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Hyundai Elantra 5-door

isn't showing the first post in any topic. Can you repeat what you said? A 5-door Elantra, isn't that the wagon? Are they offering the wagon at all in the 2001 year? I haven't seen any at dealers or on the road, just the 4-door sedan with the XG300-style grille and large taillamps.


  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Posts: 2,228
    A 5-door hatchback Elantra will be offered sometime in spring 2001. It will be taking the place of the old wagon model. It is supposed to be touted as more of a sporty model, with standard alloy wheels, fog lamps, 4 wheel disc brakes, and spoiler. I think it looks very good, much sportier than the sedan and with greater cargo space to boot. It should be a great addition to Hyundai's expanding lineup.
  • otis12otis12 Posts: 171
    Nothing from the LA Auto show on Edmunds site? Will it be unveiled at the Detroit auto show? Any photos at any websites?
  • The car makes its North American debut in Detroit next week. You can see pictures at, and, as it seems to be for sale in Europe and Australia. The specs look nice: rear discs with ABS, upgraded suspension and interior (you can get leather in Europe but I doubt we'll have that option). I'm thinking about buying a Golf, but I must admit this car looks enticing.
  • otis12otis12 Posts: 171
    I agree with you, the Elantra looks great and offers an alternative to the Golf. I know the Kia Spectra is available as well, but I admit that I have concerns about its quality.
  • I've been looking at small cars and I find it interesting that people are saying they're concerned about Kia's quality, but not Hyundai's Hyundai has owned Kia for quite some time now and it was Kia that had better quality than Hyundai... but that's not saying much. I see people saying the '01 and '00 Hyundai are doing ok, but Consumers is full of black circles for Hyundai and Kia. Frankly, from what I've seen they're both still pretty much behind in the quality realm and not worth spending hard earned money on.
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Posts: 2,228
    And from what are you determining that Kia had better quality than Hyundai?? The reason people have had more reservations about Kia is because they have had terrible reported quality from 97-99. Hyundai, in this same time frame, had average if not above average quality and much fewer reported problems. Go look at the NHTSA website and look at the number of recalls and complaints on Kia versus Hyundai and you will see what I am talking about. When Kia switched to its own design on the Sephia in 98, many teething problems occured, including poor quality control of outsourced parts like the disc brakes. Hyundai did not have those problems as their cars were already at least half-way through their production cycle and had the bugs worked out already. As far as Hyundai owning Kia, that has only been in effect for roughly 1 year, not a very long time to implement big changes. Lastly, Consumer Reports is the biggest load of crap I have ever seen in a magazine. I find it so funny how much stock people put into that publication when it is backed by simple journalists, not knowledgable car people. Do you realize that their ratings scale is based on a very small sample of roughly 30,000 people?? Gee, how accurate could that possibly be seeing as Hyundai sold over 200,000 cars in 1999. Their also heavily biased based on who gives them the biggest money. Not to mention, I have never actually seen a bunch of black circles as you stated. All the articles I have seen says "insuffient data to determine reliability", meaning not enough people responded to the polls to rate it. The only black circles I have seen refers to expected depreciation, which is a given.
    At any rate, I have to disagree with your assessment of Hyundai. They have caught up to the competition in terms of initial quality and their reliability in the long run is also comparable. I chose Hyundai over Kia because of how much more solid and refined they felt. My 2000 Hyundai Accent was rated higher in JD Power's intial quality survey than many well known cars, such as the Toyota Celica and Subaru Legacy (it was rated in the middle of 200 possible places). The Kia Sportage has been rated dead last 2 years in a row, with the Sephia barely any higher. That is why people are more afraid of Kia than Hyundai and they have good reason to be. However, Kia is making improvements now that Hyundai has taken over. I have had no problems with my car in 11K hard driven miles, which included at least 3 jaunts to over 100mph (my sister's 2000 Honda Odyssey has had over 20 visits to the dealer in the same mileage with numerous failures of important parts). I'm very satisfied with my Hyundai, enough so that I plan on being a return customer. I paid more for my car than I should have and yet I feel like my hard-earned money was well spent. The Accent is solid, refined, and built just as well as any Japanese car. I suggest you actually go test-drive one before claiming they are behind the competition.
