HYUNDAI Tucson Limited AWD 2012

  • Excellent infotainment system
  • Low price
  • Great driver controls
  • Easy to park
  • Dual-zone climate controls let your adjust the temperature for each side of the car separately

The Tucson may be on the petite side when it comes to crossovers, but this Hyundai proves that plenty of great perks can come in a small package. Our fully loaded test vehicle packed in an excellent infotainment system, and nice bonuses like extra in-car outlets for charging devices and included navigation The best part? Even with top-of-the-line features, the high-end Limited model came in at a lower price than nearly any other crossover in our test. If limited cargo space isn’t an issue, the Tucson and Hyundai’s well-known 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty make this a solid choice for the price.

While the Hyundai packs in plenty of great options, you’ll want to look elsewhere if you want a zippy ride; the Tucson was one of the worst performers in our test when it came to acceleration. Still, this crossover was a standout in braking power, boasting the second shortest stopping distance of the bunch in Car and Driver‘s track testing. The Tucson’s smaller stature helped it grip the pavement better during sharp turns for a superb road holding score as well. An added bonus: The Hyundai offers a relatively quiet ride.

The Tucson didn’t do quite as well when we took it out on the road. The transmission was average (not too sensitive, but not terribly unresponsive either when we were shifting speed) and fuel economy came in at the middle of the pack too. A good turning radius and the vehicle’s small stature made it easier to park, though we had some major complaints about visibility (a common issue among crossovers). The handling also left a little to be desired and steering was less than crisp.

Our top-of-the-line test vehicle came with plenty of perks standard, including a Bluetooth hands-free system and iPod input. It also included Hyundai’s Premium package option with navigation. With all these great assets, it should come as no surprise that the Tucson was a top performer when it came to ease of use. We were particularly impressed with the SUV’s excellent phone pairing and straightforward driver controls. Dual-zone HVAC controls mean that all passengers can be comfortable and heated front seats are an added bonus for those in the front row. Other perks include built-in USB ports and additional outlets with a compartment for charging auto accessories. Our only complaints: Voice recognition didn’t always work perfectly and occasionally there were some unexplained hiccups in the Bluetooth system.

While the Hyundai’s smaller stature may make for a better driving experience in some ways, it certainly doesn’t help when it comes to space. Unsurprisingly, the Tucson offered less storage than most SUV’s in our test. There’s plenty of leg and headroom at least, but we found the seats to be too stiff. Installing a car seat was fairly straightforward, thanks to the Tucson’s built-in rear mounts in the back seat.


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