2012 Hyundai Elantra

The year 2012 is without doubt one of the most exciting for car enthusiasts. One of the latest models is the 2012 Hyundai Elantra which has already won the prestigious crown as the 2012 North American car of the year.

The Korean car maker seems intent on out-staging other brands that have dominated the sedan market and this compact size model is a perfect start.


General Info
Vehicle Type: Compact Base Price: $15,345.00
Fuel Tank Capacity: 12.8 gallons(48L) MPG: 29 city / 40 hwy
Length: 178.3 in. (452.8 cm) Wheel Base: 106.3 in. (270 cm)
Height: 56.5 in. (143.5 cm) Width: 69.9 in. (177.5 cm)
Curb Weight: 2661 lbs (1207 kg) Ground Clearance: NA
Luggage Capacity: 14.8 cu ft Maximum Seating: 5 people
Engine: 1.8L Inline-4 DOHC Compression Ratio: 10.3: 1
Horsepower: 148 HP Max RPM: 6500 RPM
Torque: 131 lb-ft @ 4700 rpm Transmission: 6-Speed Manual
0-60 mph: 8.4 seconds Maximum Speed: NA
Available Trims & Engine
Option:Limited MSRP: $20,945; MPG: 29 city / 40 hwy

Engine & Performance

The 2012 redesign has a 1.8 liter 4 -cylinder engine and this is still immense power for any car in its class. The car comes with a front wheel drive and its 1.8 liter engine produces 148 Horse power and 131 lb-ft pound-feet torque.

The engine is mated to either a six-speed manual or automatic option which can be attributed to its low weight at less than 2,700 pounds. A new engine system in the model known as Active-Evo which when selected enables the readjustment of the car’s automatic transmission shift points and throttle response thus increasing fuel economy by 7%. An Elantra limited will move from zero to 60 mph in 9.4 seconds.

Fuel Economy

In terms of fuel economy, the 2012 Elantra beats its closest competition hands down. For a car in its class to offer 40-MPG on all models on the highway, and 29 MPG for city driving (33 MPG combined) is just impressive and you do not have to upgrade to other trims to enjoy these figures.

In comparative terms, similar cars including the new Ford Focus, Chevrolet Cruze, Mazda 3 and the Civic cannot claim such fuel economy figures.


The 2012 Elantra provides drivers with a comprehensive package in terms of features. In the main trims including base GLS, and Limited there is leather upholstery, air conditioning, height-adjustable driver’s seat, 6 speaker sound system and a CD player, iPod/ USB interface, Sirius XM™ Satellite Radio , 60/40 split rear folding seat among other features.

In the limited edition, you also get heated rear and front seats which the Focus, Cruze or the Civic do not offer, keyless ignition and entry, rearview camera just to mention some of the amazing features. Compared to Toyota Corolla (MSRP $16,130; 27 city / 34 hwy) or Honda Civic (MSRP $15,955; 28 city / 36 hwy), you get more passage volume.


The exterior of the 2012 Hyundai Elantra gives the car a sporty appearance and the rear cut doors give the car a sense of constant visual motion. The 15-inch steel wheels in the base model also enhance the exterior while the dynamic shapes and fluid lines give the car an aerodynamic finish.

Safety & Reliability

Consider the car with these features; six air bags (front seat side impacts and side curtain air bags), traction and electronic stability control, active front head restraints, anti-clock disc brakes, vehicle stability management system, break assist among others. With such features, it is no wonder the car won the IIHS Top Safety Picks designation.

In the 2012 Hyundai Elantra, you have the ultimate ride. Of course the interior could do with a few tweaks while the lack of independent rear suspension makes the car vibrate at to gears and on rough roads. Like with all Hyundai models, steering is not powerful but the company may do something about it over time.

Overall Rating
73 out of 100

What others say:

“Confident performance is something you’ll find in the 2012 Hyundai Elantra, but a sporty or athletic driving feel isn’t.”Car Connection

“Elantra’s steering is accurate with good feel, but it seems a bit heavy just off center. The handling never quite manages to feel sporty, but Elantra is well behaved with stable and predictable manners. Brakes are strong with good pedal feel.”Consumer Guide

“The 2012 Hyundai Elantra compact sedan gains Hyundai’s ActiveECO system that modifies engine and transmission controls for maximum fuel economy and smoothness.”KBB

“Outstanding fuel economy on all models; lots of features for the money; comfortable and well-built cabin; large trunk; long warranty coverage; distinctive styling…Limited rear headroom; not as sporty as some rivals.”Edmunds