2022 Infiniti Q50 Sedan Overview

The 2022 Infiniti Q50 adds wireless tech and a higher standard of luxury

The 2022 Infiniti Q50

The 2022 Infiniti Q50 is sold in rear- or all-wheel-drive powertrains. U.S. pricing starts at $43,125. (Photos courtesy of Infiniti)

Table of Contents

New for 2022
Standard Equipment
Safety Features
2022 Infiniti Q50 Pricing
Powertrain
Infiniti Q50 Red Sport 400
Why Buy the Infiniti Q50?
Specifications

BY MARK MAYNARD

Infiniti has begun the 2022 model year with a triple play. Dealerships have a wholly redesigned QX60 SUV, a refreshed QX80 large SUV and a more tech-relevant Q50 large-compact sedan. And these are in addition to the redesigned 2022 Infiniti QX55 coupe crossover — the sportback variant of the QX50 crossover — that went on sale earlier this year. Finally, and still relevant, is the Q60 coupe, based on the Q50.

The Infiniti Q50 is a so-called “executive” class sedan. It is a super-compact and almost midsize by size, but the EPA classifies it as a midsize for fuel-economy ratings. The current generation Q50 made its U.S. debut in late summer of 2013. It shares a foundation with the Japanese market V37 Nissan Skyline.

Infiniti's zero-gravity seats

Zero-gravity spinal support seats minimize pressure on back muscles.

What’s New for 2022

The 2022 Q50 is not a redesign but an update for two features that will appeal to younger buyers:

The standard 16-speaker Bose Performance Series Audio. It features Bose Centerpoint simulated surround.

Wireless Apple CarPlay cuts the cord for uncluttered use. Android phone users are supported by two standard USB ports, a Type-A and Type-C.

Dual, high-definition displays feature smartphone compatibility software and Infiniti InTouch Services.

Wireless CarPlay

High-definition displays feature smartphone compatibility software.

Infiniti Q50 Standard Equipment

Every 2022 Infiniti Q50 includes standard leather-trimmed upholstery and eight-way power-adjustable front seats, with power lumbar for the driver. There is a power tilt and telescoping steering wheel and power-folding side mirrors with reverse tilt-down. The dual-occupant memory system for the driver’s seat remembers steering wheel, seat, and outside mirror position and is linked to individual Intelligent Keys.

The Q50 Red Sport 400 is now available with power-fold side mirrors, revised genuine carbon-fiber interior trim, and new black exterior trim.

There are two new premium paint colors of Grand Blue ($695) and Slate Gray, available only on the Red Sport 400. Other premium colors (a $695 choice) include Majestic White and Midnight Back. Dynamic Sunstone Red, $900, is considered an exclusive color.

Other standard Q50 features include:

  • Backup Collision Intervention
  • Around View Monitor with Moving Object Detection
  • Lane Departure Warning (now with haptic steering)
  • Intelligent Cruise Control
  • Distance Control Assist
  • High Beam Assist
The Infiniti shift console

The seven-speed automatic transmission has downshift rev-matching.

Safety Features

Standard safety features on all Q50 models include:

  • Six air bags,
  • Blind-spot warning,
  • Predictive forward collision warning,
  • Backup collision intervention,
  • Forward emergency braking,
  • Lane departure warning (with haptic steering),
  • Around View Monitor with moving object detection.
“Human-eye” LED headlights

“Human-eye” LED headlights are standard.

Infiniti Q50 Pricing

For 2022, the entry Pure model was eliminated and in its place is the Luxe, followed by Sensory and the top-line Red Sport 400.

Available later in the model year will be the Infiniti Q50 Signature Edition, which has dark chrome exterior trim, 19-inch bright aluminum alloy wheels, and saddle brown leather-trimmed sports seats. Pricing will be announced later.

At $43,125, the Luxe is about $5,400 more than the Pure. Add $2,000 for AWD for any trim level.

The Q50 Sensory starts at $50,825 and the Q50 Red Sport 400 at $56,975. All MSRPs include the $1,025 freight charge from Tochigi, Japan.

Check here for more Infiniti pricing and incentive information.

The high performance tires and wheels on the Infiniti Q50 Red Sport 400

The Q50 Red Sport 400 has four-piston front brake calipers painted red.

Q50 Powertrain

The Infiniti Q50 is somewhat unique for its standard rear-wheel drive or optional all-wheel drive. That format makes it more of a competitor with the BMW 3-Series, Mercedes-Benz C-Class, or Genesis G70.

The only Q50 powertrain is a 3.0-liter twin-turbo V-6. In standard models, the direct-injected engine has 300 horsepower and 295 foot-pounds of peak torque from 1,500-5,200 rpm.

The V-6 engine in the Q50

The only Q50 powertrain is a 3.0-liter twin-turbo V-6.

 Q50 Red Sport 400

The higher-performance Q50 Red Sport 400 has 400 hp and 350 lb.-ft. torque from 1,600-5,200 rpm. This engine is beefed up with an extra water pump for more cooling and an optical turbine speed sensor. The speed sensor allows the twin-turbochargers to perform at up to 240,000 rpm, which is higher than ever before for a V-6 engine, Infiniti says.

Premium fuel is recommended for both engines.

Both engines are paired to an advanced seven-speed automatic transmission with manual shift mode and downshift rev-matching.

The Q50 Red Sport 400 has such performance upgrades as four-piston front brake calipers and two-piston rear calipers, painted red. Its Dynamic Digital Suspension constantly adjusts the shock absorber valves to control body motion when cornering. Other hardware features include exclusive 19-inch aluminum-alloy wheels and dual exhaust tips with a brushed satin finish.

Interior upgrades include black exterior accents, aluminum pedals, and semi-aniline leather-appointed surfaces.

A carbon-fiber trim package available only for the Red Sport 400 would add $1,520.

Back seats in white leather

The thin front seatback design adds a bit more knee room in the back seat.

Why Buy the Infiniti Q50?

In this era of the SUV, consistency is an asset for this attractively styled four-door car.

The Q50 has existed in its current makeup for several years with only modest updates. As a result, some buyers will look elsewhere for the latest and greatest in prestige or brand awareness. But returning Q50 lessors and intenders new to the brand will value Infiniti’s interior refinement and attention to detail.

And now, there is wireless connectivity for that high-power audio system.

Cars are being delivered now.

A rear view

The Q50 is unique in the segment for its rear- or all-wheel drive and a standard V-6 engine and seven-speed automatic.

Infiniti Q50 Specifications

Body style: large-compact four-door, five-passenger sedan in rear- or all-wheel drive

Engine: twin-turbocharged, direct-injection, 3.0-liter V-6

Transmission: 7-speed automatic

Fuel economy: 20/29/22 mpg city/hwy/combined for rear-wheel drive; 19/27/22 mpg with AWD

BY THE NUMBERS

Fuel tank: 20 gallons

Trunk space: 13.5 cu. ft.

