2012 Hyundai Elantra review

One of the likely consequences of the federal government's push for more stringent fuel economy standards is that more people will be driving smaller cars in the future. Not too long ago, with the exception of a few distinguished compact cars, that didn't look like a very appealing reality.

That's changed with the debut of efficient models like the Chevrolet Cruze, the upcoming 2012 Ford Focus and now the redesigned Hyundai Elantra. The Elantra has all the makings of a sales success: stop-and-stare styling, a fuel-sipping four-cylinder engine and an optimal blend of ride comfort and handling poise — all at a competitive price.

In short, the Elantra is a home run in the compact segment, allowing more drivers to happily enter a fuel-efficient future.

The 2011 Elantra sedan is available at Hyundai dealerships now and is offered in two trim levels: base GLS and upscale Limited. I tested automatic-transmission versions of both trims; click here for a side-by-side comparison of the two models.

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