Better Value than a Honda Civic? We Test the 2023 Hyundai Elantra Limited
With new car prices hitting record highs each and every day, it is refreshing when we get a tester here that does not break the bank. It is even sweeter when it is a well-optioned model as well.
Let me introduce you to the 2023 Hyundai Elantra Limited. This is the top trim of the Elantra (if you do not count the N Line and N models that are more suited to spirited driving than commuting). With comfortable seating for 4, total seating for 5, stellar fuel economy, and luxurious touches like leather seats, a digital gauge cluster, and heated seats, this Elantra is quite the bargain with its sub-$30K price tag.
Driving this around for a week was a joy as the 2.0L engine and “intelligent variable transmission” made enough power and delivered it to the front wheels when requested. The steering was light and easily maneuverable in the parking lot and was well-weighted on the highway. Speaking of the highway, this Elantra has Hyundai’s Highway Driving Assist which will adjust the adaptive cruise control to not only keep a safe distance between you and the vehicle in front of you, but will also adjust the preset speed to stay at the posted speed limit for a given stretch of highway.
Having sampled many products from Hyundai, there were some interesting omissions from this Elantra Limited. We have really come to enjoy the blind-spot cameras that Hyundai products use on their vehicles with a digital gauge cluster, displaying the image of what is in your blind spot when you turn on a blinker. However, this Limited model only had the rear-facing backup camera that is mandated by federal laws. Also curiously absent (as with most premium products from Hyundai) is wireless Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™. Base SE models with their 8-inch infotainment screen get wireless interfaces, but the larger 10.25-inch screen standard in our Limited was relegated to using a USB-A cord.
When you take a step back and compare it to the Honda Civic, this Elantra Limited compares quite favorably. A similarly-equipped Civic would be the Touring model and those start at $29,650, which is more than our $27,395 Elantra. Factor in Hyundai’s 5-year/60,000-mile new car warranty and their 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty, and some might call you crazy for shopping anywhere but a Hyundai dealership.
2023 Hyundai Elantra Limited Specs:
2.0L Inline 4-Cylinder Engine
132 lb-ft of Torque
Intelligent Variable Transmission
17-inch Alloy Wheels
225/45 R17 Kumho Majesty Solus Tires
Heated Front Leather-Trimmed Seats
6-Way Power Adjustable Driver Seat
14.2 Cubic Feet of Trunk Space
10.25-inch Center Infotainment Screen
10.25-inch Digital Instrument Cluster
Bose Premium Audio with 8 Speakers
Dual-Zone Climate Control
Proximity Key with Push Button Start
EPA Fuel Economy 30/40/34 (city/hwy/combined)
Starting MSRP $26,350 (Limited)
Price as tested: $27,395
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