2019 Hyundai Tucson Preview
By Liz Kim, March 29, 2018
- Refresh for Hyundai’s compact crossover
- A 2.4-liter engine replaces last year’s 1.6-liter turbocharged engine upgrade
- Newly standard safety equipment
- In dealer showrooms in Fall 2018
You can’t ever underestimate Hyundai’s ambitions for the US market. They want to revamp their entire crossover program, introducing eight new CUVs by 2020.
Well, technically, they’re not all brand-new; the Tucson is relatively young, as its current generation was introduced in 2015. But to maintain peak interest levels, Hyundai gives its popular Tucson compact crossover vehicle a bit of a makeover, as well as added some valuable feature content.
The Tucson is still a good looking little vehicle, with taut lines and tidy proportions. Thankfully, most of that stays, and as it is not an all-new vehicle, the Tucson makes do with a minor facelift. The headlights are the most notice among the changes, featuring an angular light strip that acts as its daytime running light. The rest of the fascia is slightly altered as well, as well as Hyundai’s Cascading grille. In the back, the taillights are tweaked, and the Tucson has redesigned 17- and 19-inch wheels, and new 18-inch wheels.
You’ll only notice if you put a 2019 Tucson side-by-side with one from 2018, but the center stack is slightly different, as well as the rearview mirror. The most noticeable aspect is the 7-inch floating tablet-style display that comes standard on all models.
Five trim levels exist for the Tucson: the base SE, the SEL, Sport, Value and Limited. Some options that the higher trim levels offer include ventilated front seats, rear parking sensors, heated rear seats, and a hands-free power tailgate. AWD is an optional upgrade for all trim levels.
Under the Hood:
The base engine for the 2019 Tucson Value and SE trims is a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that can make 164 horsepower, while the SEL, Sport and Limited trim levels get an upgrade in the form of a new 2.4-liter inline-four engine producing 181 horsepower, a small improvement over last year’s 1.6-liter turbocharged engine that made 175 horsepower. Both engines are matched to a six-speed automatic transmission, as the seven-speed dual-clutch transmission is no longer offered.
Now standard on every Tucson is automatic emergency braking and lane keeping assist, which nudges the Tucson back into the middle of the lane if the system detects that the car is drifting out of it when you’re traveling over 40 mph. Considering that these features were previously only available on the top trim level, we’d say that this is a win.
Available as an option are new features like forward collision-avoidance assist with pedestrian detection, adaptive cruise control, a 360-degree view monitor, and a driver attention warning.
A 7-inch screen is the center of your infotainment universe, but we’re happy to say that Hyundai retains knobs and buttons along the side for primary functions. Apple CarPlay and Android Autos smartphone projection comes standard across the line, and a new USB charging port in the second row for the SEL trim reduces conflicts between power hungry siblings. The Limited trim level gets a Qi wireless charging pad, which finally works with the newest Apple phones.