2004 Hyundai Elantra Review


Pros & Cons

  • Solidly built, powerful engine for its class, plenty of standard features, ultralow price tag, long warranty.
  • Poor offset crash test score, antilock brakes available only as a package option.
List Price Estimate
$970 - $2,169

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Edmunds' Expert Review

Between its low cost, solid performance, numerous features and long warranty, the Elantra presents one of the best values on the market in the economy class.

2004 Highlights

The Elantra received a slight refresh for this year in the form of a new hood, deck lid, front and rear bumpers, grille, headlamps and taillights. Interior revisions include a redesigned instrument cluster, vents, center console and climate controls. The engine has been fitted with continuously variable valve timing, and it is now sold in SULEV or ULEV configurations (depending on the state in which it's purchased) which offer horsepower ratings of 138 and 132, respectively. The base GLS model now offers remote keyless entry as standard equipment, while GT models now have a Kenwood CD/MP3 audio system as standard.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 2004 Hyundai Elantra.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

easily a 300k+ car
GLS 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)
I'm a mechanic, and i have had this car since 180k. the engine is solid, no internal leaks except the valve cover gasket. The transmission with proper or improper maintenance, can last about 250k with little to no problems. the engine has original head gasket, intake gasket, and exhaust gaskets. the only common problem that I've seen is that the rear engine mount has a tendency to tear, causing shuddering during acceleration. the electronics are solid, no computer failures and I have not needed to replace the starter or have any problems starting. the aptitude needed to operate things inside the car is very simple. it has comfortable air conditioning that can last a long time with proper maintenance. I have gone on long road trips in this car and you could be able to stay in the drivers seat for a little bit over an hour and a half. the interior has no tears, stains, or sun damage, a simple vacuum can be able to make the car look like brand new. the steering wheel has a tendency to fall apart at about 150k, but it still works! also, the visibility is great! I have minimal blind spots, and great visibility. The acceleration is pretty decent too. I can be able to get to 60 mph in under 10 seconds with excellent control. I have had it up to 110 and it is pretty stable at high speeds. This car is the best car that I've ever owned for it's low pricing, and I will be buying this car again once my current elantra runs into the ground. Update: now at 286k and still going strong! Update of an update: the car has kicked the bucket at 302k miles. Head gasket and piston rings were failing, and blue smoke was being emitted from the backside of the car. All in all, that car was one of the longest lasting cars that I’ve ever bought.
Hyundai Elantra
GLS 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 4A)
I was in an accident with my 2004 Hyundai Elantra and although it was totaled, there is nothing bad I can say about this car. The other guy ran a red light and I t-boned him at 60 mph. The airbag deployed and my seat belt did not break. This accident was three days ago and I'm just sore. No broken bones. I was at the emergency room for about 30 minutes and was told I was fine and could leave. My Hyundai Elantra saved my life and that is why I'm taking the time to write this review. I highly recommend this vehicle for its comfort, safety, size, and pretty much everything else about it.
Such a good car
GLS 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 4A)
I bought this car new back in college. 8 years and 100k miles later I'm finally about to give it up for something larger. The biggest repair I've ever had to do on this car is replace the battery. Other than that, every day this car has started right up and performed great. It's been all over the country and even got me through the mountains without a problem. I couldn't ask for better gas mileage out of a car with such good acceleration. I did install an aftermarket stereo a few years ago to support my Ipod but the factory stereo was fine besides that. It's going to be hard to say goodbye!
Best car I ever owned
GT 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl 4A)
I bought my Hyundai new in April 2004. I now have 123,000 miles on and could not be more pleased. Besides replacing tires and brakes( front rotors one time) the only repairs have been Timing belt, water pump, belts, tune-up with plugs & plug wires and front struts all done at 100,000 miles. Runs as good as new with very little rattle. I did replace the hatch lid struts 2 years ago.I average 24MPH in city driving, 32 on a trip. Love this car. I will run it till it dies. I traded my wife's 2006 Elantra GT in on a 2012 Santa Fe. Don't regret it a bit. Another great vehicle.


NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger4 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger4 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    Rollover4 / 5
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test

More about the 2004 Hyundai Elantra

Used 2004 Hyundai Elantra Overview

The Used 2004 Hyundai Elantra is offered in the following submodels: Elantra Hatchback, Elantra Sedan. Available styles include GLS 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 4A), GT 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 4A), GLS 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M), GT 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl 4A), GT 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl 5M), and GT 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M). Pre-owned Hyundai Elantra models are available with a 2.0 L-liter gas engine, with output up to 135 hp, depending on engine type. The Used 2004 Hyundai Elantra comes with front wheel drive. Available transmissions include: 4-speed automatic, 5-speed manual. The Used 2004 Hyundai Elantra comes with a 5 yr./ 60000 mi. basic warranty, a 5 yr./ unlimited mi. roadside warranty, and a 10 yr./ 100000 mi. powertrain warranty.

What's a good price on a Used 2004 Hyundai Elantra?

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Which used 2004 Hyundai Elantras are available in my area?

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Can't find a used 2004 Hyundai Elantras you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Hyundai Elantra for sale - 2 great deals out of 19 listings starting at $7,952.

Find a used Hyundai for sale - 9 great deals out of 13 listings starting at $18,922.

Find a used certified pre-owned Hyundai Elantra for sale - 5 great deals out of 22 listings starting at $21,135.

Find a used certified pre-owned Hyundai for sale - 10 great deals out of 10 listings starting at $21,586.

Should I lease or buy a 2004 Hyundai Elantra?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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