The last time we got an Elantra GT was in the early 2000s, when Hyundai brought over a quirky five-door that resembled the Mazda6 hatchback more than the re-badged Hyundai i30 you see here. Now dubbed the Elantra GT (rather than the Elantra Touring of the previous i30), the Mazda3 and Subaru Impreza just got a new challenger in the 5-door compact segment.
The 148 horsepower 1.8L 4-cylinder makes 148 horsepower and returns 28/39 mpg for a 32 mpg combined average. This beats the Impreza and matches the Mazda3 SkyActiv (though a forthcoming review will show that while Jack Baruth managed to match the Elantra’s EPA figures, my Mazda3 didn’t hit its mark). Of the two sedans, the Mazda3 is the better driving car, but the i30′s European roots will hopefully translate into solid driving dynamics.
The Hyundai takes the cake for styling, and will probably have a nicer interior. In addition to the usual Elantra content, there’s a refrigerated glovebox, a feature also seen on the Dodge Caliber.