Hyundai has unveiled the 2022 Hyundai Tucson in the US, where it will go on sale from spring 2021. First seen in September, the fourth-generation SUV is quite an arresting sight in and out thanks to its “Sensuous Sportiness” design language and “Interspace” cabin.

Hyundai is moving towards sharply cut shapes, and the “Parametric Dynamics” look here sports kinetic, jewel-like surface detailing. The half-mirror type daytime running lamps are assimilated seamlessly within the parametric grille and are only visible when illuminated.

The profile, which has a long wheelbase and short overhangs, features sharp geometric angles and edges. The chrome line beginning from the side mirrors follows the arc of the roofline with increasing width; it subtly conveys speed as it reaches the C pillar, Hyundai says.

The kinetic design theme carries over to the rear, where the full-width tail lamp incorporates half-concealed triangular shapes that echo the front DRL theme. In order to achieve the purity of this design theme, the Hyundai logo is elevated and integrated into the glass, and the rear wiper is concealed beneath the rear spoiler. Much effort and wow.

This generation of Tucson is available in regular and long wheelbase forms, and the US gets the LWB version. At 4,630 mm long and 1,864 mm wide, the new car is 155 mm longer and 15 mm wider than before. The 2,756 mm wheelbase is 86 mm longer than the third-gen TL’s. Passenger volume is 170 litres up, while the 1,096L max cargo capacity is 218 litres more.

The new Tucson’s cabin looks significantly more modern and premium that the outgoing car’s. The broad ridge of the dash blends into the doors, wrapping around front occupants like a “geologic gorge”, while a vertical centre fascia descends to the console like a waterfall. Nice touches include the twin silver garnish lines that stream from the centre of the dash to the rear doors, and ambient lighting adjustable to 64 colours in ten levels of brightness.

Other highlights include the 10.25-inch touchscreen, a hoodless digital meter panel and multi-air ventilation. The latter is a temperature-adjusting system providing diffused airflow on the front passengers, said to be unique in the automotive industry. Gear selection is via buttons, like the sleek new Sonata.

The US-market 2022 Tucson comes with three powertrain options – NA petrol, turbo hybrid and plug-in hybrid. The NA engine is a Smartstream 2.5 litre with high-efficiency combustion, cooled EGR and an optimised ITMS cooling system. The 187 hp/241 Nm sends power to the front wheels via an eight-speed automatic transmission.

Hyundai’s HTRAC AWD system with Normal, Sport (more torque to the rear) and Smart modes is available. The Korean carmaker says that its AWD system has a wider range of torque distribution variability than many competitive systems, and is tuned to conditions such as straight-line acceleration, medium- and high-speed cornering, and hill starts.

Another big claim is with regards to the hybrid and PHEV versions. Hyundai says that these models focus on a balanced combination of fun-to-drive performance coupled with excellent economy, compared with a pure efficiency focus at the compromise of driving engagement by many competitors. Both hybrid and PHEV feature a 1.6 litre turbo engine and a six-speed automatic.

In the regular hybrid, the ICE makes an estimated 177 hp and 264 Nm of torque, with estimated total system combined 226 hp and 350 Nm. The 1.6T works together with a 44.2 kW electric motor and a 1.49 kWh battery pack. Hyundai says that this hybrid powertrain is 30% more fuel efficient than the standard gasoline option, with 20% more torque to boot. A range of over 800 km is possible.

The PHEV’s battery is a much larger one at 13.8 kWh, good for an estimated full-electric range of 45 km. Recharging takes less than two hours using the 7.2 kW on-board charger. For the first time in a Hyundai SUV, hybrid and plug-ins will have standard HTRAC AWD.

Hybrid models also feature e-handling, which applies e-motor torque control according to dynamic inputs and road conditions to improve cornering performance. As the SUV turns into a corner, the system applies precise incremental braking force to the front wheels, increasing traction and steering response. Then, as the vehicle exits the corner, the motor applies precise torque to the rear axle, increasing the rear tyre contact patches for enhanced traction and control while powering away.

In the features department, segment-first equipment include Remote Smart Park Assist (park, retrieve the car from outside the car using the smart key), remote start with heated/ventilated front seats (via Blue Link app), digital key (lock, unlock via Android app), and wireless Android Auto/Apple CarPlay (with Qi wireless charger).

Hyundai’s SmartSense driver assist suite comes with Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist (FCA) with Ped and Cyclist Detection, Lane Keeping Assist (LKA), High Beam Assist (HBA), Driver Attention Warning (DAW) and Rear Occupant Alert (ROA) as standard. On the options list are Blind-Spot Collision-Avoidance Assist (BCA), Rear Cross-Traffic Collision-Avoidance Assist (RCCA), Safe Exit Warning (SEW), Smart Cruise Control (SCC) with Stop & Go, Ultrasonic Rear Occupant Alert (ROA) and Remote Smart Parking Assist.

Sounds good, no? Hyundai has already confirmed that the Tucson N Line – with more aggressive exterior styling and sporty interior details – will join the range later in 2021. What do you think of the new Tuscon?

GALLERY: 2022 Hyundai Tucson, US-market LWB

GALLERY: Fourth-gen Hyundai Tucson