How Long Do Hyundai Elantra Last? (Solved & Explained)

The Korean-made Hyundai Elantra is a high-ranking compact car known for its affordable price tag and daring designs.

The latest model boasts a sporty exterior, a technology-packed infotainment system, and even a hybrid engine option.

In this article we’ll take a closer look at the quality, reliability and average lifespan of the Hyundai Elantra.

Read on to find out…

Here is the Short Answer to How Long Hyundai Elantra Last:

The Hyundai Elantra can easily last from 200,000 up to 250,000 miles when properly maintained and driven sensibly. If you drive 15,000 miles annually, then it will last approximately 13 to 17 years before requiring expensive repairs. There are even instances of Elantras reaching up to 300,000 miles.

How Many Miles Can You Expect from a Hyundai Elantra?

Our research into the Hyundai Elantra has led us to confidently claim that a well-maintained Elantra can last up to almost two-decades.

We have read several stories from Elantra owners claiming that they are well on their way to 250,000 miles with their Elantra, with some even claiming that they have achieved 300,000 miles already.

Therefore, we approximate a safe range of 200,000 to 250,000 miles (or 13 to 17 years based on 15,000 miles of annual driving) for this particular model.

Hyundai are confident in their vehicles longevity, offering an industry-leading 10-year / 100,000 mile powertrain limited warranty, which covers issues related to the engine or transmission.

As with any vehicle, longevity reports can vary greatly depending on a number of factors. Primarily these include:

  • Maintenance
  • Driving habbits

Its very important to adhere to factory required maintenance intervals as well as carrying out your own basic maintenance tasks such as keeping an eye on coolant and oil levels as well as checking tire pressures etc.

Driving habits are equally important, smooth, controlled acceleration and braking will make the world of difference when aiming to prolong the shelf life of your Elantra.

How Soon Should You Expect Rust on a Hyundai Elantra?

Most modern-day Elantra units, from 2009 onwards, are built to be more resistant to rust and corrosion than past models – and for the most part, rusting is not a common issue.

Even the 2013 Elantra which had the highest number of complaints on carcomplaints.com did not have any recorded rust or corrosion complaints.

Based on our findings, you could expect your Hyundai Elantra to start developing some degree of rust after seven years of normal use – however this can vary greatly from owner to owner, depending on how the vehicle is cared for and the conditions it is regularly exposed to.

According to hotcars.com, Elantra owners should not worry about the early onset of rust as the Elantra is considered to be of good build quality and is not known to rust easily (at least for the latest models).

Based on popular Hyundai Forums, some isolated reports of rusting were found in the following areas:

  • Quarter panel
  • Subframe
  • Subfloor

Fortunately, Hyundai offers the best rust and corrosion warranty in America.

The anti-perforation warranty covers all models from model year 2005 and above and is good for 7 years with unlimited miles.

To help keep rust at bay bay we advise:

  • Regular car washes, especially after exposure to road salt, dirt or rain
  • Rustproofing sprays
  • keeping the car stored in a garage out of the elements
  • Investing in a ceramic coating from a reputable professional

Please also check out our article on Hyundai Elantra snow and winter driving

What is High Mileage for a Hyundai Elantra?

A Hyundai Elantra with over 100,000 miles on the odometer is considered high mileage and a riskier investment although there are multiple factors to take into consideration, most importantly the vehicle’s service history.

Buying a second-hand Elantra with over 100k miles doesn’t necessarily mean a sour outcome.

Some important factors to consider are:

  • Amount of previous owners. As a general rule less is better. More owners generally equates to more wear and tear. If one family owned it and drove the full 100k miles and serviced the car, then you can almost guarantee they took good care of it throughout ownership.
  • Maintenance history. That the vehicle was properly serviced and the seller can provide proof of this.
  • Check the CarFax. This doesn’t guarentee anything but can help provide a clearer picture of wear and tear. Make sure it has minimal damage, if any. Analyze the data to make sure if something did happen, it wasn’t engine related or mechanical.
  • How long you intend to keep the car. If you’re planning on keeping the car for many years, you have to ask yourself – do the short-term savings outweigh spending a little extra into something more reliable.

