Hyundai has a full line of SUVs aimed at today's busy family. The Tucson is on the smaller end of the list, fitting in between the Kona and the Santa Fe. It offers a respectable amount of cabin space along with a comfortable ride. Overall, the Tucson feels like a good deal when comparing the standard features to the price.
What's New for 2021?
Very few changes are made for the 2021 Tucson. There are some minor differences in the color options. Ash Black replaces Black Noir Pearl and Red Crimson replaces Gemstone Red. Sage Brown is no longer an option but buyers can now choose Coliseum Gray.
The Tucson is in its third generation, which debuted in 2016. The last time significant changes were made was in 2019. Hyundai plans on launching a new generation for 2022, which explains the minor tweaks this year.
All models of the 2021 Tucson sit on stylish alloy wheels. The standard size is 17-inches, with the SEL and Limited going up to 18-inches. For even larger wheels, buyers can go with the Sport to jump up to 19-inches. All six trim levels come with handy exterior features like automatic headlights.
Going up to the Value trim level adds quite a bit to the 2021 Tucson. These models have roof rails as well as heated side mirrors. The SEL trim level and up show off eye-catching dual exhaust outlets. Those wanting LED headlights can have them if they go with the Sport trim or higher.
Hyundai splits the trim lineup in half when it comes to what is found underneath the hood. For the first three Tucson trims, they go with a 2.0L four-cylinder. It makes 161-horsepower and 150 lb-ft of torque. This engine does an adequate job when it comes to moving the Tucson, but drivers will undoubtedly notice some sluggish acceleration in certain situations.
For a more satisfying drive, buyers should go with the Sport, SEL, or Limited trim. These use a 2.4L four-cylinder, which means they can make 181-horsepower along with 175 lb-ft of torque. Both of the engines get paired with a six-speed automatic transmission.
Sticking with the base engine of the Tucson will see the SUV getting 23mpg in the city and 28mpg while on the highway. Opting for the more powerful engine will drop each of these numbers down by one. While these are respectable numbers, they lag behind some of the other options in the vehicle class.
Smartphone integration became standard for the Tucson in 2019. This continues to be the case moving into 2021. All models have both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay to work with. Most trim levels use a 7-inch touchscreen, although the Ultimate goes up to an 8-inch. Along with the touch controls, there are physical knobs to help easily navigate the climate and audio settings.
Satellite radio is found standard on all but the base model. For a premium sound system, buyers need to go with the Sport trim or higher. These versions of the Tucson have an eight-speaker setup from Infinity. Also found on those same trim levels is a wireless charging pad. As for an integrated navigation system, drivers will need to choose the Tucson Ultimate.
There are a handful of standard driver aids to be found on the 2021 Tucson. They all give drivers lane keep assist, a driver drowsiness monitor, automatic emergency braking, and forward-collision warning. There are multiple available features as well, including popular ones like pedestrian detection and adaptive cruise control. A surround-view camera system is also available, but only on the top two trims.
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety has not officially tested the 2021 Tucson. However, the 2020 model received the score of "Good" in all six crash-testing categories and was named a top safety pick. Considering the Tucson is essentially unchanged for 2021, it is a safe bet that this will once again be the case.
Inside the 2021 Tucson is enough room for five. Adults will find that they can comfortably sit in the front or back of this SUV. The entry-level model only offers a height-adjustable driver's seat. All other models get power-adjustment to make it easier to find the perfect position.
Hyundai is generous when it comes to heated front seats, including them as a standard feature on all but the entry-level SE trim. The SEL and higher get a little more luxurious with soft-touch door panels. These models also have dual-zone automatic climate control. The Sport trim gets leather for the steering wheel, while the Limited and Ultimate get leather upholstery.
The 2021 Hyundai Tucson is a well-rounded compact SUV that checks all of the boxes for many drivers. Those in the market for a vehicle in this class will not want to miss it.
Formula for Calculating Dealer Cost:
Total Dealer Cost - Rebate and Incentive + Taxes / Licensing Fees = True Dealer Cost. (You can get rebates and incentives here)
Note: All Hyundai Tucson MSRP, invoice and dealer cost dollar figures above are approximate amounts. Prices are subject to change without notice.
A note about rebates: Most rebates are subtracted from the "on the road" figure. In most cases, you can have the rebate if you are arranging your own financing or you are paying cash. If you decide to use the manufacturer’s low interest financing, you do not usually get the rebate. Ask your dealer for details.