Wednesday, July 22, 2015

First Drive: 2016 Hyundai Tucson - Affordable Luxury and Style

The awesome team at Hyundai brought twenty-four lifestyle bloggers including myself to Minneapolis to drive their compact SUV, the 2016 Hyundai Tucson. Having driven it's bigger brothers the Santa Fe and the Santa Fe Sport, would the smaller brother be able to hold its own? Let's take the 2016 Tucson for a spin and find out!

We started our day at our hotel, The Commons, located right in the heart of the University of Minnesota campus! We choose out favorite color and hit the road. Hyundai always provides incredible driving directions and the most amazing driving routes!

Soon we were on the road and after several miles out on the freeway we were out in the Wisconsin countryside! Wide open spaces and hilly roads made for a wonderful day of driving! The Tucson handles corners well and the cabin made for a very quiet driving experience.

There are several trim levels to choose from here. The Basic SE models come equipped with a backup camera, heated cloth seats, a touch screen radio system and several power ports. The Eco, Sport and Limited trims come with heated and cooled leather seats, a larger infotainment screen with navigation, a panoramic sunroof, dual zone climate control, lane departure warning, rear view camera, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, and blind spot detection with rear cross-traffic alert. The Eco trim however doesn't have 19-inch alloy wheels and goes for a more efficient 17-inch alloys.

There is also an automatic liftgate and the trunk floor can be easily configured to be flush with the bumper or dropped a few inches to provide extra room for bulkier items. Two nice conveniences available on the Tucson.

Everything here is powered by one of two engines depending on which trim you select. The SE Base trim has a 164-hp, 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. All other trims have the option of a 175-hp, 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine. Both engines are great in their own right but found that the 1.6-liter engine provided a smoother and quieter ride.

The stylish good looks of the Tucson really shine! I love the large grille and the wraparound headlights. The rear taillights looks very much like Hyundai's luxury flagship Genesis. The optional 19-inch alloys are some of the coolest wheels I have seen on a stock vehicle!

As you can see the Tucson isn't afraid of getting dirty! We got to the drive the SUV over gravel roads and through some great puddles and the handling was superb!

At the end of the day I was impressed with what the 2016 Hyundai Tucson brings to the table. Stylish good looks and great technology combine to give you an SUV that is great to look at and fun to drive!

The 2016 Hyundai Tucson will be available this summer with a starting price of  $22,700.

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