The ever-growing popularity of SUV’s continues to grow, so much, so that manufacturers are offering more and more different trim lines to feed enthusiastic buyers. Hyundai has given the N treatment to their successful Tucson. The N is the brand or trim line Hyundai use for their sporting models at present only the highly acclaimed 130N hot hatchback.
The Tucson N Line features exterior elements inspired by Hyundai’s N range of high-performance models, with bespoke front and rear bumpers, dark mesh-pattern grille with a dark chrome surround. The 19” alloy wheels, door mirror housings and rear spoiler are all finished in glossy black, to further emphasise the car’s sporting attitude. Black-bezel headlamps, unique LED daytime running lights and darkened window frames in combination with body-coloured door handles also create a more dynamic look for the Tucson N Line Interior changes for Tucson N Line include N-branded leather-suede sport seats with red accent stitching, which is also carried over to the N branded leather steering wheel. Alloy pedals and the leather-wrapped, red-accented N gear shift lever are also part of the Tucson N Line’s sporting enhancements.
As well as external and interior styling changes, Tucson N Line T-GDi models feature dynamic modifications over regular Tucson models, with modifications to the motor-driven power steering software giving a more direct, linear feel at the wheel and further adjustment to suspension settings providing a 5% greater rigidity in the rear setup and an 8% increase at the front. The 177 bhp petrol engine version I drove, with the seven-speed auto gearbox, was lively, and enthusiastic, good fun to drive and easy to live with.
The Tucson N does benefit from the sharpening of its suspension settings as it felt subtle and direct to drive and yet once in cruise mode the Tucson N does not compromise on comfort. Interior space is functional, maybe a little cramped if you have any tall people in the rear as the roof slopes a little. Build quality is top class as expected in a Hyundai.
The cabin layout is clean and easy to use, driving position is one of the best I have come across in a Suv, plenty of height for excellent visibility, but not too high as if you feel you are sitting on the car rather than it. The Tucson N is light on its feet; it will sprint to 60mph in 9 seconds and is capable of 125mph, the quoted consumption figure of 36.2, I found to be optimistic, I achieved closer 30 mpg.
Is the Tucson N a sports SUV? Well take it for what it is a well-sorted, attractive looking well-built SUV that has little more flair and excitement than what is the norm in SUV land, and you will not be disappointed.
Hyundai Tucson N-Line 1.6 T-GDi 177PS 2WD DCT Price as tested £27,285.00.