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Hyundai Elantra Owners: Meet the Members

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    bdwyer63bdwyer63 Member Posts: 2
    Hi all:

    I post this message with joy and guilt at the same time. My wife and I just purchased a jet black 2002 Elantra GLS loaded to the 9's for about $12,700. The only options that we didn't get were the spoiler and ABS. Beyond that it's got every toy and creature comfort you could want (AT, Keyless entry/alarm, AC, all power, moonroof, CD 6 speaker stereo, etc).

    This purchase started out as nothing more than a car "shopping" expedition where we would be comparing/test driving similar "economy" compacts for my son to have when he gets his license this fall. Our field was narrowed down to three, the Mazda Protege (which we did test drive), the Honda Civic and of course the Elantra.

    As mentioned we did test drive the Mazda and while it was pretty good, I didn't care for the stiff ride and even stiffer price. After our test drive in the Elantra however, we were both so impressed with it that the Honda got nothing more than a look at the sticker. That alone was enough for us to realize that we'd be wasting our time taking it out. Keep in mind too, that the Honda was even on the same lot as the Hyundai!

    I should take a step back and note that our other car is a 98 Chrysler Intrepid (Canadian car). We have always loved this car for it's ride and roominess and frankly never believed that we'd ever consider riding in something small again. What an utter shock we had when we took our "no-salesman present" test drive!

    I was so impressed with our drive, that not only did we decide to buy the Elantra right there and then, but further we decided that we would keep the Elantra as our car and give our 98 Intrepid to our son! Beyond the bargain basement price of this car with options in, I was FLOORED by the quality of the ride and handling!

    I didn't think it was possible that a compact car could have such a ride. We've had compact rentals recently while the Intrepid had been in for service (Saturn and Ford Focus to name two) and both had left shivers up my spine. If this little car can maintain it's reliability over the long term, I will truly become a Hyundai advocate. So now it's up to Hyundai to prove if they truly are a better company than they were in days gone by.

    I will post my own long term roadtest articles as time (and mileage go by). To start though I can tell you since I purchase my little E car last Thursday, I have put 400 miles on it. We took a trip from Bedford, NH to the White Mountain Region this past Saturday. The sun was out, the car drove, handled and road like a dream. Absoultely NO driver fatigue whatsoever on almost a 300 mile trip. I might add that I'm 6'1". That's all for now. I'm happy to join the club of the proud owners of a Hyundai Elantra.

    Oh yes...my son...well, he's started talking to me again and the reality that he'll have a nice car waiting for him has started to settle in. He's really happy about the $3000 stereo system I put in to it. He's still a little miffed about not having a new car. Geesh, spoiled kid! lol
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    lostlovelostlove Member Posts: 4
    Well I just traded in my black 1999 New Beetle for the 2002 Hyundai Elantra GLS. Mine is black with grey interior. I guess Package 3? It has cruise control, keyless entry, CD player, power windows and mirrors, etc. Lots of nice things. I just bought it last week and so far I've put 500 miles on the car (I commute a lot) and it's been running smooth with no problems. Looks pretty sleek. This is my first non-VW car so we'll see how the future with Hyundai is going to look. The car was great for the price range and seemed like it was nice in the test drive. Very smooth. Corners were a bit weird but overall it was good considering other cars of its class. Much nicer warranty than VW as well. Hopefully the future will be bright...
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    th003gth003g Member Posts: 149
    why did you trade in the beetle? and vw enthusiasts are gonna ask... FOR a HYUNDAI? hahaha we know y u chose hyundai
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    dmickdmick Member Posts: 28
    I just purchased an Ocean blue Elantra GLS with option 5 pkg ( abs and traction control).I'am very please with the car, but I'm disappointed in Hyundai for making me travel far to get the car I wanted. There were 3 dealers closer to my home and no one attempted to get me a car with the ABS brake pkg, except the one I did by from. There should be better availablility of the ABS pkg. since it's so hard to find. I think the car is a sleeper as far as quality and reliability, but time will tell. I plan on keeping this car for 8 or more years, based on my other car purchases.
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    jimbeaumijimbeaumi Member Posts: 620
    Don't blame Hyundai, blame the dealers. But you are correct, ABS should be available more. Is it still packaged such that you cannot buy it with CD/keyless/moonroof?
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    dominickc1dominickc1 Member Posts: 22
    Where did you buy your GT at in Colorado? I'm thinking of trading in my 01 GT for a 03 when it comes out. I had nothing but troubles with the engine like coming on every month. My 01 was a program car with 11,000 miles on it and thats why they trade it back to the dealership with such a low miles on it. I won't buy nothing from Phillong Hyundai dealership in the Springs, because they don't treat their customers right in the service dept.
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    jimbeaumijimbeaumi Member Posts: 620
    I answered my own question yesterday with a trip to the dealer. They had at least one '02 GLS with ABS and CD, keyless, etc.
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    mplsgrlmplsgrl Member Posts: 2
    I purchased my 2002 Elantra GT on October 1st and I am still taking the long way home, Treating her to 92O gas and a wash and wax whenever I think she needs it. (She loves the special attention my five year old pays to her wheels, his little fingers can get into the smallest nooks and crannies to get out stones and grit) I absolutely love this car. I just placed a little bit of heaven on my street.

