Thursday, May 30, 2013

Car Review: The 2013 Hyundai Elantra still tops the compact market

DALLAS, May 27, 2013 — Changes to the 2013 Hyundai Elantra are miniscule this year, but there has been the introduction of new body styles, a coupe and a hatchback.
The Hyundai Elantra comes in a hatchback too.
For the standard Elantra, however, it’s business as usual and still all about the classy styling as well as what’s under the hood, emphasizing good fuel economy and many excellent standard features.
A fixture in the compact car market, particularly after a redesign several years ago, Hyundai’s competition ranges from the Chevrolet Cruze, Ford Focus and Mazda 3 to the Honda Civic, Nissan Sentra and Toyota Corolla.
There are two trims to choose from: the GLS and Limited. With the GLS, you get 16-inch steel wheels, heated mirrors, power accessories, a height-adjustable driver seat, 60/40 split-folding rear seat, and a good bit of techie options like a trip computer, satellite radio and an auxiliary audio jack, and iPod/USB audio interface.
If you choose the GLS with automatic transmission, there is a Preferred Package, making a few changes to the standard features like 16-inch alloy wheels as well as the addition of fog lamps, upgraded interior trim, heated front seats, and lighted vanity mirrors.
The Limited 2013 Hyundai Elantra offers all the goodies from the GLS Preferred Package, but 17-inch alloy wheels, a sunroof, leather upholstery, and heated front and rear seats are also added. For more luxury, you can also opt for the Technology Package, which adds to the mix automatic headlamps, rearview camera, dual-zone automatic climate control, and an upgraded sound system.
Under the hood, this Hyundai has front-wheel drive with a 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine that puts out 148 horsepower and 131 pound-feet of torque. The six-speed manual transmission is the norm, but a six-speed automatic is optional on the GLS. On the Limited sedan, it is automatic as the standard.
For safety, the 2013 Hyundai Elantra has traction and stability control, antilock disc brakes, active front head restraints and front seat side-impact, and side curtain airbags. 
Inside the Elantra, you will find a stylized interior that boasts a center stack and easy to use and manipulate buttons and knobs, a design that Hyundai can certainly boast about overall.
Space-wise, the Hyundai Elantra offers plenty of it for the compact car market. Plenty of headroom even for a front seat driver or passenger who stands over six-feet, and even in the backseat seat there is plenty of legroom. The trunk is large with 14.8 cubic feet of cargo space too.
Behind the wheel, the 2013 Hyundai Elantra is fun to drive as there is plenty of power to get where you need to go quickly and easy with handling good for this compact market option.
Should You Need to Know: Kudos to the larger than usual trunks found in this class and the outstanding warranty coverage. Take particular note of the 2013 Hyundai Elantra GT, which is an all-new hatchback that replaced the Elantra Touring wagon with a 51-foot cargo area.
Miles Per Gallon: The 2013 Hyundai Elantra has impressive fuel economy with 29 miles per gallon in the city and 40 miles per gallon on the highway.
Cost: The 2013 Hyundai Elantra starts at around $17,000 for the GLS.
Rita Cook is a writer/editor with over 1300 articles to her credit in the past 15-plus years. She is a frequent auto and travel contributor on a national radio show called “The Duva Show” where her “The Insider Mag’s” I’m Standing Here segment can be heard weekly between 6:00 and 7:00 p.m. Monday evenings.
Cook is a member of the Texas Auto Writer’s Association and the North Texas Film Critics and writes for the Dallas Morning News, Focus Daily New, Living Magazine and Valley Scene Magazines as well as www.greensourceDFW. She also spends much of her time on the road traveling or working on books.
She recently received the 2012 Green Media Award from the North Texas Corporate Recycling Association.
Her latest book release is “Haunted Bartlesville, Oklahoma” from www.historypress.net and she will be publishing her ninth book this spring about Prohibition-Era cocktails in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. Follow Cook at Twitter at @ritacook13.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Service Appointment Scheduler


 
Gary Rome Hyundai has launched a new online appointment site designed to serve you better. Our old site is now discontinued and unavailable. Please follow the link and instructions below. For your protection, you will need a new username and password with our new site. We welcome your feedback as we add new features. As always, you will be able to book appointments 24/7 at your convenience.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Vehicle Profile: 2013 Hyundai Veloster Turbo

