Hyundai Tucson Test Drive

Hyundai Tucson Overview

Of late, Hyundai has been treading a rather unconventional path when it comes to rolling out new cars in India. It launched the new Elantra at a time when all other car makers have been shying away from the segment citing low sales. That gambit appears to have paid off with Elantras being shipped out of showrooms at a rather brisk pace. But barely three months into the Elantra’s launch, Hyundai has executed a similar move by introducing the Tucson – an SUV that sits bang in between the soft-roader pack that is lead by the Creta on one side and the Santa Fe on the other. It’s a space that has been left to Honda’s petrol-only CR-V. Is that down to a lack of interest in the segment or has it been underserved?

And is the Tucson good enough to revive it? Also, the challenge is tougher still for the urban Tucson as it sits in a price range that will have it rubbing shoulders with the butch and rugged Ford Endeavour and Toyota Fortuner. So, is this 5-seater SUV really all that impressive for buyers to take the bait?

Hyundai Tucson Design

As far as looks are concerned, the mini Santa Fe stance certainly works in Tucson’s favour. Upfront there’s a healthy dose of chrome on the trademark hexagonal grille, the swept-back dual barrel LED headlamps look very modern and detailing on the chiselled bumper is attractive too. Even in profile, the Tucson holds your attention, thanks to the strong shoulder line and curved glasshouse. From the rear it looks quite similar to the Creta, but when looked at closely, you do get more modern cuts and creases to help it stand out from its cheaper sibling.

Although Hyundai claims the chassis to be all-new, the Tucson’s basic architecture is quite similar to the second generation car. But Hyundai have worked on it to a great extent, as the new car has a much more rigid structure thanks to Hyundai using more high-strength steel compared to the last generation car. On top of that, Hyundai have also used lot of adhesive application on the chassis, which will not only improve rigidity but also help reduce NVH and vibrations.

Hyundai Tucson Cabin

Following a fairly long stint behind the wheel, we can say that the Tucson’s cabin is a nice place to spend time in. The dual-tone dashboard may not be terribly exciting to look at but in that typical Hyundai fashion, its superbly put together and well laid out too. Most of the interior is lined in quality fabrics and soft-touch plastics which help create an ambience worthy of the Tucson’s price tag.

Some might view the lack of sharp creases and contours inside the cabin as a sign of lesser quality but that’s certainly not the case here. The simple and effective way in which the interior has been designed ensures the Tucson is always relaxing to drive. Speaking of relaxing, the front seats are near perfect when it comes to width and under thigh support. Covered in quality leather trim, they are comfortable and supple enough without being too soft. At 2670mm, the Tucson has an impressively long wheelbase for its size and this shows in the second row. The rear legroom is akin to some of the full-size SUVs and the rear bench itself is generously accommodating. In order to liberate more headroom, Hyundai has set the rear bench quite low though it’s not to the point that it is uncomfortable. What’s uncomfortable though is the rear middle seat comfort, partly due to the hard backrest and partly because of a big hump in the central tunnel. The wide opening boot, meanwhile, is rated at 513-litres with all the seats in place. If you ask us it’s easily enough for a family’s worth of luggage for a weekend away. Being a premium Hyundai, the Tucson is generously equipped. Even the entry-level variant gets electrically foldable ORVMs, automatic headlamps, puddle lamps, cruise control and Hyundai’s new eight inch touchscreen infotainment system with Android Auto/Apple CarPlay.

As for the top-spec variant, there’s LED headlamps, LED static bending lights, dual-zone climate control, 10-way electrically adjustable driver’s seat, electric tailgate and an electronic parking brake as well. Hyundai hasn’t skimped on safety either, with standard kit including electronic stability control, vehicle stability management, hill assist and downhill brake assist, besides 6 airbags and ABS with EBD. Oddly enough, there are no automatic wipers or a sunroof – features that are available in less expensive Hyundai models.

