Primary Navigation Mobile

There is a newer version of this car Read the latest Hyundai Tucson (15-20) review here

Hyundai Tucson Estate engines, drive and performance

2004 - 2009 (change model)
Performance rating: 2.5 out of 52.5

Written by David Ross Published: 6 June 2019 Updated: 6 June 2019

Easily the best engine in the Tucson range is the 2.0-litre diesel. Originally this was a CRTD unit with 138bhp and a 0-62mph time of 12 seconds but this rebadged CRDi in 2008 and received a power boost to 148bhp. It pulls well from low revs, although it can get a little noisy, especially when worked hard. The extra power cuts the 0-62mph time to 11.6 seconds and the revised engine is also marginally more economical.

There are two petrol engines but neither is impressive – the 2.0-litre is only available with a five-speed manual (the diesel gets a much better six-speed) and feels slow and unresponsive. The 2.7-litre V6 sounds good on paper with 173bhp but the automatic gearbox (it’s not offered as a manual) is slow-witted and robs the engine of any decent pace.

The Tucson may be an off roader, but it is surprisingly good in corners and there’s not too much body roll while grip is good too. The ride is firm though so it’s not particularly comfortable in town or on uneven road surfaces but it’s comfortable on the motorway. The steering is quite vague however and lacks the precision and feel of more upmarket 4x4s.

There are two different version of Tucson available, the standard four-wheel drive or a front-wheel drive only model. The 4×4 variant uses an ‘on-demand’ system which runs in front-wheel drive until it detects a loss of traction, when the 4WD cuts in. For off-road terrain you can select permanent four-wheel drive up to 21mph.