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Hyundai Elantra 2001-2006



  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    it's rude, crude and boring. The only good thing about it is that it's cheap to buy and fix. I do think that the basic lines (design, not substance) of the Cav are better than the Malibu and the Impala. As to GM, I generally prefer Olds model for model to Pontiac which looks like they were drawn by a 14 year old boy daydreaming in math class (think I stole that line from C&D's review of the Bonneville). Hopefully Pontiac will deep-six the cladding--looks like they're trying to do that in 02.

    I think the Elantra is larger in almost every dimension to the N-body GM cars with the exception of trunk. At 94 cubic feet of passenger space it (and the Focus) are right up there with larger size vehicles. That's why the Focus replaced both the Escort and Contour.
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    the Elantra is very close in handling, but probably not quite as good. I compared the Pro5 to the GLS. I would think that the GT Elantra might be right up there. When my Michelins are worn down I'll probably replace with Yokahamas. I would think any Focus advantage would largely be with tire aspect ratios and more aggressive tread design. I did find the Elantra more comfortable.

    The Focus and Mazda were close to the Elantra in engine response but the extra horsepower is noticable in the Elantra.

    If all three cars cost exactly the same it would be almost a push. I think price considerations give the advantage to the Elantra.
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    Elantra, Focus, Alero

    Front headroom 39.6,39.3, 38.4
    Rear headroom 38, 38.5, 37
    Front shoulder 54.7,53.7,53.6
    Rear shoulder 53.5,53.7, 52.6
    Front hip 53,49.4, 50.9
    Rear hip 55.6, 49.5, 51.5
    Front leg 43.2,43.1, 42.2
    Rear leg 35, 37.6, 35.5
    Luggage 11, 12.9, 14.6

    I would say that the Alero comes up third in most of the meaningful comparison EXCEPT for cargo. I think that subjectively it could be called prettier, however.
  • jpelderjpelder Posts: 235
    I sense a little Stuart Smalley here...
  • jpelderjpelder Posts: 235
    How did I misunderstand?

    "The Cav. is actually one of the best GM cars in my opinion, if you're restricting yourself to styling. "
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,934
    Note the title of this forum: Hyundai Elantra. So yes, Elantra owners congregate at this board to talk about how wonderful we think our cars are, and also about our wishes and gripes. If people want to beat up on the Elantra, there are other boards expressly for that purpose, e.g. the Honda Civic vs. Hyundai Elantra board and the Low-End Cars board (one of my favorites because we can talk about lots of cars).

    Re the Protege and Focus: I agree that the Protege handles better, but the tradeoff is a harsh ride. I recently read a thread on the Protege board about a poor guy in Chicago who bought a Pro ES and just loved it--until the jarring ride aggravated an old neck injury. I've rented many Pros in Chicago and that's what took it off my list. The Focus may handle a little better than the Elantra (the GLS anyway, not sure about the GT) but there was no way I would buy a Focus in the fall of 2000 with all its recalls and quality issues, not after all the problems I had with my new '95 Mystique (but it had great ride and handling). I bought the Elantra because of its smooth ride, roomy interior, performance, driver's seat comfort, styling, features, warranty, and value--under $12,000 nicely equipped. I'm amazed if you could buy an Alero for that, especially since it will soon be a collector's item with the death of Oldsmobile.
  • th003gth003g Posts: 149
    I just got back from picking up mom's new Elantra GLS to go along with my GT. Having driven the Pro 5 and having a sister who works at a Ford dealership, I have the following opinions. Equip the GT with a strut tower bar and lower profile 50 series tires and it would handle on par with the Pro/5 let alone out accelerate the poor Mazda. GT's tires at 60 series are just too tall plain and simple, they roll easily in fast cornering which I like to do in my GT. The GT is a bigger car (longer by 7 inches and more room in almost every dimension). The focus ZX5 equipped anywhere near the GT will cost more than a Pro5 let alone my GT. IMHO the focus is butt ugly, especially in the interior. Ford has got to do something with their design team... maybe keep them sober or get real world focus groups. Again this is my Opinion
  • buoyantbuoyant Posts: 128
    It appears the firestarters have finally entered the room (it's always just a matter of time). Unfortunately, a select group of individuals derives pleasure in upsetting others and now they moved from the freeway (I usually get stuck behind them while they've buried their heads in the clouds while cruising at 63mph in the passing lane) to this board.

