Hyundai Elantra Set for LA Debut, Veloster and Accent to Follow Later

As we reported last week, Hyundai has a crop of new vehicles coming in the near future and we've recently learned it will be highlighted by three new small cars. The trio will be headed up by the new Elantra, just confirmed to be debuting at the end of this year at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

The Elantra, known globally as the Avante, is a major redesign of Hyundai's compact sedan. While specific details on the car are still scarce, we can see that its styling has been thoroughly updated inside and out to bring it in line with the company's latest design language. While sharing some cues with the larger Sonata, the Elantra's styling is more akin to the new Tucson, which isn't a bad thing. U.S.-spec cars are expected to carry new 1.6-liter and 2.0-liter four-cylinder engines with six-speed manual and automatic transmission choices and go on-sale sometime in early 2011 following the LA debut.

A month later, Hyundai will follow the Elantra with an all-new compact coupe based on the Veloster Concept. Hyundai confirmed to Motor Trend in June that the shooting brake-shaped hatch would make its debut in Detroit and likely hit showrooms by the fall of 2011. The four-seater is expected to carry the aforementioned 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine making a rumored 140 horsepower and good for some 40 miles per gallon. We expect the same six-speed manual and automatic gearbox choices. No name has been confirmed yet, but our sources tell us it won't be "Veloster." A revival of the "Tiburon" name is being considered.

Also waiting in the wings is the next-generation Accent, though we've yet to confirm a debut date. The car has recently been revealed in both the Chinese and Russian markets, as the Verna and the Concept RB. The former looks more like the U.S.-market Sonata while the later looks more like the upcoming Elantra, so it's anyone's guess which body style will appear in the U.S. Either way, the new 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine is again expected under the hood, presumably with the same transmission options. With the car already revealed in global markets, a U.S. launch is expected in the near future as well. Presuming Hyundai doesn't double-up at either LA or Detroit, they still have Chicago and New York wide open for big debuts. Like the Elantra and Veloster, we expect to see the new Accent in showrooms by the end of 2011.

Stay with Automobilemag.com for coverage of the L.A. Auto Show when news breaks.

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