Front head/leg room: 39.5*/44.5 in. *w/moonroof

Rear head/leg room: 36.8/35.1 in.

Length/wheelbase: 189.6/112.2 in.

Curb weights: 3,781 to 4,019 lbs.

Turning circle: 36.7 ft. RWD; 37.4 ft. AWD

PRICING

Base MSRP: $43,125 to $56,975; add $2,000 for AWD; pricing includes the $1,025 freight charge

Where assembled: Tochigi, Japan

Warranty: 4-years/60,000-miles basic coverage; 6-years/70,000-miles powertrain coverage

Read more

2022 Infiniti QX80 Overview

The “significantly refined” 2022 Infiniti QX80 SUV emphasizes a more luxurious interior and more technologies

An exterior view of the 2022 Infiniti QX80 SUV

The three-row, body-on-frame Infiniti QX80 SUV goes on sale later this summer. Pricing starts at almost $72,000. (Photos courtesy of Infiniti)

Table of Contents

Pricing
Drivetrain
Standard Equipment
Options
Specifications

BY MARK MAYNARD

The “significantly refined” 2022 Infiniti QX80 SUV emphasizes a more luxurious interior and more technologies. Prominent in the update is a wide-screen, high-definition 12.3-inch Infiniti InTouch display that includes wireless Apple CarPlay and USB-based Android Auto compatibility.

The InTouch infotainment system

The wide-screen InTouch display updates the previous two screens that were stacked in the center of the instrument panel.

2022 Infiniti QX80 Pricing

The three-row, body-on-frame Infiniti QX80 SUV goes on sale later this summer. Sold in three trim levels of Luxe, Premium Select, and Sensory, starting MSRPs range from $71,995 to $ 76,780 to $83,630.

Rear-wheel drive is standard or add all-mode four-wheel drive to any trim level for $3,100. All MSRPs include the $1,395 freight charge from Kyushu, Japan.

Check Infiniti pricing and incentives here.

And please read my review of the 2020 Infiniti QX80 here.

The front-seat area of the QX80

All trim levels of the QX80 have Nappa leather-appointed seats in all three rows.

QX80 Drivetrain

The 5,678-pound QX80 has a 400-horsepower, direct-injected 5.6-liter V-8 paired with a seven-speed automatic transmission. With a maximum of 413 foot-pounds of torque at 4,000 rpm, the tow capacity is up to 8,500 pounds.

Fuel economy ratings from 2021 are 14 mpg city and 20 mpg highway, using the recommended premium fuel. The 26-gallon should provide around 400 miles of driving.

All QX80 models have a four-wheel independent, double-wishbone suspension with rear automatic self-leveling. The hydraulic Body Motion Control System is available.

The second-row captain's chairs.

Second-row captain’s chairs tip up for easier access to the third row.

QX80 Standard Equipment

The wide-screen InTouch display updates the previous two screens that were stacked in the center of the instrument panel. The navigation system includes five years of free access to premium traffic and MapCare. A Wi-Fi hotspot to connect multiple devices is included, but a subscription is sold separately after the 30-day trial.

  • Smart Rearview Mirror. The digital mirror provides an unobstructed view when cargo or passengers obstruct rearward vision;
  • Around View Monitor with Moving Object Detection and Front and Rear Sonar. The system helps when navigating tight parking spaces;
  • Intelligent Cruise Control, Backup Collision Intervention, Lane Departure Warning, Blind Spot Intervention, and Lane Departure Prevention. The driver-assistance technologies provide Level 2 semi-autonomous highway driving;
  • Nappa leather-appointed seats in all three rows and second-row captain’s chairs that tip up for easier access to the third row;
  • Heated front seats.
The third row of the QX80

The third-row space is kid-class with short legroom of 28.8 inches.

QX80 Optional Features

  • Semi-aniline leather-appointed and climate-controlled front seats;
  • Advanced Climate Control System with Plasmacluster technology and Grape Polyphenol filter;
  • Bose Performance Series Audio with 17 speakers;
  • 22-inch alloy wheels with dark chrome accents;
  • Body Motion Control System;
  • Rear Seat Entertainment system, with twin, 8-inch screens.
The wide open cargo area of the QX80

Power 60/40-split fold-flat and reclining third-row seats.

Infiniti QX80 Specifications

Body style: full-size 7-passenger body-on-frame SUV; rear-wheel or 4WD

Engine: 400-hp, direct-injected 5.6-liter V-8 with 413 foot-pounds of torque at 4,000 rpm.

Transmission: 7-speed automatic transmission with snow and tow modes

Tow capacity: up to 8,500 lbs. with standard trailer sway control

Fuel economy: 14/20 mpg city/highway; premium fuel recommended

BY THE NUMBERS

Fuel tank: 26 gallons

Cargo space: 16.6 to 49.6 to 95.1 cu. ft.

Front head/leg room: 39.9/39.6 in.

2nd-row head/leg room: 40/41 in.

3rd-row head/leg room: 36.8/28.8 in.

Length/wheelbase: 210.2/121.1 in.

Height/width: 75.8*/79.9 in. *with roof rails

Curb weight: 5,678 lbs.

Turning circle: 41.3 ft.

PRICING

QX80 Luxe, $71,995, includes 20-inch alloy wheels, Charcoal Burl trim, Bose 13-speaker premium audio system and a power liftgate.

QX80 Premium Select, $76,780, includes 22-inch dark chrome alloy wheels and unique Matte Mocha Burl interior trim.

The QX80 Sensory, $83,630, includes 22-inch dark chrome alloy wheels, chrome exterior accents, semi-aniline leather-appointed seats, 17-speaker Bose Performance Audio, Hydraulic Body Motion Control, and climate-controlled front seats.

Where assembled: Kyushu, Japan

Warranty: 4-years/50,000-miles basic coverage with 24-hour roadside assistance; 6-years/70,000-miles powertrain

A rear view of the QX80

Rear-wheel drive is standard on the QX80 or add all-mode four-wheel drive for $3,100.

Read more

2022 Honda Civic Sedan Review

The 11th generation 2022 Honda Civic Sedan is redesigned with a “thin and light” body design, new materials, and technologies

A front view of a red 2022 Honda Civic Sport

The redesigned 2022 Honda Civic has more mature styling and a more premium appearance to the interior. (Photography courtesy of Honda)

Table of Contents

Overview
What’s New In the Redesign?
Pricing
Powertrains and Fuel Economy
Safety Features
Driver-Assist System
Interior Function
Back seats and cargo
Ride and Handling
Why Buy the 2022 Honda Civic?
Specifications

BY MARK MAYNARD

The Honda Civic marks its 11th generation in North America with the complete redesign of the 2020 model. This stalwart economy car made its U.S. debut in 1973 amid the first oil embargo by OPEC. According to Honda, 49 years later, the Civic is the longest-running automotive nameplate in the United States.

The 2020 redesign created the most technologically advanced Civic sedan in the model’s history.

