The executive sedan segment in India is one of the most sought-after genre with products like the Chevrolet Cruze, Toyota Corolla Altis, Skoda Laura and the Hyundai Elantra, which used to dominate the segment with its sheer road presence. But with the arrival of the new Corolla Altis, Hyundai Elantra lost its charm. As we have said many-a-times, Hyundai doesn't like to be left behind when it comes to India and now they have launched the updated Elantra to regain its dominance. So is the car all about the looks or is it a capable executive class sedan, we find in our 2015 Hyundai Elantra review!
Nothing could match the sheer desirability of the Hyundai Elantra when it comes to the design. Hyundai Elantra is probably the best looking sedan not only in its segment but throughout the segments. The teardrop styled swept back headlamps houses projector lights, while the fog lamps are designed in an inverted 'L' shape. There are creases on the bonnet while chrome has been added to the front fascia. The side profile is a bit angular as compared to the competitors, while the rear is immaculately designed with stretched tail light and new Verna inspired chrome tail pipe.
The biggest change in the updated Elantra is the all-black interiors, which used to be beige earlier and looks sportier than before. There's brushed aluminium bits on the door pads, dashboard and door sills that make the cabin look quite cool. The seating space is adequate both at the front seats and the rear seats while the rear headroom has some space for improvement.
The instrument cluster looks funky and the steering has a good feel attached to it. The overall design of the central console is neatly laid, though the bigger touchscreen unit for the infotainment system needs improvement. Also, the notable thing to mention here would be the aluminium brushed foot pedals which feels very sporty.
Engine, Performance and Gearbox
We got the diesel manual variant of the Hyundai Elantra 2015. To be very honest, Hyundai Elantra 1.6-litre engine feels overwhelmingly fast. The 6-speed manual gearbox helps you push the car to the three digits in no time. The engine is a 1582 cc unit producing 128 PS and 260 Nm of torque. There's no lag at all and the engine is as smooth as it can get. Infact, it is very less noised as compared to some of the diesel engines in the market. While we can't say it's a driver's car, it is still a car you would like to take out for a spin.
Ride and Handling
First-thing-first, this is by far the best handling Hyundai in the market, and especially when compared to the younger sibling Verna. While it may not be the best handler in its segment when compared to the Toyota Corolla Altis or the Chevrolet Crize for that matter, it definitely soaks up most of the bumps and gives you a confident ride. The in-cabin noise, like mentioned before, has been reduced considerably, giving you a very relaxed driving environment.
Safety and Features
The 2015 Hyundai Elantra comes equipped with the much required ventilated seats, which works independent of the AC and a dual-zone climate control. The updated Elantra also gets a big chilled glove box, and electrically foldable ORVMs, though they do not retract after you shut down the car. On the safety front, the Hyundai Elantra 1.6 S MT diesel comes equipped with the dual airbags upfront and curtain airbags at the rear. Additional features include ESP, ABS and EBD, traction control and stability control.
If you are in the market looking for an executive sedan, look no further than the 2015 Hyundai Elantra. The sedan has distinctive and head-turning looks, plush interiors and hugely improved ride and handling quality. To top it all, it has a Hyundai brand attached, which means you will not have any issue selling the car.