2018 Hyundai Elantra GT: All Hail the Return of the Euro-Hatch! [Review]

Hyundai Elantra GT LSD
The insanely practical 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT. [photo: Arv Voss]
Hyundai Motor America, in keeping with the growing popular hatchback trend, has added a sporty version of its own, the 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT, along with an even sportier model to come, the Elantra GT Sport. This new hatchback family member joins the Elantra sedan models providing more space and versatility, with 11 more cubic feet than the sedans for a total of 25 cubic feet of cargo space.

My 2018 Elantra GT test vehicle came with the 6-speed automatic transmission. The base sticker read $20,350, which is higher than the Elantra sedan’s $17,985 base price, but the GT‘s higher price is justifiable based on its enhanced practicality, versatility, and style. The final price tag came to a total of $27,460 after factoring in the following optional fare: the Style Package; the Tech Package; Carpeted floor mats along with the Inland Freight and Handling fee.


Along with a suite of common standard safety features, an 8.0-inch infotainment touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto is standard, while Blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and navigation are optional fare.

There’s a viable reason for the Elantra GT’s Euro look — it is actually derived from Hyundai’s European division displaying clean simple lines and appealing attention to detail, fit and finish. Blend the styling with an available 201-hp turbocharged four-cylinder along with a standard six-speed manual gearbox), and this latest Hyundai hatch is sure to challenge the favorite hatchbacks of the segment such as Honda’s Civic and the VW Golf. Similar to the outgoing Elantra GT Hatch, the new iteration GT 5-door closely resembles the European-market’s Hyundai i30 Hatch, meaning that it’s not simply a hatchback version of the U.S.-market Elantra sedan, but rather rides on a different architecture; the relationship is like that between VW’s Golf and Jetta. For instance The Elantra GT’s wheelbase is two inches shorter than that of the Elantra sedan, which places it in between the Golf and Civic hatches in terms of size.

Hyundai Elantra GT Eng
[photo: Arv Voss]


Power for the Elantra GT hatch is provided by a forward, transversely mounted 2.0-liter, DOHC, 16-valve inline 4-cylinder engine with Dual CVVT that pumps out 161 horsepower at 6,200 rpm, while developing 150 pound feet of torque at 4,700 rpm. A turbocharged 1.6-liter will propel the coming GT Sport hatch with 201 horses and 195 pound feet of torque.

Both a six-speed manual gearbox and six-speed automatic transmission are available to gear energy to the front wheels for the normally aspirated engine, while the turbocharged Elantra GT Sport’s 1.6-liter mill direct motive force to the driving wheels via either a standard 6-speed manual transmission or an optional 7-speed DCT automatic.

The GT Sport will switch out the standard GT’s torsion-beam rear suspension with an independent multilink setup, while eighteen-inch wheels and larger brakes will add to the significant changes for the performance-oriented models.

The new 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT, in addition to pleasing one’s visual sense, is also a pleasure to drive, with positive handling characteristics, generous acceleration, smooth comfortable ride quality and smooth gear changes in either manual or automatic mode through the 6-speed SHIFTRONIC transmission, with Drive Mode Select.

Base pricing will range from $19,350 for the 2.0-liter with a manual gearbox. Add $1.000 for the 6-speed auto version. The 1.6-liter GT Sport will start at $23,250. for a manual, with an extra $1,000 for a 7-speed EcoShift Dual Clutch Transmission with SHIFTRONIC. Add an $885 destination charge for both models.


Entering the cabin, the Elantra GT’s interior showcases an upscale and practically laid out and user-friendly arrangement, with a dashboard design that varies from that of the sedan’s. An updated version of Hyundai’s Blue Link infotainment system is standard. The Elantra GT’s 60/40 split rear seats when folded, provides 55 cubic feet of space, surpassing both the Civic and Golf.

TFLCAR’s TAKE: Even while not having had the opportunity to drive the GT Sport yet, I would place my bet on the automatic version as the better buy for optimum performance for only roughly $3,000. more than the regular GT for a total of $31,460. The Sport version’s EPA fuel economy estimates are 26 mpg city and 32 mpg highway and 27 mpg combined, losing only 2 mpg city, with the same 32 mpg highway and losing only 1 mpg from the base GT.

SPECIFICATIONS: 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT

  • Base Price: $20,350, price as Tested: $27,460
  • Engine Type and Size: 2.0-liter, DOHC, 16-valve inline 4-cylinder with Dual CVVT
  • Horsepower (bhp): 161 @ 6,200 rpm
  • Torque (ft./ lbs.): 150 @ 4,700 rpm
  • Transmission: Six-speed automatic with SHIFTRONIC
  • Drive Train: Transversely mounted front engine / FWD
  • Suspension: Front – MacPherson strut with coil springs, hydraulic twin-tube shock absorbers and stabilizer bar. Rear – Coupled torsion beam axle with gas-filled, hydraulic monotube shock absorbers, coil springs and stabilizer bar.
  • Brakes: Power-assisted four-wheel discs (vented front) with ABS and EBD
  • Tires: Nexen N-Priz AH8 – 225/45 R17 mounted on 5-“V”-spoke alloy wheels
  • Wheelbase: 104.3 inches
  • Length Overall: 170.9 inches
  • Width: 70.7 inches
  • Height: 57.7 inches
  • Curb Weight: 3,968 lbs.
  • Turning Circle: 34.78 ft.
  • Fuel Capacity: 14.0 gallons
  • EPA Mileage Estimates: 24 mpg city / 32 mpg highway