Mark Jones
Road Test Editor
5 minute read
16 Nov 2016
8:16 am

Hyundai Tucson goes turbodiesel

Mark Jones

The SUV contains a number of clever convenience and connectivity features.

When your morning commute to a new car launch is longer than it would have been to fly to Cape Town to drive the car itself, and also substantially longer than the launch drive, you can forgive me for feeling that my day was not going to be good.

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But on eventually arriving at the venue, I was greeted by great strawberry and cream scones, a hot cup of coffee and a bunch of great looking new Hyundai Tucson turbodiesels.

So things started to look up rather quickly. We were ushered into our obligatory media and technical briefing, and I have to be honest, I did not know that the Tucson, which is known as Hyundai’s compact SUV in their range, has been the market segment runaway leader in terms of sales since the petrol engine derivatives were introduced in March.

Something like one in every five SUVs in this segment is a Tucson. “The overall total of 56 408 first generation Tucson and ix35 sales is proof of the popularity of Hyundai’s SUV, and since the launch of the new Tucson earlier in 2016 we have sold an average of more than 600 units per month. That puts us firmly in the top position in this market segment,” says Stanley Anderson, sales and operations director of Hyundai Automotive South Africa.

After being told this, I decided I best start paying attention to what was being said, and I can now tell you that the first turbodiesel derivative is the new 1.7-litre Euro 6 engine that offers a maximum of 85kW of power at 4 000rpm and 280Nm of peak torque between 1 250 and 2 750rpm.

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This engine is only offered in a six-speed manual transmission.

This was the car we got to drive at the launch and those that are also available in dealerships right now. The other turbodiesel that will be here before month end is a 2.0-litre Euro 2 spec engine that delivers a decent 131kW of maximum power at 4 000rpm along with a proper 400Nm of torque between 1 750 and 2 750rpm.

And here you get a six-speed automatic box as the only option. “The Tucson turbodiesels – launched at a very competitive price and with a comprehensive standard package – will certainly add a further boost to Hyundai Automotive South Africa’s sales and to its positive brand image. It is a welcome expansion of our range at a time when our automotive market is under pressure,” said Anderson.

The launch price of the new Tucson 1.7 Executive Turbodiesel MT is R439 900, while the Tucson 2.0 Elite AT will go for R519 900.

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The technical details are as follows: The new Tucson 1.7 Executive turbodiesel is built in Hyundai’s modern factory in the Czech Republic. A cylinder block with a weight reduction of 5kg, an improved 2 000 bar high-pressure fuel injection system, and a Lean NOx Trap (LNT) catalytic converter makes this advanced turbodiesel an excellent choice for fuel-efficient , yet powerful driving.

This engine employs an Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) system that, together with the LNT catalytic converter, results in cleaner exhaust gases and a CO2 emissions figure of 124 g/km. Average fuel consumption on a combined test cycle was measured at 6.8 litres per 100 km, it was claimed.

Now, let me tell you, that 6.8 litres per 100km claim was exactly the number we got on the launch drive, which for a modern manufacturer is saying quite a lot. None of these ludicrous 4.6 litres per 100km claims that you will never be able to get in the real world no matter how hard you try.

If you are still into manual shifting, the box on the 1.7-litre was an absolute gem, as was the ride and power delivery of this model.

The 2.0-litre diesel engine in the Elite is imported from South Korea and is also equipped with a turbocharger that enables it to deal particularly well with the oxygen-starved Highveld and other high-lying and mountainous areas in South Africa.

This is something we will testify to as soon as our test car arrives. Inside, soft-touch, high-quality materials are used across the cabin surfaces, creating a refined cabin ambience.

The new horizontal layout of the centre console conveys the car’s elegance while increasing the feeling of roominess.

A number of clever convenience and connectivity features add refinement to the cabin and enhance the on-board experience.

And there is space aplenty with all seats upright, the roomy luggage area is 1 030mm wide, 889mm deep and 806mm tall, delivering up to a substantial 513 litres of capacity. This can be increased to a maximum of 1 503 litres with the rear seats folded.

Practicality is boosted by a lower boot sill height, two-level boot floor and a stowable cargo cover. The introduction of new technologies means the Tucson is one of the most comprehensively equipped vehicles in its segment when it comes to safety features.

The car has scored a full set of five stars in the European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP) tests.

Hyundai’s five-year/150 000km manufacturer’s warranty, enhanced by the additional new groundbreaking seven-year/ 200 000km drivetrain warranty, comes standard with the all-new Hyundai Tucson package, as well as roadside assistance for fiveyears or 150 000km.

All derivatives come with a fiveyear /90 000km service plan, and service intervals are spaced at 15000km, except for the Tucson 1.7 UII Executive Diesel, which has 30 000km service intervals.

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