    There is nothing else this luxurious under 15K or 20K for that matter.

    GET ONE!!!!!!!!!
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    nihao4587nihao4587 Member Posts: 43
    Just got the 02 GT after trading-in our 02 Civic. The exterior of the GT has nothing special, but its interior just won us all over. We love all the stuff that we might only get from luxury cars, and of course, the quiet and comfort ride makes the ride so much enjoyable. Good luck everyone and hope the GT can be this way for a long time.
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    clayman1000clayman1000 Member Posts: 69
    Just purchased a 03 Gt and am enjoying the heck out of it.
    Still a little tentative in the turns.
    Mostly quiet motor with grunt in second and third.
    takes some getting used to...
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    Karen_SKaren_S Member Posts: 5,092
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    renfrow1renfrow1 Member Posts: 7
    Hey all, I'm Dan...Just found this board today, and I'm so glad I did, I'm excited to be amongst such avid Hyundai fans...All three of my cars I've owned were Hyundai's...I started out with a 1988 Excel that ran like a caged animal at times, but got me from point A to B...I got rid of it after it blew a cylinder, but hey we all start somewhere right???

    Got a 1994 Excel Hatchback semi-new...It was in late 1994 that I bought it, and was a dealership demo car...A base model 5 speed that never gave me a single problem...I truly loved that car, and I regret trading it in two months ago, it still ran perfectly!!!

    I currently own a Carbon Blue Elantra GT with all the goodies...I'm having some early problems with it...Mostly the narl and rubber feeling when shifting into 2nd and 3rd gear, and the high rpm's...Other than that and the fact that a dark blue car is impossible to keep clean, I love the overall drive of it...I want to upgrade to a Tiburon really quick though, I love the new body on the 03's :)

    HAPPY DRIVING!!!

    DAN
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    johnbaxter1johnbaxter1 Member Posts: 12
    mpg has declined steadly from initial 24 overall
     to 17-18 overall.
     no inner city or heavy stop and go driving.
     mostly errands in suburban malls or occasional
     trips to visit friends-mostly using highways.
     service manager claims "nothing shows up on the
     OBD scans to indicate any engine diagnostic
     problem".In other words,this is the way it is
     and the Hyundai manufacturer is under no
     warranty obligation to go any further in terms
     of addressing poor gas mileage problems with
     the GT 2002.!Does any one have this problem too!
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    nfv343nfv343 Member Posts: 3
    Well, no one has posted here in awhile: I WANTED (and tried to bring home) a 2002 Elantra GT last year...my wife wouldn't have it (it was the Rally Red: she said it looked like a "midlife crisis car" [okay ~ I'm 45] and she called it "The Mistress"!). So I took it back and got an '01 Sonata GLS V-6...and it was a great car, one of the best I've ever driven...

