With the fourth generation of the Tucson did Hyundai Not only has its design completely turned inside out, but its bestselling SUV has also been extensively electrified. We were able to drive the full hybrid version that was offered for the first time.
So far Hyundai not necessarily attracted by extravagant design, at least not in a volume segment like that of the compact SUVs. To go wrong here in terms of style would be an extremely expensive matter that no car manufacturer wants to afford. The new Tucson, which has been a bestseller in the Korean carmaker's range for many years, has nevertheless taken all courage and given the - now fourth generation - a rather striking outfit. The geometric lines on the flank, the connection between headlights and grill and the very distinctive light graphic at the rear give the Tucson a high recognition value. In the mass of SUVs, at least the Korean doesn't get lost.
Switching at the push of a button
The interior of the Tucson is also ultra-modern. Which is particularly noticeable when you opt for the automatic version. The gear selector lever is missing on the center console. Flat buttons replace it. Because the speed steps are inserted electronically using "shift-by-wire" technology. The classic mechanical connection has had its day.
The cockpit is dominated by the ten-inch touchscreen in the center of the dashboard. Almost all menu items can be controlled with it. Of course, a lot is also possible through language. The designers have largely banned conventional switches and buttons. As a result, the entire cockpit ambience appears clear, tidy, reduced and very valuable. You immediately feel at home in the Tucson, which in this discipline does not need to hide itself from some premium brands. Neither when it comes to connectivity. For example, navigation is via a Hyundai-Own cloud, works faster, more precisely and, above all, more up-to-date.
Compared to its predecessor, the new Tucson has only grown a few millimeters with a length of 4,50 meters, but offers a more spacious interior thanks to its completely redeveloped platform. Adults now sit much more comfortably in the rear. The trunk volume grew by 33 liters to 620 liters. If the rear seat backs (three-part) are flat, up to 1.799 liters fit into the Tucson, a level that many mid-range station wagons do not offer.
With the new development of the fourth generation, the most modern drives are also used. The main issue here is electrification. Never before has the customer in this vehicle segment had a greater selection of electrified engines. With the exception of the two entry-level versions, the 1,6-liter petrol engine with 110 kW / 150 PS and the 1,6-liter diesel with 85 kW / 115 PS, all other variants are either mild hybrids (48-volt System) or designed as a full hybrid. We were able to drive the latter for the first time. In the "1.6 T-GDI HEV", as the hybrid is officially called, a four-cylinder turbo gasoline engine (132 kW / 180 PS) and an electric motor (44 kW / 60 PS) work together to achieve a system output of 169 kW / 230 PS. This makes the hybrid Tucson (from 34.500 euros) currently the most powerful version within the series and makes the SUV a very confident vehicle. There is always plenty of power. The Tucson also pleases with its good comfort and low engine, rolling and wind noise.
Electric power even at higher speeds
Most often in electric mode, one drives in the city. As soon as very little power (maneuvering, slow driving) is required, the gasoline engine is left out, the Tucson is only powered by the electric motor. Even if the driver takes his foot off the accelerator at a higher speed, the system switches off the combustion engine immediately. When braking, the electric motor - it then works briefly as a generator - electricity and feeds it into the battery. In this way, the energy can be used again for the next acceleration.
After our first test drive, which included motorway sections in addition to town and country, the on-board computer showed a consumption of 6,4 l / 100 km. In relation to the size of the car, this is not a bad value. According to the official WLTP cycle, Hyundai states 5,6 l / 100 km, which corresponds to CO2 emissions of 127 grams per kilometer.
Hyundai is initially offering its new Tucson in the four equipment lines "Pure", "Select", "Trend" and "Prime". In spring, the “N Line” will be added with a particularly sporty version. The price range between the basic and top model is over 18.000 euros, ranging from 26.124 to 44.255 euros. Even the entry-level version is lavishly equipped and there are even various safety assistance systems such as bicycle driver and traffic sign recognition on board as standard. However, there is no possibility to order any extras. In addition, the "Pure" is only available in red. That is pure intention: With this price strategy, Hyundai wants to ensure that customers switch to higher-quality lines.
Five-door, five-seat compact SUV; Length: 4,50 meters, width: 1,87 meters, height: 1,65 meters, wheelbase: 2,68 meters, trunk volume: 616 - 1.795 liters
Hybrid drive from 1,6-liter four-cylinder turbo gasoline engine (132 kW / 180 PS) and electric motor (44 kW / 60 PS), system output 169 kW / 230 PS, maximum torque: 350 Nm, six-speed automatic transmission, all-wheel drive, 0-100 km / h: 8,3 s, Vmax: 193 km / h, standard consumption: 5,6 liters / 100 kilometers (WLTP), CO2 emissions: 127 g / km (WLTP), emissions standard: Euro 6d, efficiency class: n / a
Price: from 34.508 euros (with all-wheel drive: 36.458 euros)
Why because it offers the best overall package in its class
Why not because we are still waiting for the plug-in hybrid version
What else VW-Tiguan, Ford Kuga, Peugeot 3008, Toyota RAV4, Kia Sportage, Mazda CX-5, Citroen C5 Aircross, Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross, Opel Crossland-X, Renault Qajar
When does he come December 2020
What's next? The Tucson will follow as a plug-in hybrid in May 2021