The exterior redesign is less provocative, more mature, and enduring. Inside, there is a more premium presence to the interior with smart ergonomic access to controls and switches, despite a standard 7-inch color touch screen that includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
Safety technologies include new front air bags designed to reduce traumatic brain and neck injuries. Rear-seat side air bags are a Civic first.

The driver-assist system, known as Honda Sensing, was updated for a front wide-view camera. And the top Touring model gets new Traffic Jam Assist and Low Speed Braking Control.

The two engine choices are carryover but with improvements to increase performance, fuel efficiency, and refinement.

Driver area of the new Civic

The redesigned dash incorporates a series of mesh panels for a clean, continuous look.

Honda Civic Overview

Four-door cars are declining in interest today, but the Honda Civic sedan has been a bread-winner model for Honda.

“Despite auto industry new vehicle sales being almost 80 percent light trucks (CUV, SUV, pickups) and last year being very negatively impacted by COVID-19, we still sold over 260,000 Civics in 2020,” said Honda spokesman Carl Pulley in an email.

More than 12 million Civics have been sold since 1973. That legacy makes it one of the top three best-selling passenger cars in America, Honda says.

Civic remains the No. 1 vehicle in the industry with Millennials, Gen Z, first-time and multicultural buyers, Pulley said. “It serves as one of the primary gateways to the Honda brand.”

As before, the Civic continues as front-wheel drive with no plan yet for all-wheel drive.

The 2020 Civic Hatchback will be built in the U.S. for the first time, with production to begin later this year at Honda’s Greensburg, Ind. auto plant. The sedan is built in Allison, Ontario, Canada.

Industry sources say the new sedan and hatchback will be followed by the sporty Si and high-performance Type R.

Sedans competing with the Honda Civic include the Hyundai Elantra, Kia Forte, Mazda 3, Subaru Impreza, and Toyota Corolla.

The front seats in the new Civic

The interior styling follows the “Man-Maximum, Machine-Minimum” approach.

Honda Civic Redesign

In designing the 11th-generation Civic, the stylists and engineers focused on the original Honda design approach of “Man-Maximum, Machine-Minimum.”

The pulled-back windshield pillars, low hood, flat dashboard, and hidden windshield wipers enable a windshield with clearly defined corners for a panoramic view.

Key to the Civic’s exterior redesign was moving the bottom of the windshield pillars rearward by nearly 2 inches. The revision elongates the hood for a premium silhouette. Honda says it is a subtle design element that emphasizes the wheels and tires for a stable, planted stance.

Civic's fabric front seatbacks

The fabric-vinyl upholstery is neatly stitched and the seats are supportive.

Dimensions and body structure

By size, the 2022 model is 1.3 inches longer (184 inches) but the same width and height as before, 70.9/55.7 inches.

Curb weights are up by 106 to 114 pounds across the trim levels. And trunk space was trimmed by just 0.3 cubic feet, but it is still significant at 14.8 cubic feet.

The body structure is the most rigid in Civic history, Honda says. The stiffer structure aids ride quality, reduces interior noise, and sharpens suspension response for better handling. In addition, a slightly wider rear track (0.5-inch) enhances stability.

The color touch screen

All Civics have a 7-inch (shown) or 9-inch touch screen.

Honda Civic Pricing

The Honda Civic has a choice of two four-cylinder engines in four front-wheel-drive trim levels of LX, Sport, EX 1.5, and Touring 1.5. All models have a continuously variable automatic transmission. All-wheel drive is not offered.

Starting prices range from $22,695 for the base LX with the 2.0-liter engine to $29,295 for the Touring 1.5. All MSRP pricing includes the $995 freight charge from Allison, Ontario, Canada.

The Civic Sport 2.0L

The Sport model has a more aggressive exterior and interior styling and a Sport mode with paddle shifters.

The Sport is well equipped. Highlights of its standard equipment include smart-entry locking with push-button ignition, electric parking brake, eight-speaker audio system, Apple CarPlay or Android Auto infotainment, sport pedals, automatic high beams, LED headlights and taillights, and 18-inch alloy wheels with 235/40 all-season tires

My Civic Sport tester was $25,657.21, which included two accessories by Honda Performance Development:

  • HPD Kit of front, side, and rear underbody spoilers, decklid spoiler, and HPD emblem $1,417.80;
  • Honda Genuine Accessories of a gloss black H-mark, Civic, and Sport emblems $144.41.
  • The tester’s Platinum White Pearl paint added $395.

Check here for Honda Civic pricing and incentives.

A rear view of the new Civi

The Sport trim adds gloss-black side mirrors, 18-inch wheels, and chrome exhaust tips.

Powertrains and Fuel Economy

The standard engine is a 158-horsepower, 2.0-liter. The uplevel engine is a 180-hp, turbocharged and direct-injected 1.5-liter. Both engines run on 87 octane fuel and all models have a 12.4-gallon tank.

All Civic sedans use a continuously variable transmission, with paddle shifters for the Sport and Touring trim levels. There is no six-speed manual for the sedan, but a stick shift will be available for the upcoming hatchback model.

The EX 1.5 Turbo model is the mileage champ. It has EPA fuel-economy ratings of 33 mpg city, 42 highway and 36 mpg combined.

Next in line is the entry LX model at 31/40/35 mpg followed by the Touring 1.5 Turbo at 31/38/34 mpg and then the Sport 2.0L at 30/37/33 mpg.

In my week of testing a Sport 2.0L, the best average fuel economy I could manage was 30.1 to 30.6 mpg, but it was consistent from town to highway.

The 2.0-liter Civic engine

The base engine is a 158-horsepower, 2.0-liter.

Honda Civic Safety Features

The 2022 Honda Civic sedan can boast what Honda calls the world’s first application of front driver and passenger air bags designed to reduce traumatic brain and neck injuries.
The new design better controls head motions, Honda says. The driver’s air bag is donut-shaped to cradle and hold the head to reduce rotation. The passenger-side air bag uses a three-chamber design for a similar result.

Side impact protection was improved throughout. There are stiffer structures in the roof and doors, side sills and door pillars, rear wheel arches and rear window pillars.

There are a total of 10 air bags.

Driver-Assist System

The Sport model is technologically equipped for Level 2 semi-autonomous driving. The Honda Sensing system integrates Adaptive Cruise Control, Collision Mitigating Braking, Lane-Keeping Assist, Road Departure Mitigation, Traffic Jam Assist, Vehicle Stability Assist.

When activated, the system consistently keeps the car centered between the white lines. And, in my experience, there were no random shutoffs or alarming audible alerts.

Honda Civic Interior Function

Honda applies the “Man-Maximum, Machine-Minimum” approach to interior design. The focus is on “exceptional visibility, intuitive ergonomics, extraordinary passenger volume, and driver-focused technology.”

The approach works quite well and provides open sightlines over the shoulder and across the hood. New owners will discover the smart ergonomics in several areas, including the comfortably angled door-side armrests and window controls. Large visors slide, and there is a deep center armrest box.

