The 2022 Toyota Avalon Crushed the 2022 Hyundai Elantra on Consumer Reports

The 2022 Hyundai Elantra compact sedan redesign in silver parked outside of a luxury home complex
2022 Hyundai Elantra | Hyundai Motor America

The Toyota Avalon has not gotten its dues over the years. Whether it’s because of the waning love of sedans or because buyers don’t look to Toyota for a nice sedan, the Avalon just never quite breaks through the zeitgeist. However, the 2022 Hyundai Elantra continues to be a popular sedan even though it was absolutely pulverized by the 2022 Toyota Avalon on Consumer Reports.

2022 Toyota Avalon2022 Hyundai Elantra
Price Range$36,275 – $43,550$19,850 – $28,250
Engine Options2.5-liter four hybrid 
3.5-liter V6
1.6-liter 4 turbo 
1.6-liter 4 hybrid
2-liter 4 
2-liter 4 turbo 
Horsepower 215 hp
301 hp
201 hp
139 hp
147 hp
276 hp
Torque163 lb-ft
267 lb-ft 
132-195 lb-ft
TransmissionEight-speed automatic
7-speed Sequential
6-speed Sequential
8-speed Sequential
6-speed Manual
MPG Rating42 overall mpg (hybrid)
25 overall mpg (V6)
48 overall mpg (hybrid)
33 overall mpg (2.0-liter)
IIHS Safety RatingGoodTop Safety Pick
NHTSA Safety RatingNANA

Is the 2022 Toyota Avalon a good car? 

  • Pros: Super comfortable and roomy interior
  • Cons: The Avalon is expensive 

Following the Toyota Avalon redesign in 2019, the 2022 Toyota Avalon is really hitting its stride. The new generation is more fun to drive, more nimble, and even more comfortable than before. The latest Avalon is a no-brainer alternative to higher-priced luxury cars. Both the standard V6 and the hybrid powertrains offer good power and smooth acceleration. However, anything that requires any amount of power comes with a raspy sound like it’s working too hard. 

The two Toyota Avalon power plants are the standard 3.5-liter V6 making an impressive 301 hp and the 2.5-liter hybrid making 215 hp. According to Consumer Reports, the V6 engine in the non-hybrid version delivers more power with less effort (and with a better sound) thanks in part to its eight-speed transmission, which makes quick, smooth shifts.

The Avalon is safe, reliable, and supremely comfortable. However, all that comfort will cost you. The 2022 Toyota Avalon starts at $36,275, which is more than the top-tier trim for the 2022 Hyundai Elantra. 

Is the 2022 Hyundai Elantra a good car? 

  • Pros: Tons of options and trim levels 
  • Cons: The V6 version can make a rough sound and has a rougher ride than the Hybrid

The 2022 Hyundai Elantra is a popular compact sedan due to its low price point, many options and trims, and fuel economy. The Hyundai Elantra isn’t the fanciest car on the road, but its affordable price and chart-topping gas mileage make it a real contender. However, its lack of refinement, comfort and ok reliability earned it a 74/100 on Consumer Reports. 

Also, unlike the 2022 Toyota Avalon, the Hyundai Elantra has light, maybe too light, steering feedback. Even still, CR doesn’t have many bad things to say about its handling overall. 

2022 Toyota Avalon vs. 2022 Hyundai Elantra: Driving

2022 Toyota Avalon profile parked in a misty field. The Avalon killed on Consumer Reports.
2022 Toyota Avalon | Toyota

Both cars have strong powertrains offering enough power for all daily driving applications. The 2022 Hyundai Elantra offers four powertrain options: the 147-hp 2.0-liter four-cylinder, and at the top of the line, the 276-hp 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder. 

The 2022 Toyota Avalon brings fewer power options to the table with only two engines; the 2.5-liter four-cylinder hybrid and the 3.5-liter V6. The V6 makes an astonishing 301 hp. While the Avalon also has a hybrid getting 42 mpg, the Elantra’s hybrid offers 48 mpg. 

As far as driving characteristics are concerned, the Toyota Avalon gets the upper hand because it is nimble and crisp in the corners even though it’s a large, heavy sedan. The Hyundai Elantra is also surprisingly agile, even with its overly light steering. The Hyundai is a much smaller and lighter car, and while it handles well, it isn’t quite as good as the Avalon.