    But every time I'd see an Elantra GT (which wasn't very often; they're still rare), my heart would skip a beat! So, after we refinanced our home, and my wife got her 2004 Toyota Sienna XLE, I came home with a much more "SENSIBLE" pewter/silver 2003 Elantra GT 5-speed/no options. At first I wanted the Cobalt Blue or Chianti Red, but the Silver has really grown on me; I've decided it's the most "traditionally sporty" color for this model (and who wants to try to keep those darker colors clean?!)

     Now I'm the one turning heads...

    I've put 1,700 miles on it, and so far not one single problem other than an occasional "quiet rattle" somewhere in back (hatchbacks, right?). Meanwhile, our $33,000 Sienna with 3,500 miles on it has had what Consumer Reports would call "6 sample defects, all minor," but all very irritating from a company that's supposed to be so great! One of those defects ~ a horn that wasn't working (fuse wasn't installed by dealer) could've been very dangerous. We had it in the dealership for it's first oil change this week, and they've started to address those problems, but one that they "fixed" (a rubbing/rattling sliding door) starting doing the same thing the next day...

    Hyundai is coming up in the world, and I'm glad to be part of "the flock."
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    backybacky Member Posts: 18,949
    Congratulations on your "sensible" GT purchase! Your story proves again the risks of buying one of the first units of a brand-new design to roll off the assembly line, even if it is a Toyota. I took that risk with my '01 Elantra GLS, buying one of the first 1000 units in the U.S., but I think they were being sold overseas before that. I've had very little trouble with my Elantra in almost 3 years (knock knock)--less trouble than I had with my previous car, a '97 Sentra. I went the sensible route too, a 5-speed with package 2, champagne, and I'm glad I got a lighter color as it hides dirt well. Pewter was my first choice, but they didn't have any pewter 5-speeds with package 2 back when I was shopping.
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    tmanttmant Member Posts: 70
    Good thing you got you GT. I've been wanting this car since last year and I knew I would not be happy if I did not get it. Wife looked at the GT sedan and I had to convince her the utility of the hatch was so much better!!!

    I have the carbon blue and boy its gonna be tough to keep it looking good. Good luck to me on that!

    The only thing bothering me a little is the shifting that occurs in 3rd and 4th like there is another half gear in between them.
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    ellandryellandry Member Posts: 66
    Hi guys I just bought my new Elantra GLS last week, 0.9% interest@ 60mo and $1500 for my trade, and this is my first Hyundai I have owned. My last car that I just traded in was a 1995 Mitsubishi Galant with 104,000 (with a broken A/C which makes that three since I owned the car LOL) that was a absolute nightmare. I am excited about my car but am getting kinda worried since I have only had it for a week and already had to take it to the dealer for them to order the "new" updated weatherstripping to fix the noise between 65mph and 80mph problem. Now the engine seems to be making little noises here and there they just seem to make me a little unsettled. Maybe Im being paranoid since this is my first "brand new" car in like 10 years. Hopefully you guys can give me some good advice.
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    bester1bester1 Member Posts: 22
    I felt the same way after buying a Korean car - Nervous. Anyway, 10 months and 9,000 miles later, I must say that it is a joy to dry and other than a few small annoying issues, it has been a pleasure.
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    jimbeaumijimbeaumi Member Posts: 620
    I will second the prior comments, as I was nervous and skeptical about buying Korean until I did alot of research. The Elantra sedan threads have lots of posts from folks (including me) who are very satisfied. I've passed two years and 35K and still love this car. Enjoy!
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    ellandryellandry Member Posts: 66
    Well I appreciate the reassurance :) Anyone have any tips for me and my new car? Is it ok to go and get oil changes at Wal-mart? Thx
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    ellandryellandry Member Posts: 66
    Also is using the stp octane boosters and stuff worth using also? I generally use the 87octane just to save money
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    backybacky Member Posts: 18,949
    If you want to throw money away, go right ahead and buy octane boosters. The Elantra runs fine on 87 octane without any boosters.
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    ellandryellandry Member Posts: 66
    How about Wal-mart oil chnages?
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    backybacky Member Posts: 18,949
    My Hyundai dealer charges a maximum of $25 for an oil/filter change, which includes a series of checks. Often I get coupons in the mail for 40-50% off. My Elantra gets 2 oil changes a year (about 8000 mi/year). On one of those oil changes each year, I have other service done, at minimum a tire rotation. I know they use the genuine Hyundai filter that meets warranty requirements.

