Hyundai Tucson, the perfect family SUV

We bid farewell to the ix35 as Hyundai focuses on pleasing an audience it knows well.

Roughly three years ago, Hyundai took to its showrooms to showcase its all-new Tucson, which was set to go on sale as a 2016 model, and for the first time will use the Tucson name in all markets where it is sold, so in simple terms, we bid farewell to the ix35.

Hyundai knows its audience and that they are the types who want to get plenty for their money, and this is what brought commendable success to the ix35 that the Tucson replaces.


It was big – five-seats big – attractively priced, and didn’t look too bad. Sure, it possessed a fair few rough edges and could never be described as a dazzler in any area, but it was competent and sold pretty strongly.

The new Tucson is better than most of its key competitors, including the new Volkswagen Tiguan, which can only be had in a 1.4 engine derivative right now and yet goes for almost the same price of over R500 000.

Right after a long and exhausting day, I was treated to a fair and a good drive in the top-of-the range Hyundai Tucson R2.0-litre Elite Turbodiesel automatic that retails for R519 900. If space remains top of the list of things you look at when wanting to buy a vehicle, then the Tiguan edges the Tucson in utility space at 1 655 litres versus 1 503 litres with the rear seats folded down.


The centre console gets a smart-looking six-speaker audio system that boasts Bluetooth connectivity as well as USB and auxiliary inputs which are easy to use during driving.

Safety is guaranteed; the model comes with blind spot detection, vehicle stability management, rear cross traffic alert and six-airbags (driver, passenger, side and curtain units) to name but some of the features on board.

The Tucson 2.0-litre turbodiesel has a healthy power output of 131kW at 4 000rpm, and 400 Nm torque between 1 750 and 2 750rpm; all that oomph sent through to the front wheels via a six-speed automatic gearbox. That is enough torque to tow a trailer or caravan if you want, while possessing enough power to overtake slower moving traffic with ease.


In terms of how it drives, the Tucson still has a short delay while you wait for the turbocharger to kick in. It isn’t too bad if you accept that this isn’t an outright performance SUV, but a perfect vehicle for everyday driving and family road trips. So if you are a fan of high performance SUVs, this isn’t the vehicle to go for.

Nevertheless, you get the power when you want it as you can see from the road test data. It also delivers its shove over a sufficiently wide range of revs and it feels comfortable around town and on cross-country drives alike.

The Tucson is covered by Hyundai’s five-year/150 000km manufacturer’s warranty.

Road Test Data Hyundai Tucson R2.0 Elite

  • Gearbox: 6 Speed Automatic Transmission
  • Engine: 2.0 litre Turbodiesel
  • Power: 131 kW @ 4 000 rpm
  • Torque: 400 Nm @ 1 750 – 2 750 rpm
  • Licensing Mass: 1 593 kg
  • Power to Weight: 82.235 kW / Tonne
  • Power to Capacity: 65.664 kW / Litre
  • 0-100 km/h: 10.35 Seconds
  • ¼ Mile: 17.65 Seconds @ 131.51 km/h
  • 1 Km: 31.98 Seconds @ 166.16 km/h
  • 60-100 km/h: 5.27 Seconds (in Drive Sport)
  • 80-120 km/h: 6.97 Seconds (in Drive Sport)
  • 60-140 km/h: 15.99 Seconds (in Drive Sport)
  • True Top Speed: 205.67 km/h @ 3 700 rpm in 6th (Clock 210 km/h)
  • Fuel Consumption: 7.9 litres / 100 km Claimed (8.6 litres Test Average)
  • Fuel Tank Size: 62 litres
  • Fuel Range: 785 km Claimed (721 km on Test)
  • CO2 Emissions: 175 g/km
  • Vehicle Odometer: 2 318 Km
  • Test Temperature: 20 Degrees
  • Tyres Size: 225/55 R18 (Front & Rear)
  • Tyres Make: Kumho Crugen
  • Service / Maint Plan: 5 Years / 90 000 Km Service Plan
  • Warranty: 7 Years / 200 000 Km
  • Test Date: 27 January 2017
  • Priced From: R519 900

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