The Tucson badge will be familiar to local buyers as the ix35’s predecessor, and Hyundai has confirmed that all markets will again use the Tucson name when this new model hits showrooms.
The ix35’s retirement will leave the carmaker without a player in the small-SUV market - although there is ongoing speculation that the ix25 may yet land here.
The new Tucson also debuts a refreshed look for Hyundai’s hexagonal grille design, introducing a more organic and chrome-rich design that flows from a new upright face into the long headlights.
The Santa Fe’s fast-rising belt-line and tight character lines continue here, made even sharper with the new Tucson.
At the rear, the Tucson’s new tail-light design follows a theme established both with the Santa Fe and with the compact new i20 hatch.
There’s also a few surprises in the cabin, with the two-tier dash design dominated by a large centre display and a dark chrome finish to the few highlights.
Hyundai’s latest multi-function steering wheel design features, in front of a pair of large instrument dials and a tall centre display. Soft-touch materials feature throughout the cabin.
In Australia, the Tucson will be offered with a 130kW 1.6 litre turbo petrol engine and seven-speed dual-clutch auto, replacing the 136kW 2.4 litre engine and conventional six-speed auto currently offered with the ix35.
A naturally-aspirated 2.0 litre petrol engine will again be offered in Australia, along with a 2.0 litre diesel.
Specific outputs for those two mills have not been confirmed, but current Australian ix35 versions list 122kW/205Nm and 135kW/392Nm respectively.
Hyundai Australia has also confirmed that its local tuning program for suspension and steering will continue with the new Tucson, kicking off later this month.
Australian models will again be sourced from two separate origins, depending on the trim grade: Korea and the Czech Republic.
In Europe, which is the only market to be fully detailed at this stage, the Tucson will be offered with heated and ventilated front seats, a powered smart tailgate, and Smart Parking Assist with parallel and bay parking functions.
Other tech standard to the new Tucson in Europe will include Autonomous Emergency Braking, Lane Keeping Assist, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Blindspot Monitoring and an Active hood system for improved pedestrian safety.
Australian features and trim grades are still to be confirmed, although it is believed that the Tucson will be the first local model to offer the new Android Auto and Apple Carplay infotainment systems.
Dimensions & Storage
At 4475mm, the new Tucson is 65mm longer than the ix35 it will replace in Australia, while its 2670mm wheelbase is 20mm longer than in the ix35.
The new model is also 30mm wider at 1850mm but, for a more sporting profile, is a slight 10mm shorter top-to-bottom at 1645mm.
Rear storage is listed at 513 litres with the back row of seats in their upright position, but seats-down capacity is still to be confirmed.
Hyundai says it developed the new Tucson with a view to building sales in Europe, where the brand has now passed one million SUV sales.
The Tucson will be a crucial player for Hyundai in Europe, where small SUVs made up 22 percent of all passenger vehicle sales. Likewise, small SUVs represented a significant 17.9 percent of Australian sales in January.
Watch for more details on the local Tucson range to be revealed in the lead-up to its third-quarter Australian launch.
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