The third-generation Hyundai Tucson has been introduced in the Indian automotive market at a competitive price of Rs 18.99 lakh. This is the second Indian innings of the SUV, which was sold in its first-generation avatar in the country between 2005 to 2010. Globally, the Tucson has sold over 4.5 million units and is one of the highest selling SUVs since the introduction of its first iteration in 2004. In India, however, the first generation Tucson did not fare well and sold under 2,000 units in five years. That said, the new generation SUV is expected to sell in much better numbers particularly due to an attractive introductory price tag.
The luxury 5-seater SUV is based on Hyundai's 'Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 Design Philosophy', which mimics the flow of water through its lines and creases. In addition, the Tucson seems to draw inspiration from the larger Santa Fe as the similarities are easily visible. It comes with a number of first-in-segment features, which include dual barrel LED headlamps, LED static bending lights, fog lamps with LED Daytime Running Lamps, twin chrome exhaust, 18-inch diamond cut alloy wheels and puddle lamps. Other features on the Hyundai Tucson are positioning lamps, spoiler with LED stop lamp and a shark fin antenna. Owing to these elements, the Tucson exudes a futuristic and upmarket look and is also one of the sharpest looking SUVs in its price-segment.
Engine and Transmission
The new offering from Hyundai comes with two engine options, a 2.0-litre Nu petrol engine, which also powers the recently launched Elantra and an all-new 2.0-litre CRDi diesel engine for India. The petrol engine generates 153 hp of power at 6,200 rpm and 192 Nm of torque at 4,000 rpm. The new R e-VGT 2.0 CRDi engine produces a healthy 183 hp of power at 4,000 rpm and 400 Nm of torque between 1,750 rpm to 2,750 rpm. Both engines have the option of a 6-speed manual and an automatic transmission, which is a good thing since the customer has the complete freedom of choosing, irrespective of the fuel choice s/he makes. From a segment perspective, both engines offer impressive power output, while matching or being close to the fuel-efficiency figures of the competition.
There are some nifty first-in-segment features like different driving modes for different driving situations, hands-free electrically operational tail gate with height adjustment, electric parking brake, electrically foldable and heated ORVMs (Outside Rear View Mirrors) and compass on ECM (Electronic Control Module). Along with these, a dual-zone automatic climate control, automatic headlamps, rain sensing wipers, tilt and telescopic steering and a cooled glovebox are also a part of the package. The hand-free electrically operated tail gate is a notable inclusion in the Tucson, given its price-point. The feature comes in handy when one is carrying some stuff with both hands and needs to open the tail gate. Instead of having to put the carried stuff down and then pull out the key, one can just wave their foot under the rear bumper and voila! The tail gate would sense the gesture and automatically open, allowing for easy placement of the luggage.
The Hyundai Tucson has been awarded five stars by Euro NCAP in 2015, and Top Safety Pick+ Award 2016, in the USA by IIHS (Insurance Institute of Highway Safety). The SUV comes loaded with 6 airbags, ESP (Electronic Stability Programme) with VSM (Vehicle Stability Management), HAC (Hill Start Assist), ABS (Anti-lock Braking System) with EBD (Electronic Brake force Distribution) and reverse parking camera with steering adaptive guidelines and sensors. It also has first-in-segment DBC (Downhill Brake Control) and front parking sensors. The safety packaging is in line with Hyundai's recent focus on safety, irrespective of price-segments. Not only is the Tucson ahead of some of its competitors in safety, it also matches the kit offered by some vehicles in the Rs 30 lakh segment. However, the inclusion of these features may vary from one variant to the other.
The Hyundai Tucson is offered in five variants and the base MT petrol version has an introductory price tag of Rs 18.99 lakh, while the diesel top-end AT trim is priced at Rs 24.99 lakh, both prices being ex-showroom Delhi. Currently, the SUV is offered only in a two-wheel drive configuration, but the company is planning to introduce an all-wheel drive version by April 2017. When launched, the all-wheel drive Tucson is expected to have additional features as well, although none of them have been confirmed by the company yet. The Tucson will presently be sold in five colours and will compete with the Honda CR-V and the Ssangyong Rexton. However, given the negligible sales of these models, the Tucson will end up competing primarily against the Ford Endeavour and the Toyota Fortuner. This consideration will only be for those not looking strictly for a seven-seater as the Tucson seats five people while the other two seat seven people. Hyundai expects to sell 500 to 700 units of the Tucson every month in India.