Hyundai’s answer to the VW Golf and Honda Civic Hatch brings a turbocharged 1.6-liter and a six-speed stick.
Hyundai and Kia are finally building cars aimed to make enthusiasts take notice. The latest such offering is the Hyundai Elantra GT Sport, which just made its debut today at the Chicago Auto Show. It’s not the hardcore hot hatch we’ve been waiting for, but it should stack up nicely against the Mazda3, Honda Civic Sport, and Volkswagen Golf.
Like the Elantra Sport sedan that debuted last year, the Elantra GT Sport gets a 1.6-liter turbo four-cylinder that puts out 201 horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque. Transmission choices for the GT Sport include a six-speed manual and a seven-speed dual-clutch. The base Elantra GT hatch uses a 2.0-liter naturally-aspirated 162-hp four-cylinder with either a six-speed manual or a torque-converter six-speed automatic.
Both the base GT and GT Sport were developed at the Nürburgring, which Hyundai says gives them an excellent ride/handling balance. Additionally, the GT Sport swaps the base car’s torsion bar rear suspension for an independent multilink setup.
Inside, Hyundai says the Elantra GT is the roomiest of all compact hatches on the market today, and it comes with the automaker’s latest-and-greatest safety and infotainment features. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard, and additionally, if you’ve got Amazon Alexa in your home, you can remote-start the Elantra GT by voice command. The future!
In a press release, Hyundai’s U.S. product head Scott Margason described the Elantra GT Sport as “a true hot hatch,” but we won’t be certain about that until we drive one. Based on the specs, the Elantra GT Sport doesn’t seem quite at the level of the 220-HP Volkswagen Golf GTI or the 252-HP Ford Focus ST. But even against the base Golf, Honda Civic Sport, and the Mazda3 S, it goes up against some stiff hatchback competition.
Source: Road And Track