High-quality materials are visible throughout the interior, especially on touch points. Special attention was given to the refined operation of switchgear and controls. And all trim levels have a new front seat design that holds firmly without extreme side and bottom bolstering.

There are numerous areas for small-item storage, including the door panels that can accommodate large bottles. The 7-inch touch-screen display includes buttons for volume and radio tuning.

The AC and vent controls also include dials to easily adjust temp, fan speed, and vent directions. Also rewarding is the wide span of vent flow along the face of the dashboard; prominent finger controls make it easy to readjust the airflow.

The shift console is slim but functional with large cup holders and an e-bin with a charging USB and 180-watt 12-volt plug. But despite all of the Civic Sport’s advanced technologies, wireless charging is only available with the top-line Touring model. And with multiple tries, I was unable to sync my iPhone for hands-free talking.

The top-line Civic Sedan Touring debuts a new 9-inch color touch screen and digital color instrument display. The 10.2-inch high-def panel is customizable and can be configured to show traditional round gauges or bar graphs.

The refined door panel of the new Civic

There is room in the door panel for large bottles.

Back Seat and Trunk Space

The Civic redesign attempts to make the most of back-seat roominess, but it is still a compact space.

The rear legroom of 37.4 inches is long for a small car. But the headroom of 37.1 inches will be restrictive to growing teenagers or business colleagues.

Trunk space of nearly 15 cubic feet has plenty of reach to the back seat. The trunk entry point is wide at 37 inches, but the 18-inch access opening will restrict big-box items. Fold the seatback to carry items up to about 6 feet in length.

The Civic's back seat

Back seat legroom is long at 37.4 inches. Fold the back seat for up to 6 feet in length.

Folded back seat

Civic Sport Ride and Handling

The Civic Sport ride quality is taut but not harsh. It handles well enough, but its sportiness is more in styling than performance.

The continuously variable transmission is dutiful and primed for fuel economy. Unfortunately, it also provokes engine noise on hard acceleration. Sport mode cranks up the shift response to simulate shift points, but it was almost too much enthusiasm for around-town driving.

The car rides low and the chin scrapes on driveways. In the hope of avoiding the cringeworthy occurrence, I’d make wide-angled turns into my driveway. But that only caused a scrape to the right-front alloy wheel — which was another cringeworthy moment. In my weak defense, the 18-inch Goodyear Eagle Sport all-season tires fit right to the edge of the wheel.

The Goodyears, too, have a hard treadwear rating of 560, which I blame for the maelstrom of tire noise inside the cabin at Interstate speeds.

The 18-inch tire-and-wheel package pushed the turning circle to a wide 38.1 feet versus 36.1 feet with the 16- or 17-inch wheels.

Four-wheel-disc braking is by 11.1-inch vented rotors at the front with solid 10.2-inch rotors at the rear.

2022 Civic trunk

The trunk has 14.8 cubic feet of capacity.

Why Buy the Honda Civic?

The Honda Civic’s 2020 redesign is a remarkable improvement for refinement and premium presentation. The interior is as accommodating as it can get for a compact sedan, and the exterior’s clean lines will be a big purchase motivator.

However, the Civic has no hybrid model and some of the competitors offer all-wheel-drive.

American Honda is fortunate that it has weathered the industrywide parts supply issues and has cars to sell. With the Sept. 1 sales report, Honda said that demand has been off the charts for all-new Civic sedan and dealers are selling cars as quickly as they are trucked in.

Honda Civic 2.0L Sport Specifications

  • Body style: compact, front-drive, 5-passenger 4-door sedan
  • Engine: 158-hp, 2.0-liter 4-cylinder with 16-valve DOHC i-VTEC with multiport injection and idle stop-start; 138 lb.-ft. at 4,200 rpm
  • Transmission: CVT with paddle shifters
  • Fuel economy: 30/37/33 mpg city/hwy/combined; 87 octane

 

BY THE NUMBERS

  • Fuel tank: 12.4 gallons
  • Trunk space: 14.8 cu. ft.
  • Front head/leg room: 39.3/42.3 in.
  • Rear head/leg room: 37.1/37.4 in.
  • Length/wheelbase: 184/107.7 in.
  • Curb weight: 2,935 lbs. (Sport)
  • Turning circle: 38.1 ft. (Sport)

PRICING

  • Base price: $24,095, including $995 freight charge; price as tested $25,657.21
  • Options on test vehicle: Platinum White Pearl paint $395; HPD Kit of front, side, and rear underbody spoilers, decklid spoiler and HPD emblem $1,417.80; Honda Genuine Accessories of a gloss black H-mark, Civic, and Sport emblems $144.41
  • Where assembled: Allison, Ontario, Canada
Read more

2016 Lamborghini Huracan Review

The rear-wheel-drive Lamborghini Huracan LP 580-2 is new for 2016 and has a shared but unique architecture with the Audi R8

The Rosso Red Lamborghini Huracan

The 2016 Lamborghini Huracan 580-2 starts at $204,595. (Photography by Mark Maynard)

Table of Contents

Pricing
Powertrain
Ride and Handling
Interior Function
Why buy the Lamborghini Huracan?
Specifications

 BY MARK MAYNARD

The Lamborghini Huracan has a reputation as a social rave, but in truth, it is a masterpiece of engineering and a daily-driver supercar.

The Huracan is Lamborghini’s smaller sports car. The exotic two-seater replaced the Gallardo in mid-2014, and the new model is a righteous successor.

New for 2016 is the rear-wheel-drive Lamborghini Huracan LP 580-2. There’s also the all-wheel-drive Huracan LP 610-4 with about 602 horsepower.

There are coupe and convertible versions of the AWD model, but only a hardtop for the 2016 RWD model. A new setup for springs and stabilizer bars on a double-wishbone suspension improves torsional rigidity by 50 percent over its predecessor, the Gallardo LP 550-2.

With positive support from parent company Volkswagen Group, the Lamborghini Huracan is a shared architecture with the Audi R8. Comparable exotics include the Ferrari 458 and McLaren 650S. But there also are new and less expensive supercars, such as the Acura NSX, Aston Martin Vantage, and even the Corvette Z06.

The Huracan driver area

The leather-lined buckets are comfortably bolstered for performance driving.

Lamborghini Huracan Pricing

The starting price of $204,595 for the Huracan LP 580-2 is a reasonable entry point for a V-10 supercar. That pricing includes the $3,495 freight charge from Modena, Italy, and the $1,300 gas-guzzler tax.

The tester was $238,795 with just two options, including the transparent engine-bay cover, $7,000. One admiring look at this car in the bright Rosso Red paint ($2,500)  and the driver is immediately guilty until proved innocent.

Despite that V-10, the Huracan’s fuel economy is not terrible. The EPA cites 17 mpg city, 21 highway and 17 mpg combined on the recommended premium fuel. On a daylong drive, I managed 19.9 mpg. But the mileage drops precipitously when the right foot goes down. The 22-gallon tank allows around 366 miles of driving with restraint.