How Long Do Hyundai Elantra Last Compared to Similar Models?

Below, we look at how the Hyundai Elantra fares against its main competition in terms of longevity and reliability.

Hyundai Elantra vs. Ford Focus

The Ford Focus can last as long as the Hyundai Elantra, with our research providing up to 250,000 miles (or approximately 17 years based on 15,000 miles driven per year), with proper maintenance.

Below are additional comparisons:

Make and ModelQuality and Reliability (J.D. Power)Annual Maintenance Cost(RepairPal)
Hyundai Elantra87/100$452
Ford Focus78/100$569

Hyundai Elantra vs. Chevrolet Cruze

The Hyundai Elantra can last significantly longer than the Chevrolet Cruze. While the Chevrolet Cruze can last up to 200,000 miles (or approximately 13 years based on 15,000 miles of driving per year), the Hyundai Elantra can last 50,000 miles more, at 250,000 miles (or roughly 17 years based on 15,000 miles driven per year).

Below are additional comparisons:

Make and ModelQuality and Reliability (J.D. Power)Annual Maintenance Cost(RepairPal)
Hyundai Elantra87/100$452
Chevrolet Cruze85/100$545

Hyundai Elantra vs. Toyota Corolla

The Toyota Corolla can last longer than the Hyundai Elantra, if properly maintained. The Corolla can last up to 300,000 miles (or 20 years based on 15,000 miles of driving annually), while the Hyundai Elantra can last up to 250,000 miles (or 17 years if driven at 15,000 miles annually) only.

Below are additional comparisons:

Make and ModelQuality and Reliability (J.D. Power)Annual Maintenance Cost(RepairPal)
Hyundai Elantra87/100$452
Toyota Corolla80/100$362

How Reliable is a Hyundai Elantra?

The latest Hyundai Elantra is one of the most reliable compact cars on the road today.

According to RepairPal, the 2021 Hyundai Elantra scored a reliability rating of 4.5 out of 5.0, which places the vehicle in the 8th spot out of 36 competitor cars.

J.D. Power has also given the 2021 Elantra a “great” quality and reliability rating, at 87 out of 100.

Based on customer ratings, Kelley Blue Book has awarded the Elantra a reliability score of 4.4 stars out of 5.

These scores indicate the Elantra is a dependable car that won’t let you down.

Please also read our article: 11 Hyundai Elantra facts and statistics

Reliability Compared to Other Cars

ModelReliability 
Toyota Corolla4.5 / 5.0
Kia Forte4.5 / 5.0
Honda Civic4.5 / 5.0
Toyota Matrix4.5 / 5.0
Chevrolet Cobalt4.5 / 5.0
Hyundai Elantra GT4.5 / 5.0
Hyundai Elantra4.5 / 5.0
Mazda34.0 / 5.0
Ford C-Max4.0 / 5.0
Kia Forte Koup4.0 / 5.0
Hyundai Elantra Coupe4.0 / 5.0
Chevrolet HHR4.0 / 5.0
Nissan Sentra4.0 / 5.0
Buick Verano4.0 / 5.0
Dodge Caliber4.0 / 5.0
Dodge Avenger4.0 / 5.0
Chevrolet Cruze Limited4.0 / 5.0
Hyundai Veloster4.0 / 5.0
Mitsubishi Eclipse4.0 / 5.0
Volkswagen Jetta4.0 / 5.0
Mazda54.0 / 5.0
Nissan 370Z4.0 / 5.0
Volkswagen Beetle4.0 / 5.0
Volkswagen Golf4.0 / 5.0
Chevrolet Cruze4.0 / 5.0
Ford Focus4.0 / 5.0
Dodge Dart4.0 / 5.0
Mitsubishi Lancer3.5 / 5.0
Chrysler PT Cruiser3.5 / 5.0
Volkswagen Golf SportWagen3.5 / 5.0
Subaru WRX3.5 / 5.0
Subaru Impreza3.5 / 5.0
Volkswagen GTI3.0 / 5.0
Volkswagen Eos3.0 / 5.0
Subaru WRX STI2.5 / 5.0
Avg. Compact Car4.0

