2016 Hyundai Tucson Limited AWD – review

2016 Hyundai Tucson - all-wheel-drive and packed with luxury features. An impressive package that comes at at a surprisingly high price

2016 Hyundai Tucson – all-wheel-drive and packed with luxury features. An impressive package that comes at at a surprisingly high price

I always look forward to testing Hyundais.  The Korean manufacturer for some years now has offered vehicles packed with features at a price point that has competitors scratching their head and wondering, “How do they do it for that price?”

And there is no questioning the level of quality and reliability of the brand either.  Build quality and the quality of interior materials is very good, and our Hyundai Tucson was no exception.

Our test unit was a 2016, and in Hyundai-speak, officially dubbed a Tuscon Limited AWD DCT CUV.  This is the second highest trim level (the Tuscon is offered in seven trim levels), and comes with almost every feature you can imagine.

For enthusiasts, the Limited comes with the 1.6-litre DOHC 4-cylinder turbocharged engine.  On paper, the 1.6-litre engine seems small, but with the turbocharger, power is a respectable 175 horsepower delivered through  a quick-shifting 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.  Technically, this is a very nice powertrain package.

The Limited model gives a long, long list of standard features, the most important of which are fulltime all-wheel-drive, 19-in. alloy wheels, blind spot warning system with rear cross-traffic alert, rear parking assistance, heated front and rear seats, heated steering wheel (hurray!!), Nav, and a power tailgate.

The 2016 Hyundai Tucson's styling is pleasingly bold, with a large grille and fog light accents giving it a 'face' that looks like a much larger vehicle

The 2016 Hyundai Tucson’s styling is pleasingly bold, with a large grille and fog light accents giving it a ‘face’ of a much larger vehicle

On the road

Driving the Tucson is easy-peasy.  Hyundai is one of those all to rare companies that ‘gets’ wonderfully intuitive driver controls.  The Tucson’s GPS system, for instance, is a marvel of simplicity (unlike the one on our in-house 2015 Subaru WRX.)

Punching in a destination by street address was easy without pondering the next step.  Other manufacturers need to look at how Hyundai has designed the screen on the Tucson’s GPS and just copy it for themselves.

We drove the Tuscon on the highway, Edmonton to Calgary and back, and found the CUV to be quiet, comfortable and insulating the cabin nicely from road noise.  A minor feature I really liked was the one-touch lane change turn signal.  Touch the turn signal once and it flashes 3 times, which is great for changing lanes.  No big deal.  The German makers were the first ones, I think, to offer this convenience.  For me, the 3 flashes is too short.  Hyundai has cleverly allowed the user through the CUV’s onboard menu system to increase the number of flashes.  I easily set the vehicle to flash 5 times with one touch, giving me plenty of signal time to complete a lane change.

Our observed fuel economy was respectable, too.  The official Canada EnerGuide fuel consumption rating is 9.9/8.4 L/100 km (city/hwy).  We obtained 8.7 L/100 km (actual consumption, calculated, not taken from the onboard computer readout), using regular unleaded fuel.


I really liked the 2016 Hyundai Tucson Limited.  It has plenty of luxury features (heated steering wheel is sooooo nice and the power tailgate are almost ‘must haves’ these days), and it is packaged with a nice collection of safety features, such as blind spot warning and rear cross-traffic alert.  The CUV (or ‘wagon’) design offers terrific utility, and of course the all-wheel-drive gives superb confidence in our extreme, winter driving conditions.

BUT, Hyundai has lost its way on the Tucson’s pricing.  The 2016 Hyundai Tucson Limited AWD stickers at $36,649 + $1,760, for an MSRP total of $38,409.  Gulp.  That seems pricey in my books.

By comparison, a 2016 Subaru Forester Limited 2.5i with Technology Package stickers at $35,795.  Sure, the Forester lacks the heated steering wheel, but considering the Subaru’s track record for outstanding reliability and class-leading resale value, I’d personally opt for the Forester.


  • Superbly intuitive navigation system
  • Impressive 1.6-litre turbocharged engine and 7-speed DCT transmission
  • Real world fuel economy


  • High price compared to competition



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