View the current lineup of Lamborghini models here.

Front passenger seat

The seats are surprisingly comfortable for an all-day drive.

Huracan LP 580-2 Powertrain

For the starting price, the owner gets a hybrid chassis of aluminum and carbon fiber. The naturally aspirated, 572-horsepower 5.2-liter V-10 has direct injection and cylinder deactivation. And with peak torque of 398 foot-pounds at 6,500 rpm, 75 percent of the torque is available at 1,000 rpm, Lamborghini says.

The seven-speed dual-clutch transmission gives such quick shifts in Sport mode that its speed would embarrass a lightning strike. There are automatic and manual driving options and performance choices of Strada (normal), Sport, and Corsa (track).

Lamborghini cites zero to 62 mph acceleration in 3.2 seconds and a top speed of 199 mph. The 14.6-foot-long, midengine car has a dry weight of 3,062 pounds. Lamborghini does not cite “wet” curb weight, such as when loaded with fuel, but figure another 122 pounds with a tankful.

The 572-hp V-10 engine

The 572-hp, naturally aspirated 5.2-liter V-10.

Huracan LP 580-2 Ride and Handling

Sport mode opens the pipes, sharpens the shift points, and gives hefty throttle blips on downshifts. In addition, the system loosens the reins of stability and traction controls for some slide through the corners.

A hard launch brings a howitzer blast of force without torque pull left or right. The experience is straight-ahead traction in a blazing chorus of cylinders.

19 inch Pirelli tires

Low profile, high grip 19-inchPirelli tires.

There is an absolute engagement of gears from the start off to flat out. Flooring the pedal at about 30 mph is a hold-on event as the Huracan lunges like a predator in pursuit.

The magnetic ride suspension shows its superiority with sensitive adjustments in milliseconds. After six hours on the road, there was no fanny fatigue or torqued necks. The steering is light, direct, and requires just minimal inputs to clip the apex.

The standard steel brakes have supercar dimensions. The ventilated and cross-drilled rotors are 14.37 inches at the front and 14 inches rear. The aluminum monoblock calipers have eight pistons at the front and four pistons rear. From 62 mph, the stopping distance takes just 104.7 feet, which is 3.6 feet shorter than the rear-drive Gallardo predecessor.

The steering wheel as command center

The driver’s command center.

Huracan Interior Function

Breathe deep the rich cabin aroma of leather and microsuede. The interior layout is efficient and easy to access, with some console controls by Audi. The foot-wide gauge array can be electronically changed into a full video screen with a large RPM gauge and other essentials.

The Huracan interior is cockpit-compact, but this is a wide car and there is wide shoulder room of almost 55 inches door to door. There is long legroom and headroom for a 6-foot-3 driver, and maybe even taller, which is also surprising for the car’s low 46-inch roof height. But the doors are not hugely broad (unlike a Corvette) and the tight turning circle makes maneuvering easy in close quarters.

The leather-lined buckets are bolstered for performance driving but surprisingly comfortable for an all-day drive. However, the seats are heatable there is no lumbar adjustment or seat ventilation.

The LP 580-2 has a weight distribution of 40 percent front and 60 percent rear.

Why buy the Lamborghini Huracan?

I’m not sure why this car costs nearly a quarter of a million dollars. But there will be few complaints about owning this daily-driving supercar.

Whatever the Lamborghini Huracan does not have or does not do, you do not need or will find a way to do without — and like it.

The red starter button

The red push-button ignition.

Huracan LP 580-2 Specifications

Body style: 2-seat, rear-wheel-drive coupe

Chassis: Hybrid aluminum and carbon fiber

Bodyshell: Aluminum and composite material outer skin

Suspension: Aluminum double-wishbone

Springs and dampers: Steel springs and hydraulic dampers. “MagneRide”
electromagnetic damper control available as an option

Engine: 572-hp, naturally aspirated 5.2-liter V-10 with direct injection and cylinder deactivation; 398 lb.-ft. of torque at 6,500 rpm

Transmission: 7-speed dual-clutch

Fuel economy: 17/21/17 mpg city/highway/combined; premium required

Fuel tank: 22 gallons

BY THE NUMBERS

Top speed: 198.8 mph

0-62 mph acceleration: 3.2 seconds

0-200 kmh (124.27 mph) acceleration: 10.1 seconds

Brakes: Specially contoured steel discs ventilated and cross-drilled; 14.3-inch front rotors with 8-piston calipers; rear,14-inch rotors with 4-piston calipers

Steering: Electromechanical; optional variable-ratio LDS (Lamborghini Dynamic Steering)

Tires: Pirelli 245/35 19-inch front, 305/35 R19 rear

Wheels: 8.5J x 19-inches front, 11J x 19 inches rear

Length/wheelbase: 175.5/103. in.

Width/height: 88*/45.9 in. *including side mirrors

Dry weight: 3,062.2 lbs.

Turning circle: 37.7 ft.

PRICING

Base price: $204,595, including $3,495 freight charge and $1,300 gas-guzzler tax; price as tested $238,795

Options on test vehicle: transparent engine-bay cover $7,000; Rosso Red paint $2,500

Where assembled: Modena, Italy

Warranty: 36-months/unlimited mileage covering everything from the powertrain to the seats

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2019 Lamborghini Urus Review

With 650 horsepower, the Lamborghini Urus super-SUV is all beef and pure bull

A side view of the Urus

The 2019 Lamborghini Urus starts at $203,995 and the tester was $259,284 with 25 packages or accessories. (Photography by Mark Maynard)

Table of Contents

Overview
Pricing
Performance
Ride and Handling
Interior Function
Why buy the Lamborghini Urus?
Specifications

 

BY MARK MAYNARD

Go bullish or get ignored is the driving force in the so-called super SUV segment. For the Lamborghini Urus it is all about the power and presence with equal parts prestige, pampering and privilege.

There are serious players in this group:

  • Bentley’s 626-horsepower Bentayga Speed ($235,000-plus);
  • Range Rover’s 557-hp SV Coupe (two-door; $295,000);
  • The 577-hp Mercedes-AMG G63 G-wagen ($148,000);
  • The 590-hp Maserati Levante Trofeo AWD ($170,000);
  • The 541-hp Porsche Cayenne Turbo Coupe, a $131,000 four-door.

And then there’s today’s tester, the Lamborghini Urus with 650-hp and a starting price of $203,995. As tested, the price came to almost $260,000.

The red leather upholstery

Serious support in the sport seats.

Serious bolstering in the front seats.

Lamborghini Urus Overview

For Lamborghini, it is about having one of its Urus SUVs in the garage with one of the brand’s sports cars, and not parked next to an SUV by any other maker.

The Urus is Lamborghini’s second run at an SUV. Its first was the V-12 powered LM002 short-box pickup, aka “Rambo Lambo,” sold in the U.S. between 1986 and 1993.

