2021 Hyundai Elantra N Line Balances Performance and Value (2024)

We suspect Hyundai's product planning department went through a few cases of the good stuff when Honda announced that the Civic Si would not return for the 2021 model year. The car Hyundai had benchmarked when creating the new 2021 Elantra N Line would be a no show for the fight. Honda says the Si will eventually return, but the temporary absence of that sport-compact icon has opened a window of opportunity for Hyundai as it releases the first performance variant of its compact sedan.

Don't confuse the Elantra N Line with the 276-hp Elantra N, which we've already driven in prototype form. That higher-performance model will be more akin to the Civic Type R than the Si when it goes on sale next fall. As with the Si, a turbocharged inline-four turns the N Line's front wheels. Its small yet willing 1.6-liter mill develops 201 horsepower at 6000 rpm but will happily rev to its 6500-rpm redline and sounds good doing it. More important when scurrying around town, its 195 pound-feet of torque peaks at just 1500 rpm and holds strong to 4000 rpm.

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Equipped with the standard six-speed manual transmission, the N Line pulls hard both off the line and out of tight second-gear corners, exhibiting just a hint of torque steer. The transmission's first three gears are short and tightly spaced, which translates into great responsiveness in the city. However, second gear is all done around 55 mph, and the additional gear change to third will add a couple tenths to its zero-to-60-mph time. An equally close-ratioed seven-speed dual-clutch automatic is an $1100 option. The manual's clutch and shifter are light but offer sufficient feedback, and the pedals are well placed for heel-and-toe action. Unfortunately, this 1.6-liter hangs onto revs momentarily when you let off the throttle, which can make smooth shifts difficult around town.

Built on the third generation of Hyundai's K platform, the Elantra N Line weighs about 3000 pounds with either transmission. That's about 200 pounds lighter than the similarly sized yet more powerful Volkswagen Jetta GLI, now its most natural rival. Hyundai's design team has also taken significantly more risks than VW's, what with the new Elantra's dramatically sloping roofline, sharp-edged tail, and a handful of polarizing visual elements, most notably the three body creases that intersect on its front doors. However, less imagination was exercised for the N Line's model-specific pieces, which are fairly standard sporty small-car stuff. Black mirrors and trim? Check. Blacked-out grille with a more aggressive mesh? Yup. Body-color side sill moldings? Got it. Two chrome exhaust tips, a small rear spoiler, and a new rear bumper stylized to look like a diffuser? Of course.

Similar design clichés dot the N Line's interior. Red accents have been added to the Elantra's clean analog gauge cluster, and its three-spoke steering wheel, seats, and door panels wear plenty of red stitching. At least the red stripe on the shifter is interesting, and the sport seats look and feel right with their prominent bolsters and embossed N logos. Hyundai didn't skimp on technology, either: A wireless phone charging pad and wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are all standard.

Projector headlights, LED taillights, and a sunroof are also standard, as are dark-finished 18-inch wheels wrapped in 235/40R-18 tires, either Hankook Ventus S1 RX all-season or Goodyear Eagle F1 summer rubber. The N Line shares the regular Elantra's strut front suspension but gains an independent rear end, larger front brake rotors, stiffened powertrain mounts, and revised chassis tuning. Along with firmer dampers, the anti-roll bars are stiffer and spring rates have been dialed up a whopping 26 percent in front and 71 percent in the rear versus the standard Elantra.

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Given the revisions, we were prepared for a bridle ride. But the N Line's comportment feels pleasantly compliant and exhibits good body control. Its steering ratio is spot on, and there's plenty of communication with the front tires. The N Line retains its composure when pushed hard, and its front end has good bite when turning into corners. While it doesn't have the power or intensity of the harder-core N model, it is good fun and should be able to hang with your buddy's Civic Si on curvy roads.

At $25,095 to start, the Elantra N Line is an undeniable value, undercutting the Jetta GLI by more than $2000. But the VW, which recently made our 10Best list for the second year in a row, may still have a performance edge over this Hyundai. We won't know for sure until we get an N Line to the test track, but Hyundai is clearly intent on making the new Elantra a serious player in the sport-compact segment.

2021 Hyundai Elantra N Line Balances Performance and Value (4)



2021 Hyundai Elantra N Line

front-engine, front-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door sedan


turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 16-valve inline-4, aluminum block and head, direct fuel injection
97 in3, 1591 cm3
201 hp @ 6000 rpm
195 lb-ft @ 1500 rpm

6-speed manual, 7-speed dual-clutch automatic

Wheelbase: 107.1 in
Length: 184.1 in
Width: 71.9 in
Height: 55.9 in
Passenger volume: 100 ft3
Trunk volume: 14 ft3
Curb weight (C/D est): 3000–3050 lb

60 mph: 6.5–6.7 sec
1/4 mile: 14.5–15.0 sec
Top speed: 125 mph

Combined/city/highway: 28–31/25–28/34–36 mpg

2021 Hyundai Elantra N Line Balances Performance and Value (5)

Scott Oldham

Contributing Editor

More parking. That's all Scott Oldham really wants out of life. His three-car garage is full, as is his driveway. Necessity, combined with poor financial judgment and an inability to sell anything, has forced the second-generation automotive writer and smoky-burnout enthusiast to store a few of his prized American classics in rental garages around Los Angeles. But not the big-block 1969 Camaro his built with his dad; that one stays close to home.

