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2021 Hyundai Tucson Review: Expected Release Date, Prices, MPG and Performance

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John Bedrow

Automotive Journalist

August 12, 2020 at 12:39 PM

With many of spy shots out we can now confirm that the 2021 Hyundai Tucson is just around the corner. This time it will receive major updates in terms of its design as well as features. Showcased at the 2019 LA auto show in form of the Vision T Concept, the 2021 model is sure to shake up the competition in the compact SUV segment. Its new-age design and the introduction of a plug-in hybrid model is certainly going to send many buyers to Hyundai dealerships.

Named after the city of Tucson, the outgoing Hyundai Tucson is an extremely promising option in the compact SUV segment as it offered great value and a plethora of features, but somehow it never managed to entice buyers because it was a jack of all trades and with its somewhat conservative styling and mediocre engine options, it failed to stand out in a sea of compact SUVs. Hence, with the 2021 Hyundai Tucson, we expect Hyundai to make the car more dynamic as well as distinctive with its radical new design. It's redesigned styling that previewed with the Vision T concept confirms that the 2021 model will be a much sharper looking SUV with more angular lines and sharper features borrowing cues from the latest lineup of Hyundai like the new 2021 Santa-Fe which was a hit courtesy it's unconventional styling.

2021 Hyundai Tucson will get a radical redesign

Hyundai is also rumored to offer a plug-in hybrid which is expected to be powered by a more traditional four-cylinder engine. The entire hybrid drivetrain will be very similar if not identical to the ones used in the Sonata and Elantra Hybrid. When the production model sets foot in the real world it would compete against rivals like the Honda CR-V, Mazda CX-5, and Toyota RAV4. Hence, its time to check out if you should wait for the 2021 model or just go with the outgoing version.

What's new:

  • Completely Redesigned exterior
  • Completely Redesigned Interior
  • New Engine Options
  • New N-Line Variant

What to expect in the engine department?

Hyundai has not yet made any announcements or revealed any information regarding the engine or performance figures for the 2021 Hyundai Tucson. However, rumors make us believe that the 2021 Tucson might be powered by the same engine that currently comes with the Sonata sedan. It will supposedly be a 2.5-liter inline four-cylinder unit for the base trim and the lower trims, while the top trim might house a bit more powerful 1.6-liter turbocharged engine. All these engines already exist in outgoing Hyundai products and we know that the 1.6 Turbo unit offers a good combination of sportiness and refinement. We also predict that Hyundai will also launch the more performance-focused N trim for the 2021 model after launching the other trims. The sportier N-line model might be able to churn out almost around 300 hp with the help of a 2.5-liter turbocharged engine which is also expected to make an appearance in the Sonata N-line model. 

2021 Hyundai is expected to get new engine options

Another interesting addition will be the plug-in hybrid model of the 2021 Tucson. Just like the N-Line model it might also make an appearance after the release of the internal combustion-powered versions so we can expect an early 2022 launch. There is no confirmation about the engine it will get but rumors suggest that it might offer the best in class electric-only range. It will also get Hyundai’s latest fast charging technology which promises to reduce its charging time by quite some margin and should use similar underpinnings to the recently unveiled hybrid versions of the all-new Elantra and Sonata.

Models

2021 Hyundai Tucson (Expected)

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan

2020 Honda CR-V

2020 Mazda CX-5

MSRP

$25,000

$24,945

$25,050

$25,090

Engine

2.5-liter Inline Four-cylinder*

2.0 Intercooled TSI Inline-4

1.5-liter turbocharged inline-4

2.5-liter Naturally Aspirated inline-4

Drivetrain

FWD*

FWD

FWD

FWD

Transmission

6-speed automatic w/OD*

8-speed automatic

CVT

6-speed automatic

Power ( hp @ RPM)

161 @ 6,200*

184 @ 4,400

190 @ 5,600

187 @ 6,000

Torque (lb-ft @ RPM)

150 @ 4,700*

221 @ 1,600

179 @ 2,000

186 @ 4,000

*2020 data used for reference.