Boost makes everything better
The 2013 Hyundai Veloster Turbo model’s coupling of distinctive visual appeal and efficient performance makes it special, with an extra helping of sportiness for those who long to carve corners tighter and reach speed limits faster and it's now on sale here at Gary Rome Hyundai in Holyoke, Massachusetts.
The three-door 2013 Veloster Turbo (MSRP $22,100) seats four. Power comes from an aluminum 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine featuring Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI), dual overhead cams (DOHC) and Dual Continuously Variable Valve Timing (Dual CVVT). A twin-scroll turbocharger brings output up to 201 hp and 195 lb/ft of torque. Those numbers represent best-in-class hp per liter and weight-to-power ratio. A six-speed manual transmission is standard, or you can opt for a six-speed automatic with SHIFTRONIC manual shifting, paddle shifters, the Hyundai Active ECO system, and Hill-Start Assist. EPA estimates for the Veloster Turbo are 24 mpg city and 35 mpg highway.
This front-wheel drive Veloster Turbo rides on a front suspension featuring MacPherson struts, twin-tube shocks and a 24-mm stabilizer bar; under the rear is a V-torsion beam setup with monotube shocks. Connecting it all to the road are 18-inch alloy wheels wrapped in 215/40 V-rated tires; sticky Michelin Pilot Super Sport summer tires are optional. A sport-tuned motor-driven electric power steering (MDPS) system provides the driver with a good bit of response and feedback, while four-wheel antilock (ABS) disc brakes ensure everything comes to a quick and controlled stop.
Well-Equipped for All
The 2013 Hyundai Veloster Turbo tackles safety with those ABS brakes, as well as six standard airbags, Vehicle Stability Management, Electronic Stability Control and Traction Control System, Brake Assist, and Electronic Brake-force Distribution.
Veloster Turbo drivers benefit from standard keyless entry with push-button start; power-adjustable heated exterior mirrors with integrated turn signals; a leather-wrapped, tilt and telescoping steering wheel with audio controls; Bluetooth® hands-free calling with voice recognition; and an eight-speaker Dimension premium audio system boasting an external amplifier and subwoofer, Sirius/XM Satellite Radio, iPod®/USB/video input jacks and a Gracenote feature that allows owners to upload album cover art and manage their personal music libraries using voice-recognition technology.
These items are complimented by heated front seats with driver-side power lumbar support, Blue Link® telematics, leather upholstery, black high-gloss accents, a seven-inch LCD touch-screen display and alloy pedals that contribute to the interior’s sporty appearance. Outside, the 2013 Hyundai Veloster Turbo is tricked out with LED headlamp accents, LED taillamps, foglamps, and styling tweaks including a lower-body kit and a unique grille. Finishing things off is a pair of center-mounted chrome exhaust tips.
After that generous list of standard goods, there’s not a lot left for the options column, but Hyundai has put together an Ultimate Package with a navigation system, backup sensors and a rearview camera, a panoramic sunroof, automatic headlights and a handy 115-volt power outlet.
An Instant Hit
The Hyundai Veloster Turbo hatchback is receiving lots of positive attention. Among the accolades are a “5-Year Cost to Own Award” from Kelley Blue Book (KBB.com) and a “Best Sports Car” award from Ruedas ESPN, a Spanish-language automotive radio show.
In summing up this award-winning pocket rocket, perhaps the editors of CarandDriver.com put it best when they wrote, Restraint is a noble thing, and Hyundai sets an excellent example with the 2013 Veloster Turbo. The 201-hp version of this half-coupe/half-sedan/half-hatchback is everything it could be without becoming things it shouldn’t be, including expensive.”
For a closer look at the high-performance Veloster Turbo, schedule a test drive today.
[[make = "Hyundai"]] [[model = "Veloster Turbo"]] [[year = "2013"]]
[PRINTER FRIENDLY VERSION]

Tuesday, May 07, 2013

Gary Rome Needs Your Help to Donate to The One Fund


This is Gary Rome and I'm here to talk to you about something much more important than cars. I want to talk to you about our friends and families that were impacted by the tragic events at the marathon. My family at Gary Rome Auto Group came to me and asked me what can we do? We decided to support the Boston One Fund. For every test drive we'll donate $10and $100 for every car purchased. And because we know how important time with our family is, I'm going to give you a $10 gift certificate to Squires Bistro on Main Street in Agawam.

GO TO VIDEO

Please come to Gary Rome Hyundai in Holyoke or Gary Rome Kia in Enfield and take a test drive and I'll donate $10 to The One Fund and I'll give you a $10 gift certificate to Squires Bistro in Agawam and when you decide to buy from me, I'll then donate $100 to The One Fund. Gary Rome Auto Group, helping those that help us. It doesn't cost any of us extra to be nice!