    How much does Wal-mart charge for an oil change? Are you sure the filters they use meet Hyundai's warranty requirements? What if they don't, and you have an engine warranty claim down the road, and Hyundai doesn't honor it because you didn't use Hyundai-spec filters (worst case, yes, but it can happen)? What if someone at Wal-mart strips the oil pan threads (easy to do on the Elantra) so you need a new oil pan--but they don't tell you and you find out about it later? Will Wal-mart buy you a new oil pan?

    Personally, I'm a believer in minimizing risk and hassle if it is easy and cheap to do so. So that's why I always have a Hyundai dealer, the same dealer whenever possible, do oil changes and other mechanical service on my Elantra. I know then that there will never be any problem with Hyundai honoring its warranty, and if there is a problem like stripped threads, I know--and Hyundai knows--who is at fault. I pay a few bucks more per year, but I see it as a kind of insurance policy. IMHO.
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    ellandryellandry Member Posts: 66
    Guys how good are the tires that came with my car? Are they any good?
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    themanxthemanx Member Posts: 110
    I find the Michelin's that are on my new 03 GLS are fine. They are no race car tires, but for normal driving of a 4 banger, they handle ok and seem to be pretty quiet on the road.

    ElantraStan
    http://www.stanarseneaux.com/elantra/
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    jimbeaumijimbeaumi Member Posts: 620
    I liked the performance of the original equipment Michelins, however I was only able to get about 35K miles out of them. Perhaps I could have squeezed out a little more, but they were not holding well in the rain. I now have Dunlop.
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    tmanttmant Member Posts: 70
    I would be wary of Walmart doing the oil changes (or anyone for that matter) since most if not all manuals indicate the incorrect amount of oil to fill. My one experience with Walmart shows that they overfill. I had them do my windstar which takes 5 qts, they put 6.

    Stripping the oil pan might still be a problem as I have read before hear. I bought the Fumuto oil drain valve which makes it easy to drain the oil without worrying about stripped threads.

    Aside, from that, I don't think there is anything wrong with having someone other than the dealer do oil changes. The filters used and oil (hopefully both brand names) should not be an issue. Of course there are brands better than others. Even dealership folks can mess up your car.

    Tires have been good. I hear they don't last long and are very expensive to replace. I'm considering Falken Ziex for replacements, which is at least 30,000 miles away for me.
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    ellandryellandry Member Posts: 66
    ok guys anyone who has replaced their factory tires which brand did you choose, how are they working out and roughly how much did they cost?
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    gerlisgerlis Member Posts: 1
    Hello,
    just wanted to give a report, I purchased my 02 Gt in February from corp. Hyundai direct. Man I got a killer deal on a vehicle with 5k on it. I won't mention the price, I don't want to upset anyone. I was so worried about buying Korean, but did the research on groups like this and felt pretty good. Well better part of 8 months has gone by and I still love my car!! I definately will look at Hyundai before others now. I grew up in a Ford family, but will never won one again!
    anybody know what kind of light modifications that you can do that will not effect the warranty??
    thanks