The Lamborghini Urus shares nothing material with that truck. As a division of the global Volkswagen Group (including Bentley, Bugatti, Audi, Porsche, and Ducati motorcycles), the Urus takes a rib from the Audi Q7 SUV. It is an exemplary starting point well fortified with an advanced 4.0-liter V-8, eight-speed automatic, all-wheel drive, and a calm and functional cabin. And from there, the Lamborghini DNA takes hold to create a hooved beast for the track, trail, or town.

The driver area in the Urus

The driver area presents as a space-wars themed cockpit

2019 Lamborghini Urus Pricing

The tester’s sticker of $259,284 includes 25 packages or accessories, including the $3,995 freight charge from Sant’Agata Bolognese, Italy.

The add-ons ranged from a trailer hitch ($1,168) to ambient interior lighting ($3,036) to full leather upholstery ($3,157) with heated and cooled front seats ($631). The advanced driver assist system and Bang & Olufsen sound system were each $6,313.

Standard equipment includes permanent four-wheel drive with limited-slip rear differential and active torque vectoring, air suspension, full LED adaptive headlights and taillights, smart key locking and push-button ignition.

Choose your Urus here.

The steering wheel

A hands-on driving experience.

Urus Performance

Flip up the red bracket over the start-stop button on the center console and the engine fires with an open-pipe report then settles into a rumbling idle. But that gutsy V8 belts fire and brimstone with little provocation. And there are drive modes of Strada, Sport, Corsa, Sabbia, Terra and Neve (street, sport, track, sand, dirt and snow).

The twin-turbocharged, 650-horsepower V-8 with 627 foot-pounds of torque at 2,250 rpm will launch the Urus to 62 mph in a blaring 3.6 seconds. And that’s with a shaggy curb weight of 4,850 pounds.

It isn’t so much about how fast it will go, but how fast it gets to 30 mph, 60 mph, 90 mph. Be ready for the head-jerking jolt when the driver nails the throttle, even a little bit. The Urus jumps and kicks like a shock-rod to the flank of a rodeo bull. And unlike its rider trying to hold on, the controllability of the Urus makes its rider want to do it again — with respect, of course.

Fuel economy is not embarrassing at 12 mpg city, 17 highway and 14 mpg combined on the required premium fuel. I worked up to 20 mpg on a highway run while resisting Sport mode. But with a 19.8-gallon tank, there is much full-on Sport mode to be enjoyed.

 The twin-turbocharged, 650-horsepower V-8

The twin-turbocharged, 650-horsepower V-8.

Urus Ride and Handling

To handle stopping power from a top speed of 190 mph, Lamborghini says it built the world’s largest set of ventilated carbon-ceramic disc brakes for the Urus: 10-piston front calipers grip 17.3-inch rotors at the front and single-piston calipers for the rear 14.5-inch rotors.

Rear-wheel steering helps crimp the turning circle to 38.7 feet, making the Urus very urban friendly. The 360-degree camera system overcomes rear visibility issues at the small window.

The air suspension system can provide up to 9.8 inches of ground clearance for off-road use or drop the height for passenger loading. But this is the only Lambo that you will never have to remember to raise the nose when crossing a speed bump.

The 22-inch ZR-rated (street and competition) Pirelli P Zero tires are staggered, in sizes of 285/40 front and 325/35 rear. The rear rubber is nearly 13 inches wide, which benefits braking from 62 mph to zero in about 111 feet. That’s about 11 feet farther than Lamborghini’s Aventador coupe.

The big disc brakes on the Urus

The carbon-ceramic four-wheel-disc brakes are about the largest used on any car.

Urus Interior Function

Despite the competition-grade hardware, the Lamborghini Urus is a streamliner on the highway with no nervous twitching and it soars through cornering maneuvers. The cabin is well soundproofed, the steering is quick with good communication through the wheel.

The only driver element that I would change would be for steering-column-mounted shifters, rather than mounted on the steering wheel. As with other Lamborghinis, Drive is engaged by flipping the right-side paddle shifter. And when the wheel is turned, as when backing out of a driveway, the paddle is upside down on the wrong side.

The driver area presents as a space-wars themed cockpit with full electronic displays that are reasonably configured for touch-screen adjustment. The optional 18-way power-adjustable and massaging front seats are heated and cooled.

The back seat space is quite comfortable with long legroom and full climate controls. But the huge center tunnel detracts from the center-seat footroom. A two-seat “executive” option would be smart, but it’s easier to sell an SUV on the utility of five seats for a car that costs as much as a guest house.

Lamborghini doesn’t give interior dimensions but says there is front seat room to accommodate someone up to 6-feet-8 inches and someone 6-feet-2 inches should be comfortable in the back seat.

The open cargo area of the urus suv

Plenty of room for pro-league golf bags.

Why Buy the Lamborghini Urus?

The Lamborghini Urus might not be much of a rock climber. And I would cringe to throw bags of landscape materials in the back. But the Urus is the only five-seat Lamborghini with cargo room for luxury-class golf bags.

In this super-SUV segment, it isn’t so much a matter of cost but of value. And the Urus brings an easy quarter-million in value for its exclusivity, heritage, and prestige.

A rear view of the Lambo urus

The fuel economy is not embarrassing at 12 mpg city, 17 highway and 14 mpg combined .

2019 Lamborghini Urus Specifications

Body style: Full-size 5-seat, AWD SUV

Engine: 650-hp, twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V-8; 627 lb.-ft. torque at 2,250 rpm

Transmission: 8-speed automatic with six drive modes

Fuel economy: 12/17/14 mpg city/hwy/combined; premium fuel

0-62 mph: 3.6 seconds

BY THE NUMBERS

Fuel tank: 19.8 gal.

Cargo space: 21.7 cu. ft. *behind back seat

Length/wheelbase: 201.2/118.2 in.

Width/height: 85.8/64.5 in. *width includes mirrors

Curb weight: 4,850 lbs.

Turning circle: 38.7 ft.

PRICING

Base price: $203,995, including $3,995 freight charge; price as tested $259,184

Where assembled: Sant’Agata Bolognese, Italy

Warranty: 3-years/36,000-miles including powertrain and roadside assistance

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2022 Hyundai Tucson Hybrid Review

Tech-knowledgeable Tucson Hybrid is a low profile, high spark compact SUV

An exterior view of the redesigned Hyundai Tucson SV

A comprehensive redesign of the 2022 Hyundai Tucson made it longer, wider, and taller. (Photos courtesy of Hyundai)

Table of Contents

Overview
Pricing
Hybrid models
Exterior styling
Safety Features
Hybrid Powertrains
Fuel Economy
Interior Function
Ride and Handling
Driver Assist Features
Back Seats and Cargo
Why buy the Hyundai Tucson Hybrid?
Specifications

BY MARK MAYNARD

Hyundai has found the sweet spot for size and versatility in its redesigned and re-engineered 2022 Tucson compact SUV crossover. The two-row SUV is now more of a super-compact in size with enough elbow and head room for growing teenagers.

