Available now, the SR joins the new Elantra range with a starting price of $28,990 plus on-road costs.
A six-speed manual will be standard, and a seven-speed automatic transmission (with paddle shifters) will bump pricing up to $31,290 before on-road costs.
That pricing positions the SR, as expected, above the auto-only $26,490 Elantra Elite, and well beyond the $21,490 starting point of the entry-level, manual-equipped Active model.
While all variants in the regular Elantra range are powered by a naturally aspirated 112kW/192Nm 2.0-litre petrol engine, the Elantra SR gets the now well-travelled 1.6-litre turbo engine that has featured in the Veloster SR Turbo and the Kia Pro_Cee'd GT - the latter now retired from the local scene.
That mill sees outputs in the top-spec Elantra SR of 150kW at 6000rpm and 265Nm between 1500 and 4500rpm. 'Warm' territory by today's standards in the sporty small-car segment, but a neat upgrade for the new flagship variant.
However, if not the engine itself, the Elantra SR's biggest selling point is its independent rear suspension (IRS), replacing the torsion-beam setup that features in the core range.
The addition of IRS will, by default but but also by specific Australian-focused tuning, deliver greater road-holding for a more dynamic run through corners.
Importantly, the Elantra SR's IRS setup is the same package we'll find in the all-new i30 hatch when it hits Australia in the second quarter of 2017.
Other tweaks for this SR-badged special include larger brakes and a faster steering setup, along with - of course - a sports styling kit inside and out.
Key features, beyond those offered with the Active and Elite, include:
- 1.6 Turbo-GDi engine (+38kW & 73Nm)
- 17-inch twin-spoke alloy wheels
- Larger front brake discs (+25mm diameter/+2mm thickness)
- Multi-link independent suspension with bespoke Australian sports-tuned dynamics.
- Drive Mode Select (DCT only) - Normal, Sport & Eco modes
- Sensory Safety features including:
- Blind Spot Detection (BSD)
- Lane Change Assist (LCA)
- Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA)
- Front parking assist system (4 sensors)
- Twin exhaust tips
- HID Bi-Xenon headlights (sports design)
- Sports body kit (front/rear bumpers, side skirts, radiator grille)
- Sports tail-light design
- Alloy sports pedals
- Black headlining
- Carbon-fibre effect dashboard/door inserts
- Dark charcoal metallic painted dash panels and door handles
- Red-stitched interior upholstery
- Sports front bucket seats with extended bolsters and ‘Sport’ logos
- Sports steering wheel (flat-bottomed) and supervision cluster
- Electrically adjustable driver’s seat (10-way including lumbar)
- Heated front seats
- Power-operated sunroof
- Steering-wheel mounted paddle-shifters (DCT only)
- USB power outlet in centre floor console storage compartment
- New exterior colours exclusive to Elantra SR Turbo: Sparkling Metal, Phoenix Orange and Blazing Yellow
- Metallic / Mica paint: $495
- Optional: Red leather upholstery: $295
2017 Elantra SR pricing and specifications (plus on-road costs):
- Elantra SR - six-speed manual - $28,990
- Elantra SR - seven-speed Dual Clutch Transmission - $31,290
Watch for CarAdvice's first-drive review of the Elantra SR to come late next week.