2009 Hyundai Elantra Sedan Review | Edmunds.com

2009 Hyundai Elantra Sedan

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Hyundai Elantra Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 2.0 L Inline 4-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 4-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 132 hp @ 6000 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 25/33 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2009 Hyundai Elantra

  • The 2009 Hyundai Elantra is often overlooked, but it's a roomy and well-built small sedan with surprisingly sophisticated road manners. It is a must-drive if you're in the market for an economy car.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    High-class cabin for the price, smooth and secure ride, spacious interior with adult-friendly backseat, well-equipped, low price, long warranty.

  • Cons

    Engine is noisy at mid-to-high rpm, a bit bland to drive, a few cheap interior bits.

  • What's New for 2009

    The Hyundai Elantra gets enhanced suspension and steering tuning for 2009, along with new interior instrument and radio displays. A USB/iPod audio jack is now available.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (5 total reviews)


Know what you are getting.

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Vehicle: 2009 Hyundai Elantra SE PZEV 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 4A)

The AC is inadequate. On 95 degree days, it is still warm in the car. This is a common problem for Hyundai. I had to have the windows tinted to help. I was in a head on accident and the air bags didn't go off. Another common problem for Hyundai. I'm waiting for a recall announcement. The idiot lights come on sporadically (ESC,ABS,TPMS). The longest one has stayed on was over an hour. I don't know if the ABS and ESC are working. Another common problem for Hyundai. The car has over 50K miles on it and we have not had any problems with it not running or starting. We get about 25 miles to the gallon but do mostly city driving.




Commuter car

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Vehicle: 2009 Hyundai Elantra SE PZEV 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 4A)

I bought this car as a commuter vehicle. It gets 34 mpg doing my commute of 60 miles each way. I am 6'2" and for the most part it is a comfortable ride. If stuck in traffic for a while my right leg starts to cramp because there is not enough thigh support. I use a driving pillow which helps some. The front wheel well inserts seem a little flimsy because you can really hear all the road pebbles thrown up from the tires. The first couple hundred miles my radio died. It was replaced and now is O.K. Pretty quite highway ride and pretty good in the snow.




You've got to drive it

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Vehicle: 2009 Hyundai Elantra SE PZEV 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 4A)

I tried many cars at Auto Show before deciding on Elantra SE, more interior room than many bigger cars. Handling fantastic when pushed on mountain roads but SE suspension is sometimes unforgiving on poor roads. If the road is bad you'll definitely know it. The car is great on freeways but you have to drive it, on the on ramps don't leave it in "D" use the shift-tronic you'll enjoy the power and control it gives you. I'm a high mileage driver and enjoy the 30-31 mpg average I'm getting. Long rides avg 34+ mpg.




Ride and road noise!?

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Vehicle: 2009 Hyundai Elantra SE PZEV 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 4A)

After 3000 miles am very happy with SE Except for Ride (any bump is transmitted to my a..) and Road Noise (sound of tires against asphalt ((no concrete here)) very high on freeways and state/local roads.) Wonder if stock tires on alloy 16 rims to blame? Sidebar: I've been driving 50 years.




All in the family

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Vehicle: 2009 Hyundai Elantra SE PZEV 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 4A)

Great-fun vehicle to own. My sister owned a 2000 Hyundai Elantra Wagon, which was very impressive and had almost 200,000 miles when she replaced it with a 2007 Hyundai Elantra GLS. I was impressed with both, so I decided to get the 2009 model-with a sunroof, mudguards, heater seats, wheel-locks- had to spoil myself some! It drives great, took it on a few trips, Excellent gas mileage for sure, and a definitely nice vehicle for any lengthy trip!



Full 2009 Hyundai Elantra Review

What's New for 2009

The Hyundai Elantra gets enhanced suspension and steering tuning for 2009, along with new interior instrument and radio displays. A USB/iPod audio jack is now available.

Introduction

If you're reading this, that means you've stumbled upon the 2009 Hyundai Elantra. Good for you, because like Aladdin discovering the lamp inside that giant sand cavern, the Elantra represents a rewarding find among a variety of seemingly more tantalizing choices. Although compact sedans like the Honda Civic, Mazda 3 and Toyota Corolla get most of the attention from car buyers, the Elantra manages to match or even beat these little big boys at their own game, while featuring a lower price and a longer warranty. It's certainly a diamond in the rough.