The Best and Worst Years for the Hyundai Elantra

The Hyundai Elantra has received its fair share of complaints, but the company has worked on resolving these problems, and in the past 5 years there has been a noticeable downward trend in customer complaints.

Based on findings from reputable automotive sites and owner feedback, the best Hyundai Elantra is the 2020 model year Elantra while the worst is the 2013 model year Elantra.

  • Carcomplaints.com has recorded no complaints for the 2020 Elantra, and it was also awarded the Top Safety Pick by the IIHS
  • the 2013 Elantra logged the highest total number of complaints since the introduction of the model at 515 complaints.

The top 3 reported issues about the 2013 Elantra were:

  • Engine problems
  • Wheel problems
  • Brake problems

Based on J.D. Power consumer ratings, the 2020 Elantra scored a “great” quality and reliability score (87 out of 100) and an overall rating of 83 out of 100, placing it in 3rd place in the sedan category, right behind the Kia Forte and Nissan Sentra (both scored 84 out of 100).

The 2013 Elantra, on the other hand, received an “average” reliability score (77 out of 100) and an overall rating of 79 out of 100, which placed the car in the 12th position.

Based on 132 reviews in cars.com, the 2020 Elantra received 4.7 stars out of 5.0.

Below is a table of the recorded complaints for the Hyundai Elantra from model year 2010 to model year 2021:

Model YearRecorded Complaints (carcomplaints.com)
2010 Hyundai Elantra107
2011 Hyundai Elantra107
2012 Hyundai Elantra148
2013 Hyundai Elantra515
2014 Hyundai Elantra77
2015 Hyundai Elantra59
2016 Hyundai Elantra37
2017 Hyundai Elantra 53
2018 Hyundai Elantra15
2019 Hyundai Elantra2
2020 Hyundai Elantra0
2021 Hyundai Elantra1

What About Recalls for the Hyundai Elantra?

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) database, the Hyundai Elantra has been recalled a total of 25 times since 2010.

A recall is issued when a manufacturer or the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) deems that a vehicle or one or more of its components creates an unreasonable safety risk or does not meet minimum safety requirements – recall related problems are fixed free of charge.

To find out if your Elantra has been subject to a recall, you can use the search portal on the Hyundai website, by simply entering your vehicle VIN number.

Here are the total number of recall campaigns per year for the Hyundai Elantra for the past decade:

Model YearNumber of Recall Campaigns
2010 Hyundai Elantra4
2011 Hyundai Elantra5
2012 Hyundai Elantra4
2013 Hyundai Elantra3
2014 Hyundai Elantra1
2015 Hyundai Elantra0
2016 Hyundai Elantra0
2017 Hyundai Elantra 4
2018 Hyundai Elantra0
2019 Hyundai Elantra1
2020 Hyundai Elantra3

Hyundai Elantra Model Year List

Below is a list of Hyundai Elantra models according to generation and model year:

First Generation

  • 1990 Hyundai Elantra
  • 1991 Hyundai Elantra
  • 1992 Hyundai Elantra
  • 1993 Hyundai Elantra
  • 1994 Hyundai Elantra

Second Generation

  • 1995 Hyundai Elantra
  • 1996 Hyundai Elantra
  • 1997 Hyundai Elantra
  • 1998 Hyundai Elantra
  • 1999 Hyundai Elantra