Hyundai Tucson Engine

The new Tucson is available with two engine options – a 2.0-litre petrol and a 2.0-litre diesel. We drove the diesel-powered model which is expected to be the higher selling of the two. This engine produces 182bhp and a healthy 400Nm of torque between 1,750 and 2,750rpm. For more details on Hyundai Tucson check Basna

As you would expect, that broad spread of torque low down the rev -range makes the Tucson truly effortless around town. What adds to the impressive low speed manners is the 6-speed automatic gearbox which allows for silky smooth shifts – be it upshifts or downshifts. However, like in the Elantra this gearbox tends to be aggressive at times, holding on to gears for longer instead of relying on the torque and upshifting early. That said, in everyday ECO mode the gearbox goes about its business in a relaxing manner.

This new 2.0-litre engine though lacks top-end grunt and is noticeably less refined than the 1.6-litre unit found in the Elantra. But less refinement is hardly a bother thanks to the remarkably low NVH levels. Out on the open road, the Tucson is amazingly quiet with little in terms of engine, tire or wind noise filtering into the cabin. Even at highway speeds there’s barely any engine noise unless you floor the throttle.

Hyundai Tucson Riding

The thing you’d probably enjoy the most is the ride quality. It’s very well judged for our roads, its suppleness and 172mm of ground making light work of craters and bumps on our route. Ride at the rear does feel a bit stiff but that helps in keeping body roll within acceptable levels. But regardless of all the drama outside, it’s always nice and quiet inside the cabin. Hyundai has employed numerous measures such as enhanced sound deadening materials and strengthened body stiffness to ensure noise from engine and road stays muted.

The steering feels light but unlike the Creta, weighs up enough at higher speeds to impart a greater sense of confidence. On corners though, you do wish the steering offered more feedback. We were a bit let down by the brake feel, which despite all four discs, feels blunted and we often found ourselves timing our brakes much in advance to avoid any surprises. On the whole, the Tucson despite its size feels like a supremely easy “car” to drive all day long.

Hyundai Tucson Safety

Despite all of this, the Tucson makes a delightful case for itself as an overall package – it looks dapper, is laden with convenience and safety features (the top-end model gets 6 airbags, electronic stability programme and vehicle stability control), is a perfectly amicable machine to drive on all seven days and to any destination, however far or fancy that might crop up. Yes, there’s no all-wheel-drive option available just yet but Hyundai tells us there’s one coming mid next year so you could indulge in light mud-plugging then.

Hyundai Tucson Price in Mumbai

Hyundai Tucson On Road Price is 21,69,772/- and Ex-showroom Price is 18,63,975/- in Mumbai. Hyundai Tucson comes in 5 colours, namely Wine Red,Phantom Black,Sleek Silver,Pure White,Star Dust. Hyundai Tucson comes with 2WD with 1999 CC Displacement and 4 Cylinders with Maximum Power 153 bhp@6200 rpm and Peak Torque 192 Nm@4000 rpm DRIVE TRAIN 2WD and reaches 100 KMPH at N/A . Hyundai Tucson comes with Manual Transmission with 2WD .View offers on Tucson in Mumbai at Autozhop.

Hyundai Tucson Verdict

On the whole, the Tucson doesn’t have much to offer enthusiasts but it makes a great choice as a family car. With the Honda CRV being its only rival, the fact that the Tucson gets a powerful diesel motor option makes it a much more tempting buy. It gets loads of kit too and does look rather special. Priced in between Rs 18.99 lakh (petrol M/T) to Rs 24.99 lakh (GLS diesel A/T) the Tucson slots right in between the smaller Creta and the premium Santa Fe. With rivals like the Volkswagen Tiguan still some time away, the Tucson has a clear road ahead to be yet another success story for Hyundai. It does have some limitations yet it works really well as a family car. So the Hyundai Tucson isn’t a SUV to die for but it’s also a product you can’t go wrong with.

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