The Hyundai might be the least powerful of the lot, but these figures are of the 2020 model year. As the new model is being built up from scratch they are sure to change and no one knows if the Tucson might overtake the most of the rivals if not all. If the Tucson receives the top of the line engine from the Hyundai Sonata, it will certainly overtake even the Honda- CRV in terms of power and torque output.

How many miles to the gallon will the 2021 Hyundai Tucson deliver? 

The 2020 model of the Tucson does no wonders when it comes to the mpg figures, hence the incoming 2021 model is sure to step up the game. This will be due to the fact that one of the engine options available will be a hybrid, this is always good news for mileage conscious buyers. Although the current model’s figures are better than the bigger SUV’s, EPA has not released any estimates for the 2021 model. But with Hyundai’s current record it is still safe to assume that the figures would be better than the 2020 models mark which stands at 23 mpg for city, 28 mpg on the highway, and 25 mpg of combined fuel efficiency o

Models

2021 Hyundai Tucson (Expected)

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan

2020 Honda CR-V

2020 Mazda CX-5

MPG (City)

23*

22

26

25

MPG (Highway)

28*

29

32

31

MPG (Combined)

25*

25

28

28

Fuel Capacity (Gallons)

16.4*

15.3

14.0

14.8

Range (City/Highway/Combined)

377.2/459.2/410

337/444/382

364/448/392

370/459/415

*2020 data used for reference

The current version of the Tucson is by far the least fuel-efficient crossover SUV in its segment. It fails to stand on par with the Mazda and is easily overcome by the Honda CR-V. However, the Honda, while having good mpg figures it has a smaller fuel tank which might make for frequent refueling on long trips. On the other hand, Volkswagen Tiguan while having better mpg figures it falls short on range due to a smaller fuel tank. Overall, the 2021 Hyundai Tuscon certainly has to offer better frugality in order to beat its rivals without compromising on the range or fuel capacity.

What to expect from the interior of the 2021 Hyundai Tucson?

As the spy shots have revealed, the exterior of the Tucson 2021 is no doubt going to be a much sharper and is sure to turn heads, but what about the interior? Well, as per the new trend all latest Hyundais, it is safe to assume that the 2021 Tucson is going to offer better quality materials and all the latest gizmo and tech along with a new design direction which should take inspiration from the brand's flagship, i.e the Palisade as well as their luxury division Genesis for a contemporary and class-leading interior design.

2021 Hyundai Tucson will get all-new interior design

Hyundai does a great job simplifying all the technology and offering it in a userfriendly package, hence we expect 2021 to offer advanced but a clean cabin. Many features will be driver-focused as the dashboard does not create much distraction while driving. The quality of materials used should also be a step up from what we have seen in the 2020 model, hence we expect to see some industry-leading specifications inside the cabin of this upcoming Tucson.

2021 Hyundai Tucson should have similar interior dimensions

The spy photos of the car have let us deduce that the interior space might be the same or there might be just a small change in the proportion. Expect the cabin to offer a redesigned dashboard and upholstery to provide a more upmarket experience. New seats and the redesigned cabin could also help free up more space in the back so we expect the 2021 Tucson to fair better in the rear legroom department than the outgoing model.

Models

2021 Hyundai Tucson (Expected)

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan

2020 Honda CR-V

2020 Mazda CX-5

Seating Capacity

5*

7

5

5

Front Row (Headroom/Shoulder Room/ Leg Room, in inches)

39.6/57.1/41.5*

39.6/57.0/40.2

40.1/57.9/41.3

39.7/57.1/41.0

Rear Row (Headroom/Shoulder Room/Leg Room, in inches)

39.2/55.5/38.2*

38.9/55.8/38.7

39.2/55.6/40.4

39.0/54.8/39.6

*2020 data used for reference.

The interior space of the current model of Tucson is very similar to what the rivals offer and it is safe to say that the upcoming model would also host the same dimensions. It is surely not going to be any smaller but we do expect it to have slightly bigger interior dimensions which can be achieved by smarter packaging and this should allow it to challenge the Honda CR-V, which makes the best use of its interior space and thus makes it feel extremely spacious.