The upper-trim models are stitched with such fine materials that the visual impression reminds of Lexus or Audi. The cabin soundproofing, with some acoustic glass, is luxury-class quiet. And the seats are some of the most comfortable in this mainstream segment.

The Tucson's interior design is uncluttered and ergonomically arranged

Tucson’s interior, or ‘Interspace’, is uncluttered and contemporary in design.

Hyundai Tucson Overview

Now in its fourth generation, Tucson is Hyundai’s best-selling model globally. The U.S. model is the long-wheelbase version of the global platform.

The 2022 Hyundai Tucson is longer, wider, taller, and has a longer wheelbase than the previous generation. The new model is 6.1 inches longer (182.3 inches) and a half-inch wider and taller.

The added length greatly benefited back-seat legroom, now at a leggy 41.3 inches. And cargo space increased by 7.7 cubic feet for more functional space behind the second row.

The new more rigid, high-strength steel architecture improves handling response and crash protection, Hyundai says.

The hybrid model has heated and ventilated front seats

The Limited’s leather-trimmed front seats are heated and ventilated.

Tucson Pricing

As a prime moneymaker, Hyundai has groomed the 2022 Tucson to be an SUV for all. It is sold in front or all-wheel-drive trim levels with a choice of gasoline, hybrid or plug-in hybrid powertrains.

Gas-engine models have a 187-horsepower, 2.5-liter direct-injected four-cylinder engine that is paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission.

Starting prices for the 2.5 models range from $26,135 for the entry SE to $35,855 for the top-line Limited. Add $1,500 for HTRAC electronic all-wheel drive. All MSRP pricing includes the $1,185 freight charge from Ulsan, Korea.

There also is a higher-performance N Line model that is built on the 2.5-liter powertrain. It has starting prices of $31,785 for front-drive or $33,285 with AWD.

Hybrid models

There are three trim levels of gasoline-electric hybrid models. All have standard all-wheel drive and a six-speed automatic transmission. Starting prices range from $30,235 for the entry Blue Hybrid to $38,535 for the top-line Limited.

The midrange SEL Convenience Hybrid pares back on options for a starting price of $32,835.

Today’s Limited Hybrid tester was $38,704 as tested. Its only option was for a set of four carpeted floor mats for $169.

Ambient lighting around the center console

The center console has side storage and a bead of ambient LED lighting.

Tucson Plug-In

The Tucson Plug-in Hybrid model goes on sale later this summer, but pricing had not been announced at the time of this posting. Check here for updates.

The plug-in Tucson has an impressive all-electric range of around 32 miles and an estimated combined fuel economy of 70 MPGe. The plug-in powertrain has an estimated 261-hp from the 1.6-liter turbocharged and direct-injected engine with a six-speed automatic transmission.

Level-II charging capability is well under two hours to recharge the system using the 7.2kW onboard charger, Hyundai says.

Hyundai Warranties

Hyundai has long provided what it calls “America’s Best Warranty.” New this year is the addition of free scheduled maintenance for 3 years or 36,000 miles. The service will be mostly for oil changes and tire rotation. Roadside assistance is provided for 5 years and unlimited mileage.

The basic coverage is for 5 years or 60,000 miles bumper to bumper and the powertrain is covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles.

Hybrid components and the battery are covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles.

A commonly overlooked cost when buying a tech-forward new vehicle is the data plan. The typical data plan to use all those electronic features, such as speed limit posting and smart cruise control, is an additional $30 a month. But Hyundai has three years of free data for the Blue Link Connected Services.

The 19-inch tire-and-wheel package for the Tucson Hybrid

19-inch Michelin Primacy all-season 235/55 tires.

 Tucson Exterior Styling

Tucson’s new exterior styling continues with Hyundai’s evolving Sensuous Sportiness design. Tucson embodies what the designers call ‘Parametric Dynamics.’ It is defined as “kinetic, jewel-like surface detailing” — but I am still not clear on what that is. Except that it has a commanding presence and an appealing stance.

I especially liked the tester’s Phantom Black paint that compliments the black plastic fender overriders. The right color for a body shape can really have a positive effect. And sometimes the lighter paint colors and black fender protectors look too utilitarian.

Another clever design is at the top of the rear liftgate. The rear wiper tucks under the tailgate spoiler to help aerodynamics and also to help protect the wiper blade from sun damage.

Tucson Hybrid Standard Equipment

The SE is well equipped as an entry model. Among its interior features are remote keyless locking, rearview monitor with parking guidance, electric parking brake, and six-way adjustable driver seat with height adjustment. The six-speaker audio system with an 8-inch color touch screen includes wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, two charging USB outlets.

Exterior features include 17-inch alloy wheels, automatic on-off LED headlights with high beam assist, solar glass (windshield and front windows), and body-color rear spoiler with LED brake light.

The Limited is elevated to a near-luxury treatment. Its features include attractive leather upholstery, panoramic sunroof, 19-inch alloy wheels, heated and ventilated front seats, surround-view monitor with guidance lines, and wireless charging.

The Tucson back seats

Back seat space is now quite comfortable with a long 41.3 inches of legroom.

Tucson Safety Features

The Tucson Hybrid has a full safety suite of features and advanced technologies. Among them are Forward Collision Warning with Pedestrian Detection, Lane Following Assist and Lane Keeping Assist, and Leading Vehicle Departure Alert.

I especially valued the LDVA, which alerts the driver to stop texting or spacing out when the vehicle ahead moves forward. The drivers behind might appreciate the feature even more.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave Tucson a TOP SAFETY PICK+  designation for the 2022 model year. Tucson was recognized for its structural crashworthiness, LED headlights, and standard SmartSense crash prevention features.

Tucson Hybrid Powertrains

The gasoline-electric hybrid powertrain is comprised of a 1.6-liter turbocharged gasoline engine and a 44.2 kW electric motor with a 1.49 kWh battery pack. The transmission is a six-speed automatic.

Total system power is an estimated 226-hp with 258 foot-pounds of torque.

Between the immediate launch by the motor and the quick uptake from the transmission.

Hyundai says this hybrid powertrain is 30 percent more fuel-efficient than the standard gasoline engine, with 20 percent more torque for effortless daily driving.

Tucson Hybrid Fuel Economy

Tucson Hybrid models have fuel economy ratings of 38 mpg city, 38 highway and 38 mpg combined with front-wheel drive. All-wheel-drive models are rated for 37/36/37 mpg city/highway/combined, using the recommended 87-octane fuel. The 13.7-gallon tank will allow a cruising range of more than 500 miles.

When driven frugally between 60-80 mph, the hybrid tester returned mileage of 38.8 mpg. When driven aggressively at speeds of 75-80 mph the range was 29.8 to 30.1 mpg.

Gas Tucson models have mileage ratings of 26/33/29 mpg with front drive and 24/29/26 mpg AWD.

Looking into the cargo area of the Tucson

Square cargo space has about 6 feet in length with the back seat folded.

