2019 Tucson New Car Test Drive
The 2019 Hyundai Tucson slips into the crossover-SUV mainstream with good looks and features. It once was Hyundai's smallest SUV, but those duties have since fallen to the Kona, and next year to the new Venue.
Moderately redesigned and upgraded this year, the 2019 Tucson boasts some appearance changes both inside and out, including a new grille, a new dash and a new electronic parking brake. The base touchscreen is now 7.0 inches on the diagonal, and wireless smartphone charging is available.
A new optional 2.4-liter engine with stop/start supplants the previous turbo-4. Hyundai also has added new safety technology, led by automatic emergency braking.
The 2019 Tucson comes in seven trims: SE, Value, SEL, Sport, Night, Limited, and Ultimate. Base SE and Value trim levels continue to use a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine. Mating with a 6-speed automatic, the base engine is rated at 161 horsepower and 150 pound-feet of torque. Front-drive is standard, with all-wheel drive an option.
For other Tucson models, Hyundai has replaced the former turbo-4 with a normally-aspirated 2.4-liter engine, also found in sedans. Coupled to a 6-speed automatic rather than the previous dual-clutch transmission, the bigger engine makes 181 horsepower and 175 pound-feet. Both outputs arrive at significantly higher engine speeds.
Forward-collision warnings with automatic emergency braking now are standard, along with active lane control and a driver-attention warning. Sport and Ultimate models get a more sophisticated version of emergency braking, with pedestrian detection.
Adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go operation is installed in Night trim level and up, while the Limited adds a surround-view camera system. Blind-spot monitors are standard on all except SE.
Both crash-test agencies give the 2019 Tucson good scores. The NHTSA issued a five-star overall rating, with five stars for frontal and side impact. The IIHS gave the Tucson “Good” scores in all tests, deeming it a Top Safety Pick..
Prices do not include $1,045 destination charge.
SE ($23,200 with front-wheel drive, $24,600 with all-wheel drive) holds the 2.0-liter engine and comes with air conditioning, cloth upholstery, and 17-inch alloy wheels. The 7.0-inch infotainment touchscreen has Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. Active-safety features include automatic emergency braking and driver-attention warnings.
Value ($24,650 with FWD, $26,050 with AWD) adds an 8-way power driver's seat, heated front seats, keyless start, satellite and HD radio, and blind-spot monitors.
SEL ($25,600 with FWD, $27,000 with AWD) upgrades to the 2.4-liter engine, adding automatic climate control, hands-free liftgate, and 18-inch wheels.
Sport ($27,700 with FWD, $29,100 with AWD) adds 8-speaker Infinity audio, LED headlights and taillights, wireless smartphone charging, 19-inch wheels, foglights, and distinct styling details.
Night ($30,650 with FWD, $32,050 with AWD) has 19-inch wheels, a panoramic sunroof, gloss black grille, alloy pedals, and adaptive cruise control.
Limited ($28,900 with FWD, $30,300 with AWD) gains leather upholstery, a power passenger seat, 18-inch wheels, and a heated steering wheel.
Ultimate ($31,550 with FWD, $32,950 with AWD) includes cooled front seats, heated rear seats, and an 8.0-inch touchscreen with navigation..