Hyundai: 2015 Tucson 2WD Elite Review

Hyundai: 2015 Tucson 2WD Elite Review

Hyundai has given the Tucson some much-needed visual attention and it’s arguably the best-looking vehicle in the price range of this category.

Gone are the clumsy lines and it’s emerged much more aggressive and coherent, ready to take the fight to the Mazda CX-5, Nissan Qashqai, Honda CR-V, Mitsubishi Outlander, Ford Kuga and Subaru Forester.

This new Tucson replaces the ix35 that was a solid performer, if a little ugly. It has adopted the Santa Fe’s genetics with a bold front grille, rounded panels and rising shoulder line, and it shares the same solid-feeling drive that the bigger Hyundai brings to the large SUV segment.Hyundai Tucson Elite 2015 front

For a medium-sized SUV, there’s a lot of space: 513 litres in the boot with the rear seats in place or more than 1500 litres if you fold them flat.

The Tucson beats the ix35 in both wheelbase and height and so there is plenty of room for three adults in the rear, too.

This new height must be a worry for Hyundai as there’s a large sticker on the sun Hyundai Tucson Elite 2015 bootvisor warning of the rollover risk. I didn’t at any time feel that the Tucson was at risk of rolling over. Sure, it’s not like a Lotus Elise in the corners, but it’s also not like driving a game of Jenga.

It is a practical towing machine for family-owned toys with a tow capacity of 1600kg.

On a braked trailer that is more than enough for a couple of trail bikes, a horse, or a small boat. Power comes from a 2-litre Hyundai Tucson Elite 2015 front interiorpetrol engine producing 121kW and 203Nm of torque coupled to a 6-speed automatic gearbox.

This would be more than adequate for towing smaller trailers, but we’d advise people to check out the diesel if they want to tow something heavy.

In the cabin, there are touches of premium that are slightly let down by finishes that cheapen it. We drove the Elite, so it gets all the good bits, but black plastic scuff plates Hyundai Tucson Elite 2015 rear quarteron the door sills are no substitute for some shiny metal ones.

The premium touches include puddle lamps that illuminate as you approach the car, keyless entry/start/stop, tinted windows, and projection headlamps with static bending lights (i.e. you turn and the lights point in the direction you’re turning, which is a great feature for helping you get into unlit driveways).

All of the media is controlled using the 7-inch touchscreen that, irritatingly, asks you to confirm that you are not an idiot every time you enter the car. The features are logical, and you can connect your phone via Bluetooth.

Notably, the overall driving experience hints at a higher level than the Tucson sits in the marketplace. A notable omission is satellite navigation (although you could always use your phone), and rain-sensing wipers.

The capacity of the fuel tank is 62 litres and the combined fuel economy is 7.9l/100km (we achieved 8.2l/100km, which is not bad), so you could do it the best part of 750km on one tank.

Surprisingly, the Tucson only got a 4-star crash test rating for its performance in the frontal offset test, something that Hyundai say it is fixing.

The safety features included are six airbags, automatic headlights, parking sensors front and back, reversing camera, electronic stability control, blind spot warning, brake assist, rear cross traffic alert, traction control and a rollover sensor.

To sum up, the Tucson feels like a baby Santa Fe. It has the same solidity while achieving a slightly more nimble feeling, undoubtedly because it’s quite a lot lighter. It’s missing a few important features that would make it a premium offering, reflecting in the price.

There’s the option of an all-wheel-drive at $51,990 if you want to go with diesel or $47,990 if you’re happy with the 1.6 turbo petrol DCT7 with 7-speed dual-clutch automatic. These don’t get the same level of equipment as the Elite.

The Tucson has narrowed the gap considerably to the Mazda CX-5, which has sat as the market leader in this segment for a few years now.

Price: $47,990

Pros

  • Practical
  • Stylish

Cons

  • Premium feel tainted by a few cheap finishes and omissions

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