2022 Hyundai Tucson Offers Daring Looks, More Power and Space

  • With a daring design inside and out, the 2022 Hyundai Tucson grows significantly larger, gaining people and cargo space.
  • It now offers a 10.3-inch infotainment screen and a digital gauge cluster.
  • Gasoline and hybrid models will arrive next spring, with plug-in models available in summer 2021.

    Hyundai’s barrage of redesigned models continues. The Korean giant unveiled its new 2022 Tucson a few months ago, and we now have all the U.S. details about this new compact SUV. When it goes on sale next spring, it’ll still sit in the heart of Hyundai’s lineup of five crossovers, between the Kona and Santa Fe, but the U.S. is only getting the long-wheelbase version of the global platform, which is longer, wider, taller, and has a longer wheelbase than the previous generation.

    At 181.3 inches, the Tucson is 6.1 inches longer than before, and its new wheelbase of 108.3 inches has grown by 3.4 inches. It’s also about a half inch wider and taller. Without the optional panoramic sunroof, Hyundai says its passenger space increases by 6.0 cubic feet, to 108 cubic feet, and cargo volume is up to 39 cubic feet (80 cu ft with its rear seats folded). That’s 8 cubic feet more than the 2021 model.

    That rumbling sound is dozens of Toyota, Honda, and Nissan engineers pulling out their calculators. On the outside, the Tucson will now be about the same size as the top sellers in the space, the Toyota RAV4 and Honda CR-V, and it will basically match their cargo volume. But its wheelbase is considerably longer, and according to Hyundai the SUV will have more interior space, including 3.5 inches more rear seat legroom than the Toyota and about an inch more than the Honda. The Nissan Rogue is still about two inches longer than the Hyundai, but its wheelbase is nearly two inches shorter.

    Hyundai’s design team, led by SangYup Lee, its senior vice president and head of Hyundai Global Design Center, has reshaped the SUV with bulging fenders, exaggerated wheel wells, a level roofline and short overhangs. The appearance is more rugged than before, but also more muscular, with wedged geometric angles and hard edges that appear borrowed from Lamborghini’s Urus. Unique touches include a chrome strip that increases in width as it follows the arc of its roofline and eventually forms the SUV’s C-pillar.

    Its large grille and stacked headlamps expand upon designs seen on the larger Santa Fe and Palisade, but things get more interesting out back. Incorporated into its full-width taillights are half-concealed triangular shapes. Visible only when illuminated, they echo the shapes of its front daytime running lights. Lee has also integrated the Hyundai logo into the glass and concealed the rear wiper beneath the crossover’s rear spoiler.

    Inside, its pushbutton shifter and four-spoke steering wheel are shared with other models. However, the five-seater gets a broad new dash that wraps into its doors and features an available 10.3-inch infotainment screen and a hoodless digital gauge cluster. It’s all very minimalist and modern, with piano-black surfaces, silver trim, wireless phone charging and adjustable mood lighting in 64 colors and 10 levels of brightness. Navigation with split-screen functionality and an eight-speaker Bose sound system will be available. The standard 8.8-inch touchscreen will feature wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and a new voice recognition system with expanded capability that will include control of the rear hatch, heated steering wheel and its heated and cooled seats.

    Front-wheel drive is standard and all-wheel drive is optional. Gas models will get the same base engine as the Sonata, a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter inline-four with 187 horsepower and 178 lb-ft of torque. That’s 23 horsepower more than the outgoing 2.0-liter and 5 hp more than currently optional 2.4-liter. Paired with a retuned eight-speed automatic with a broader range of ratios, Hyundai says it has targeted a combined fuel economy of 28 mpg with front-wheel drive.

    The new hybrid and plug-in-hybrid models have a turbocharged 1.6-liter gasoline four-cylinder, a six-speed automatic transmission, and standard all-wheel drive. In the hybrid, which has the same 59-hp electric motor and 1.49-kWh battery pack as the Santa Fe hybrid, total system output is an estimated 226 horsepower and 258 lb.-ft. of torque. Hyundai says the hybrid powertrain is 30 percent more fuel efficient than the standard gasoline engine and will provide for over 500 miles of range.

    When the plug-in version goes on sale until next summer, it’ll feature a larger 13.8-kWh battery pack for an estimated all-electric range of 28 miles. With its 7.2-kW onboard charger, Hyundai says it’ll recharge fully in less than two hours using a Level 2 charger.

    A Tucson N Line is also in the works and will debut late next year. Hyundai says it’ll have an even more aggressive exterior and interior and appeal to enthusiast buyers.

    Many driver-assistance features will come as standard equipment, including forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, and lane-keep assist. Blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, adaptive cruise control, and a park-assist system, which will park and retrieve the SUV from parking spaces for you, will be optional.

    Pricing hasn’t been announced, but the current Tucson starts under $25,000 and we expect Hyundai to stay below that threshold.

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