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I’m Sorry, But The New 2021 Hyundai Elantra Is All Kinds Of Ugly

2021 Hyunda Elantra

Now before I dive into this, let me preface this post by saying that I am a big Hyundai fan. My wife (now ex) has a 2017 Hyundai Sonata 2.0T Sport. I myself have been looking for a 2018 Hyundai Elantra Sport. I’ve recommended their cars to countless people in my social circle, many of which went on to buy them.

But a few years ago, they started making some odd styling decisions that really had me scratching my head. When Hyundai gave the Elantra a mild facelift for the 2019 model year, I wasn’t a huge fan, but it wasn’t horrible either.

2021 Hyunda Elantra

The 2020 Hyundai Sonata on the other hand.. Now that’s a hot mess. With a grille that resembles a catfish, a rear-end that I don’t even have words for, and the chrome strip that runs from the headlights to the rear of the car. Ewww. People seem to either love it or hate it, there’s no in between.

And now we’ve got the 2021 Hyundai Elantra, which debuted online last night, the real-life unveiling cancelled on account of the coronavirus pandemic. My first impressions, after slogging through the never-ending presentation? There’s a LOT going on here. Take a look at these photos yourself and see what you think.

2021 Hyunda Elantra

So many hard, angular lines. In describing the car’s looks, Hyundai designers used lots of flowery language like “sensuous sportiness” and talking about the “feeling of tension” that the car delivers. But on social media, the public was singing a different tune entirely.

  • 2017/2018 over the new body styles by a landslide.
  • It’s too busy, too sharp, there’s no flow…your designers need to edit a bit.
  • Love the inside but outside not so much.
  • Grills just keep getting more ridiculous and ugly…
  • I’m sorry but…. Its ugly.
  • I love my Hyundai, but their designs lately are all just a little bit off. That rear window/accent looks horrible, and the angles on the new grills are terrible, like a gaping fish maw.

2021 Hyunda Elantra interior

Yeah, so I’m not the only one who feels like Hyundai really missed the mark here. The side profile of the car is ridiculous looking, with “parametric-jewel body surfaces” that look like a series of angular dents in an otherwise flat plane.

Personally, if I were in the market, I’d go with the Kia Forte over this, as I think the design is a lot cleaner and sharper. The only thing the Elantra has going for it over the Forte is it’s updated interior, which looks pretty slick with the double screens, smart voice recognition system, and other premium features.. But that ridiculous steering wheel needs to go.

What do you think of the new 2021 Hyundai Elantra?



  1. Chris

    November 16, 2020 at 11:05 am

    This! I wondered if anyone else thought the new Elantra’s are awful looking. I don’t like the interior either, though lol

  2. manny

    February 5, 2021 at 4:31 pm

    They really f’d it up. what the heck is that divider between driver/passenger
    These must have been temps that designed this one. Holy mutha – I’ll look elsewhere

  3. Jaz

    March 22, 2021 at 1:48 pm

    I was wondering what I saw in traffic. Not sure how and why these terrible decisions were made. Just plain ugly

    • Sujeet Patel

      March 22, 2021 at 2:47 pm

      I haven’t seen one in person yet, but I parked next to a new Sonata the other day, and that was equally bad.

  4. Robert

    September 4, 2021 at 2:57 pm

    Worst designs i ever saw in my life..their previous generations are much better in looks and styling as well as catchy and simpler to the eye..idk who the hell designed this vehicle..H e probably must be high

  5. Graham

    September 4, 2021 at 6:08 pm

    Yep. It seems like Hyundai started going south starting with the 2018 Sonata, and it just spiraled out of control from there. Very disappointing, as I was in the market for a small compact car, and the Elantra was on my short list until I saw it.

    Kia on the other hand knocked it out of the park with the Forte!

  6. Ary

    April 22, 2022 at 12:33 am

    I hate the new design so much. I had a blue 2018 that I loved with all my heart. Someone cut me off and totaled it when they ran a red light. I really want another Elantra, but the new design isn’t appealing. It’s much more masculine—-like a regular sedan was crossed with a 14 year old boy’s drawings of cars in the future.

    They also muted the color options. I miss my electric blue. Given that my old Hyundai saved my life, I’d like to buy a new one. I’ll have to wait until this design fades away, or buy a Honda Civic 🙁

  7. Mike

    February 20, 2024 at 5:24 pm

    Every time I see one I can’t believe they put those horrible indents in the side doors. Yuck.

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