– Ft. Lauderdale
Looking at the range readout and seeing "500 miles" is quite a sight. Only a few cars these days claim to offer over 500 miles of range on a single tank of gas, and most of them are diesel trucks with huge fuel reserves. But the pint-sized Hyundai Elantra Hybrid is one of the few compact cars that can traverse time zones without stopping.
At its most efficient, the base Elantra Hybrid Blue gets up to 54 miles per gallon combined, which puts it second only to the new Toyota Prius in terms of efficiency. But even if you "splurge" on the Elantra Hybrid Limited – which adds bigger wheels and better equipment – this fuel-sipping sedan still returns 50 mpg combined and only costs a smidgen over $30,000.
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|Quick Specs||2023 Hyundai Elantra Hybrid Limited|
|Engine||1.6-Liter Four-Cylinder Hybrid|
|Output||139 Horsepower / 195 Pound-Feet|
|Fuel Economy||49 City / 52 Highway / 50 Combined|
|Base Price||$24,550 + $1,115 Destination|
- Exterior Color: Ceramic White
- Interior Color: Melange / Gray
- Wheel Size: 17 Inches
The Elantra Hybrid looks edgy, which is rare these days for a small car. Its pointed nose and triangular grille are a welcomed reprieve from more boring designs like the Volkswagen Jetta, while the sharp creases on the side profile and rear end add another extra bit of edginess to the overall look.
The interior isn't edgy at all – it's just simple and good. The cabin is clean and cohesive with soft-touch materials on the door panels, a few weighty aluminum trim pieces, and nice lines that offer a distraction from the hard plastics elsewhere in the cabin.
- Seating Capacity: 5
- Seating Configuration: 2 / 3
- Cargo Capacity: 14.2 Cubic Feet
The Hyundai Elantra Hybrid cruises in absolute serenity. The suspension is soft and compliant and able to absorb bumps in the road without so much as a shrug. The leather seats on this Limited model offer great cushioning and excellent bolstering, as well as ample butt and back support. A bit of road noise does make its way into the cabin at higher speeds, but that's not uncommon for a small affordable car.
The Elantra immediately feels roomier than some of the alternatives when you hop inside, in both rows of seats. And the numbers support that; the Elantra Hybrid has the best or near-best headroom and legroom in the class, but falls just short in cargo space behind the Honda Civic.
|Hyundai Elantra Hybrid||40.6 / 37.3 Inches||42.3 / 38.0 Inches||14.2 Cubic Feet|
|Honda Civic||39.3 / 37.1 Inches||42.3 / 37.4 Inches||14.8 Cubic Feet|
|Nissan Sentra||38.9 / 36.7 Inches||43.8 / 34.9 Inches||14.3 Cubic Feet|
|Toyota Corolla Hybrid||38.3 / 37.1 Inches||42.3 / 34.8 Inches||13.1 Cubic Feet|
|Volkswagen Jetta||38.5 / 37.2 Inches||41.1 / 37.4 Inches||14.1 Cubic Feet|
- Center Display: 10.3-Inch Touchscreen
- Instrument Cluster Display: 10.3 Inches
- Wireless Apple CarPlay / Android Auto: No
The top-end Elantra Hybrid Limited tested here has a 10.3-inch digital instrument cluster and a corresponding 10.3-inch touchscreen. The infotainment interface is clean and easy to use, while the digital cluster is pretty nifty too, with highly configurable settings that offer quick access to audio, safety, and efficiency. But like a lot of current Hyundai products, it still forces you to plug in to use Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
- Engine: 1.6-Liter Four-Cylinder Hybrid
- Output: 139 Horsepower / 195 Pound-Feet
- Transmission: Six-Speed Dual-Clutch
If you want a sporty Elantra, buy the excellent N model. Otherwise, the Elantra Hybrid will happily get you from point A to point B without fuss or frills. The hybrid powertrain is moderately torquey but not overly powerful – you will have to bury your foot deep into the go pedal to get this car up to highway speed. The suspension is squishy and not at all dynamic, but at least the steering is nicely weighted and delivers decent feedback. Even the six-speed dual-clutch transmission is a better option than the traditional continuously variable units found on many hybrids; it doesn't drone or lag.
- Driver Assistance Level: SAE Level 2 (Hands-On)
- NHTSA Rating: Not Rated
- IIHS Rating: Top Safety Pick
The Hyundai Elantra Hybrid has a whole host of standard safety features ranging from a front-collision warning to lane-centering and high-beam assist, with a number of options in between. The Limited model adds adaptive cruise control and Hyundai’s Highway Driving Assist, which applies steering, braking, and acceleration inputs when active. And it works wonderfully on the highway, keeping the car centered in the lane and steady with the flow of traffic.
|Hyundai Elantra Hybrid (Limited)||49 MPG||52 MPG||50 MPG|
|Hyundai Elantra Hybrid (Blue)||53 MPG||56 MPG||54 MPG|
|Honda Civic||33 MPG||42 MPG||36 MPG|
|Nissan Sentra||29 MPG||39 MPG||33 MPG|
|Toyota Corolla Hybrid||53 MPG||46 MPG||50 MPG|
|Volkswagen Jetta||31 MPG||41 MPG||45 MPG|
- Base Price: $24,550 + $1,115 Destination
- Trim Base Price: $30,265
- As-Tested Price: $30,715
You’ll be hard-pressed to find another car this efficient and affordable; the Elantra Hybrid Blue starts at $25,665 (with the $1,115 destination fee included) while the Limited gets slightly pricier at $30,265. But the only option on the top trim model is $450 white paint, which you could easily skip for a number of no-cost hues.
The Toyota Corolla Hybrid is the only serious alternative to the Elantra in terms of range and affordability; Toyota asks just $24,395 for its base LE model. But if you’re not as concerned with efficiency, most of the pure gas alternatives are cheaper, even when you start adding options.
|Base Price||Competitive Spec|
|Hyundai Elantra Hybrid||$25,665||$30,715|
|Toyota Corolla Hybrid||$24,145||$28,620|
Gallery: 2023 Hyundai Elantra Hybrid Review
2023 Hyundai Elantra Hybrid Limited