2023 Hyundai Tucson GLS Gasoline Review | Philkotse Philippines

Updated Feb 24, 2023

User's: 5.0/5 Editor's: 3.8/5
An entry-level model that could tick all the boxes.
2023 Hyundai Tucson GLS Gasoline Review | Philkotse Philippines

In this review...

  1. Introduction
  2. Exterior
  3. Interior
  4. Tech & Safety
  5. Engine & Performance
  6. Fuel Efficiency
  7. Verdict
  8. Variants & Price
  9. Color Options
  10. Specs

2023 Hyundai Tucson GLS Review: Introduction

The next-generation Hyundai Tucson has finally arrived following the launch of the Korean automaker’s revitalized model lineup in the country.

Hyundai Tucson front view

2023 Hyundai Tucson

Looking at the two Tucson variants made available in the local lineup, there are two glaring differences between them, namely the engine and price. The Hyundai Tucson GLS has a gasoline engine and a Php 1,570,000 price, while the Tucson GLS+ gets a diesel mill and a Php 1,840,000 price tag.

We were able to get the keys to the Hyundai Tucson GLS gasoline variant to see if it is a viable alternative to the top-spec trim. After all, the Php 270,000 price difference isn’t cheap.

3.8/5

Hyundai Tucson 2023 Review

How we do our reviews
  • aesthetics
    5.0/5

    Overall exterior & Interior design, build quality, form vs function

  • Safety & Technology
    3.0/5

    Number of safety & tech features, consistency during usage

  • Performance
    3.5/5

    Power delivery, acceleration, transmission, suspension, handling

  • Comfort & Practicality
    4.0/5

    Overall Ride Comfort, Space, Storage Areas

  • Value for Money
    3.5/5

    Sticker price vs overall package

2023 Hyundai Tucson GLS Exterior Review: Stand out from the crowd

When I first saw the fourth-generation Hyundai Tucson, it looked bigger in person. That is a good thing though as not only does it exude a beefy appearance but also translates to a good amount of interior space. But we’ll talk more about the interior in a second.

Hyundai Tucson grille

The DRLs look hidden alongside the grille

For the exterior, the brand’s new design language guided by the concept of Sensuous Sportiness simply demands people’s attention on the road. I had a lot of people coming to me saying that the design is appealing, especially the seamless combination of the daytime running lights (DRLs) and the jewel-like grille.

Hyundai is calling this Parametric Hidden Lights as the DRLs blend with the grille when turned off. Also standard in the Tucson that I find compelling is the static bending lights in the LED headlamps, which follow the direction of my steering input to illuminate blind spots.

Hyundai Tucson rear view

The rear end gets a fang-like taillight assembly

A set of 18-inch wheels is fitted into the crossover. Although it looks ambitious and intricate, I don’t find it overdone considering that all design cues appear to follow a single design concept. This holds true for the rear end as well, highlighted by the striking LED taillights with fang-like styling.

Personally, I think that the Hyundai Tucson GLS’ design is one of, if not its strongest, selling point. When talking design, I will take the Korean compact crossover over its rivals such as Ford Territory, Honda CR-V, and Toyota Corolla Cross, even without the 19-inch alloys in the top-of-the-line Tucson GLS+.

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2023 Hyundai Tucson GLS Interior Review: Calm and chilling

Moving into the interior, the cabin doesn’t look as busy as the exterior. I’m not complaining as it gave a sense of calmness which was relaxing to the eyes. Further enhancing the calming interior is the use of ambient mood lamps that can be configured to your liking.

Hyundai Tucson interior view

Interior of the Hyundai Tucson

There may not be a lot of stuff going on inside but I commend Hyundai for making the Tucson look seamless, particularly the integration of the two screens. Behind the steering wheel is a 10.25-inch digital instrument gauge cluster, while the center console houses the standard 8-inch head unit.

Also further enhancing the cabin is the dual-zone climate control with a digital screen for displaying information. I just find it odd that the temperature control gets tactile toggle switches instead of the fan speed. On the go, I change the fan speed more often so it would be great to have a non-touch control.