    If you don't like the Elantra, that is fine. Odds are I think the model you are driving is about as appealing as clothing from a J.C. Penney clearance rack. But this board probably isn't the best place to come and talk about how much you dislike the Elantra (PARTICULARLY if you neither own one or wouldn't consider owning one). I don't like the Focus, but you won't see me posting my dissent on the Focus board.

    It's great (or is it?) that everyone seems to have an opinion on everything, but it's rather annoying that some feel the necessity to share their opinions with EVERYONE (as though everyone else was actually interested). If scientists can ever single out the gene that causes this unrestrained vocal behavior, I'd be in support of genetic engineering.

    Let me reiterate: this is the Elantra board. It is not the Alero board, neither is it the Protege board. If you think the Alero is the best thing since sliced bread (you own one) and want to discuss how much you prefer it over the competitions' offerings, your comments belong on the Alero board, not here.

    When I last drove an Alero, I thought it was a pretty nice car for being an automatic. But I did not care for the looks AT ALL. An Intrigue the Alero is not. Yet, I feel no compelling reason to share this opinion with the Alero board. I guess I feel most people who like the Alero could really give a d--- how I "feel" about their car. And I don't post for the sake of posting.

    I am not here to reassure myself. I drove nearly 20 different models before settling on the Elantra, and found it the best car for ME.

    By all means, I encourage everyone to drive all the cars in their price range, because you might be surprised what you discover. God knows I was.

    Vocus is right, handling and sportiness are not the Hyundai's forte. But Hyundai has never peddled the Elantra as a sports car. If someone told you it was, they were being deceitful.

    Likewise, if you place aesthetic importance on mock-stainless steel trim, dapper upholstery and pumpkin colored dash lighting, the Elantra is not your ride.

    Personally, I bought my Elantra because I wanted more driver involvement, and the stick in the Elantra was better than every other model I tested (the 5-spd Nissans were so unpleasant to drive, it's almost beyond description). This came as a complete surprise to me.

    I considered (STRONGLY considered) a Pro 5 because of Mazda's college grad program, but was turned off by how loud it ran on the highway (try driving 85mph across Montana on the Interstate in one of those babies and you'd be screaming for mercy after a couple hours - and you'd probably be deaf too). I'd love to have a car that handled like a BMW (actually, I'd love to have a BMW), but not if driving it over 70 made hearing the stereo clearly an impossibility (BTW, the stock stereo in the Protege could double as a boat anchor - it's just that good ;) ).

    The Elantra is primarily about value, but that wasn't the actual sell for me. I wanted a stick, and the one in the Elantra had the best action. I also do a lot of Interstate driving (no corkscrew turns) and quietness at the higher end is a must. Interestingly, the Elantra excelled at both these criteria despite costing far less than some of the other cars I was considering.

    Plus, I love the outside looks. And the lower beltline means I don't have to put up with that "sitting in a bathtub" feeling I got from a lot of the other small cars I tested - something I hate (especially when doing rapid manuevers in heavy traffic).

    Quality? I kept coming back to this issue again and again, but with the warranty, I feel somewhat reassured.

    One thing I CAN tell you after delivering cars part-time for a local Ford dealer: the Focus is NOT as well-built as the Elantra is (and I won't even bring up any of the recalls on it).

    One of the new Foci I drove was so poorly put together that you could see the painted sheet metal (a good 3/4" inch of it) in the passenger footwell because the carpeting was not cut properly. The person riding with me was in similar disbelief that it could have left the factory that way.

