I purchased my Hyundaia Elantra Touring new in April of 2011, and am desperately hunting for a new car in Sept. 2017. This car only has 60,000 miles on it and has been a money pit from the get go. It has ALWAYS had issues with the sway bar and sway bar links. At LEAST once a year we're having to replace them, which is absurd. The car also sounds like it's developing issues with the transmission, as it gets jerky switching between 2nd and 3rd gear. This car only has 60,000 miles on it, which is hardly anything. I like the size of this car, and the gas mileage is pretty decent (around 30 mpg), but the amount of money we've had to sink into this car has been awful. I would have assumed we just received a bum car, but my in-laws also purchased the same car about 3 months after we purchased ours, and they dumped it after 18 months as it was also consistently breaking down and needing repair. I'm not sure how this car has received such high reviews. I will be glad when we can get a new one. This has left a poor impression of Hyundai on me, and I'll be going back to Hondas from now on.
This was initially a European product that Hyundai imported to North America for 2 or 3 years. Even though some publications have said this is a worse-than-average vehicle for frequency of repairs, my experience is that the 2011 version has been highly reliable. The recalls were for minor problems that local dealers straightened out in an hour or less each trip in. My only issue areas are the seat comfort for longer trips and the amount of road noise that gets into the cabin. On the other hand, the 5-speed manual is very pliant and well-synchronized going both up and down. The car has never let me down.
I bought this car as my family was expanding and wanted something practical but still fun to drive with decent looks. I have not been disappointed.
For me the 5spd manual transmission is a must, I have gone one some long extended road trips - 20 hours in a single day and the bullet proof engine just keeps on going. I'm 115,000 miles (185,000km) in with no problems. I just keep up my maintenance, oil changes and changed my timing belt (400$) and the car has treated me well.
The space with the seats folded flat is incredible - I have carried tables, lounge chairs and everything in-between.
I bought this car when it was 33 months old with 31K miles from a Honda dealer. After a year I can say I'm quite happy with the car. Sporty handling and a decent combo of power and economy. I'm a DIYer so I was happy to see oil & filter changes are a breeze. Engine uses no oil between oil changes. The hatchback practicality is great. A golf club bag fits neatly across the back. I had narrowed my decision down to this car or a Toyota Matrix. I'm happy with my selection. I average over 30 mpg in mixed driving and about 34 highway mpg
handling, fuel economy, reliability
leather front seats need more padding, performance would be better with a 5 speed auto transmission
'Does everything very well; truly great in several areas: driver/passenger comfort & cargo space w/compact exterior size, both low and hi-speed handling, ease of parking and maneuvering in heavy-traffic, braking distance, driver-visibility, fun-factor & winter-weather driveability (with 5-speed manual tranny), reliability, ease of service, and a long list of standard features. All that and an expectation of good long-term reliability for 19G including tax and title? I'm pretty happy.
UPDATE: In February 2015, I rear-ended an SUV that had suddenly stopped on a merge ramp. 'Totalled my poor baby, but it protected me. No incursion of damage into the passenger compartment. I'm very, very sorry to see this car go bye-bye; it was terrific.