The exterior of a red Hyundai Tucson

Hyundai Tucson review

The Hyundai Tucson has plenty of road presence and offers excellent value for money. An ideal choice for families, it has excellent reliability scores and a high level of safety kit.

Pros

  • Stylish design
  • Practical, roomy cabin and boot
  • You get a lot for your money

Cons

  • Not exciting to drive
  • Visibility is restricted at the rear
  • Not a lot of safety kit on some models

Summary

“The Hyundai Tucson is fashionable, highly practical and very good value.”

The Hyundai Tucson is a practical and good looking alternative to more established rivals. As a crossover, it benefits from SUV looks and a high riding position but is still an easy car to drive. 

Launched in 2015, the engines and infotainment system were refreshed in 2017, while an update in 2018 brought an attractive new grille, bumpers and alloy wheels, plus LED lights to complete the contemporary look.

There’s always been a decent range of engines, with two petrol and three diesel choices. From 2017, the previously lower-spec diesels were replaced with punchier versions. The most powerful 2.0-litre diesel engines were also replaced with hybrids that featured a 48V electric motor. These are the only Tucsons to have four-wheel drive.

The earlier Tucson line-up featured S and SE models with a sat nav upgrade option. Since 2017, sat nav features on all versions.

The line-up runs from S Connect to SE Nav and N Line to the more luxurious Premium and Premium SE models.

Wheel shot of the Hyundai Tucson

What’s the interior like?

“All Tucsons are generously equipped and the latest models have very plush interiors.”

The Tucson has a pleasant interior, comfortable seats and a higher riding position. An update in 2018 included more soft-touch materials for a more luxurious feel. The slightly clunky-looking centre console was also improved and the latest cars (post-2018) feature an elegant ‘free floating’ touchscreen display. 

You’ll have a good view of the road ahead, but it’s hard to see much out of the back. Luckily, it has useful parking sensors and cameras that come as standard. There’s loads of room for adults in both the front and back seats with plenty of rear legroom, even for somebody sitting behind a tall driver.

There are lots of cabin storage options and a spacious boot that offers a decent 513 litres of luggage space, so you can fit in a number of large suitcases.

The interior of a Hyundai Tucson with steering wheel and dashboard in shot

What’s it like to drive?

“With a comfy ride and strong diesel performance, the Tucson is a great all-rounder.”

As a family car, the Tucson is definitely up with the class leaders for comfort and performance. If you choose a Tucson with optional selectable drive modes, the Sport setting adds a bit more weight and feel. It feels stable with lots of grip when cornering so it won’t sway from side to side. 

The petrol engines are good if you don’t intend to drive far, but if you plan on doing lots of A-road and motorway driving, the diesels are a better bet. They offer more all-round power and are more economical.

The exterior of a red Hyundai Tucson

Is it cost-efficient to buy and run?

“Decent fuel economy and affordable ownership costs makes the Tucson an appealing package.”

The smallest diesel engine returns up to 49 mpg in the Tucson, which is good for a car of this size. All the diesels should top 40 mpg with ease, but watch out for the most powerful petrol model which drops economy down to around 35 mpg. 

The rest of the running costs should be very moderate, with cheap insurance guaranteed by group ratings of between 12 and 25. Servicing costs will also be low, especially using main dealer service plans.

With Hyundai’s ever-improving record on depreciation, you shouldn’t have to worry about losing much money on your used Tucson.

Fascia shot of the Hyundai Tucson

How reliable and safe is it?

“A five-year warranty speaks volumes and the five-star Euro NCAP crash test award is reassuring.”

Hyundai are developing a pretty good record for reliability and the Tucson is no exception. There are a limited number of faults reported in new models, but the company’s very strong five-year warranty package should be reassuring, even for second owners.

It also has a five-star Euro NCAP independent crash test rating with good but not exceptional occupant safety scores. Only post-2018 Premium models feature automatic emergency braking, with blind spot warnings and cross-traffic alerts also part of the package.

Engine shot of the Hyundai Tucson

Which one is best for you?

Best for economy - SE Nav 1.6 CRDi 115PS  

Best for family - SE Nav 1.6 CRDi 115PS

Best for fun - Premium 1.6 CRDi 136PS           

The petrol models aren't the best choice unless you plan to drive less than 12,000 and will be sticking to urban areas. If you’re looking at the post-2017 engines, the 1.6 CRDi is very good and the lower powered (115 horsepower) version will still be more than enough for most of your driving needs. Older cars have a 1.7-litre diesel which has similar all-round abilities. The 132 hp 1.6-litre engine is a great option if you want a petrol Tucson.

The SE Nav is a good trim with sat nav, rear parking sensors and cruise control. It’s also worth looking at higher trims as they'll be equipped with features like front and rear parking sensors.

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