    G
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    jimbeaumijimbeaumi Member Posts: 620
    Like tmant, I looked for the Falken (highly rated in CR), but the only dealer in my area according to the Falken website is Sears -- and Sears did not have the same model nor the same size. I decided on the Dunlops because they are rated comparably to the Michelin Energy tires, and far less expensive. I have had one warning about short Dunlop life, so I can't tell you for another 30K or 35K miles. The ride and handling are fine.
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    obsidianblackobsidianblack Member Posts: 35
    We just purchased our GLS exactly a month ago. We love it! Never thought I'd do it, but for the first time ever got one in black. It just looked more impressive than the other colors the dealer had on the lot.
      Any idea if either of the four cylinder engines is rated better than the other?
      Also, what car wax do any of you recommend? I'm thinking on using just plain old super hard Turtle Wax.
      Let me know your thoughts.
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    ellandryellandry Member Posts: 66
    I used NuFinish (solid orange bottle) it works well and doesnt allow bugs etc to stick so they eaily wipe off.

    I used to have a 95 Galant with a 2.4L engine before and wondered myself if I took a step down performance wise wince the 2003 GLS I have has a 2.0L from what the manual says.
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    obsidianblackobsidianblack Member Posts: 35
    We just purchased our GLS exactly a month ago. We love it! Never thought I'd do it, but for the first time ever got one in black. It just looked more impressive than the other colors the dealer had on the lot.
      Any idea if either of the four cylinder engines is rated better than the other?
      Also, what car wax do any of you recommend? I'm thinking on using just plain old super hard Turtle Wax.
      Let me know your thoughts.
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    jimbeaumijimbeaumi Member Posts: 620
    There is only one engine in this car. The '04s offer ULEV and SULEV variants.

    I use Zymol cleaner wax (available at Target, $12.99) on my '01 GLS, Champagne. I get very good results -- it even removed some light scratches resulting from a leaping dog. It is a light blue liquid. I extend the life of my wax between waxings by rinsing off dirt (no soap) at the local $2 manual spray wash.

    I envy you -- I miss having a black car. I chose Champagne because I wanted the lighter interior color. For '04 the grey is lighter.
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    obsidianblackobsidianblack Member Posts: 35
    Thanks for the info. Saw that wax @ Advance Auto Parts. Won't the cleaner in it sort of scratch the surface? It's why I chose the Turtle Wax. Maybe I'm wrong about the scratching, or too paranoid!
      Thought I saw in the owners manual something about two different engines in the '03's. I'll have to double check.
       So far, we love it! First "foreign" car we've owned, other than the beat up '88 Honda Accord I had a few years ago as a work car. It finally gave up the ghost after I sold it to my son's girlfriend. Think it had 230,000 miles on by then! Alot of car for not too much money!!
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    ellandryellandry Member Posts: 66
    go to walmart and get the NuFinish I mentioned, its a white liquid like suntan lotion, no scratching and is supposed to work for a year, cheap also.
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    backybacky Member Posts: 18,949
    I used to use NuFinish, and it probably lasted longer than any other wax (although it's not really wax) I've used, but it doesn't last a year--six months tops for me. Also I found it doesn't shine as well as some other waxes, which is why I stopped using it. Currently I am using Meguiar's Gold Class liquid, which gives a deep shine even on light colored paint (champagne) and lasts 3-4 months.
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    jimbeaumijimbeaumi Member Posts: 620
    The Zymol does a good job without scratching, which is why I like it so well. I have also used NuFinish and it works pretty well. I couldn't tell you how long the waxes remain effective because a) I will spend the winter without a carport for the first time in nine years, and b) I am one of those nuts who waxes a car several times in a year, whenever the desire strikes me.
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    ellandryellandry Member Posts: 66
    Guys tell me about the 03 Elantra GLS engine. I know its 2.0L right? my 95 Galant had a 2.4L 4 cyl but it sounded nothing like the Elantras engine. Having to get used to the very pronounced sound it makes.(I know I only have 1000+ miles on it so far so I guess I will get used to it. any comments?
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    obsidianblackobsidianblack Member Posts: 35
    We've got the Sulev engine in ours (jimbeaumi sez there's only one engine available in the '03's, but my owner's manual shows two). It was quiet to begin with,and after 2500 miles, seems to be even quieter! It's got enough pep in it for me. Gotta believe once it gets it's first oil change it'll be quieter still. I've had many four cylinder cars and really it's hard to compare one to another.
      Manual sez to avoid gas with ethanol. Anymore that's tough to do. There are a chain of stations around here called Speedway that people seem to think gives better gas mileage and it's gas doesn't have ethanol. Shell's supposed to be good, too. For as long as I've been driving and that's a long time I've used BP. Now people are telling me it's junk gas and I noticed it had ethanol in it, too! Aiyiyi! Anyone any thoughts on the gas situation?!
      By the way, waxed mine with the Turtle wax yesterday. Shines nice. Might just try the Zymol next time, tho. Very satisfied with the Turtle wax, tho.
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    jimbeaumijimbeaumi Member Posts: 620
    Jimbeau sez this because there was no information regarding two engines in 2003. People in this forum have been discussing it for some time and only 2004 models have been mentioned. It is very possible that they started using the engine very late in the 2003 model year, but no one here has mentioned seeing them on the lots either.
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    ellandryellandry Member Posts: 66
    how do I figure which engine my 03 has?
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    ellandryellandry Member Posts: 66
    I just went and look at my sticker and it just says 2.0L DOHC 16 Valve Engine. I know my cars build date is Oct 2002
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    backybacky Member Posts: 18,949
    This has been discussed in the main topic (Hyundai Elantra)--probably a better place for this discussion anyway. For '04, the Elantra engine is the Beta 2.0L engine with VVT in two variants: SULEV with 132 hp, and a ULEV version with 138 hp. Before that, from '99-'03 anyway, there was only one Elantra engine, the 2.0L Beta engine w/o VVT that was originally rated at 140 hp and then re-rated by Hyundai (oops) at 135 hp.
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    ellandryellandry Member Posts: 66
    I guess Im trying to see what I lostif anything going from the 95 Glanat to the 03 Elantra performance wise. Specs on the 95 Galant engine are:

    # Base Number of Cylinders: 4
    # Base Engine Size: 2.4 liters
    # Base Engine Type: Inline 4
    # Horsepower: 141 hp
    # Max Horsepower: 5500 rpm
    # Torque: 148 ft-lbs.
    # Max Torque: 3000 rpm
    # Drive Type: FWD

    I do remember that when driving the Galants engine seemed a lot quieter than the Elantra.
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    backybacky Member Posts: 18,949
    Isn't this a moot point now? You bought the Elantra, right? My advice is, enjoy it and stop the second-guessing.

    However, if you insist on comparing performance of the two cars, you need to use figures such as power-to-weight ratio that equalize the differences between the two cars.
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    ellandryellandry Member Posts: 66
    Yes I have purchased the car, i dont hate it just havent had a new car in a long time and never a Hyundai. My only reference point to compare is the last car I owned which was the 95 Galant. Im not complaining just want to make sure I don't judge the Hyundai unfairly. Understand what I mean?
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    ellandryellandry Member Posts: 66
    I cant believe it would be that easy to gain 5 HP

    http://webhome.idirect.com/~trini/car/freehp.html
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    obsidianblackobsidianblack Member Posts: 35
    Ellendry may well be right in what's being seen at the car lots, but may I refer to page 9-2 of the '03 Elantra owners manual. My manual was published Nov.12, 2002. It clearly states TWO different engines. Granted there's very little difference between the two, and by the sounds of it, we all have the Sulev engine. Must not be a clearcut answer here. Besides, as Backy pretty much said, we've got what we've got, enjoy it. And I do enjoy mine very much!! Tough to compare one manufacturers 4 cylinder with another's.
       What kind of gas mileage are all of you getting? The last I checked it was 30 mpg, combined city and highway. Since then I've switched from BP to Speedway(which might be owned by Marathon). I'll let you all know soon if it seems to have made a difference.
       Have noticed as a fellow worker who owns an '01 Elantra GT, the heater will cook you it's so warm, and the AC will freeze you it's so cold. I like both of those very much!!
      After one month's ownweship, I don't have a single complaint.
This discussion has been closed.