  • otis12otis12 Posts: 171
    Consumer Reports accepts no advertising and they buy the cars they test, they do not accept test vehicles assigned to automotive journalists from the manufacturers. So I put great credence in their reviews. Now, your points about Hyundai buying Kia about 1 year ago are correct...the Sephia/Spectra predates Hyundai's takeover of Kia and that is why I have concerns about quality. However, your defense of Hyundai is a bit overdone, lngtonge18. Sometimes you sound like a shill for Hyundai. Personally, I am not a "Hyundai man" or a "Pontiac man." I'll buy what product on the market at the time meets my needs.
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Posts: 2,228
    I will have to look closer to see if they really do buy the cars they test, but honestly, I don't see why they would buy every car they test. It wouldn't make economic sense and would cost them a whole lot of money to do so. I think they get the cars from the manufacturer or the dealer. Anyway, lets say they do buy them, that is only for initial testing purposes, not to long-term test the car. They derive their reliability grading scales from a survey of owners. When it comes to Daewoo, Hyundai, and Kia, those cars aren't rated at all because there is "insufficient data to rate", in other words too few people responded to the poll to properly rate the car. So I was simply stating that it was wrong to say they rated the cars with all black circles, when the cars haven't even been rated except for depreciation and initial tests. I find their initial tests to be overly opinionated based on their distaste for anything that doesn't carry a well-known Japanese brand name on it. At least car magazines back up their opinions more logically.
    Secondly, you can think what you like about my defense of Hyundai, but you couldn't be further from the truth. I am much more educated in this topic than the average jo person. I have been studying cars, all cars, since 1992. I read everything I can about every single one. I am not a "Hyundai man" either. I would buy whatever car I think is honestly the best out there for me. I love all sorts of different cars, including my 84 VW GTI and 84 Mazda RX-7. I have also owned and loved a 93 Mitsubishi Diamante, 87 VW Fox, and 85 Honda Civic Wagon. As you can see, my tastes are very broad. I just have been so pleasantly surprised by the all around goodness of my Hyundai that I feel the need to spread the word and help get rid of the crappy image that they have carried from the days of the 5 grand Excel. My whole reason in being here is to educate people who don't know much about cars to not just look at one source of info and let them know that Hyundai is not the terrible quality car some people would like them to believe. When I bought my '00 Accent, I also test drove the Kia Sephia, VW Golf, Ford Focus, Suzuki Swift, and Daewoo Lanos. I liked all but the Sephia. I got the Hyundai simply because the dealer could get me financed and I was impressed with its solid feel compared to the tinny Lanos, Swift, and Sephia. Since than it has continued to impress me and dispelled any fear I had about buying a Hyundai.
    Here's a little interesting tidbit of info: I went to JDpower's website and looked up the mid-term quality surveys. The second quality survey done on the 99 Accent after 1-3 years of ownership was pretty good. They rated mechanical quality 3 stars, which is average, whereas the Civic and Protege got 4 stars and the Sentra and Corolla got 5. However, they rated feature and accessory reliability at 5 stars, the highest, for the Accent and Corolla, whereas the Sentra, Protege, and Civic all got 3 stars. They also rated body and interior reliabilty 5 stars for the Accent and Corolla, compared to 3 for the Protege and 4 for the Sentra and Civic. So, in other words, in most areas the Accent was on par quality wise with the cream of the crop Corolla while mechanical reliability has proven to be competent if not outstanding. The Kia Sephia in the same test got 2 stars in every category. Just thought it was interesting to see Hyundai catching up in the surveys. Guess more and more poeple like me are happy with their Hyundais :)
  • seloveselove Posts: 12
    I'm particularly excited that the 5-door hatchback is making a comeback in this country and as soon as I see the elantra hatch in the dealers I'm going to check it out. I have seen pix on various websites; it looks kind of SAAB-y. In other news, Kia will have a 5-door Rio and it looks super cute from pictures on Edmunds. Also, Mazda is set to bring out the 5-door protege.

