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2015 Hyundai Elantra Preview

What will change? Probably not much, considering Hyundai just gave its compact-car line a substantial freshening for the 2014 model year. The only things that will likely set the 2015 Elantra sedans, hatchbacks, and coupes apart from the 2014s are paint colors and prices.

Why wait for the 2015 Hyundai Elantra: No compelling reason. Hyundai made a number of changes for model-year 2014, including revised exterior and interior styling, more horsepower for some models, and some updated convenience features.

Why buy a 2014 Hyundai Elantra: To take advantage of those 2014 updates. Elantra is among the only compacts available with more than two body styles. The 2015 will repeat in a choice of four-door sedan, two-door coupe, and four-door hatchback called the GT. All body styles share elements of their basic designs with the Forte produced by Hyundai’s Kia-brand subsidiary. For 2014, the Elantra got new front and rear fascia styling and a revised control scheme designed for more intuitive operation. The sedan roster gained a new Sport trim level while the coupe and hatchback offered more standard power.

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW

Styling As Hyundai altered the Elantra’s look for 2014, expect no changes for 2015. Though several elements of the exterior design are new, the cars retain the same basic shapes as their older counterparts. The overall look is cleaner and more contemporary than its predecessor, however.

Mechanical Elantra sedans should continue to offer buyers a choice of two engines for 2015 while the coupe and hatchback will have a single motor. The SE and Limited sedans will have a 145-horsepower 1.8-liter four-cylinder. A six-speed manual transmission would be standard on the SE while a six-speed automatic would be optional on that model and standard on the Limited. The Sport sedan, along with all coupes and GTs, received a 173-horsepower 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine as part of their 2014 freshening. Sedans and GTs would have a standard six-speed manual transmission and an optional six-speed automatic. Coupes are automatic only.

Fuel Economy EPA fuel economy estimates for the 2015 Hyundai Elantra should be no different than those of the 2014 models. The SE sedan, which has the 1.8-liter engine, rates 27/37/31 city/highway/combined with the manual transmission and 28/38/32 with the automatic. The Limited sedan, which has the 1.8-liter engine and automatic transmission scores 27/37/31. Sport sedans and GT hatchbacks, which use the 2.0-liter engine, rate 24/34/28 with the manual transmission. With the automatic, estimates are 24/35/28 for the sedan, 24/34/28 for the coupe, and 24/33/27 for the hatch.

Features The Elantra sedan, coupe, and hatchback offer basically the same convenience features, including air conditioning, power windows/locks/mirrors, and remote keyless entry. Items such as aluminum wheels, Bluetooth cell-phone connectivity, and heated front seats are optional on the SE sedan but standard otherwise. Leather upholstery is standard on the Limited and Sport sedans, as well as the coupe; it’s optional on the GT. Factory options will be limited to packages. The SE’s Preferred Equipment Package includes alloy wheels, Bluetooth, heated front seats, and a few other convenience items. The Limited Technology Package adds an uprated audio system, navigation system, rearview camera, dual-zone automatic climate control, and keyless entry with pushbutton engine start. Most of these items are also part of Technology Packages for the coupe and GT. The GT also offers a Style Package that includes unique wheels and exterior trim, a sport suspension, and leather seating surfaces.

QUICK HITS: Hyundai’s warranty coverage continues among the best in the business, at least among mainstream car brands. All Elantras have a standard limited warranty that runs for 5 years/60,000 miles (whichever comes first) along with 5 years of roadside assistance. Certain drivetrain components are covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles.

Prices Expect the 2015 Hyundai Elantra sedan to start at about $18,000, including destination fee. Loaded examples will likely top out at about $25,000. The coupe and GT will be about $500-$1,500 more than the sedan.

Competitors Chevrolet Cruze, Ford Focus, Honda Civic, Kia Forte, Mazda 3, Nissan Sentra, Toyota Corolla, Volkswagen Golf and Jetta

Hyundai Elantra Photo Gallery

About Ed Piotrowski

Ed Piotrowski has more than a decade of experience as a community and automotive journalist. As a former editor for Consumer Guide Automotive, he wrote new car news and reviews for the publication's magazine and website. He served as the lead editor of Consumer Guide's auto show coverage, managed its short- and long-term vehicle test fleet, and made regular appearances on a suburban Chicago radio station. He is a member of the Midwest Automotive Media Association where he served as the lodging logistics manager for the organization's annual Spring Collection road rally. Ed writes from Chicago's northwest suburbs.

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