    So, it bests the Ford on the quality front IMO and if "Quality is Job 1" at Ford, the Hyundai must be the automotive equivalent of a fine Swiss timepiece.

    Lastly, I would strongly encourage anyone considering a stick shift to at least drive an Elantra. I was more than happy to exchange a little handling in return for a much more pleasant and driveable manual transaxle. It is the BEST manual I've ever driven (and I've driven a lot of them). Try it and you may be pleasantly surprised. I sure was.
  • All i gotta say is wow . that was very well put and almost .... wait a minute. Do you write for a living ???? because i gotta say that was way well put .. covered most the base's and Damn straight forward .

    Sure i drive a hyundai ( my second i might add) and i am a bit parcial. But i think the elantra is a great car for the money . Sure there are alot of better cars out there but i think if hyundai buyers are one of two things . They are either way cheap or out to find the best value for there money .

    I purchased a GT so i guess i am best value type (god did that sound way cheesy) . For what it cost and what it has as standard options i don't think there is a better value out there . I think gls buyers are also looking for the best value they also come with nice standard features. hmmmm maybe hyundai buyers aren't so cheap after all ???
  • jpelderjpelder Posts: 235
    I doubt Bouyant writes for a living, since nobody would regularly read someone who so strongly discourages input from others.

    What is clear is a hypersensitivity and intolerance for dissenting opinions. Nobody is deriving pleasure is upsetting others...were others even upset? This conversation was rather uncharted and evolved freely.

    By the way, I am not a cheerleader for the Focus, but if you are open-mined this will interest you. The carpet for the Focus is cut with a computer-controlled high pressure water jet. In fact, the company that does it also does it for several import companies. (I know this because I tried to sell them the glue to adhere it to the floor.) There is little if any human error possible. However, other things happen to the car along the way, so I do not question your experience.

    Don't be so defensive and intolerant when others express opinions that differ from'll go further in life.
  • justinjustin Posts: 1,918
    I would never take a chance and put Mom in a Ford Focus. I love my mother. :) She drives too much to be constantly worrying about recalls the like.

    The Protege is nice. She has actually always liked Mazdas for small cars. And, as far as I know, the Mazda is not even close to a Focus. The Mazda is actually made in Japan I believe. We will be looking at that, since the Protege is so roomy inside.

    The Elantra is a car that, on paper anyway, seems safe, powerful, content-rich, and backed by a good warranty. For cars in the $14k range, what else can you ask for? The fact that the Elantra does not look as boring as the others, but not too strange either, is just a plus.
  • What is the "TPS" ? What does it do ? Why should I ask for this to be replaced vs re-programing the on-board processor. I am scheduled for service next Fri and I could raise this issue but I would like to be a litte more infommed. Thanks.
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    If I were you, I would compare the Protege and Elantra together. The Elantra is definitely lower priced, has more safety stuff standard/available (has available traction control, and Protege does not), and some luxury features not available on Protege. Some people have this "thing" that they won't buy a Hyundai because of their earlier record, but they have improved a LOT and offer alot of value and features for the money.\

    You could also go to and do a search for all cars in a certain size/price range. That might help you as well, to see them side by side in a comparison.
  • I really think you need to reread what was said . The point trying to be made was that this is a board talking about the elantra . NOT a board just to bash the car . What is wrong with that ? And yes alot of people in this world say things JUST to argue and no other reason . Many talk before they know what they are talking about . I don't see where bouyant was discouraging anybody from commenting . I think the point was to make a comment but not just for bashing sake. Lets face it there isn't a new car on the market that is 100% trouble free . THEY ALL have there little problems and some have few if any . It is the roll of the dice . Let people bash Hyundai all they want . Say it is crap and they would never buy them and the quality is no good . This will keep the price down so it doesn't do what Toyota Honda and Datsun did , sky rocket in price . But thats not the point of this blurb . The point is this is a board to TALK about elantra, NOT to just come and FAME...
  • It sends a signal to the engine controller letting it know whether the car is at idle, wide open throttle (WOT), or somewhere in between.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    This board is for discussing the Elantra. Some comparisons are inevitable and welcomed, but extended discussion about the merits of one vehicle vs. another belong on our Comparisons - Sedans vs. Sedans board. If a suitable discussion does not already exist, anyone is free to create a new one.

