Hyundai’s new Tucson will arrive in Australia next year, topped with an N-Line model and packed full of cutting-edge tech.
Hyundai has pulled the sheet away from its all-new Tucson, revealing the stunning new-look design it has already teased leading up to this digital unveil.
Shown in its home market Korea where it will go on sale shortly, the new model has been confirmed to arrive in Australia in the first half of 2021, with the (so far) flagship N-Line also confirmed for Australian shores. A variety of engines and trims will be available, but for now, there will be no hybrid model to take on the Toyota Rav4 hybrid.
Full pricing and specifications for the new local lineup will be announced closer to the model’s arrival.
Starting with the new look exterior, Tucson’s styling is led by the brand’s Sensuous Sportiness design identity, that Hyundai says helps the Tucson stand apart from any other contender in the segment due to its ‘parametric dynamics’ style with ‘kinetic jewel surface details’. The front grille is one of the most striking elements, filled with LED lights which only reveal themselves when illuminated.
We see many creases and sharp angular metal work around the body which will be a challenge during mass production, though Hyundai’s latest models have all shown that the Korean manufacturer is on par with some of the best.
At the rear the design is no less ambitious, with a connected LED light bar sitting across the beltline and joining two clawed LED taillights. The appearance of the tailgate, topped by a spoiler, also looks slightly raked from the trick of silver and black elements.
Moving the game away from current expectations, we see other foundational changes such as the badge sitting on the rear glass, rather than on the bodywork. The rear wiper also hides underneath the spoiler so it is out of sight.
Moving inside, we see a mix of grey and black trims in either fabric or leather upholstery. Central to the theme of the cabin is openness, which is led by the centre console stack flowing as one continuous design piece with flush buttons and a wide 10.25-inch digital touch display screen. It has wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and optional Bose sound system. The cabin ambience is set with a 64-colour mood lighting system with 10 levels of brightness.
Behind the steering wheel, we see another 10.25-inch display screen, this time sitting tablet-style as a replacement for the usual cowled cluster space. It’s much neater. The steering wheel is redesigned, and it has buttons for the safety technology systems like adaptive cruise control and lane-keeping assist (full list below).
Digital technology includes a digital key that uses a smartphone app to operate commands such as locking and unlocking the car, using Near Field Communication (NFC) to detect authorised users so they can operate their vehicle without a physical key present, and starting the engine and its climate control system from up to 27 metres away.
Adding to that is even the ability (in some markets) for users to control smart appliances at home. This might include turning on the air conditioner before arriving home and can work the opposite way with voice recognition for users to warm up the car’s heaters (including seat and steering wheel) before hopping in.
In the rear, we can see dual ventilation controls with digital climate control. While there are not many other details yet, Hyundai says it has a new fold-and-dive functionality on the seat which helps open the back up to a large 1095-litres of cargo space.
The model is offered in both short and long-wheelbase for a variety of markets; Australia will offer the long-wheelbase version only.
Underneath the bonnet, the new Tucson will offer a variety of engines too, from petrol and diesel conventional combustion cycle motors to hybrid and plug-in hybrid.
Australia will not offer the hybrid and plug-in hybrid at launch though the electrified engines are under consideration.
Instead, we’ll first see new generation versions of the 1.6-litre turbo petrol, 2.0-litre naturally-aspirated petrol and 2.0-litre diesel turbo in mainstream Tucson models. Specifications for these engines have not yet been confirmed.
Available in both front and all-wheel drive, the Tucson uses HTRAC all-wheel-drive, this time adding mud, sand and snow modes to the comfort, sport and eco-driving modes. Local ride and handling tuning will take place prior to the new Tucson hitting showrooms, meaning it will be tuned by Hyundai Australia’s expert engineering team to ensure it rides and handling well on local roads.
On the safety front, a comprehensive suite of aids available include: Highway Driving Assist (HDA), Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA) with pedestrian detection, Lane Keeping Assist (LKA), Lane Following Assist (LFA), Blind-Spot View Monitor, Blind-Spot Collision Warning (BCW), Blind-Spot Collision-Avoidance Assist (BCA) with Rear Cross-Traffic Collision-Avoidance Assist (RCCA), Advanced Smart Cruise Control (SCC) with Stop and Go, Safe Exit Warning (SEW), Surround View Monitor, Reverse Parking Collision-Avoidance Assist (RPCA), Remote Smart Parking Assist (RSPA), High Beam Assist (HBA) and Driver Attention Warning (DAW).