Hyundai Tucson second row seats

It comes with a center armrest with cup holders

As mentioned earlier, the space inside the Tucson is ample. I never had complaints about the leg and headroom, which I believe is important for the 5-seater compact crossover category. The leather seats were comfortable but the suspension can feel a bit stiff. More on this later in the driving impressions.

Hyundai Tucson cargo

Cargo area of the Korean crossover

From the ample space to the composed cabin layout, I think that the interior of the Tucson is well-designed. But if you are looking for a powered tailgate, you won’t find it in this GLS variant. You might want to consider paying Php 270,000 to benefit from the automated open/close tailgate function, which welcomes you to a cargo space of 1,903 liters with the rear seats folded down. You can fit about 12 grocery bags with the rear seats up, and about five to six large luggage suitcases with them folded down.

2023 Hyundai Tucson GLS: Tech & Safety Review

The Hyundai Tucson is equipped with an 8-inch infotainment touchscreen, with both variants coming with wireless Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto. I found that the wireless CarPlay paired well with the vehicle’s wireless charger. These two features totally eliminate the need for cables.

Hyundai Tucson infotainment screen

8-inch head unit

While the system was responsive and easy-to-use, the wireless connectivity occasionally disconnects when driving on slightly rough roads on an expressway. Instead of reconnecting my phone, I just listened to FM radio for safety reasons. But when driving in the city, I didn’t encounter this issue.

Another piece of tech I find interesting was the 10.25-inch digital instrument gauge cluster. The system wasn’t perfect but it was smooth enough for me to say that it is one of my favorites. Moreover, switching between the drive modes was fun thanks to the different gauge cluster layouts.

Hyundai Tucson head unit

The Tucson is equipped with a reverse camera

What I find missing while driving the Tucson was the integration of a comprehensive Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS), even for the top-spec model. For a futuristic-looking vehicle like the Tucson, you would probably expect it to offer an ADAS as I did but all you get are standard safety features. But, considering the Tucson GLS’ price point, I’ll give it a pass.

Included on the safety equipment list are six airbags, Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Downhill Brake Control (DBC), Hill-start Assist Control (HAC), Trailer Stability Assist (TSA), Parking Distance Warning (PDW), and a rearview monitor. It also comes with standard cruise control with Manual Speed Limit (MSLA).

2023 Hyundai Tucson GLS: Engine & Performance

This is where the biggest difference between the GLS and GLS+ lies. Under the hood of this Hyundai Tucson GLS is a 2.0-liter Smartstream G engine capable of generating 154 horsepower and 192 Nm of torque. It sends power exclusively to the front wheels via a 6-speed automatic transmission.

Hyundai Tucson engine

Smartstream G2.0

In contrast, the Hyundai Tucson GLS+ offers a 2.0-liter Smartstream D (turbodiesel), good for 183 horsepower and 416 Nm of torque, with an 8-speed shift-by-wire auto gearbox and paddle shifters. Performance-wise, the difference between the two power units is noticeable.

I say that as I got the chance to drive the two Tucson variants one after the other. While the diesel version offers punchy pulls, this gasoline version has a straightforward power delivery. Even when downshifting through the manual mode, there wasn’t a moment I felt like I was pushed back to my seat.

In city driving, the Tucson performed well despite lacking the heavy pulls you get from its diesel counterpart. It can get you from point A to point B with ease. However, you need to prepare for your overtaking maneuvers ahead of time on the highway as it felt like gasping at around 80 km/h.

Hyundai Tucson side view

This vehicle flaunts sharp character lines

But reading between the lines, the Tucson GLS is capable of offering a more comfortable ride. Sure, the suspension leans ever so slightly toward the stiffer side as I mentioned earlier but that’s good for putting the power down. Moreover, the crossover enhances comfort with its impressive NVH (Noise, Vibration, and Harshness) including a quieter engine operation compared to the rumbly diesel power unit.