    Thankfully, these 5-doors all are more "hatchbacky" than station-wagon. I'm 25 with no kids, but I've always driven hatches. I think sedans are weird. All the new 5-doors that don't look like mommy mobiles are giving me hope that one day, I might be able to find my perfect car!
  • carladycarlady Posts: 35
    More 5 door cars are much needed in the US. I say, bring it on!!!

    News & Views and Hatchbacks Message Boards
  • otis12otis12 Posts: 171
    Looks like we're (finally) gonna have some choices in the USA. The elantra, kia spectra and, of course, the vw golf. Carlady, might I suggest a 5-door hatchback comparison this spring when the elantra arrives to join the other two vehicles I've named? Note to lngtonge18: The Feb. 2001 Consumer Reports compared four small sedans and placed the Elantra second, behind the newly redesigned Honda Civic. I think you'll find their comments of interest, re: how much Hyundai has improved. Like you, I read all I can and keep an open mind...and a test drive of the Elantra hatch is on my 'to do' list.
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    Actually they rate the new Elantra 4 door very highly. Ahead of the Corolla and very close to the Civic.

    Having driven both the '01 Elantra and the Spectra, it seems to me that the Elantra is a far more sophisticated car (although I liked the Optima better than I remember a '99 Sonata-- seemed to have better suspension).

    I too am looking forward to the Elantra 5 door, purple night instrumentation and all.
  • csandstecsandste Posts: 1,866
    Don't forget that a 5 door Protege is coming.
  • carladycarlady Posts: 35
    IMHO, the more five doors the better!

    News & Views and Hatchbacks Message Boards
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Alamogordo, NMPosts: 7,615
    After reading these messages here on Elantra comparisons I want to respond to the Kia quality issue. While most of the complaints concern a sub supplying them off-sized brake parts I have not experienced a brake problem with mine. At around 15-20,000 miles they would shudder a little bit. I chose to let them "wear" in and didn't seek a mechanic's help. They worked out of that within 1,000 miles or so. My Sephia brakes are working great now. I test drove and just about bought a '99 Elantra. As far as looks go I thought that year's body style far outshines the 2001 Elantra body style. The earlier look was racier and smoother to look at. It drove real nice but I wasn't real impressed with it's gas mileage. I read up on the Kia Sephia in one of the reports and decided to go with the Kia. It's given me just what I wanted. Great price, fantastic reliabilty, good handling and good gas mileage. I drive a long way to work back and forth and it's pulling around 30mpg. I just passed 54,000 miles and soon it'll be time for a minor tuneup. I just bought it a cool tire and wheel set with 70,000 mile Yokohama tires and Konig Diva wheels. That baby's as cute as a bug. I really feel that Kia has been drug through the mud with our "quality" reports. I don't even read the American car mags thinking that they're going to give the Sephia a fair review-they're usually so drunk from their cruise in the Mustang or Viper that the Korean cars aren't given a fair look. Consumer Reports buys the cars they test? What's up with that? At 54,000 miles and going strong I have no reason to start doubting my '99 Kia Sephia now!

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • I am very excited about the new Hyundai Elantra hatchback. I was wondering why Hyundai would kill off the funky wagon for 2001 until I saw the new Santa Fe. Maybe Hyundai didn't offer the Elantra in wagon format for 2001 because it was afraid of stealing sales from its own SUV?

    Theories aside, I've been reading the posts in this topic because I'm in the market for a new wagon or mini-SUV to replace my beloved Geo Metro. I'm fairly interested in the Kia Rio, Hyundai Elantra (sedan or hatch) and the Potiac Vibe. I'm glad to see others with similar interests!

