The Koreans, in turn, could learn a thing or two about instilling some national character into their cars, because they nailed the sensible bit ages ago.
With the third-generation Tucson crossover, Hyundai really upped its game by quite a few levels.
This brand is all about value for money, at least at the moment while it’s still taking baby steps into the world and finding its place.
Remember how everyone sniggered at the Daihatsu Compagno when it first arrived in Europe as the first Japanese car to be sold in the UK back in 1965? Of course you don’t, but we’re just making a point. The same thing happened in America, except the Yanks straight up fell on their backsides, and pointed and howled at the Toyopet. And that point is, look at them now…
Hyundai really only got it about five years ago when the Koreans started rapidly redesigning its wares, and utilising Californian and European design studios instead of some cubicles in Ulsan.
Now it needs to figure out what makes a Hyundai a Hyundai, besides an affordable price. And the new Tucson is a right step in this direction, offering greater practicality, better looks, a quiet, more refined ride, and a host of safety and comfort features that are class-leading. It doesn’t hurt either that both its closest competitors, the Fiat 500X and the Jeep Renegade, were hobbled by general all-round mediocrity and an awful transmission, respectively.