Hyundai Tucson (2018-2020) Review & Prices

With a spacious cabin and plenty of kit, the Hyundai Tucson is an appealing used option for those in the market for a family-friendly SUV

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RRP £23,375 - £36,405
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Reviewed by Carwow after extensive testing of the vehicle.

What's good

  • Comfortable to drive
  • Lots of kit
  • Roomy for passengers

What's not so good

  • Bland exterior
  • Drab interior
  • Bigger luggage space available elsewhere

Find out more about the Hyundai Tucson (2018-2020)

Is a used Hyundai Tucson a good car?

The family SUV market is hotly contested, meaning there are an almost overwhelming number of options to choose from. One contender worthy of investigation is the Hyundai Tucson, which offers a spacious interior and plenty of standard equipment.

It doesn’t look as posh as some alternatives, though, while the interior lacks any sort of design sparkle. It’s a bit like buying a new washing machine in that it’s great that it does what it’s designed to do but you won’t be inviting your mates over to show it off.

The third-generation Hyundai Tucson went on sale in 2015, sporting a much more bold and imposing design than the model that came before it, thanks to a larger grille and larger headlights.

The Hyundai Tucson might be a bit bland inside, but it's a practical and well-equipped SUV.

It was built on completely new underpinnings, too, meaning it benefitted from more interior space and the latest technologies of the time. Hyundai boasted that its sat nav system was three times faster than that found in the older car, for example. Meanwhile, the interior design might be on the bland side, but it does represent a decent jump in the quality of materials used.

That new platform also helped introduce some new safety technologies, with the Tucson getting an autonomous emergency braking system, lane keep assist and a blind spot warning.

An update in 2018 did a good job of improving the exterior styling by introducing a larger grille and sharper lines in the headlights and front and rear bumpers. Kit improved too, with the addition of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as standard across the range.

What are the engine options?

Early Tucsons were offered with a choice of two petrol and three diesel engines. The entry-level petrol was a 1.6-litre unit with 135hp, while a turbocharged version was available on higher trims and made 176hp. Both engines had a six-speed manual gearbox as standard, with the more powerful unit having a seven-speed automatic option.

The basic diesel was a 1.7-litre unit with 115hp, while a larger 2.0-litre engine had both 136hp and 184hp output options and a six-speed automatic gearbox option. A seven-speed auto option was added to the 1.7-litre diesel in 2016.

There are also front- and all-wheel drive alternatives. The least powerful petrol is only two-wheel drive, the 1.7-litre diesel and the lower-powered 2.0-litre diesel have a choice of both, while the most powerful petrol and diesel are both exclusively all-wheel drive.

If you’re looking for lower running costs, two-wheel drive engines will be your best bet, with a diesel perfect for those who spend most of their time on the motorway. The 2.0-litre with 136hp offers a good compromise of performance and efficiency.

In 2018, the engine range was updated, with the 185hp 2.0-litre diesel engine being the first Hyundai to use mild hybrid technology to improve fuel efficiency. It also received a new eight-speed automatic transmission.

A 1.6-litre diesel replaced the outgoing 1.7-litre unit and received 115hp and 136hp outputs and a choice of manual and automatic gearboxes, so you have roughly the same power output choice before across the new diesel engine line-up. Meanwhile, the petrol engines were also offered across more trim levels than before.

What trim levels are available?

While the Tucson is generally well-equipped, early examples in cheapest S trim only come with the basics. You will find 16-inch alloy wheels, cloth seat trim, air conditioning and Bluetooth connectivity.

Step up to SE and things start to look a little better, with roof rails, skid plates on the outside that give a more rugged appearance, leather-wrapped steering wheel, heated front seats and dual-zone climate control. The lane keep assistant also starts with this trim.

Opt for the Premium model and there are 19-inch alloy wheels, a chrome effect for the front grille, leather seat trim, automatic windscreen wipers, parking sensors front and rear, blind spot detection and automatic emergency braking.

Finally, top-spec Premium SE models add more chrome effect trim pieces, LED headlights, a sunroof, heated steering wheel and keyless entry and start.

With the 2018 update also came a few trim changes, which really give you a lot of kit for your cash. For example, all models have Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as standard, a rear view camera, climate control and leather steering wheel.

The SE Nav model gets 17-inch alloy wheels, front and rear parking sensors and automatic windscreen wipers. Step up to Premium and extra kit includes 18-inch alloy wheels, keyless entry and start, wireless charging and a new premium audio system.

Range-topping Premium SE models received adaptive cruise control, a 360-degree camera, panoramic sunroof and ventilated front seats. These models are naturally the priciest of the range but have all the kit you could ever need from a family SUV.

How practical is it?

The Hyundai Tucson comes with absolutely loads of room in the front, so you won’t have to worry about your head touching the roof if you’re very tall, while heated and ventilated front seats on top-spec cars are perfect for cold winter mornings and roasting hot summer afternoons.

Passenger space in the back is pretty good – there’s more room than you’ll find in the back of a Nissan Qashqai – and the Tucson’s standard reclining rear seats are just the thing for making sure tall passengers are comfortable on long journeys.

