Many hate Hyundai, but never really give them a shot. So far I haven't really been disappointed. I might wish for more, but I'm happy with the sub $14k price paid. Takes to mods well, including using factory items from higher Hyundai models Car will also take a beating and keep on ticking. Had a compressed piston rod from water logging the engine, but it ran for 20k miles with naught but a misfire code. Have had a couple of minor quality issues dealing with poor taillight fitment and center arm rest fabric coming loose. Only other minor thing would be the mpg. Tho others report more, I ~27 mpg mixed tho have got 33 mpg on long road trips. Still way better than my 18-20 mpg in last car.
Euro hatch sport look, handling (with Tiburon suspension), warranty peace of mind (with good service dept), luggage space(though i still manage to fill it up)
If i could just get a fastback style hatch from Hyundai now with their new 2.4 GDI engines and a 6 spd, I'd be quite happy! However, look for the Veloster hatch and possibly an Elantra coupe with the new GDI engines due out in 2012 time frame!