    It really isn't necessary for anyone to repeatedly bash a vehicle in that vehicle's dedicated discussion. Everyone's opinion is welcome, of course, but once you've made your point and you've made it clear you are not interested in this vehicle, it probably is time to move on to other discussions.


    Sedans Message Board
  • jpelderjpelder Posts: 235
    I agree this is a room to talk about the Hyundai. This portion of the discussion started by my asking about a redesign of the Elantra and, yes, looks.

    I realize this is not totally directed at my comments, but also to others who mentioned the protege and the focus. However, it seems silly to rant and rave that those with different opinions should not share them. Especially when you label the the limited elantra criticisms as "unrestrained", and take 18 paragraphs to vent.

    Not forum should permit pure bashing. However, you can look into every other car forum here and find pro and con opinions...usually without inflamatory remarks.

    It's fine it Bouyant does not want mention his criticisms of the Focus in the Focus forum. However, that should not make it a rule for everyone else. In fact, I think it would be helpful to mention them...especially the part about the carpet situation he (I'm assuming bouyant is male) encountered in the Focus.

    By the way, I agree about the roll of the dice thing. Let's face it, we all usually only own one of a particular model at a time. Whatever your experience, you'll swear on a stack of bibles! To boot, everyone has different standards. Some get bent out of shape if they have to realign the car. Others, like my dad who had a maverick for 14 years, judge it like this...every day I put the key in and it starts.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Buoyant doesn't make the rules here; the Town Hall Membership Agreement governs us all. And it does require that topical discussions remain on topic. Did you read pat Jan 11, 2002 10:35am?

    You have made your opinion of this vehicle clear. There are more appropriate places in the Town Hall for you to continue your line of posts. This is not the right place. If you or anyone else needs clarification, please feel free to email me.

    Now with that, let's everyone get back to discussing the Elantra and stop talking about each other.

    Thank you.

    Sedans Message Board
  • dmarzo1dmarzo1 Posts: 37
    Before I return to singing the praises of my new Elantra GT, I thought I would chip in a kind word (for what its worth) for jpelder. John provided me some very helpful comments on another board and I really appreciated it.

    Back to the Hyundai: One month ago, I never would have dreamed of owning a Hyundai. But after a few weeks of research (Thank you and some test drives, I have become a convert. Though, long term reliability concerns still tug at me, I think the car is just a super value. I am not turning to these boards for affirmation or as a way to justify my purchase. Just enjoy the good discussion. Thanks to the participants and moderators for keeping the info flowing.

  • hyundaimahyundaima Posts: 197
    TPS measures the opening angle of the throttle valve. Ignition timing and injection time are based on input from this sensor and others. Faulty TPS can give you higher than normal idle rpm since its signal is used to determine whether the throttle valve is closed.
  • mike91326mike91326 SoCalPosts: 251
    Today one of my office mate's 17-year-old son stopped by our office with his 2002 Elantra GLS. He has the 5-speed with package 3. In the two months that he has owned the car he has made a few "improvements" which include:

    1) Added a 200-watt amp to the existing factory radio/CD and speakers.
    2) Changed out the exhaust system.
    3) Installed 17" wheels and 50 series low profile tires.
    4) Installed new heavy duty shocks/struts all around, and
    5) Installed Piia driving lights in the opening with the black vents.

    He said his cost has been about $1,000, net of what he received for the original new tires.

