July 19, 2024

Design Review: Hyundai Tucson Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV)


The Hyundai Tucson has long been a popular choice in the compact SUV market, blending practicality, style, and efficiency. With the introduction of the Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) variant, Hyundai offers a compelling option for eco-conscious drivers seeking versatility and sustainability. Let’s delve into an extensive design review of the Hyundai Tucson PHEV.

Exterior Design:

The exterior design of the Tucson PHEV is sleek and modern, with a striking presence on the road. Hyundai has retained the Tucson’s signature cascading grille, which now features an intricate pattern and chrome accents, giving the front end a sophisticated look. The LED headlights and daytime running lights add a touch of premium flair, while the sculpted body lines create a sense of dynamism.

  • Front Fascia: The front fascia of the Tucson PHEV is characterized by its sharp lines and integrated aerodynamic elements. The charging port is conveniently located on the front left fender, with a discreet flap that blends seamlessly into the design.
  • Side Profile: Moving to the side profile, the Tucson PHEV features a slightly raised beltline and a floating roof design, giving it a sporty yet elegant appearance. The 19-inch alloy wheels (standard on higher trims) add to the overall aesthetic, while the chrome window surrounds and door handles provide a touch of refinement.
  • Rear Design: At the rear, the Tucson PHEV showcases LED taillights with a distinctive pattern, creating a memorable impression. The rear bumper features a diffuser-like element, emphasizing the vehicle’s efficiency. Overall, the exterior design of the Tucson PHEV balances style and aerodynamics, making it stand out in the crowded SUV market.

Interior Design and Comfort:

Step inside the Tucson PHEV, and you’re greeted by a modern and well-appointed cabin designed for comfort and convenience. Hyundai has paid attention to detail, using high-quality materials throughout the interior.

  • Dashboard and Controls: The dashboard layout is clean and ergonomic, with intuitive placement of controls and a user-friendly interface. Soft-touch materials and contrast stitching on the dashboard and door panels elevate the cabin’s premium feel.
  • Infotainment System: The centerpiece of the interior is the large touchscreen infotainment system, which supports Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The system is responsive and easy to navigate, providing access to a range of entertainment and connectivity options.
  • Seating and Space: The Tucson PHEV offers ample space for passengers, with comfortable and supportive seats. The driver’s seat is power-adjustable, allowing for a customized driving position. Rear passengers benefit from generous legroom and headroom, making long journeys a comfortable experience.
  • Cargo Capacity: Despite the hybrid powertrain components, the Tucson PHEV retains a respectable cargo capacity. The rear seats can be folded flat to accommodate larger items, making it versatile for both daily errands and weekend getaways.

Technology and Features:

Hyundai has equipped the Tucson PHEV with a host of technology features aimed at enhancing convenience, safety, and connectivity.

  • Hyundai SmartSense: The Tucson PHEV comes standard with Hyundai’s suite of advanced driver-assistance systems, known as SmartSense. This includes features such as forward collision-avoidance assist, lane-keeping assist, blind-spot collision warning, and adaptive cruise control.
  • Wireless Charging: For added convenience, the Tucson PHEV offers an available wireless charging pad for compatible smartphones, reducing clutter and ensuring your devices stay powered on the go.
  • Blue Link Connected Car Services: Hyundai’s Blue Link system allows remote access to the vehicle, including remote start, climate control, and vehicle status checks through a smartphone app.
  • BOSE Premium Sound System: Music enthusiasts will appreciate the available BOSE premium sound system, delivering crisp and immersive audio quality throughout the cabin.

Powertrain and Efficiency:

The heart of the Tucson PHEV lies in its powertrain, combining a gasoline engine with an electric motor for optimal efficiency and performance.

  • Plug-in Hybrid System: The Tucson PHEV features a 1.6-liter turbocharged gasoline engine paired with an electric motor and a lithium-ion polymer battery. This setup offers the flexibility of electric-only driving for shorter trips, with the gasoline engine providing extended range when needed.
  • Electric Range: Hyundai claims an estimated all-electric range of around 32 miles on a single charge, making it suitable for daily commutes and short trips without using gasoline.
  • Total System Power: The combined power output of the gasoline engine and electric motor results in a respectable total system output, providing responsive acceleration and confident highway passing.
  • Regenerative Braking: The Tucson PHEV features regenerative braking, which captures energy during deceleration and braking, helping to recharge the battery and improve overall efficiency.

Driving Dynamics:

Behind the wheel, the Tucson PHEV delivers a refined and composed driving experience, blending comfort with eco-friendly performance.

  • Smooth Acceleration: The electric motor’s instant torque delivery results in smooth and responsive acceleration from a standstill, ideal for city driving.
  • Driving Modes: Drivers can select from different driving modes, including Eco, Comfort, Sport, and EV mode. Each mode tailors the vehicle’s performance to suit the driving conditions and preferences.
  • Suspension and Handling: The Tucson PHEV strikes a good balance between ride comfort and handling agility. The suspension absorbs road imperfections well, providing a smooth and comfortable
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