oil changes, no one ever adds the sticker mileage in the door with the odometer (even after explaining). And so recommended services are all out of whack. In addition, the roof rack rails are chipping paint. It's cosmetically tacky. But I keep the car, because again the car mechanically reliable."

3 people out of 4 found this review helpful

Solid purchase

By on Sunday, May 29, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 17,500

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Comfortable drive, style, features"

Cons: "Backseat comfort, interior materials are avg."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"I purchased in May of 2015 and have since taken it to 2 road trips and accumulated 6k miles on it. I can honestly say its a solid purchase. Comfortable, full of features, looks amazing. Its fuel economy is "OK", only because it was rated at 27-37 city/hwy mpg, but I calculated 24-26 overall in mostly city/some highway driving. I love the driver selectable steering, the transmission is okay, you can on some occasions feel the transmission shift harshly, but rarely. Having been on those road trips, I've noticed some things. My passengers and I both agree that the back seats are not comfortable on long road trips, they're leather so I'm not sure this could be said about cloth seats. Our butts and backs were very sore at the 2 hour mark, stretching at each rest stop was a must, but the two front seats were Okay for the road trip. The car has a soft touch dash, and I thought that this material should have been distributed on the top part of the door trims and the lower part of the dash (i.e. above the glove box) as these are areas where people will be touching (I would be fine with a hard plastic dash) Perhaps this material belongs there to provide sound insulation? I am unsure. A/c compressor gave out at 10k miles, but per the dealership this does not happen to most Elantras, mines was one in a couple hundred thousand to have that happen. Towing and service were covered under warranty. Many Cali road trips later and this car remains a solid purchase. It's not that fun on the road like my old college car honda fit, but it sure is a lot more comfortable. Its also full of features and has a large interior volume. As I leave the car I always have to take a second look because of its amazing style both front and back. Will keep for the next couple years."

Second Best Car I've owned

By on Friday, May 27, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 25,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Grerat price"

Cons: "Blessed mine came with a spare tire, some don't."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"The car is awesome, Navigation and DVD with backup Camera, is too cool. Gas mileage is great at 450 mile Range per tank."

Have owned this vehicle since buying new.

By on Tuesday, May 17, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 59,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "fun car to drive and enjoy."

Cons: "Speed tires have a tendancy to make noise."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"New 70,000 Pirelli tires installed About 10,000 miles ago and rotated every 6,000 miles at Discount Tire. Oil Changes as scheduled. Just took it to Florida in March and averaged 39.4 MPG driving and average speed of between 70 and 75 MPH. No accidents or paint problems."

9 people out of 11 found this review helpful

Great car !

By on Tuesday, May 10, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 11,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"Likes: driving, handling, looks,styles, design gss mileage. I really like the whole car. Dislikes: It started making a tap-tap noise in the top of the engine. It sounds like an old engine noise. I don't like it. To the dealer, service writer said it's a injector noise and all of the Hyundais with those injectors right on top of the engine will make that sound."

15 people out of 21 found this review helpful

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