The 2021 Hyundai Tucson is about to get faster.

    Hyundai has confirmed it’s working on a Tucson N-Line, with reports suggesting it could pack the 2.5-litre engine from the Sonata N-Line with 215kW of power and 420Nm of torque.

    That would make the N-Line the most powerful mainstream mid-sized SUV on the market in Australia, at least until the Volkswagen Tiguan R touches down.

    The Mazda CX-5 Turbo has 170kW and 420Nm, and the Volkswagen Tiguan R-Line is currently only available with 162kW and 350Nm from its turbocharged 2.0-litre petrol engine.

    The engine in the N-Line is expected to be hooked up with an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission and all-wheel drive.

    Externally, these renders from Thanos Pappas show what to expect if the Tucson N-Line follows in the footsteps of the Kona N-Line with a more aggressive front end, larger wheels, and sporty details such as a sharp-looking diffuser at the rear.

    Inside, the higher-tech new cabin is likely to feature red stitching and highlights, and add-ons such as a flat-bottom steering wheel.

    Overseas reports claim there will be no full-on Tucson N, making the N-Line the range-topper Hyundai’s mid-sized SUV flagship.

    Set to arrive in Australia in the first half of 2021, the new Hyundai Tucson represents a radical departure from its predecessor.

    The Tucson is critical for Hyundai in Australia. With 9335 sold to date in 2020, it’s the brand’s second-best selling vehicle in Australia, and goes head-to-head with the rampantly popular Toyota RAV4, Mazda CX-5, and Nissan X-Trail.

    With a new X-Trail coming next year, technology updates coming for the Mazda CX-5, and updates rolling out to the Honda CR-V imminently, the new Tucson needs to be good to stand out.

    Hyundai hasn’t confirmed whether the hybrid and plug-in hybrid powertrains being offered overseas will come to Australia just yet. Given the success of the Toyota RAV4 hybrid, and the fact it has locked in the Santa Fe hybrid for next year, we would bet on at least the regular Tucson hybrid making its way to Australia.

    The 2021 Tucson will be available with updated versions of the existing engines when it arrives next year.

    That means the base engine will be a naturally-aspirated 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol, sitting below a turbocharged 1.6-litre petrol and 2.0-litre turbo-diesel.

    Two versions of the Tucson will be available globally, but Australia will only get the larger option.

    Measuring up at 4630mm long, 1865mm wide, and 1665mm tall with a 2755mm wheelbase, the new Tucson is 15mm longer than a Toyota RAV4 with a 65mm longer wheelbase, although both are the same width.

    Scott Collie

    Scott Collie is an automotive journalist based in Melbourne, Australia. Scott studied journalism at RMIT University and, after a lifelong obsession with everything automotive, started covering the car industry shortly afterwards. He has a passion for travel, and is an avid Melbourne Demons supporter.

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