You can also donate directly to The One Fund: OneFundBoston.org


Wednesday, May 01, 2013

2013 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid: First Drive

 

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When it appeared in 2011 to counter rivals like the Ford Fusion Hybrid and Toyota Camry Hybrid, the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid generally didn't fare too well in head-to-head matchups. Complaints of a lack of refinement in the hybrid powertrain and braking feel were cited, and the Sonata routinely under-delivered on the fuel economy front. Hyundai seems to have been listening, as these are exactly the areas the company focused on for the 2013 Sonata Hybrid, and the result is a top-notch, fully competitive hybrid sedan ready to take on the competitors.

Changes start with the powertrain: The same 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine remains, but it now makes slightly less power, 159 horsepower compared to the 2012 model's 166. This is made up for by a more powerful electric motor, rated at 35 kilowatts instead of the last model's 30. Net power thus drops from 206 in the 2012 model to 199 in the 2013, but this is the only trade-off for superior performance, fuel economy and cargo room. The 2013 Sonata Hybrid's lithium polymer battery has a higher capacity, but it's also lighter and better packaged, allowing the trunk's cargo room to grow from 10.7 to 12.1 cubic feet.
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Hyundai also tuned these new components far better than the last version. The car exhibits improved smoothness in its electric-to-gas hybrid transition, better regenerative braking feel and much more seamless acceleration. A light in the gauge cluster will light up when the engine shuts off while cruising on flat, level roads indicating that the car is operating electrically — and it will do so even at highway speeds. Although there is no dedicated EV mode button, the car seems like it's engaged in all-electric driving over more distance and under harder acceleration than the competition.
 
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The Sonata Hybrid has a conventional six-speed automatic, which makes the car feel more "normal" than many other hybrid sedans on the market that use continuously variable transmissions. There is no loud, buzzy drone under hard acceleration as there is with a CVT, just smooth acceleration and barely perceptible shifts. At speed, the Sonata's ride is well damped, and the cabin is quiet with just minor wind noise.
 
The improvements boost the Sonata Hybrid's fuel economy as well, with the 2013 rated at 36 city, 40 highway and 38 combined, compared to the 2012 model's 34/39/36 (the 2013 Limited trim level gets 37 combined, due to the extra weight of equipment). This matches more favorably against the Toyota Camry Hybrid LE (43/39/41) and XLE (40/38/40) than the Ford Fusion Hybrid (47/47/47), although the average reported fuel economy for the Fusion is nowhere near the EPA rating, according to government website fueleconomy.gov. My test loop consisted of a morning's worth of high-speed highway, some stop-and-go traffic and a few hard acceleration moments to pass slower traffic, returning a respectable combined 37 mpg. This compares favorably to the consumer-reported averages for the Camry and Fusion.
 
Sonatahybridint
 
That number becomes even more impressive when one considers the car that delivered it. The '13 Sonata Hybrid is a big midsize sedan with plenty of room inside, comfortable seats and high-quality materials throughout. Exterior styling is differentiated from conventional Sonatas through different front and rear ends, headlights, taillights and wheels. My Limited model had leather seats, navigation, a nine-speaker Infinity sound system, heated front and rear seats and a massive panoramic sunroof. The only aspect of the Sonata Hybrid's interior that did not impress was the infotainment system's subpar graphics. Hybrid functions and monitoring displays are located in several different places throughout the hierarchy of screens, and the ones that are available look extremely dated and offer limited information. This is an area that can easily be updated to look better, yet looks nearly a decade behind the times in its sophistication.
 
Pricing is still reasonable for the Sonata Hybrid as well, starting at $26,445 (including $795 delivery fee) for the base Hybrid and climbing to $31,345 for the Hybrid Limited. The only option is a $1,000 panoramic sunroof on the Limited model. The Camry Hybrid LE starts at $26,935 (including $795 destination fee), jumping to $28,465 for the more luxurious XLE. The XLE price does not include a leather interior ($1,185) or integrated back-up camera and alarm ($695), bringing a comparably equipped XLE to $30,345. The Ford Fusion Hybrid is more expensive, starting at $27,995 (including $795 shipping) for an SE trim model and jumping to $32,895 for the Titanium. Load it up with comparable technology goodies and a moonroof, however, and the Fusion Hybrid Titanium can easily top $36,890.
 
Hyundai's updated Sonata Hybrid removes all the complaints many had about the operation of the old model, displaying a welcome refinement that further demonstrates the company's ability to do something that previously the Japanese had been known for: continuous improvement.
 
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