    He took us for a ride and all I can say is it is amazing what a few changes can do to improve an already great car. First, the amp makes a world of difference with the stock audio system. I could not believe I was listening to the factory unit. Well, if the audio was good, what came next was even better. He started up the car and we were off for a little ride. His Elantra was a little louder than mine, but not a lot. When he punched it I could not believe how quick the car was. There is quite a difference between his and mine. But, it was the handling and cornering that blew me away. He took a right turn at 40 MPH and there was no tire squeal or rear end fishtailing. It was just, one second we were going north and then the next we were going east. The ride was noticeably firmer than my car but it was not punishing. BTW, he said that the dealer told him that his full warranty is still in effect. In the next month or two he plans to replace his ECU with a high performance unit which he said would increase his HP to about 175.

    I wonder? If a 17-year-old can do this for between $1,000 and $1,500, why can't Hyundai do it? Well, time for me to go find my checkbook.
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    but would like Hyundai to offer performance improvements, it would show what a good platform this car really is. If Mazda, Mitsu, Subaru and Nissan can get into high performance on their platforms so should Hyundai.
  • mpgmanmpgman Posts: 723
    Personally, this is one of the things that sold me. Try parking new cars with painted bumpers and no side protection moldings for a while whether parallel or in parking lots. Then see how dinged up and scuffed you get in no time. The black inserts protrude just enough to prevent those little scuffs and dings. Painted bumpers may look great in a showroom but they are just plain dumb if you park anywhere but in your own private garage.
  • Mike:

    Can you find out what kind of amp (manufacturer) your 17 year old put in the car, also the tires he replaced the originals with. Also would like to know where he is going to get the ECU to bump up the hp.

    Thanks for your help.

  • mike91326mike91326 SoCalPosts: 251

    I believe the amp is by Kenwood. It is also an equalizer and fits into the space below the factory radio. He will get the ECU from As far as the tires, I think they are Goodyears' but I will have to ask my friend on Monday.
  • According to the pump, I just put 14.4 gallons of gas in my 2001 Elantra. Since I only went 391 miles and I usually get 33 mpg do you think the pump was out of calibration? Shouldn't my low gas alarm been on?
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    I'd consider 27+ pretty good for mixed driving. Mine recently went down from 27+ to about 24. Depending on your climate things should improve in the spring.
  • lokannalokanna Posts: 22
    I've been lurking on these boards for about 4 months or so now, and just want to say I will soon be joining as a "Hyundai Owner". If everything goes as planned, by this time next month I will have my first "new" car, a GLS automatic w/ package 3.

    I have a couple questions for anyone who's driven this car and a Toyota Corolla (2001 at least). My fiancee has a 2001 Corolla and while I enjoy the car immensly (to compare, I have an old 90 Pontiac Bonneville, on it's last legs mind you.), it's too small for my 6'1" frame (slightly ... husky ;D). A couple questions though: Does the Elantra Auto have the same "get up and go" as the Corolla Automatic? I'm not sure how it's laid out in the engine specs (acceleration = raw horsepower?), but the Corolla can get off the line if pushed. When I test drove the Elantra, it seemed to kind of "glide" up into the gears. I know this car has fuzzy logic, is that what I'm feeling?

    Also, does the Elanra's A/C and heater get cold/hot quickly?

    Almost finished... =D The Hyundai dealership I'm currently talking to has GLS w/ package 3 at about $15,500 (give or take). From what Edmunds tells me, I shouldn't be paying more than $13,800. That's nearly $1800 difference. I know the car buying process gives leeway, but that much? This is my first car buying experience for me, so pleaes, offer tips :D

    And finally, I mentioned the fact that the Corolla has a small profile for me, how does the Elantra suit your needs?

    Sorry to ask for the direct comparison, but it's what I have for "real world" testing at my disposal. While I like the Toyota, I feel the Elantra is a much better car for the money, and seeing as how that's an issue, I can't find a better deal.

    Thanks in advance for any help!

    PS. Gas milage can also vary when you idle in the car. I know in Illinois where my dad lives (and I used to, now in FL), he would let the car "heat up" and I assume that would effect gas milage. Just something to think about when factoring that in.
  • dmarzo1dmarzo1 Posts: 37

    Welcome to the club (well almost)...