You get a decent number of storage bins dotted about the Hyundai Tucson’s cabin, from a large bottle-shaped recess in each door to a spacious glovebox and a pair of generous cupholders in the centre console. There’s also space under the front armrest to tuck a few valuables safely out of sight.

The Hyundai Tucson’s 513-litre boot is slightly bigger than what you get in the Kia Sportage and leagues ahead of the rather small Nissan Qashqai’s load bay, but it can’t match the more practical VW Tiguan for load-carrying ability.

That said, it’s still more than spacious enough to carry a large weekly shop or a family’s luggage for a week away.

What’s it like to drive?

The Hyundai Tucson irons out bumps in the road more smoothly than the likes of the Kia Sportage, but it’s not quite as comfortable as the Nissan Qashqai. It’s still pretty relaxing to drive around town, however, and it doesn’t lean much in tight corners so your passengers are unlikely to feel car sick.

The high driving position gives you a good view out over the road ahead, but the pillar between the front doors and the windscreen is quite thick so you have to lean forward to spot traffic approaching at junctions.

Still, at least the Hyundai Tucson’s light steering helps make it easy to manoeuvre around town. The seven-speed automatic is a bit jerky at low speeds, but works well on the move for those driving long distances. Budget allowing, later top-spec cars with adaptive cruise control are perfect for those who spend their time on the motorway.

Should you want to tow with your Tucson, the higher-powered 2.0-litre diesel sold between 2015 and 2018 is your best bet, because it’s capable of towing up to 2,200kg, which is a bit more than you can do in the Kia Sportage. After 2018 the top diesel’s towing capacity dropped to 1,900kg. Each of the other engines can tow between 1,400kg and 1,900kg.

What to look out for

The Hyundai Tucson has proved a reliable family SUV over the years, not suffering from too many recurring problems. The cabin is well-built, too, and appears to stand up well to the rough and tumble of family life.

As new, the Tucson was offered with a five-year, unlimited mileage warranty. That means many younger cars on the used market could still have a decent level of coverage remaining, helping to ease some concerns about potential repairs.

One of the most common problems relates to manual transmissions. Owners have reported that clutch wear is higher than you might expect, which can lead to pricy repairs over the life of the vehicle. When test driving the car, listen out for the engine revs rising faster than the car is accelerating, which could indicate that it is slipping.

Otherwise, look out for dents and dings in the bodywork. This is not a small Hyundai and those that have lived an urban lifestyle might have encountered the odd bump here and there. Also pay particular attention to models with larger alloy wheels, which could have damage from kerb strikes.

Hyundai Tucson recalls

When a car manufacturer or the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) come across a common problem with a vehicle, a recall is issued. These are common and can relate to minor issues with electrical systems to more serious mechanical faults. In each case the manufacturer will usually fix the fault for free.

Recall work should have been carried out by a car’s previous owners, but if you want to check whether a vehicle has any outstanding recalls you can contact your local dealership. If you want to know more about recalls you can read this handy guide, or continue reading to see what faults relate to the Hyundai Tucson.

The first affects nearly 15,000 models built between January 2015 and March 2016. A secondary bonnet catch that is intended to keep the bonnet from flying open if the operator does not shut it properly may not function correctly. This can cause it to open at motorway speeds.

Around 1,800 cars built between September and November 2020 have a faulty emergency call system that does not send the vehicle identification number.

Finally, almost 120,000 Tucsons built between April 2015 and November 2020 have a problem with the control unit in the ABS and stability systems. This requires modifications to the unit and the software.

Safety and security

When it was tested in 2015, the Hyundai Tucson received five-out-of-five in safety testing by Euro NCAP. It performed well in occupant protection scenarios, scoring 86% for adults and 85% for children.

There’s a good amount of driver assistance technology available, though lane keep assist, autonomous emergency braking and blind spot detection are reserved for higher trims in pre-2018 update cars. In later cars, the first two are standard equipment, while driver attention alert is added on all but the lowest trim.

What else should I consider?

There’s plenty of competition for the Hyundai Tucson, with some excellent family SUVs to consider. One of the best is the SEAT Ateca, which is likely to be a little more expensive to buy used but looks smarter inside and out as well as being better to drive.

The mechanically similar Kia Sportage is another good option, having the added advantage of a longer warranty. At seven years or 100,000 miles, you can find older, more affordable examples still covered.

If you want something a bit more stylish without having to pay a premium price, the Peugeot 3008 is worth considering. The second generation, on sale since 2016, looks fantastic and has a posher cabin that is a much more enjoyable place to spend time.

Other alternatives include the Nissan Qashqai, which is popular and practical but not particularly reliable, and the Ford Kuga, which offers excellent value on the used market.

If you're considering a used Hyundai Tucson, check out the latest stock from a network of trusted dealers right here on carwow. And if you need to sell your old car first, we can help with that too.

Buy or lease the Hyundai Tucson (2018-2020) at a price you’ll love
We take the hassle and haggle out of car buying by finding you great deals from local and national dealers
RRP £23,375 - £36,405
Carwow price from
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