Hyundai Tucson (2004-2008) review
Hyundai's second 4x4 seems almost unnecessary. It's not much smaller than the popular Santa Fe, and prices aren't significantly cheaper either.
Hyundai's second 4x4 seems almost unnecessary. It's not much smaller than the popular Santa Fe, and prices aren't significantly cheaper either. But crucially, it's the better car. It certainly looks more attractive. Gone are the chubby lines of the Santa Fe, and in comes a sleeker profile that's much more modern. The interior is more stylish too, and trim quality is measurably better if still not up to Toyota RAV4 standards. Generally, it feels more 'European', and needless to say, there's a stack of standard equipment.
It's a better drive too. The sharper chassis is less wallowy and stodgy, proving better-balanced through corners, though this does mean the ride is restless at times. Refinement is good and it's a positive car to drive at speed. Engines are familiar but the best seller, the 2.0-litre diesel, seems more refined in this application than in other Hyundais, if still underpowered. The 2.0-litre petrol is too slow and the 2.7-litre V6 disguises its power very well - blame the poor standard auto, that also hammers fuel economy. But overall it's a decent effort at the right price, with plenty of space inside for five and a big boot (with split tailgate). The Santa Fe's moving upmarket in response, with prices to match, so it seems if you want a budget 4x4 that's useful off-road as well as on, this is a good place to start. Although Kia's Sportage, the same car underneath, may also tempt.