    I also feel the need to add/respond to a few of the previous posts. With respect to post #7, I couldn't agree more. However, I would add that today's Korean vehicles, since they are very "low cost" new cars, tend to attract younger owners who can sometimes barely afford to make their payments let alone pay for required maintenance. Thus, those owners' vehicles may tend to develop early problems that could have been avoided with proper care. Everyone knows that cars are just machines (like copiers, TV's, your heart, etc.) that require some looking after to keep in top condition. And I might also add (granted, I'm not 100% certain of this, but fairly sure) that J.D Power's survey treats ALL reported problems the same way. Under their surveys a blown transaxle is given the same "weight" as a squeaky glovebox door. So think about reported problems from that perspective.

    To poster "csandste" (#13): does the 2001 Elantra really have purple night illumination?!? Cool. VW deja vu!!
    Getting back to the matter at hand, does anyone know the estimated MSRP for the Elantra H/B?
    It looks really sharp and I can't wait for a test drive. I also like the Kia Rio wagon, but it appears to more of a "no-fills" ride. I dig it but my wife might have something to say about the lack of power goodies. We both like the upcoming Pontiac Vibe, but I don't know if we're willing to wait a year before purchase.

    I feel that Hyndai offers more value for the dollar than any other brand and the Elantra is at the top of my list. And Hyundai's generous warranty takes some of the fear out of ownership. However, I am given to wonder: will Hyundai in three or four years move "upscale" as its sales increase, leaving Kia as its entry-level brand? Maybe the time is now to take advantage of Hyundai's value (standard side airbags on a sub-$14k car?).

    Anyway, I'll be checking on this forum from time to time. Hopefully I'll get some good information before I purchase. And I totally agree with the person who suggested the hatchback comparison test (get on that one, Edmunds!). And is it just me or have other people noticed the disturbing new trend of naming hatchbacks and station wagons "crossover" vehicles? How goofy is that?
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Posts: 2,228
    Only the Elantra hatchback will have the purple illumination in keeping with its sportier persona. Expect it to start about $1000 north of the base price for the sedan, in other words, about $13,500. It is more expensive because it includes the purple illuminated gauges, 15" alloy wheels, fog lights, 4 wheel disc brakes, sport suspension, and leather wrapped steering wheel and shift knob. It looks quite a bit sportier than the sedan and is a welcome addition to the lineup. I'm thinking about possibly trading up from my 2000 Accent to the Elantra hatch, but I would take quite a hit if I did that. Plus, my Accent has been so trouble-free. Nonetheless, it's a cool car and worth a look for those who want something more unique and sporty than a sedan.
  • judasjudas Posts: 217
    5 door hatchbacks are an abomination in the eyes of our Lord.
  • estoesto Posts: 136
    Abomination is in the eye of the beholder (or something like that).

    One man's abomination is another man's ultra-practical vehicle.
  • Thanks for the tip in panel illumination. Doesn't the GLS sedan also have 15" alloys? Either way, I'm definitely going to check this car out. And at $13,500 the price will be tough to beat. I've begun to see a few of the new sedans here in NJ and they look very nice. I thought I would dislike the rear-quarter design, but the photos I've seen didn't do it justice. The one thing I don't like is the empty fog light ports in the front air dam (but I guess the 5-door has a fix for that).

