'2018 Hyundai Elantra GT Spotted In Europe'

Nov 27, 2016 02:12 AM EST | Dannah Dela Cruz

Just like the previous Elantra, Hyundai's latest i30 hatchback is set to have an Elantra GT hatchback variant. A prototype was just spotted at a secret location in Europe, enough evidence to confirm its future release.

It is the next-generation i30 Tourer, which Hyundai may offer in the United States as an Elantra Touring. The last Elantra Touring bowed out of the market after the 2012 model.

The i30 will be closely related to Elantra's compact sedan, which was unveiled at the Los Angeles Auto Show. The model is already on sale and is expected to arrive here in 2017, badged as an Elantra GT. It is not yet clear if the i30 Tourer will make it over as an Elantra Touring, as it would make a worthy rival to Volkswagen's Golf SportWagen. In other markets, it will also compete with the Ford Motor Company Focus Wagon and Opel Astra Sports Tourer, as Handi Tech reported.

Mechanically, it should be almost identical to the i30 hatch. Meaning, the offered powertrains should have low capacity gasoline and diesel units. Front-wheel drive should be standard and the transmission options should be 6-speed manual and 7-speed dual-clutch units as well.

Because the new Elantra arrived in showrooms this year as a 2017 model and was just recently updated, it indicates that the Elantra GT hatchback's arrival will likely arrive as a 2018 model. Its debut should take place at a major European auto show in 2017, most likely the Frankfurt Auto Show next September.

A sporty i30 N is also in the works and is expected at the Geneva Auto Show next March. Unfortunately though, this particular model has been ruled out for US consumption, according to Motor Authority.

There could be some new performance variants, too. The regular Elantra is destined to receive a 201-hp Sport model later this year; Hyundai also confirmed that the new Elantra GT will be based on the N performance division's first model. There's no official word yet if this N model will make it to the US, though.

Watch out for the new Elantra GT's debut, probably before the year ends or in the early months of 2017.

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