There was also some weight in the steering, even when in Eco mode. I don’t mind though as it gave me better feedback and more precise steering inputs. Overall, I think that the two engine options have their own pros and cons that will cater to different demands in the market.

2023 Hyundai Tucson GLS: Fuel Efficiency

In city driving, I was able to register 8.0 km/l while driving at an average speed of 20 km/h, which is pretty average for its segment. Based on our city fuel eco tests of other compact crossovers, the Ford Territory got 8.8 km/l, while the Honda CR-V gas variant posted 8.0 km/l as well.

Hyundai Tucson instrument gauge cluster

10.25-inch TFT LCD info display

Meanwhile, the Tucson with the gasoline powertrain returned 14.3 km/l while driving at an average speed of 90 km/h on the highway. I was interested to see what the number would be on eco mode and cruise control. After another run with the said settings, I saw a 17.9 km/l fuel efficiency rating.

2023 Hyundai Tucson GLS: Verdict

So, is the Php 270,000 price difference worth the money? After having the privilege to drive both Hyundai Tucson variants, I have to say yes. From the performance department alone, the GLS+ was able to bring an exciting driving feel that I didn’t get inside the GLS. It also adds features that further elevate the ownership experience including an 8-speed shift-by-wire auto gearbox with paddle shifters, an electronically-adjustable seat, and a power tailgate.

Hyundai Tucson front view

Available with a Php 1,570,000 price tag

But just because I said that it is worth the money doesn’t mean that the GLS has no place in the lineup at all. The entry-level Tucson is ideal for those who want a no-nonsense 5-seater vehicle. I just believe that if you want a heart-felt upgrade from a hatch or sedan to a crossover/SUV, then better consider the GLS+.

2023 Hyundai Tucson: Variants & Price

Hyundai Tucson Price & Variants in the Philippines

Tucson 2.0 GLS AT (Gas)

Php 1,570,000

Tucson 2.0 GLS+ AT (Diesel)

Php 1,840,000

2023 Hyundai Tucson: Color Options

2023 Hyundai Tucson Color Options

White Cream, Shimmering Silver, Crimson Red,
Deep Sea, Amazon Gray, Phantom Black

2023 Hyundai Tucson: Specs

Overall

Make

Hyundai

Name

Tucson GLS

Body Type

5-seater compact crossover

Dimensions and Weight

Length

4,630mm

Width

1,865mm

Height

1,665mm

Wheelbase

2,755mm

Ground clearance

181mm

Engine and Transmission

Type

2.0-liter Smartstream gasoline

Max Power

154 horsepower

Max Torque

192 Nm

Transmission

6-speed automatic

Chassis and Suspension

Brakes (front/rear)

Discs/Discs

Suspension (front/rear)

MacPherson Strut/Multi-Link

Wheels and Tires

18-inch alloy wheels

Exterior

LED headlamps with static bending light

LED daytime running lights

LED rear combination lamp

Rear fog lamp

LED position lamp

Power-folding side mirrors with a heating function

Interior

Leather seats

10.25-inch TFT LCD info display

8-inch infotainment touchscreen
with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto

Wireless charger 

Six speakers

Bluetooth with customizable voice recognition

Safety and Security

Six airbags

Anti-lock Braking System (ABS)

Electronic Stability Control (ESC)

Downhill Brake Control (DBC)

Hill-start Assist Control (HAC)

Trailer Stability Assist (TSA)

Tire Pressure Monitoring System

Parking Distance Warning (PDW)

Rear View Monitor

Manual Speed Limit (MSL)

Smart Key

See more of our car reviews at Philkotse.com.

Rex Sanchez

Rex Sanchez

Author

Rex Sanchez grew up in Saudi Arabia where he saw and got into the automotive scene. He started his career for an aviation company in the said region, writing about turbines and rotors which are later distributed for educational purposes. And now, he joined Philkotse.com as a staff writer. Currently, he is the youngest on the team and is more than ready to grow in the field.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rexsanchez09

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