Available initially in three trim grades, the all-new Tucson range will kick off with the newly introduced ActiveX model from $30,490 plus on-road costs.
Later in the year, Hyundai will boost entry-level appeal with the base-grade Active, priced from $27,990 plus on-road costs.
Depending on the model, the new Tucson will be offered with two petrol engines and one diesel, along with six-speed manual, six-speed auto and seven-speed dual-clutch auto transmissions.
Prices are up across the new range, ranging from $1000 for the entry-level petrol front-wheel-drive six-speed manual Active model, to $4500 for the top-shelf $45,490 diesel all-wheel-drive six-speed auto Highlander.
In Australia, the Tucson will be aimed directly at Mazda’s CX-5 - far-and-away Australia’s best-selling midsized SUV with 12,489 sales year-to-date - along with the Nissan X-Trail (9272) and the Toyota RAV4 (9160).
These key rivals all boast similar entry prices, with the CX-5 opening at $27,190, the X-Trail at an identical $27,990 and the RAV4 at $27,490.
Hyundai accounts for the Tucson’s increased pricing with the promise of a “bigger, better equipped and more sophisticated” offering than the ix35 it replaces.
Bigger is right, with the new Tucson measuring 65mm longer and 30mm wider than the ix35, while riding on a 30mm longer wheelbase (length: 4475mm; width: 1850mm; height: 1645mm tall; wheelbase: 2670mm). Rear storage space also grows, with seats-up capacity growing from 465 to 513 litres. (Seats-down still to be confirmed.)
With this growth, the Tucson also steps up into the "Medium SUV" category according to the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries' VFACTs data, vacating the ix35’s spot in the small class.
Engine options for the new Tucson will include a trio of four-cylinder petrol units and one diesel, along with a six-speed manual transmission at the entry end and two automatic transmissions.
The 2.0 litre petrol engines include Hyundai’s relatively new 2.0-litre GDi ‘Nu’ petrol engine, offering 121kW at 6200rpm and 203Nm at 4700rpm. It will be offered alongside the older 2.0-litre MPi version of the ‘Nu’ engine. Tucson-specific figures for the latter unit are still to be confirmed.
Six-speed manual and six-speed automatic transmissions will be offered with the 2.0 GDi engine, with fuel consumption listed at 7.8L/100km and 7.9L/100km respectively. CO2 emissions are listed at 182g/km and 185g/km. Front-wheel-drive is the only option with this engine.
Hyundai’s 1.6 litre T-GDi turbocharged engine will also feature in the petrol mix, offering 130kW at 5500rpm and 265Nm at 1500-4500rpm. This replaces the 136kW/240Nm 2.4-litre engine and six-speed auto offered with the outgoing ix35.
The smaller but torque-loaded turbo engine will be matched to an all-wheel-drive configuration and Hyundai’s new seven-speed dual-clutch auto, with fuel consumption and CO2 emissions listed at 7.7L/100km and 178g/km respectively. This neatly betters the 9.8L/100km and 233g/km figures of its 2.4-litre predecessor.
Representing the diesel end of things is Hyundai’s turbocharged 2.0-litre R-Series engine, offering 136kW at 4000rpm and 400Nm at 1750-2750rpm.
Matched to a six-speed auto and all-wheel-drive, the diesel engine is said to offer fuel use at 6.4L/100km in the Elite and 6.8L/100km with the kitted-out Highlander. CO2 emissions are listed at 169g/km and 178g/km.
Models with the 2.0-litre GDi engine are sourced from South Korea, while the 2.0 MPi, 1.6 T-GDi and 2.0 R-Series variants are all built in the the Czech Republic.
As with all other Hyundai models, the new Tucson has been put through the company’s local tuning program for suspension and steering to better suit Australian roads and tastes.
Depending on the model, standout features with the 2016 Tucson include LED headlights, Autonomous Emergency Braking, Lane Departure Warning and Lane Change Assist, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Advanced Traction Cornering Control (AWD models), Trailer Stability Assist (Active, Elite and Highlander), and a hands-free powered tailgate (Highlander).
Apple’s new CarPlay infotainment system will be featured from September, with Android Auto to join in early 2016. This makes Hyundai one of the first carmakers to offer the new connectivity systems in Australia.
Features to be confirmed closer to the Active model’s launch early in the fourth quarter of 2015.
ActiveX (beyond Active variant):
- 18-inch alloy wheels with 225/55R18 tyres
- Six airbags (driver and front passenger, driver and front passenger side (thorax), full length curtains)
- Electronic Stability Control (ESC)
- Rear view camera with dynamic guidelines
- Rear parking assist system (four sensors) with guidance
- LED Daytime Running Lamps (DRL)
- Projector beam headlamps with escort and welcome function
- Automatic dusk sensing headlamps
- Front Fog Lamps
- Leather-appointed seats (including man-made materials)
- Premium steering wheel & gear knob
- 7.0-inch touchscreen audio w/ MP3 capability, six speakers, & works with Apple CarPlay (September) & Android Auto (early 2016)
- Steering-mounted audio controls
- Electric folding / heated side mirrors
- Cruise control with steering wheel mounted controls
- Roof Rails
Elite (beyond Active variant):
- 17-inch alloy wheels with 225/60R17 tyres
- Trailer Stability Assist (TSA)
- LED headlamps with static bending lamps
- Electrically adjusted driver’s seat (10 way incl. lumbar)
- Electronic Park-Brake (EPB) with Auto Hold function
- Dual zone climate control air conditioning with auto defog function
- Proximity smart key with push button start
- 8.0-inch touchscreen satellite navigation with three-year map update plan
- Smart Tailgate function (hands-free power tailgate)
- Rain sensing wipers
- Solar glass with Privacy
- LED side repeater integrated into side mirrors
- Steering wheel mounted phone controls
NOTE that, unlike the ActiveX, the Elite does not get leather-appointed seats (cloth instead), 18-inch alloys (17-inch instead), Apple Carplay or Android Auto, or the matte grey insert on the Tucson’s side garnish.
Highlander (beyond Elite variant):
- 19-inch alloy wheels with 245/45R19 with Continental ContiSportContact5
- Front parking assist system (four sensors) with guidance
- Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) High line system
- LED tail lamps with bulb turn signal & reverse lights
- Electrically adjusted front passenger’s seat (6 way incl. lumbar)
- Leather-appointed seats (including man-made materials)
- Heated and air ventilated front seats
- Panoramic glass sunroof
- Blind Spot Detection (BSD) incorporating Lane Change Assist (LCA)
- Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA)
- Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB)
- Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS) with Lane Departure Warning (LDW)
- Twin-tip trapezoidal exhaust
- 4.2-inch TFT LCD colour display in Supervision cluster
Pricing (before on-road costs):
2.0 MPi petrol 2WD - six-speed manual - $27,990 (up $1000)
2.0 MPi petrol 2WD - six-speed auto - $30,490 (up $1300)
2.0 GDi petrol 2WD - six-speed manual - $30,490 (up $500 over ix35 SE)
2.0 GDi petrol 2WD - six-speed auto - $32,990 (up $800 over ix35 SE)
2.0 MPi petrol 2WD - six-speed auto - $35,240 (up $1650)
1.6 T-GDi petrol AWD - seven-speed DCT auto - $38,240 (up $2250)
2.0 CRDi diesel AWD - six-speed auto - $40,240 (up $1650)
1.6 T-GDi petrol AWD - seven-speed DCT auto - $43,490 (up $4900)
2.0 CRDi diesel AWD - six-speed auto - $45,490 (up $4500)