End of the road for the Hyundai Elantra in South Africa
Johannesburg - The Elantra was the car that introduced South Africa to the Hyundai brand back in 1994 and the Corolla-rivalling sedan also played a big role in cementing the Korean brand’s reputation in the country. But now it’s set to exit our market.
When inquiring about the striking new seventh-generation Hyundai Elantra that was revealed in the US on Tuesday night, our contact at Hyundai South Africa confirmed to IOL that the new model was not under consideration for South Africa as the model feasibility studies did not prove favourable.
This is not surprising given the rapid growth of the SUV market, where Hyundai is doing rather well locally with its Tucson and Creta models, as well as the recently introduced Venue. The Creta is also set to be replaced by a new model in the second half of this year.
The C-Segment sedan market is shrinking rapidly, with previously popular players like the Volkswagen Jetta having exited in recent times.
The current Elantra (pictured below) is in its runout phase, with only a few units remaining according to Hyundai.
It’s unlikely that Hyundai SA will give up on the sedan market completely as the new Accent is currently under consideration, although no concrete plans have been announced as yet.
So what are we missing out on with the new Elantra?
The new sedan boasts a daring exterior design and is built around Hyundai’s new K3 platform.
Initial powertrain choices include a 109kW Atkinson Cycle 2-litre petrol and a 1.6-litre hybrid with 103kW, but Sport and N models are also said to be on the cards.
The new Elantra looks significantly more modern inside, with a dual-screen layout and first-in-class wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay connectivity.