• (4.1) 18 reviews
  • MSRP: $738–$4,810
  • Body Style: Sedan
  • Combined MPG: 29
  • Engine: 140-hp, 2.0-liter I-4 (regular gas)
  • Drivetrain: Front-wheel Drive
  • Transmission: 4-speed automatic w/OD
2002 Hyundai Elantra

Our Take on the Latest Model 2002 Hyundai Elantra

2002 Hyundai Elantra Reviews

Vehicle Overview
Hyundai’s most popular model earned fresh styling and larger dimensions for 2001. In both size and price, the front-drive compact slots between the subcompact Accent and the midsize Sonata.

No change is evident on the four-door GLS sedan for 2002, but Hyundai launched a sporty new companion as a very late 2001 model. Unveiled at the New York Auto Show in April 2001, the Elantra GT is a European-themed, five-door hatchback sedan, while the regular Elantra is a conventional four-door sedan with a trunk.

On sale since June 2001, the GT promises the comfort and handling of a Eurosedan, mixed with the cargo-carrying versatility of a hatchback. A tauter-than-usual suspension for the GT uses higher-rate springs, gas-filled shock absorbers and larger-diameter stabilizer bars. All-disc brakes, fog lamps and five-spoke alloy wheels are installed. Under the hood is the same 140-horsepower engine used in the regular Elantra.

Highlighted by strong character lines, the Elantra’s styling is more chiseled and European-looking than on prior models. The Elantra rides a 102.7-inch wheelbase, measures 177.1 inches long overall, stands 56.1 inches high and stretches 67.7 inches wide.

Hyundai claims that a longer wheelbase and redesigned interior result in more passenger space in the current five-seat Elantra. The three-place 60/40-split, folding rear seat expands trunk space, which totals 11 cubic feet. Standard equipment includes air conditioning, a four-speaker sound system with a cassette player, a rear defogger, and power windows, locks and mirrors. A six-speaker sound system with a CD player is optional.

A unique instrument panel in the GT features purple-lit VDO gauges. Leather seating surfaces and seat-mounted side-impact airbags are equipped on the GT.

Under the Hood
Both Elantra models are powered by a 140-hp, 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that mates with a standard five-speed manual or an optional four-speed-automatic transmission. Side-impact airbags are standard, and antilock brakes are optional.

Driving Impressions
The Elantra isn’s very enticing at first, but it tends to grow on an open-minded driver and turn into an appealing little automobile. Performance with the manual shift is surprisingly frisky, and the Elantra accelerates with spirit. The gearbox and clutch are well matched to the engine, which permits a gentle engagement for easy takeoffs. But engaging Reverse can be a chore at times. Except for a slight growl during acceleration, the Elantra is quiet on the road. Naturally, an automatic transmission is likely to sap some strength from the 140-hp engine.

The Elantra manages to whip through corners and turn with ease — almost with a passion that is uncommon for a car of its class. Some body lean is evident in curves, but not enough to be troubling. The ride is pleasantly easygoing for a small car, as the Elantra’s suspension copes adeptly with rough spots.

Seats are especially attractive and firmly cushioned, with very good back support. Compared to other glove boxes, the Elantra’s holds more items than most these days. Backseat legroom also is amazing, and even the center rear position isn’t too bad.

Handling is noticeably tauter on the shapely GT hatchback, though not dramatically so, and ride comfort suffers only modestly. It is fun to drive, helped by the easy-to-use manual gearshift and well-behaved clutch. The GT’s leather upholstery is a pleasant bonus. The gauges on the GT are large, but their distinctive hue isn’t the easiest to read at a glance during nighttime driving.


Reported by Jim Flammang  for cars.com
From the cars.com 2002 Buying Guide

Consumer Reviews


Average based on 18 reviews

Write a Review

The Car That Could Last Forever!

by STLBatman from Arnold, MO on September 25, 2017

I got this car from a no credit dealer and loved the test drive. I had to fix all kinds of stuff on it of course but I did so through Carsmart in Crestwood Missouri! Those guys and gals are FANTASTIC!... Read Full Review

Read All Consumer Reviews

2 Trims Available

Photo of undefined
Wondering which configuration is right for you?
Our 2002 Hyundai Elantra trim comparison will help you decide.

Hyundai Elantra Articles

2002 Hyundai Elantra Safety Ratings

Crash-Test Reports


There are currently 6 recalls for this car.

Safety defects and recalls are relatively common. Stay informed and know what to do ahead of time.

Safety defects and recalls explained

Service & Repair

Estimated Service & Repair cost: $5,000 per year.

Save on maintenance costs and do your own repairs.

Warranty Coverage

What you should get in your warranty can be confusing. Make sure you are informed.

Learn More About Warranties

Warranties Explained


Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.


Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

Roadside Assistance

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

Free Scheduled Maintenance

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

Other Years