2021 Hyundai Elantra: Love It or Hate It, It’s Different Than the Civic or Corolla

Sometimes automakers compete by enhancing features and injecting new options into already popular styles of their models. In the case of the 2021 Hyundai Elantra, the designers took a different route. They didn’t just improve the options list for the Elantra. They went back to the drawing board entirely and broke the mold with this sedan’s redesign. It looks nothing like its Civic or Corolla rivals. Love it or not, the 2021 Hyundai Elantra gives a whole new meaning to all-new.

A style all its own, and full of triangles

The first look reviews are all talking about the Elantra’s new style. Its sleek shape is part of a modern Hyundai design philosophy called “Parametric Dynamics.” This inspiration’s psychology is supposed to generate positive emotional responses via “geometrically separated beauty.” Geometric is right. 

This car is full of triangles, from the grill to the trunk. The critics at Cars.com joked about having tried to count just how many triangle shapes they could find. It’s a bold design for a sedan, and the style, triangles, and all is the first thing everyone notices.

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The Hyundai Elantra’s style offers a long and extended profile design, somewhat like that of the Honda Civic. But the Elantra is longer, measuring 184.1 inches versus the Civic sedan’s 182.7 inches. It’s longer than the Toyota Corolla too, which measures 182.3 inches in length. The Elantra doesn’t necessarily give the impression that it’s grown 2.2 inches, in part due to the rear deck being painted black. But climbing inside, size matters, as the Elantra is offering that extra couple of inches in backseat legroom.

Sitting behind the wheel feels sporty

The 2021 Hyundai Elantra dropped the seats a tad, making it feel like the interior is wide and low. This lower seating position rivals the sporty ‘nestling in’ experience that drivers expect from the Civic. Inside, the design feels like the car wraps around the occupants, like a security blanket, although it is not as relaxing and comfortable as the Corolla. 

The ergonomically placed display screens, especially the 10.25-inch version presented in the Limited trim, tilt a full 10 degrees toward the driver. Climbing into this all-new Elantra feels more like a cockpit than a sedan. 

Tech that feels like a Mercedes

Hyundai knows the importance of offering top-notch tech and a robust menu of options. This new Elantra is absolutely loaded with features that consumers usually expect with the likes of a Mercedes. The Elantra’s available dual screens alone inspire a feeling of digital mastery. The graphics are vibrant, and functions are easy to navigate. 

The digital key function that works with a cell phone to unlock and start the car is even cooler, for those who love tech controls. The new voice recognition platform that allows the driver to control the heated steering wheel or roll down the windows makes the Elantra feel even more futuristic.

The all-new redesigned Hyundai Elantra is expected to land in dealerships later this year and start at around $21,000. Those who have taken a look so far notice the substantial changes to the design. The Reddit threads suggest both love and hate with each first impression. One commenter said the Elantra looks like it’s injected steroids into the current over-styled design of the Civic. 

The Cars.com reviews point out the car has more triangles than a bag of Doritos. Either way, there’s no question Hyundai went all-out in redesigning the newest Elantra. You might have to check it out for yourself to see if you love it or hate it.