Third Generation

  • 2000 Hyundai Elantra
  • 2001 Hyundai Elantra
  • 2002 Hyundai Elantra
  • 2003 Hyundai Elantra
  • 2004 Hyundai Elantra
  • 2005 Hyundai Elantra

Fourth Generation

  • 2006 Hyundai Elantra
  • 2007 Hyundai Elantra
  • 2008 Hyundai Elantra
  • 2009 Hyundai Elantra

Fifth Generation 

  • 2010 Hyundai Elantra
  • 2011 Hyundai Elantra
  • 2012 Hyundai Elantra
  • 2013 Hyundai Elantra
  • 2014 Hyundai Elantra

Sixth Generation

  • 2015 Hyundai Elantra
  • 2019 Hyundai Elantra

Seventh Generation

  • 2020 Hyundai Elantra
  • 2021 Hyundai Elantra

Are Hyundai Elantra Expensive to Maintain?

RepairPal states that the average total annual repair cost of the Hyundai Elantra is $452 or approximately $38 per month.

The Hyundai Elantra’s annual cost is very affordable. The annual average for all compact cars is $526 while the annual average for all vehicles is $652. 

ModelAvg. Annual 
Repair Cost
Frequency of
Unscheduled Repairs
(per year)
Probability of
Severe Repairs
Toyota Corolla$3620.47%
Kia Forte5$4240.28%
Honda Civic$3680.210%
Toyota Matrix$3960.57%
Chevrolet Cobalt$4530.29%
Kia Forte$4510.29%
Hyundai Elantra GT$3970.39%
Hyundai Elantra$4520.39%
Mazda3$4330.310%
Ford C-Max$5570.310%
Kia Forte Koup$4690.311%
Hyundai Elantra Coupe$4970.49%
Chevrolet HHR$5420.310%
Nissan Sentra$4910.212%
Buick Verano$4780.212%
Dodge Caliber$5010.212%
Dodge Avenger$5410.311%
Chevrolet Cruze Limited$4980.411%
Hyundai Veloster$4930.312%
Mitsubishi Eclipse$5100.213%
Volkswagen Jetta$6090.310%
Mazda5$5810.410%
Nissan 370Z$5040.313%
Volkswagen Beetle$6120.410%
Volkswagen Golf$6300.411%
Chevrolet Cruze$5450.412%
Ford Focus$5690.313%
Dodge Dart$5970.313%
Mitsubishi Lancer$6460.215%
Chrysler PT Cruiser$6410.214%
Volkswagen Golf SportWagen$6060.811%
Subaru WRX$6820.314%
Subaru Impreza$6530.317%
Volkswagen GTI$7911.011%
Volkswagen Eos$8241.113%
Subaru WRX STI$7580.521%
Avg. Compact Car$5260.311%

You may also be interested in our article: how long do Tesla Model 3 last?

How Long Do the Brakes of Hyundai Elantra Last?

According to data provided by nalleyhyundai.com, expect your brakes to have a lifespan of 30,000 to 70,000 miles, or roughly 2 to 5 years (based on 15,000 miles of driving per year).

To prolong the life of your brakes and brake pads, we recommend to start braking at a generous distance, to allow the brakes to ease the vehicle into full stop.

How Long Do Hyundai Elantra Batteries Last?

Hyundai Elantra batteries should last approximately 3-5 years. This can vary, depending on factors such as climate, driving habits, the type of battery, and more.

Five tips below to help prolong your Elantras battery:

  1. Keep you battery tightly fastened: The vibrations of your car can loosen the connections potentially resulting in short circuits and internal damage.
  2. Sorage: Keep your car stored indoors away from extreme changes in climate
  3. Limit short rides: Quick car rides prevent the battery from fully charging. To help maintain battery power, drive your Forester frequently and for extended periords.
  4. Control Corrosion: Clean the terminals (toothbrush dipped in baking soda and water mixture) and keep them free from buildup.
  5. Turn off all lights when you exit: Forgetting to turn your headlights or interior lights off can put alot of strain on your battery.

