Consumers got their first look at the Hyundai Elantra three years ago at 2010 Los Angeles auto show and the Korean automaker has chosen this year’s event to showcase the completely refreshed 2014 model. The refresh is intended to keep Hyundai’s best-selling model competitive against a slew of revamped competitors.
Hyundai says the 2014 Elantra will feature 75 updates, including new front and rear fascias. The 2014 Sport and Limited editions will feature all-new LED front running lights. All models will have longer front and rear bumpers which the automaker says make occupant safer in front- and rear-impact collisions.
Hyundai is discontinuing steel wheels in favor of lighter allow designs, and buyers will have two new exterior paint choices – Windy Sea Blue and Geranium Red – available to them.
Hyundai has also made a number of interior changes based on customer feedback. The changes include a higher center console and repositioned climate vents. Climate control knobs and gauges have also been redesigned.
Backup cameras will be standard on the popular SE trim level, which will now be known as the GLS. The gated automatic transmission shifter, found in current models, has been replaced with a straight shifter featuring a leather boot.
To reduce road noise, the 2014 Elantra will feature thicker carpeting and the floor pan has been fitted with sound absorbing pads. A new windshield cowl will reduce wind noise when driving at high speeds.
Slightly softer front springs and retuned shock absorbers will give the 2014 Elantra a smoother, more responsive ride.
Hyundai has replaced the Elantra’s 16-bit electric power steering processor with a new 32-bit unit, and power steering can be tuned to precisely match the vehicle’s chassis and wheel size.
SE and Limited models will also allow the driver to choose between three steering modes – Normal, Comfort and Sport.
Hyundai has added a new Sport model to the Elantra lineup. The Sport model features 17-inch wheels, a spoiler and a chrome-tipped exhaust pipe. Power is provided by a 2.0-liter direct-injection inline-four cylinder engine that delivers 173 hp and 154 pound-feet of torque. All other Elantra models come with a standard 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine rated at 148 hp and 131 pound-feet of torque.
The 2014 Elantra will go on sale next month and pricing has not been announced.