Hyundai’s N division is about to release its first SUV. And this… isn’t it. Yup, while the little Kona has just been given the full N treatment, the new Tucson has to make do with little more than sportier styling. For now, anyway.
The Tucson ‘N Line’ goes on sale in the spring. Key differences versus the standard Tucson, which just so happens to be a very good car, include a taller, wider grille, new bumpers and air intakes, black detailing, 19-inch alloys and more prominent exhausts. Inside you get N-branded seats with red contrast stitching, black headlining and metal pedals.
Far as dynamics go, Hyundai’s engineers have reprogrammed the optional adaptive dampers to make the Tucson a bit keener to drive. And that’s it. Think of N Line Hyundais as you might S Line Audis, M Sport BMWs or AMG Line Mercs and you get the idea. It’s an aesthetics thing.
So if Hyundai were to do a proper Tucson N, it might look a bit like this. No word on whether that’s happening, of course. For now it’s available with all the same engines as the standard car, from a normal 1.6-litre turbo through regular, mild- and plug-in hybrids.
The new Tucson is a controversial-looking thing at the best of times. Has the sporty-looking N Line styling improved matters?
STORY Tom Harrison