How Long Do the Tires of Hyundai Elantra Last?

Under normal circumstances, planethyundai.com states that the stock tires of the Hyundai Elantra can last up to 50,000 miles or 3 years (based on 15,000 miles of driving annually).

If you would like to keep your Elantras tires in good shape, regularly check tire air pressure and follow the recommended air pressure configurations for the front and rear tires.

It is also recommended to have your tires rotated every 5,000 miles to ensure even wear.

How Long Do the Transmissions of Hyundai Elantra Last?

The transmission of the Hyundai Elantra, along with most modern-day transmissions, should be able to last between 150,000 and 200,000 miles or roughly 13 years (based on 15,000 miles driven per year), according to yourmechanic.com.

Always make sure that your vehicle has the proper level of transmission fluid, especially before going on long-distance trips, to ensure the longevity of your transmission.

How Long do the Spark Plugs of the Hyundai Elantra Last?

According to tampahyundai.com, the spark plugs of Hyundai Elantra units can last at least 60,000 miles (or at least 4 years, based on 15,000 miles of driving annually).

Spark plugs are responsible for the engine ignition of your Elantra. If you have been having difficulties starting your car, consult with an authorized Hyundai service center immediately.

You may also be interested in our article: how long do Kia Forte Last?

What About Insurance Cost of the Hyundai Elantra?

Based on data collected by expertinsurancereviews.com, the average cost of annual car insurance for the Hyundai Elantra is $1,372 or $114 monthly.

Elantra owners with a good driving track record can save up to $566 in annual car insurance from policy discounts.

Tips to Prolong the Life of Your Hyundai Elantra

Here are a few simple tips to ensure that your Hyundai Elantra will last as long as possible.

  • Change engine oil regularly. Engine oil keeps the different parts of the vehicle’s engine lubricated. Replace your engine oil every 5,000 miles or as recommended by your vehicle’s service manual.
  • Keep the vehicle clean always. Letting dirt and moisture accumulate around vulnerable parts of the car will lead to rust and corrosion, which are hard to remedy. 
  • Know the warning signs on your dashboard. Learn what your vehicle is trying to tell you. If you are able to identify what a sign that is flashing on your dashboard means, you can immediately know when you should visit your car mechanic.

Please also read our article: how long do Nissan Altima last

Resources

  1. https://carsalesbase.com/us-hyundai-elantra/
  2. https://www.nhtsa.gov/vehicle/2020/HYUNDAI/ELANTRA
  3. https://cars.usnews.com/cars-trucks/hyundai/elantra/2011/reliability
  4. https://repairpal.com/reliability/hyundai/elantra
  5. https://www.nalleyhyundai.com/hyundai-elantra-brake-pads.html
  6. https://www.planethyundai.com/service-tips/how-many-miles-do-car-tires-last
  7. https://www.tampahyundai.com/service/spark-plugs.html
  8. https://www.expertinsurancereviews.com/hyundai-elantra-insurance-rates/ 
  9. https://www.jdpower.com/cars/2013/hyundai/elantra/sedan-4d-gls 
  10. https://www.jdpower.com/cars/2020/hyundai/elantra 
  11. https://www.cars.com/research/hyundai-elantra-2020/ 
  12. https://www.carparts.com/blog/hyundai-elantra-reliability-and-common-problems/
  13. https://repairpal.com/reliability/hyundai/elantra 
  14. https://www.carparts.com/blog/hyundai-elantra-reliability-and-common-problems/
  15. https://www.hyundaiusa.com/us/en 
  16. https://enginepatrol.com/how-long-hyundai-kona-last/
  17. https://enginepatrol.com/how-long-mitsubishi-lancer-last/
  18. https://www.hyundaiusa.com/us/en/assurance/america-best-warranty 
  19. https://enginepatrol.com/how-long-chevy-cruze-last/