For starters, the Elantra is the most spacious vehicle in the compact sedan class -- it's so big, in fact, that the EPA classifies it as a midsize. This can best be experienced in the backseat, where a high-mounted bench, generous foot room and ample head clearance make it an easy fit for full-size adults. The front seat also provides an impressive amount of space for taller drivers, given that competitors are often inhospitable for those north of 6 feet. The trunk and storage cubbies are also sizable.

On paper, the Elantra's engine is unremarkable. It's a 2.0-liter four-cylinder with 138 horsepower and a heavy iron block. In the real world, however, it's surprisingly responsive and fuel efficient, with only a somewhat agricultural engine note at high rpm being a distraction. Once under way, the Elantra continues to impress with a smooth ride and confidence-inspiring handling. As long as you opt for the Popular Equipment package, even the lower trim level GLS cossets its passengers with a generous amount of features and a handsome, well-built cabin. In short, this Hyundai feels much more expensive than it is.

Now in its third year, the current-generation Elantra carries over with only the addition of a new USB/iPod audio jack, redesigned gauges and radio displays and enhanced suspension and steering tuning (although we never really complained about either). All said, the 2009 Hyundai Elantra continues to be one of our top choices in the compact sedan category -- especially for buyers who prioritize space and comfort over a fun driving experience. If your priorities are reversed, you should check out the Mazda 3. And if you're somewhere in the middle, try the Honda Civic. But no matter where you think you may land, congrats once again for stumbling upon the Elantra. We can't promise a genie, but you should at least be pleasantly surprised.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2009 Hyundai Elantra is a small sedan available in GLS and SE trim levels. The base GLS is sparsely equipped with 15-inch steel wheels, full power accessories, keyless entry, a 60/40 split-folding rear seat and a tilt-only steering wheel. The Popular Equipment package adds air-conditioning, foglights, cruise control, illuminated vanity mirrors and a six-speaker stereo with a CD/MP3 player, USB/iPod audio jack, auxiliary audio jack and satellite radio. The SE adds that equipment, plus 16-inch alloy wheels, a telescoping steering column and a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls. The SE Premium package adds a sunroof (optional on GLS) and heated front seats. Leather upholstery can also be added to that package.

Powertrains and Performance

The front-wheel-drive Elantra is powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine good for 138 hp and 136 pound-feet of torque. Both trim levels can be equipped with either a five-speed manual or a four-speed automatic. In California-emissions states, automatic-equipped Elantras are certified as squeaky-clean Partial Zero Emissions Vehicles (PZEV) but are rated for 132 hp. In performance testing, an Elantra with the five-speed manual went from zero to 60 mph in a respectable 8.4 seconds. Fuel economy also is right up there with the class leaders at 25 mpg city/33 mpg highway and 28 mpg combined for an automatic-equipped Elantra. The manual transmission drops the city and combined numbers by 1 mpg.

Safety

Each Elantra comes standard with antilock disc brakes, active front head restraints, front side airbags and side curtain airbags. The Elantra SE adds stability and traction control and brake assist. In government crash testing, the 2009 Hyundai Elantra received five out of five stars for frontal protection and four stars for side protection. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety awarded the Elantra its top score of "Good" in its frontal offset test but the second-worst score of "Marginal" in the side test. Rear-seat side protection was rated as "Good," though it was "Poor" driver torso protection that resulted in the low overall score.

Interior Design and Special Features

As far as economy car interiors go, it doesn't get much nicer than the Hyundai Elantra. Sure, there are a few plastic bits, and the buttons are notably downgrade, but for the most part materials and build quality are impressive. For instance, the dash-top grain and cool blue lighting look like they could have been removed from an Acura. Indeed, the overall design is attractive and pleasing, looking as if it belongs in a much more expensive car. Your carpool buddies should be impressed. They'll also appreciate the Elantra's generous head-, shoulder-, hip- and legroom found in both the front and rear seats. Storage is also plentiful, with lots of cubbies and a 14-cubic-foot trunk.

Driving Impressions

The 2009 Hyundai Elantra only has 138 horses, but they're a hard-working bunch capable of getting this spacious sedan up to speed surprisingly well. They're also rather noisy, however, particularly above 3,500 rpm. More refined is the ride quality, which is smooth and stable, even at highway speeds. Wind and road noise are also negligible, making the Elantra one of the better choices in its class if you do a lot of highway driving. Although it's not especially fun to drive, the Elantra manages to hold tight through turns, offering plenty of grip and decent steering response.

Talk About The 2009 Elantra

Gas Mileage

EPA-Rated MPG

  • 25
  • cty
/
  • 33
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs