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Reborn Hyundai Tucson pricing announced

Carplay: Apple’s in-car infotainment system and a turbocharged powerplant take centre stage as Hyundai ups pressure on the compact SUV sector with new Tucson.

Hyundai crams more features, more performance into all-new Tucson compact SUV

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Hyundai logo17 Jul 2015

By NEIL DOWLING

*Updated on 21/7/15*HYUNDAI Motor Co Australia (HMCA) has set a highly competitive entry point of $27,990 plus on-road costs for its new compact SUV contender, the Tucson, ahead of its August 1 launch.

The starting price is only $1000 more expensive than the cheapest outgoing ix35, despite the Tucson boasting a string of new equipment within a more spacious body.

It does not, however, undercut some of its main rivals that also offer a 2WD petrol price leader, with Mazda’s base CX-5 Maxx kicking off from $27,190 and the Honda CR-V VTi and Toyota RAV4 GX both starting at $27,490.

The Tucson Active 2.0 MPi 2WD does match the base price for the Nissan X-Trail ST and comes in $500 below Mitsubishi’s Outlander LS.

Reviving the name that it dropped in 2010, the replacement for the successful ix35 is bigger, better equipped, more powerful and more economical.

It will also debut the latest in-car connectivity software of Apple’s CarPlay from September and, from early 2016, Android Auto.

HMCA public relations general manager Bill Thomas said there was a “little issue” with the Apple certification that “put us back a bit”.

However, he said vehicles that miss out on the CarPlay app will be upgraded free of charge, either at the dealer or downloaded via computer and USB stick.

“We haven’t decided which will be better for the customer, as yet,” he said.

“There will also be a delay in the launch of the Active variant, which has been attributed to delivery issues, but it is expected to arrive in the fourth quarter of this year.”

The slight delay means the entry model variant at launch will be the feature-rich, Korean-built ActiveX, with the Czech-built Elite and Highlander positioned further upstream. The Active will also be sourced from Europe.

The four variants are also springboards for the company’s new seven-speed dual-clutch transmission and the 1.6-litre turbo-petrol engine carried over into the SUV from the Veloster SR coupe.

In all, Hyundai will offer four engines, three transmissions and two drivetrain layouts.

It carries over the 2.0-litre MPi four-cylinder petrol engine for the front-wheel-drive Active, matched with either a six-speed manual or optional $2500 six-speed automatic. This engine and automatic combination is also available in the Elite.

The second 2.0-litre GDi engine has more sophisticated direct injection and is only available on the Korean-built ActiveX variant.

The 1.6-litre T-GDi turbo-petrol and its dual-clutch transmission will only be available on the all-wheel-drive Elite and Highlander variants.

Hyundai’s sole diesel powertrain is the 2.0-litre CRDi unit that is mated only to the six-speed automatic in AWD and, again, only for the Elite and Highlander.

The Korean car-maker is yet to confirm power and torque outputs or any performance and fuel figures.

Final specifications for the Active are not yet available, however safety kit in all variants from the ActiveX upwards includes six airbags, electronic stability control, a reversing camera and rear parking sensors, automatic headlights, LED daytime running lights and front foglights.

Other equipment includes leather-appointed seats, ‘premium’ multi-function steering wheel/gearshift, seven-inch touchscreen (with MP3 capability and six speakers), electric folding/heated wing mirrors, cruise control and roof rails.

The Elite adds trailer stability technology, bending headlights and rain-sensing wipers. Its convenience features include electric driver’s seat adjustment, dual-zone climate-control air-conditioning, smart key and push-button start, an 8.0-inch touchscreen (including satellite navigation) and hands-free electric tailgate.

It does, however, run on smaller 17-inch alloy wheels (the ActiveX has 18” alloys), uses cloth seat trim and has now Apple CarPlay or Android Auto capability.

The flagship Highlander includes advanced technology such as a lane-change assist, lane-departure warning, blind-spot detection, rear cross-traffic alert, autonomous emergency braking and tyre-pressure monitoring.

It has 19-inch alloy wheels, front parking sensors, heated and ventilated front seats, front passenger seat electric adjustment, a 4.2-inch TFT LCD colour display on the instrumental panel and a panoramic sunroof.

The Tucson’s bigger body reflects the family face of the larger Santa Fe, while the grille design follows on from the new Sonata and refreshed i30.

Hyundai said the body is also more rigid and more aerodynamic. It is 75mm longer than the ix35, the same width but about 50mm lower. It sits on a wheelbase that has been increased by 30mm to 2670mm and front and rear track dimensions are up 25mm.

By comparison, the segment-leading Mazda CX-5 has a 2700mm wheelbase and it is 65mm longer overall, 65mm higher and 10mm narrower than the Tucson.

Inside, the Tucson receives an upmarket touch with soft-touch plastics and upgraded switchgear.

Hyundai Tucson pricing*
Active 2.0 MPi 2WD$27,990
Active 2.0 MPi 2WD (a)$30,490
ActiveX 2.0 GDi 2WD$30,490
ActiveX 2.0 GDi 2WD (a)$32,990
Elite 2.0 MPi 2WD (a)$35,240
Elite 1.6 T-GDi AWD (a)$38,240
Elite 2.0 CRDi AWD (a)$40,240
Highlander 1.6 T-GDi AWD (a)$43,490
Highlander 2.0 CRDi AWD (a)$45,490
*Excludes on-road costs

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