HTRAC AWD

The multimode HTRAC AWD is an all-weather system. There are driver-selectable modes for off-road traction but also calibrations for straight-line acceleration, medium- and high-speed cornering and hill starts. The Sport setting sends more torque to the rear wheels for a seat-of-the-pants push.

Tucson Interior Function

Tucson’s interior, or the so-called “Interspace,” is smartly designed with a low-profile dashboard. There are no touch screens that rise upward to complicate forward views over the hood. Sightlines over the shoulder are unrestricted and benefit from the tall side and rear glass.

The front headroom with the panoramic sunroof is 38.3 inches, which allowed headspace for a 6-foot-6-inch male. The seats are comfortably supportive without stiff, wedgie-inducing side or bottom bolsters.

Unique in this segment is multi-air ventilation. The temperature-adjusting system provides a sweep of diffused airflow to the front passengers. Crank the fan speed and there is plenty of force with very low noise.

The bigger interior space allows more and functional small-item storage, such as along the sides of the center console.

Other new features include a 10.25-inch full-touch navigation screen. Hyundai notes that it has no hard buttons, but it is not a bad thing to have buttons for audio volume and fan.

The driver faces a 10.25-inch hoodless digital gauge cluster. It is practical because the elements are visible in all light conditions, but I do have concerns when a sensor or two might fail over time.

It also is considerate that there are many lighted buttons and switches, such as for the window lifts on the front door armrests.

Tucson Ride and Handling

Tucson is now one of the more comfortable and quiet compact SUVs on the market. The longer wheelbase benefits highway cruising without any chop or wheel vibration, even on California’s rain-grooved concrete highways. Around town, the ride is traffic-calmed and rewarding.

Tucson hybrid models feature e-handling technology. Hyundai claims the system precisely applies electric motor torque control to improve cornering performance. As the Tucson hybrid turns into a corner, the electric motor system applies incremental braking force to the front wheels. That braking increases the tire contact patch on the road surface for enhanced traction and steering response. Then, as the vehicle exits the corner, the electric motor sends torque to the rear axle to fatten rear tire contact patches for a grip and grin response.

The Limited was equipped with 19-inch Michelin Primacy all-season 235/55 tires. They are so-called “green” tires for reduced friction and they also contribute to a more supple ride.

Braking on all Tucson models is by four-wheel discs. There are ventilated 12.8-inch discs at the front and solid 12-inch discs rear.

Tucson Driver Assist Features

I especially value Hyundai’s blind-spot view monitor. Cameras in the side mirrors switch on when using the turn signal. The image gives a clear view of what might be alongside the vehicle. On the right side, it might be a bicyclist. On the left, it could be a motorcyclist.

Hyundai’s SmartSense advanced driver assistance systems provide Level 2 semi-autonomous driving. When activated, the network of radar sensors, ultrasonic sensors, and cameras does a good job of keeping the Tucson centered between the white lines.

But all Level 2 assist systems require two hands on the wheel and driver vigilance. The system sensors can be confused by certain daylight and road conditions, which can trigger a random shutoff and then a restart. I’ve also experienced system shutoff when driving alongside white- or light-colored semitruck trailers.

Even with those few variables, the system provides guardianship in the event of driver distraction.

A rear view

The 2022 Hyundai Tucson is now one of the more comfortable and quiet compact SUVs.

Tucson Back Seat and Cargo

The back seat space is now quite comfortable with a long 41.3 inches of legroom. There is such a stretch of space that a 6-foot passenger can sit behind a 6-foot driver. Headroom is not compromised at 39.5 inches.

The doors open to nearly 90 degrees, which is an asset for reaching a child seat. A low transmission-exhaust tunnel allows comfortable three-across footroom. The back seats are heated with reclining seatbacks that have fold-and-dive functionality to expand cargo space.

The expanded cargo space has a square load floor and a wide opening of 40 inches. Fold the second row for 6 feet of length. The area also has seatback release handles, underfloor storage, and a 12-volt 180-watt household plug.

Why buy the Hyundai Tucson Hybrid?

The tech-knowledgeable Tucson Limited Hybrid is a low-profile, high spark compact SUV. The tester’s $39,000 price has a high-quality presence that will impress for its layers of refined materials and smart designs.

I’ve been shopping for compact hybrid SUVs, but none has seemed the right fit for me. The roofline of the Toyota Venza is too aerodynamically low and over-the-shoulder sightlines are compromised. The Toyota RAV4 Hybrid was my fallback choice, but there is a little too much outdoorsy-SUV in the styling. The gas-electric Ford Escape is too budget-compromised. And while I like the efficiency of the Honda CR-V, it is the safe, mom-and-dad choice and I really don’t want fake wood trim in the cabin.

My 2008 Ford Escape is running well at 126,000 miles and has required little service other than routine maintenance. But if I had to buy a compact SUV this week, the Tucson Hybrid or maybe the Tucson Plug-In Hybrid would be my choice. Here are my likes:

  • The performance and stepped transmission (not a CVT).
  • The contemporary interior space and expansive cargo capacity.
  • The detailed engineering, reasonable turning circle, and unobstructed sightlines throughout.
  • And I valued the contemporary interior design, helpful technologies, and ergonomic order to the most-used features.

For $39,000, I’d be living large in a small space.

SPECIFICATIONS

2022 Hyundai Tucson Limited Hybrid AWD

Body style: compact, 5-seat, 5-door all-wheel-drive SUV crossover

Engine: 180-hp, turbocharged and direct-injected 1.6-liter Inline 4-cylinder; 195 lb.-ft. torque from 1,500-4,500 rpm

Permanent magnet synchronous motor: 44.2 kW (59-hp) from 1,600-2,000 rpm

Total system power: 226-hp; 195 lb.-ft. from 0-1,600 rpm

Battery type: 64 kW lithium-ion polymer, 1.49 kWh capacity and 270-volts maximum

Transmission: 6-speed automatic

Fuel economy: 37/36/37 mpg city/hwy/combined; 87 octane recommended

Coefficient of drag: 0.33 cd

BY THE NUMBERS

Fuel tank: 13.7 gals.

Cargo space: 38.8-74.5 cu. ft.

Front head/leg room: 38.3*/41.1 in. *40.1 w/o pano roof

Rear head/leg room: 39.5/41.3 in.

Length/wheelbase: 182.3/108.5 in.

Width/height: 73.4/65.6 in.

Curb weight: 3,752 lbs.

Turning circle: 38.6 ft.

PRICING

Base price: $38,535, including $1,185 freight charge; price as tested $38,704

Options on test vehicle: carpeted floor mats (4) $135

Where assembled: Ulsan, Korea

Warranties: 5-years/60,000-miles bumper to bumper with free scheduled maintenance for 3-years/36,000-miles (oil changes and tire rotation) and roadside assistance for 5 years and unlimited mileage; 10-years/100,000-miles powertrain

Hybrid components and hybrid battery: 10-years/100,000-miles

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