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Hyundai Tucson Elite CRDi

by John Ewing,reviewed February 2016

Hyundai’s new Tucson is the successor to the brand’s popular small SUV, the ix35.
It’s larger in most key dimensions - length, width, height, wheelbase, and front and rear track - than its predecessor. 

In fact, it has now been bumped up from the small SUV category to medium SUV in the FCAI’s official vehicle classification list, V-Facts.

Interior space is one of the Tucson’s strengths with rear seat occupants pretty well catered for by segment standards. There’s good head room, while leg and foot space is better than might be expected. Centre rear occupants only have a relatively low driveline ‘hump’ in the floor to deal with.

The cargo area, accessed via the hands-free power-operated tailgate, is also quite generous and visibly larger than Mazda’s popular CX-5. There’s an extra 85 litres with rear seats upright, according to Hyundai. Dropping the 60:40 split-fold rear seats flat liberates a claimed 1478 litres of space, to easily accommodate larger items. A ski-port in the rear seat isn’t provided though.

Tucson’s practicality extends further with three 12-volt power outlets provided, and sufficient oddments stowage space around the cabin for wallets, phones, drink bottles etc. 

The slide-out sun visor extensions are long enough to allow the visors to effectively screen the full length of the front side windows; something other cars with visor extensions, annoyingly, often don’t do. And we like the fact that a full-size alloy spare wheel is standard kit.

In typical Hyundai style, Tucson offers good equipment levels and backs the vehicle with a long warranty. Interior fit and finish has a neat, quality look, but lacks the premium feel and style of Mazda’s CX-5.

Tucson 2WD versions scored a disappointing four stars in independent ANCAP crash tests, sending the company’s engineers scurrying off to implement design changes to address the result. 

Both 2WD and AWD subsequently now have a five star rating.

The Elite’s diesel engine musters 136kW of power, and a healthy 400Nm of torque. Throttle response is solid, especially in the low and mid-rev range.

The new Tucson offers a better blend of ride comfort and handling skills than the ix35, and has benefited from local suspension tuning. Ride is firm, but comfortable, and lacks the sometimes harsh nature of its predecessor. 

Handling is competent, secure and predictable, though ultimately not as sporty as the CX-5.


Practicality, space, long warranty, improvements, good all-rounder.


Interior lacks premium look of Mazda CX-5.

Car Details

Vehicle make Hyundai
Vehicle model Tucson Elite CRDi
Year 2016
Current price range $40240 - $
ANCAP crash rating
5 out of 5 stars

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Warranty 5yr/15,000km
Engine 2.0-litre turbo-diesel 4-cyl.
Max power 136kW
Max torque 400Nm
Driving wheels AWD
Fuel type Diesel
Economy ADR 6.4 litres/100km.
CO2 Emissions 169g/km

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This review is based on road testing conducted by The Road Ahead. Further vehicle reviews, in-depth comparisons and coverage of consumer motoring issues can be found in the Club's magazine. Prices listed were current at the time of review and are manufacturers list prices and do not include statutory and delivery charges. Prices can vary from time to time and dealer to dealer.