Does it come loaded with tech inside?

Exact information about what technology is or isn’t going to be present on the 2021 Tucson is not yet available, but be prepared for a larger rectangular touch screen infotainment. Such units are offered in the present model of the company’s luxury sedans like the Sonata and Elantra. We also expect the current analog instrument cluster to be ditched in favor of an all-digital driver's display setup at least with the higher trim levels.

2021 Hyundai Tucson will receive a new infotainment setup

The standard features that could be integrated into the system are the advanced smartphone compatibility system like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Other features like SiriusXM satellite radio, on-board Wi-Fi, and in-dash navigation will be offered. We expect to see a lot of design cues and features inspired or borrowed from the Hyundai's top-tier products like the Sonata and the Palisade and it is only fair to expect the best of tech from a Hyundai as they manage to outdo not just the competition but themselves with every new product that they come up with.

Will there be any changes to the Exterior of the 2021 Hyundai Tucson?

The biggest change and the most awaited thing to look forward in the 2021 Tucson is going to be its exterior. It is all set to receive a completely redesigned and will not have any resemblance to the outgoing models. As shown on the Vision T concept in the LA Auto show in the year 2019, the Tucson will ditch its smart yet modest appearance in favor of extremely dynamic and futuristic design, riddled with sharp creases, lines, and edges.

2021 Hyundai Tucson will receive a complete exterior redesign

The design somewhat will be like the new Hyundai Sonata. Exterior front and rear daytime running LED will be present on the front as well as the rear. The turn indicator would be packed in the LED lights as well. Gem-like shapes, sleeker tail lamps, Z-shaped fenders are going to be the design language of the 2021 Tucson. There will be a full-length light stripe that would run between its rear tail lamp.

Models

2021 Hyundai Tucson (Expected)

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan

2020 Honda CR-V

2020 Mazda CX-5

Curb Weight (lbs)

3485*

3721

3307

3541

Length (inches)

176.2*

185.1

180.6

179.1

Width (inches)

72.8*

72.4

73.0

72.5

Height (inches)

64.8*

66.3

66.1

66.2

Ground Clearance (inches)

6.4*

7.9

7.8

7.5

Wheelbase (inches)

105.1*

109.8

106.2

106.2

Track Width F/R (inches)

63.3/63.8*

62.2/61.8

63.0/63.7

62.8/62.8

*2020 data used as a reference.

Will the 2021 Hyundai Tucson be worth my money and time?

The 2021 Tucson is going to be designed from the ground up in terms of the interior as well as the exterior. The Vision T Concept on which it is going to be based has showcased a whole new design layout with a bigger grille and a smarter looking front end. The engine options just like the rest of the vehicle have been completely revised and a hybrid is also expected to make its way into the range as the concept was also introduced as a plug-in hybrid. The current model is a value for money option but fails to stand out in its segment hence we expect a lot of changes from the 2021 model. It is going to hit the dealerships sometime in the latter half of the year 2020 and is expected to be priced around the $25,000 mark. The 2021 Tucson has set the hopes high and is sure to keep up to those expectations considering Hyundai’s past trend. Hence, we suggest you wait for the 2021 model as it will be a big improvement over the current model.

Also Read:

Here's everything you need to know about the upcoming 2021 Nissan Pathfinder.

Take a look at the redesigned 2021 Hyundai Elantra.

2021 Hyundai Tucson FAQs

How safe is the Hyundai Tucson?

The Tucson has received excellent safety ratings from both the IIHS and NHTSA. It scored Good in all the major crash categories and hence is quite a safe car. We expect the 2021 Tucson to offer better safety features.

What is the warranty offered with the Hyundai Tucson?

The Tucson has received excellent safety ratings from both the IIHS and NHTSA. It scored Good in all the major crash categories and hence is quite a safe car. We expect the 2021 Tucson to offer better safety features.

Will the Hyundai Tucson get a 7-seater option?

No, the upcoming 2021 Hyundai Tucson just like its outgoing version will only be available in a 5-seater configuration.

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