2021 Hyundai Elantra N Line Balances Performance and Value (2024)


What is the fair market value of a 2021 Hyundai Elantra? ›

Used 2021 Hyundai Elantra Pricing
Original MSRPKBB Fair Purchase Price (nat'l average)
SE Sedan 4D$20,655$15,523
SEL Sedan 4D$21,905$17,017
Blue HEV Sedan 4D$24,555$17,999
SEL HEV Sedan 4D$24,555$18,838
3 more rows

What is the engine failure of the 2021 Hyundai Elantra? ›

Hyundai is conducting a safety recall to address a condition involving engine failures resulting in a vehicle stall and/or fire in certain model year 2019 – 2020 Hyundai Elantra, 2019 – 2021 Hyundai Kona, and 2019 – 2021 Hyundai Veloster vehicles equipped with 2.0-liter “Nu” MPI engines and produced for sale in the ...

How much horsepower does a 2021 Hyundai Elantra N line have? ›

Stepping up from the Elantra's base 147-horsepower engine, the 2021 Hyundai Elantra N Line is powered by a 1.6-liter turbocharged and direct-injected four-cylinder that produces 201 horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque. If you want an Elantra with a manual gearbox, the N Line and N models are the only way to get that.

Does Hyundai have a high resale value? ›

When it comes time to sell your vehicle, Hyundai SUVs have high resale values, and they retain their values well over time. You can often get most of your money back when you sell or trade in a Hyundai SUV.

Do Hyundai cars hold their value? ›

Do Hyundais hold their value? Although several Hyundai models show a mixed performance in value retention, the brand still offers solid value retention in general. Some Hyundai models, like the Santa Cruz and Veloster N, have strong resale values, while others, such as the Sonata, depreciate more rapidly.

What is the problem with the 2021 Hyundai Elantra N line? ›

Common problems reported on the 2021 Hyundai Elantra include warning lights on the dash, the tail lights failing, along with some power steering problems. Overall, these problems are similar to some other compact cars on the market, leading to average repair costs as the Elantra ages.

What was the worst year for the Hyundai Elantra? ›

2013 was not a good year for the Elantra. In fact, it's the sedan's worst year to date. CarComplaints identified the 2013 Elantra as the worst model year for the compact sedan.

Is 2021 Elantra worth buying? ›

The Elantra has some "wow" factor with its effusive exterior styling, large bright screens and excellent voice controls. But it makes no claim to driving excitement and it's easy to see why. Hyundai made an excellent all-arounder, not a passion purchase. That's what the N Line version is for.

Is the Hyundai N Line fast? ›

Featuring lightning fast shifts and excellent power transmission, the new N DCT delivers excellent acceleration, taking you from 80-120 km/h in 3.3 secs.

Is the Hyundai ELANTRA N Line fast? ›

The engine is capable of reaching 0-60 mph in just 7.6 seconds. It has a top speed of 143 mph.

Is there a difference between Elantra N and N Line? ›

The N Line sports a 1.6-liter turbo-4 that makes 201 hp. The engine drives the front wheels only, either via a 6-speed manual or 7-speed dual-clutch automatic. The N uses a 2.0-liter turbo-4 that sends 276 hp to the front wheels, either via a 6-speed manual or 8-speed dual-clutch automatic.

Is the Elantra N-line a sports car? ›

2024 ELANTRA N Line

Our sporty compact sedan.

Is the n line better than the N? ›

With more power, better handling, and premium tires over standard Hyundai models, N Line brings enhanced performance and a balanced combination of tech, safety, and premium amenities. Hyundai doesn't tune N Line models for track use like it has engineered full-fledged N models.

Is the Hyundai N Line a sports car? ›

Everyday Sports Car

Easy to control, whether it's your urban commute or thrilling track driving.

What is fair market value of a car? ›

Under California law, the actual value of a car is the amount that the car was worth at the time that it was damaged or destroyed. The amount of the car value is known as it's fair market value.

What is the expected price of Hyundai Elantra? ›

Hyundai Elantra Price: The Elantra is priced from Rs 17.86 lakh to Rs 21.13 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi). Hyundai Elantra Variants: Hyundai offers it in two variants: SX and SX(O). Hyundai Elantra Powertrain: It is powered by a 2-litre petrol engine (152PS/192Nm), mated to a 6-speed manual or automatic transmission.

How much should you pay for a Hyundai Elantra? ›

2024 Hyundai Elantra Pricing
2024 Hyundai ElantraMSRP
Elantra SEL$23,425
Elantra Limited$26,915
Elantra N Line$28,315
Elantra N$33,700
1 more row

How many miles will a 2021 Hyundai Elantra last? ›

How many miles can a Hyundai Elantra last? A Hyundai Elantra can easily last 150,000 to 250,000 miles with regular maintenance and good driving practices. If you drive around 15,000 miles per year, it will survive 13 to 17 years before needing costly repairs or breaking down.


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