    Just a few comments--not so much on the Corolla/Elantra comparison but on the car buying process for an Elantra.

    First, take a look at the GT hatchback. You at least owe it to yourself to compare the GLS and GT so you can get a feel for the difference. I recently bought a GT and am amazed at the value--it is a wonderful car (well so far anyway)By the way, I am 6 foot and feel quite comfortable in it.

    As for negotiations, knowledge of the going market price is your best ally. Secondly, never be in a hurry to purchase. Try a few dealers until you feel comfortable with one. Third, try not to complicate the deal with a trade-in--it screws up the numbers if you ask me.

    Anyway, when I bought my GT, the dealership had had one on the showroom floor and they listed it for over 18K! This price included over a thousand dollar dealer markup over MSRP. I bought a car similar to the one on the floor for $14,600, basically a $3400 gap between their price and what I ended up with. This is not to trump up my negotiating skills because my skills are weak. Instead, I go in with a spreadsheet and I itemize what I am willing to pay. I hand the sheet to the salesman and say if you can do this, you have a deal. The thing is for you to build up the numbers and not let them play games with you. At the same time, don't get caught up in nickels and dimes. Sometimes, it is worth paying $300 more to buy a car from a neighborhood dealer as opposed to one 45 miles away.

    If you want, I will be happy to do up a small spreadsheet which you can print and hand to the salesperson. I can build it up with Florida taxes and such. I would usually start out at about $400 below TMV and see what happens. I am pretty sure Hyundai has some secret factory to dealer incentives going on right now because they seem willing to deal so I am sure you can get a great deal(someone else mentioned this in an earlier post)

    The last few cars I have purchased have been a lot of fun because I have had a ton of info provided in forums such as these--it really puts you in control. Thanks

    Good luck

    Dave M
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,934
    I own a '01 GLS but have driven many current-generation Corolla automatics (not the '03 yet of course). Mine is a 5-speed but I have spent several days driving Elantra automatics. My impression is that the GLS automatic is every bit as peppy as the Corolla. The Corolla may have a bit quicker initial launch, at least it feels like it, but the Elantra has longer legs, e.g. it will go 80 without even breathing hard. Best way to check this is to do back-to-back test drives of the two cars, if possible. The Elantra autoshifter does have "fuzzy logic", so it will adapt to your driving habits. But this takes a while. So if you have driven the Elantra only for a test drive, it probably did not have time to adapt to you.

    The Elantra has the best heater and A/C of any car I have owned. Period. And that's over a dozen cars over 25 years. The heater warms up after driving one mile in zero (F) weather. And the A/C blows cooold. This summer, I drove in several 90+ degree days and had to turn the fan down to its lowest setting to maintain a comfortable temperature.

    Dmarzo1 had great advice on the buying process. What I would do is find the invoice price for the car you want to buy (e.g. using's data), check for any rebates on the car (again has that info), and offer the dealer invoice price less any rebate. This still allows them the dealer holdback (or whatever is left of it, it declines over time) as profit. I would only do this if you were ready to buy the car then and there. They will likely protest mightily at that price, but the idea is to start low and go up only if you have to (just as their strategy is to start high). If the car has been sitting for awhile and there is no holdback left, then you may have to up your offer a bit--but then, the dealer may be anxious to get rid of the car too.

    One other thing... be sure to drive the car you are buying before signing the final papers and "taking delivery". This is because you have no leverage once you have bought the car. (Of course the dealer should want you to be a happy customer and give you good service after the sale, but they will be eager to fix things if they know the sale depends on it.) Many Elantras, at least the '01 models, had a tire wobble problem (mine didn't). This is one problem that you can eliminate easily with a thorough test drive, including at highway speeds. You can also check for any other obvious problems and have them taken care of before delivery. Be sure to make a thorough inspection of the exterior and interior too--parking-lot scratches etc.
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