Talking Cars 291: Driving the 2021 Hyundai Elantra

Plus, how larger wheels affect ride quality, fender benders, and how the Alaskan climate affects a car

Main theme: We discuss our first drive impressions of the all-new 2021 Hyundai Elantra. This seventh-generation of Hyundai’s compact sedan is longer, lower, and wider than before, and it has a more grown-up feel. We give our early findings about the powertrain, ride and handling, interior comfort and space, and the usability of the controls.

Audience Questions
• Because many cars today don’t have exposed bumpers, how much damage can be done to things like the grille and headlights during minor fender-benders?

• Are you considering adding side-impact testing to CR’s child-seat program?

• Is it true that you typically get a softer ride with a car that has smaller wheels compared with one that has larger-diameter wheels and tires?

• I'm thinking about buying a 2016 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid that spent most of its life in Alaska before ending up in Florida. What are the potential problems I should be aware of on a vehicle that spent so much time in freezing-cold weather?

Talking Cars 291
Talking Cars panelists Emily Thomas, Mike Monticello, and Ryan Pszczolkowski.

Consumer Reports Consumer Reports

As with other “Talking Cars” episodes, this one is available free through Apple Podcasts. (Subscribe to the audio or video.) You’ll also find the audio on Spotify (log-in required) and video on YouTube.

Toyota RAV4 Prime, Apple Car, episode 290
We Answer Your Questions, episode 289
Favorite Cars of 2020, episode 288
Tesla Model Y Test Results, episode 287
BMW 4 Series and Electric Cadillacs, episode 286

Have a Question?

We’d love to include it in a future show. Upload your video questions to our Dropbox folder. Please send high-definition (1920x1080) MP4 video files with high-quality audio. Or send an iMessage question to our TalkingCars@icloud.com account.


Mike Monticello

After my dad gave me a ride on his Yamaha two-stroke motorcycle when I was 3, I was hooked on anything with an engine. I got a master’s in journalism as a means to an end: To drive cars and get paid for it, which led me to jobs at Road & Track and Edmunds.com. My most thrilling moment so far has been hurtling down the autobahn at a GPS-timed 217.1 mph in a Ruf Rt12. On weekends you can find me churning dirt on my mountain bike or doing car or motorcycle track days. Follow me on Twitter. (@MikeMonticello)