Not only does a compact car tend to be more affordable these days, but it also features rather appealing fuel economy so consumers can save money at the pump. However, this recent shift in popularity has made a number of viable options available. The 2009 Hyundai Elantra is a real diamond in the rough when it comes to ultimate affordability and longevity.
Despite the fact that many car buyers can get distracted by other compact sedans, such as the Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla, it is the Hyundai Elantra that allows someone to get the most bang for their buck while still being comfortable behind the wheel. The Elantra is actually the most spacious vehicle in the compact sedan category, even to the point where the EPA rates it as a mid-size based on its free space dimensions. The backseat of the Elantra features a high-mount bench with plenty of headroom and legroom so that it accommodates a full-size adult. Its interior features and engine power do not disappoint either. Simply because the Elantra is the most affordable of the compact sedans does not mean that it should be passed over.
Body Style: Compact Sedan
Engines: 2.0-liter four-cylinder
Model: Hyundai Elantra GLS and Hyundai Elantra SE
Transmission: Five-speed manual or four-speed automatic
In order to keep the Hyundai Elantra up to speed with its formidable competition, the 2009 Elantra has several features to help with both overall handling and ride stability, in addition to interior perks. Since the main selling point of the Elantra is affordability, the alterations to the 2009 model are rather conservative in order to keep the manufacturing and production costs as low as possible.
The 2009 Hyundai Elantra is part of the third generation of Elantra vehicles, which means that it has a rather sleek and stylish exterior look. Even though affordability and fuel economy are still the key foundation words for the car, no one can deny the fact that the smooth design is very appealing and even looks more expensive than it actually is. All of the exterior features flow together to compose an overall connected look, which maximizes fuel efficiency in the process. Also, a sunroof is available as an option for the GLS, while the luxurious addition comes standard on the SE model of the 2009 Elantra.
The 2009 Hyundai Elantra, in both the GLS and SE models, prioritizes comfort and space for an interior that seems almost too luxurious to be considered an economy class compact sedan. However, for buyers who want a few extra gadgets to add to the overall fun and usability of the car, they can easily add on multiple options to make the Elantra their own.
The 2009 Elantra GLS is rather sparse in its standard options of full power accessories, keyless entry, a tilt-only steering wheel, and a 60/40 split folding rear seat. Yet, the additional Popular Equipment Package manages to add air-conditioning, cruise control, illuminated vanity mirrors, and foglights. Newly available for the 2009 model is the iPod and USB interface system as well. All of these optional GLS features come standard on the SE model with the extra perks of a telescoping steering column and audio controls on the steering wheel.
Performance & Handling
The 2009 Hyundai Elantra received enhanced tuning for the suspension and steering to make for a smoother overall ride and better drivability. A five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission is available for the vehicle depending on personal preferences. The front-wheel drive car is powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine in both the GLS and SE models, which produces 138 horsepower and 136 lb-ft of torque. While those numbers may seem quite low, the engine works rather hard to go from zero to 60 mph in a very respectable 8.4 seconds when using the five-speed manual transmission. Also, the 2009 Elantra is a very clean vehicle, as it was rated as a ""Partial Zero Emissions Vehicle"" in the state of California.
Every 2009 Elantra comes standard with active front-head restraints and anti-lock disc brakes. As far as airbags go, all Elantras have front-side airbags and side-curtain airbags. The 2009 Elantra SE model adds extra stability and safety with traction control and brake assist.
EPA Fuel Economy
Hyundai Elantra, automatic transmission: 25/33 mpg city/highway
Hyundai Elantra, manual transmission: 24/33 mpg city/highway
- Interior features
You Won't Like
- Noisy engine at high rpm
- Bland driving experience
An affordable option for space, comfort, and fuel economy.
If You Like This Vehicle
- Honda Civic
- Mazda 3
- Toyota Corolla