All-New 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT Is America’s i30

Developed on the Nürburgring for the shopping mall parking lot

Hyundai has lifted the veils off its all-new 2018 Elantra GT at the Chicago Auto Show.

If you live in Europe, chances are you've already seen this car badged as a Hyundai i30. Compared to its predecessor (based on the previous-generation i30), the new Elantra GT is lower, wider, and longer, resulting in a more aggressive stance and improved interior space.

Hyundai says the new Elantra GT is stiffer, stronger, and lighter than the previous-generation model. It's 22 percent more rigid, weighs 61 lb (27.7 kg) less, and has an improved 0.30 coefficient of drag. All these changes contribute to making it more efficient as well.

According to the automaker, the Elantra GT's cabin offers 96.5 cu-ft of passenger volume and nearly 25 cu-ft of cargo volume with all seats in place, with the EPA expected to rate it as a large car.

Customers will be able to choose between a base GT model and the GT Sport hot hatch, both powered by four-cylinder gasoline engines. The GT gets a 2.0-liter unit that makes 162 hp and 150 lb-ft (203 Nm) of torque, while the GT Sport receives a 1.6-liter turbo rated at 201 hp and 195 lb-ft (264 Nm) of torque. The standard engine is offered with either a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission, while the turbo comes with a six-speed manual or a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox.

Besides the more powerful engine, the GT Sport gets a fully-independent multilink suspension setup at the rear (the GT has a rear torsion beam), standard 18-inch alloy wheels, and larger front and rear brake rotors.

Hyundai is proud of having developed the Elantra GT on the Nürburgring Nordschleife in Germany, with the result being a suspension tune "that feels taut yet comfortable, minimizing unwanted body roll yet maximizing wheel impact absorption."

Inside, the Elantra GT comes with standard features such as leather seats, alloy pedals, and dual-zone climate control, as well as the new-generation AVN 5.0 infotainment system with an 8-inch touchscreen, navigation, and better response times.

The 2018 Elantra GT will arrive in U.S. dealerships this summer.