CLASSY ELANTRA MANTRA
The Koreans proved quality doesn’t always come at a price, GRAHAM SMITH writes
WITH a growing reputation for quality, this value-for-money sedan is competent, reliable all-rounder.
How things have changed the Koreans, once scorned and derided. Hyundai Kia are enjoying best of times with strong sales a growing reputation for quality.
The MD Elantra arrived in 2011 as another the good-looking, well engineered and built Korean models.
Styled in California, which explains its appealing looks, it was aimed at likes of Mazda3 and Ford Focus, said much about its engineering and quality.
A four-door five-seater, the Elantra was built on a new front-wheel-drive platform with long wheelbase wide track.
Three models — Active, Elite and Premium made up range.
The modern, functional cabin had a soft feel to the dash and other areas, with piano black, textured grey metallic finishes.
It accommodated full complement of five in comfort the 60-40 split-folding rear seat gave it a degree of flexibility. A large boot added to the Elantra’s practicality.
Power came from an allaluminium 1.8-litre four-cylinder engine that returned 7.1L/100km or better.
There were two transmission options with the Active and Elite — a six-speed manual six-speed sports shifting auto. Premium buyers
limited to slick responsive auto, but you would expect that would be their choice in any case.
Local input retuned the ride and handling to better suit local tastes expectations, and result was a sporty engaging feel on road.
Hyundai cars in general have come on in leaps and bounds when it comes to build quality, reliability durability.
The Elantra is no different and on the whole owners appear to be content with their decision buy one.
Hyundai was the brand that introduced cheap drive-away pricing as a means of getting into the local market new start-up brand. It no longer relies on being in way it once did, but shadow of past still lingers to some degree.
Those who shop with an open mind usually come the conclusion a Hyundai is a decent brand well worth considering alongside other more established brands.
But at the same time some people still buy Hyundai on basis of price and treat their cars like disposable commodities. Those need to be weeded out dismissed when shopping for a used car.
Instead, look car that has been well looked after, kept clean and well serviced. Checking the service book is a good way of assessing maintenance a car you’re contemplating buying. Also be wary
cars that have been used by rental companies. Hyundais are popular with the renter crowd, so look for cars