Remade from the inside out, the all-new 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT debuted at the Chicago Auto Show with new looks and feel. Heading here this summer in GT and GT Sport form, this newest member of the Elantra family is based on the European i30 model presented last fall in Paris. In addition to its more aggressive overall styling, the recast Elantra GT boasts enhanced dynamics plus a larger cabin with upgraded comfort and connectivity touches and a selection of new driver assist features.
Slightly longer, lower and wider than the current-generation 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT, the 2018 model maintains the same wheelbase. The more elegantly contoured sheetmetal is set off by a new cascading grille that’s destined to make its way into other upcoming Hyundai models. The car’s revised lighting now includes optional full LED headlamps as well as standard LED running lights. The GT’s flowing roofline resolves into a smoother tail that features an integrated hatch spoiler complemented by sleeker rear lamps along with a better-integrated lower fascia.
Beneath that reshaped surface the 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT benefits from a new structure made from 53 percent high-strength steel – nearly double the amount in the current car. In addition to creating a foundation that’s stronger and has 22 percent greater rigidity, the body is also 61 pound lighter. Hyundai’s engineers also developed a new suspension setup for this new Elantra hatch that was track tested on the legendary Nürburgring Nordschleife circuit. Matching MacPherson struts up front with a torsion beam rear axle on the GT or a full multilink system on the GT Sport, it reportedly makes either version more agile and better controlled. While the GT comes with 17-inch alloy wheels, the Sport-spec mode rolls on 18-inch rims and has larger 4-wheel disc brakes.
Two powertrain choices
Motivation comes in two forms. The GT is fitted with a naturally-aspirated 162-horsepower/2.0-liter 4-cylinder while the GT Sport packs the same 201-horse/1.6-liter direct-injected Turbo used in the Elantra Sport sedan. Both can be had with a standard 6-speed manual, but the GT’s optional 6-speed automatic gives way to a 7-speed dual-clutch transmission on the GT Sport.
The good news continues inside of the 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT in the form of a new dash design and improved ergonomics. While providing room for five with its 60/40 rear seat up, flat folding both backs will up total cargo capacity from roughly 25 cu ft to a class-leading 55.1 cu ft. Along with an 8.0-inch display screen, upgraded Blue Link features and a selection of new premium options that include the first application of Hyundai’s next-gen AVN 5.0 infotainment system. The GT family features leather upholstery, dual-zone climate control as well as an optional Infinity Premium Audio system with Clari-Fi, support for Android Auto/Apple CarPlay and wireless smartphone charging.