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2023 Hyundai Tucson Trim Levels, Configurations & Comparisons.

2023 Hyundai Tucson Trim Levels, Configurations & Comparisons: SE vs SEL, XRT vs N-Line and Limited
Reviewed & fact checked by
James Murdoch

What 2023 Hyundai Tucson Trim Should You Buy? What is the Difference Between Trims?

When buyers choose a compact SUV, they get both practicality and maneuverability. Many compact SUVs also offer respectable fuel economy and a sleek exterior design. With all of this in mind, it is no wonder that there currently are so many options to consider.

Hyundai makes an SUV for nearly every set of driving needs these days. The Tucson is one of the smaller options, although both the Venue and Kona are smaller. This SUV was redesigned entirely in 2022, giving it a fresh and more modern look. For the 2023 Tucson, adaptive cruise control and pedestrian become standard features.

Drivers who have their eye on the 2023 Hyundai Tucson will need to learn about all five of the available trim levels. The entry-level models are value-packed, while upper trim levels nearly rival luxury options. Knowing which features are added by each trim is the key to selecting the proper 2023 Tucson.

Compare the SE vs SEL Trims. What is the difference?

The 2023 Hyundai Tucson comes with an inline-four-cylinder engine. It is a 2.5L that is capable of creating 187 horsepower and 178 lb-ft of torque for a decently engaging drive. An eight-speed automatic transmission is also standard, along with front-wheel drive. Even the entry-level Tucson SE can be upgraded to all-wheel drive.

A trailer tow hitch is available for the SE, which can tow up to 2,000 pounds when properly equipped. There are 17-inch wheels underneath this Tucson, which comes with a compact spare tire. The headlights, front turn signals, and daytime running lights are all LED. Both automatic headlights and high-beam assist are also included across the board.

The side mirrors are body-colored, and the skid plates are painted silver for the Tucson SE. A rear spoiler gives this Hyundai a slightly sportier exterior look. Rounding out the exterior features are solar control front glass and an acoustic-laminated windshield.

Inside, the 2023 Tucson has seating for up to five. The entry-level SE sticks with a six-way manually-adjustable driver's seat and simple cloth upholstery. A 60/40 split-folding rear seat adds some versatility to this entry-level Hyundai SUV.

An 8-inch touchscreen is at the heart of the infotainment system of the 2023 Tucson. It is relatively fancy, coming standard with wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. HD radio is included as well.

Dual USB ports are found up front in the Tucson SE. The gauge cluster measures in at 4.2 inches. A rear center armrest is included, and drivers also get two 12-volt power outlets. One is in the front, while the other is in the cargo area. A dual lever cargo floor is another standard convenience feature for the base Tucson.

Hyundai is a brand that prides itself on giving all of its vehicles a lengthy list of advanced safety features. The SE comes equipped with forward-collision avoidance, blind-spot collision-avoidance assist, adaptive cruise control, and driver attention monitoring. Lane following assist and lane keeping assist are thrown in as well. Further adding to the family appeal are things like a safe exit assist and a rear occupant alert.

Choosing the SEL trim level over the SE will not mean getting any performance changes. The wheels stay the same as well, but this trim level does get LED taillights rather than the standard bulb ones. Another exterior upgrade involves the side mirrors, which get heat and integrated turn signals. Roof rails and a hands-free power liftgate are also added, along with rear privacy glass.

Several comfort-enhancing features are found in the cabin of the Tucson SEL. It gets heated front seats along with an eight-way power-adjustable driver's seat. Power lumbar support is also added for the driver. This trim level gains satellite radio and Blue Connected Services for three years.

There are a few extra tech upgrades for the SEL, including second-row USB ports. This model also has console-mounted rear A/C vents. A push-button start, the Hyundai digital key, and proximity keyless entry are also added by the SEL trim of the Tucson.

The step up from the SE to the SEL trim of the 2023 Tucson will cost less than $2,000.

Compare the SEL vs XRT Trim Levels. What is the difference?

The 2023 Tucson XRT is the off-road-oriented version of this Hyundai SUV. It is the first model to come standard with a tow hitch, although it does not increase the towing capacity. Otherwise, the XRT makes no performance upgrades to the Tucson.

That said, the Tucson XRT does manage to look more athletic. It rides around on 19-inch alloy wheels. The side mirrors are now black, along with the skid plates. The XRT has exclusive side cladding and side steps as well.

Inside, the XRT has seats that are trimmed with synthetic leather. It also gets treated to a leather-wrapped steering wheel as well as a leather-wrapped shift knob. The touchscreen jumps up in size to 10.25 inches, but that comes at the cost of the wireless versions of Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. On the plus side, this model has an integrated navigation system and what Hyundai calls "dynamic voice recognition."

