COVID-19 isn’t stopping Hyundai from pulling the covers off the all-new 2021 Elantra compact sedan. Marking the world debut of the Hyundai’s popular compact sedan, the Elantra showcases Hyundai’s latest ambitions including a new design language, hybrid-electric tech, and a segment first wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity.
The all-new seventh-generation Elantra rides on a new vehicle platform with a longer wheelbase, wide stance, and lower roofline. The four-door coupe look gains around 56 mm in overall length, 20 mm in wheelbase, while its width is up by 25 mm. The overall height has also dropped 20 mm.
Designers phrase the all-new Elantra’s design as “Parametric Dynamics.” The unconventional lines, using surfaces that look like geometric crystals and divided body surfaces are meant to break a taboo in automotive design. Having three lines meet at one point is a main ingredient in making the colorful parametric dynamics of Elantra.
At the front, the jewel-like grille hides the turn signals, while the wide, cascading grille integrates the headlights. At the side, the parametric-jewel body surface is evident on the driver’s door, while at the back, is a wide horizontal line that extends across the center of the trunk. A high-tech “H-Tail Lamp,” creates a flying H logo-like shape, while wheel sizes measure from 15 to 17 inches.
Inside, the 2021 Elantra takes on an “immersive cocoon” layout. Low, wide structures go from the door all the way to the center console. The low, wide structure also provides ample interior room (bigger than the outgoing model, actually). A large interface consisting of two harmoniously connected 10.25-inch displays enhances the futuristic feeling of the car. The angled touchscreen is easy for the driver to see and control. Features include Qi wireless charging, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and even a Bose sound system.
At its launch, Hyundai’s all-new compact sedan is powered by the Kona’s 2.0-liter Atkinson Cycle engine with 147 horsepower 179 Nm of torque. This is mated to the in-house developed continuously variable transmission called IVT. More importantly, it debuts a gasoline-electric hybrid powertrain option for the first time. The Elantra Hybrid pairs a 1.6-liter Atkinson-cycle engine with an electric motor. Combined, it makes 139 horsepower and 264 Nm of torque. This engine is mated to a 6-speed dual clutch automatic.
Underpinning the Elantra is Hyundai’s K3 vehicle platform. This third-generation vehicle platform not only dramatically enhances the overall design driving performance, but is also stronger and weighs less. The suspension is tuned to minimize unwanted body roll, while still maximizing wheel impact absorption. It also offers a fully independent multilink rear suspension (at least in the Elantra Hybrid) for a sportier drive.
Production of the 2021 Elantra starts in the fall in Ulsan, Korea and at Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama, and sales begin in the fourth quarter globally.