    By the way, I was reading some of your posts in the Hyundai Accent topic and you seem to have had a great ownership experience with yours. Why not stick with it? No sense in parting with a comfy reliable car. In fact, I was very close to purchasing an Accent myself after reading the comments of all the owners. Still might, actually, since it's one of the dwindling number of 3-door hatches left (after the demise of the venerable Metro!).
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Posts: 2,228
    The Elantra GLS has 15" steel wheels with hubcaps. Currently, there are no optional alloy wheels like there was for the 2000 model. I'm sure that will change soon. You are right about my Accent. My experience with it has been very enjoyable, but I still yearn for a car with power windows and doors and a little more horsepower. I may in fact just trade up to the Accent GS with the power package because I like the design and reliability of mine so much and the GS has a more powerful engine for 2001 (kill 2 birds with one stone). I regret not going for the GS originally, but at the time, funds were limited and my credit had not been established yet so I had very little choice in the matter. However, I almost feel compelled to keep my car as long as possible so I can prove to the naysayers that Hyundai is indeed a reliable alternative to the Japanese brands.
  • judasjudas Posts: 217
    Pontiac Aztek's are "ultra-practical" I'm sure, I don't want one of them either. You gotta draw the line somewhere. Someone fill me in, what exactly is the appeal of 5 door hatches? Why not just get a wagon? I don't think I've ever seen a 5 door hatch that didn't make me want to lose my lunch, although there may be some out there, who knows.
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Posts: 2,228
    The Pontiac Aztek is a whole different ball game compared to 5 door hatch cars. The Aztek tried to combine a minivan and an SUV with horrifying results. A 5 door hatch car is not trying to accomplish that. Looks are purely subjective, so if you don't like the looks of them than you won't get their appeal. The reason I don't want a wagon is the same reason why people continue to choose SUVs over wagons. Wagons simply aren't very attractive. They spell family car in a big way. As a single male with no desire to ever want a family, that is not the image I want to project. I also don't want an SUV because they are too big and bulky, not sporty at all, have crappy fuel economy, and I don't like their looks. Most 5 door hatchs look very similar to 4 door sedans, but they trump them with cargo-hauling capabilities and flexibility. That is their appeal. To look sportier and more like a sedan than a wagon, and yet offer the same hauling capabilities as a wagon. Wagons are also usually bigger cars, which some people might not like. 5 door hatchs keep the same size as their sedan counterparts, but have wagon-like room. People are shocked by how much room is in my 3 door hatch. I could fit a washer in the back and close the hatch. A sedan could never do that. I don't think I could go back to owning a sedan. They are too frustrating when it comes time to haul bulky items. So the 5 door hatch is the best of both worlds. It's more practical than a sedan, but looks better than a wagon.
  • ken126ken126 Posts: 39
    When is this 5 door coming out?
  • I've seen a lot of favourable discussion here, but is there any site on the Web that shows a PHOTO of the new Elantra 5-door hatch?

    I tend to keep cars six years, trading one of the two in every three years. 2001 was the year I was seriously going to consider an Elantra wagon, since Honda Marketing has decided to end my long streak of trouble-free Civic hatchbacks.

    With the wagon gone as well, the Elantra hatch SOUNDS like a practical alternative; the Kia Rio hatch looks nice, but I understand it's basically a rehashed, more powerful Aspire (no, thanks!), and in any case it'll be several years before Hyundai gets Kia up to their own current quality, unless they just reskin the whole Hyundai line.

    With the wagon gone, the Elantra hatch sounds like an interesting alternative. But, gotta see one first!
  • How about these? All Korean, but they'll do for now.

    I'll post again once I discover they update the English section to include the hatchback info.


  • Remember that the photos on the above site are not the American version of the car. We don't and won't have that black trim on any of the U.S. Elantras, for example. There are other differences as well... the fog lights aren't the same, the interior is all black, and more. If you go to the Sedans section and look somewhere in the 400's you'll find a link to a site which contains more info about the U.S. hatchback... including some short movies.

    I'm definitely looking to buy a hatchback sometime in May or June. When I do, I will of course post the details...

    Finally, he wagon will return next year for anyone interested.

  • jkempskie,

    Thanks for the Korean hatchback pix (a Saab profile at a bargain price!), and for the information that the wagon will be back next year.

    NOW what am I gonna do? I want one of each!

    - D.
  • I was unable to find a single good source of information on the Elantra GT, but I did find several web sites that had a paragraph or two about the GT. I also was able to find some pictures on foreign web sights. I put all of this information together on one page at:


  • The hatchback site compilation you put together is terrific! Many more actual views of the car than I thought were out there. (It looks especially good in the shot of the dark red car.)

    Think this has tipped me in favour of the GT. My wife can get the wagon next time!

    - D.
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