More noteworthy additions are made to the cabin at the XRT level. For example, the gauge display is more than doubled, now measuring 10.25 inches. This trim level gets an auto-dimming rearview mirror to help protect the driver's eyes at night. The XRT is the first version of the 2023 Tucson to get dual-zone automatic climate control, and Hyundai even throws in an auto-defogger. Perhaps most impressive is the 64-color ambient interior lighting system that displays on the center console and door pockets.

As for the safety features, the XRT gets a more advanced version of the rear seat occupant alert that uses ultrasonic sensors to better detect when someone is sitting in the back. If these sensors pick up movement after the vehicle is parked and locked, it will honk the horn and even text the driver. It costs over $5,000 more to go up to the XRT over the SEL.

Compare the XRT vs N Line. What is the difference?

Before the XRT came on the scene as the more rugged Tucson, buyers had the N Line to consider. Unlike some Hyundai vehicles, the Tucson N Line does not get an upgraded engine. This trim level makes the tow hitch an available rather than a standard feature once again.

The N Line maintains the 19-inch alloy wheels added by the XRT. It also upgrades to "premium LED" daytime running lights. This trim level has an exclusive design for its front and rear fascia, along with an N Line front grille. Swinging around back, this Tucson has a single twin-tip exhaust. Further setting it apart is the design of its rear spoiler.

While previous trim levels offered a power moonroof, the N Line comes standard with a panoramic sunroof. This Tucson has a combination of leather and cloth upholstery for the seats. The steering wheel is still wrapped in leather, but it gains an "N" logo. Also slightly tweaked is the leather-wrapped shift knob. The N-Line is home to alloy pedals and scuff plates.

A Bose premium sound system becomes standard for the 2023 Tucson N Line. This trim level also has LED interior lighting to help give it a more upscale look and feel. When compared to the Tucson XRT, the N Line costs a mere $50 more. The choice may ultimately come down to the style preferences of the buyer.

Compare N Line vs Limited Trims. What is the difference?

The 2023 Tucson Limited swaps out the sportier elements of the Tucson for more luxurious ones. That said, it is the only model that has a shift-by-wire system. This saves both space and weight while also making those shifts faster.

For the exterior, the Limited has projector-type LED headlights. The side mirrors go back to being body-colored, but they gain snazzy chrome accents. Exterior changes made for the N Line are mostly deleted for the Limited, but the panoramic sunroof stays.

Many upgrades are made to the seating of the Tucson Limited. Both of the front seats are ventilated, and the front passenger finally gets their own power adjustment. For the driver, memory settings are added so that families can share driving responsibilities. Rear passengers are not neglected either, thanks to the heated outboard back seats.

That is not the end of the cabin additions to be discovered in the Limited. This Tucson alone has a heated steering wheel for toasty hands, along with steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters. A universal garage door opener is also added to that auto-dimming rearview mirror. The ambient interior lighting system still has those 64 color options, but they are found in additional areas of the cabin to give drivers a more immersive customized experience.

Multiple safety features are exclusive to the Tucson Limited model. It is home to a surround-view monitor, parking-collision avoidance assist, and even a remote smart parking assist. There are both forward and reverse parking distance warnings to make sure the Tucson does not bump into any obstacles. The adaptive cruise control feature benefits from navigation along with curve control, and this Tucson gets Highway Driving Assist. Finally, the Limited trim level gets a blind-view monitor that shows what is happening next to the vehicle on the infotainment touchscreen.

Drivers are probably wondering what all of these extra features are going to mean for their wallets at the end of the day. It costs $2,500 more than the N Line model, which is not all that much considering the sheer number of upgrades found here.

Final Thoughts

Like with many of their vehicles, Hyundai loads each version of the 2023 Tucson with an impressive amount of features. Since the performance specs do not really change throughout the lineup, buyers will need to choose their trim on price and standard equipment only. For many, the Tucson SEL is going to be the right call.

Not only does the SEL add quite a few extra features, such as adaptive cruise control, but it is also available with a convenience package. The package gives drivers many of the upgrades found on higher trim levels at a lower price. Examples of features found in the package include a sunroof, the larger gauge display, and dual-zone automatic climate control.

The XRT model of the Tucson does not have enough upgrades to really be considered an off-roader. Along those same lines, the N Line does not increase the performance enough to really be any sportier. The Limited trim level may be the right call for families looking for as many driver aids as possible, provided it fits into the budget.

Drivers will want to take a close look at the 2023 Hyundai Tucson SEL when shopping for a new compact SUV.

Previous Year Trim Configurations:

2022 Hyundai Tucson Trim Levels