Another feather in the Avalon’s cap is the supple ride and gorgeous interior. Consumer Reports calls the 2022 Toyota Avalon’s ride as “excellent,” a word CR doesn’t throw around lightly. The big sedan gives the feeling of true luxury and quality. From road imperfections to serious potholes, the Avalon is said to take bumps with grace. The 2022 Hyundai Elantra, on the other hand, also has a decent ride, but it sits firmly in “average” territory. CR says there is a twitchiness to the ride that makes the car feel unsettled and nervous. 

2022 Hyundai Elantra vs. 2022 Toyota Avalon: Safety features

The 2022 Hyundai Elantra earned the IIHS Top Safety Pick award due to its high crash rating and standard active safety features. The Hyundai Elantra comes with forward-collision warning, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, blind-spot warning, and rear cross-traffic warning. That being said, CR found it difficult to install a car seat making its child-safety rating take a hit. 

According to CR, the Avalon scored a “Good” on all IIHS crash tests and a “superior” rating in front crash prevention. Toyota gave the Avalon a suite of standard active safety systems, which Toyota calls the Toyota Safety Sense P (TSS-P). They include forward-collision warning with automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, lane departure warning with steering assist, as well as blind-spot and rear cross-traffic warning. Unlike the Elantra, CR easily installed a car seat, adding to its overall safety score.

2022 Toyota Avalon vs. 2022 Hyundai Elantra: Trim levels and features

The 2022 Hyundai Elantra N line in blue
2022 Hyundai Elantra N Line driving down the road | Hyundai

Your Hyundai Elantra Might Be Extremely Easy to Break Into

The 2022 Hyundai Elantra has six different trims:

SE: $20,875

SEL: $22,125

Blue Hybrid: $24,775

N Line: $25,275

Limited: $26,625

Limited Hybrid: $29,275

The Elantra offers a lot of variation in the lineup. From multiple hybrids to the sport N-Line, The Elantra tries to offer something for everyone. This is probably the Elantra’s strongest attribute. 

Consumer Reports recommends the SEL trim level as the best value for your money. The amount of features alongside the price point makes the SEL trim a strong option. Secondly, the Hybrid would be the recommended option for customers who can swing a little more cash. 

The Toyota Avalon also comes in six trim levels but only with two engine options:

XLE: $37,300

Hybrid XLE: $38,275

Hybrid XSE Nightshade: $41,625

Limited: $43,600

Touring: $44,000

Hybrid Limited: $44,575

Although there are many trims for the 2022 Avalon, there are only two engine options available; the V6 and the Hybrid four-cylinder. The price difference between the two is so slight that it seems like a no-brainer to go with the more sophisticated and economical hybrid powerplant. Forward collision warning with pedestrian detection, automatic emergency braking, and blind-spot warning are standard, so the XLE is probably the smartest trim to get. 

2022 HyundaI Elantra Advantages

The 2022 Hyundai Elantra is a popular compact sedan with a lot to offer for a relatively small price. It comes with glowing safety reviews and a pile of safety features; it has tons of trims and engine options and starts under $20k. What it may lack in refinement and comfort, it makes up for in its budget-friendly price point. 

2022 Toyota Avalon Advantages

The Avalon combines Toyota’s rugged reliability and toughness with a supple and comfortable ride with a plush interior. These last two accolades are not often associated with Toyota’s, but the Avalon is really stepping up to the table on the luxury front. Aside from its superior comfort and spacious cabin, the Avalon also has two great engines, one of which is far more powerful than anything the Elantra offers, and the other is crazy fuel-efficient. 

Which Sedan is the right fit for you?

The 2022 Toyota Avalon is objectively better than the 2022 Hyundai Elantra. But, it also costs considerably more money. This sedan comparison helps us to see the difference in car buying philosophies. One is, buy the best car for the least amount of money possible. In this scenario, the Hyundai is a great option. However, the other philosophy might suggest that you try and buy the best car you can afford so that you can actually enjoy the money you spent by getting a great car that will make you happy. 

I’m not suggesting that money and things make us happy, but a comfortable and reliable car can go a long way in helping us minimize daily stress. And it is this philosophy that drives the comparison between these two great cars. But, at the end of the day, the Toyota Avalon is a hard sedan to beat regardless of whichever principle you stand behind. Even though the Avalon is a great car, Toyota is still planning to kill it next year. RIP.