Honda CR-V vs. Hyundai Tucson

By

Automotive Editor

Justin Cupler has specialized as an automotive writer since 2009 and has been published in multiple websites and online magazines. In addition to contributing to CarsDirect, Justin also hosts a web-series car-review show and dabbles in the world of personal-finance writing.

His specialty is in the high-performance realm, but he has a deep love and understanding for all things automotive. Before diving into the world of writing, Justin was an automotive technician and manager for six years and spent the majority of his younger life tinkering with classic muscle cars.

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, Automotive Editor - May 21, 2018

Hyundai has steadily been upping its game in recent years, pulling closer to class leaders and, in some cases, even passing them. In the hotly contested compact crossover segment, Hyundai tosses its Tucson into the ring to do battle with one of the originators of this class: the Honda CR-V. Both models offer turbocharged engines, good interior space, and peaceful cabins, but which is the better option for you? Continue reading to find out.

See a side-by-side comparison of the Tucson & CR-V »

What the CR-V Gets Right

The CR-V rolls into this competition with the more recognizable name and tons more experience, so it’s no surprise that Honda managed to make its cabin just a touch better than the Tucson’s. The CR-V makes better use of its slightly larger body, as its rear seats offer 40.4 inches of legroom, which is 2.2 inches better than the Hyundai. On top of the added legroom, the CR-V also swallows tons more cargo at 39.2 cubic feet with the rear seats up and a whopping 75.8 cubes with the seats folded.

While both models are IIHS Top Safety Picks with certain options, the CR-V nips the Tucson with its more accessible automatic emergency braking on the EX, EX-L, and Touring trims – the Tucson only offers this on its top trim. Also, the CR-V’s standard headlights, while only rated “Marginal,” by the IIHS, are better than the Tucson’s “Poor” standard headlights.

Finally, the CR-V’s standard 2.4-liter engine’s 184 horsepower makes easy work of the Tucson’s 164-hp base unit.

What the Tucson Gets Right

The 2018 Tucson starts out at $23,530 (destination fees included), making its base price $1,715 cheaper than the base 2018 CR-V. You can even move up to the better-equipped Tucson SEL trim and still save a little money. Also, the Tucson’s styling, while showing its age a bit, still seems younger and less polarizing than the CR-V’s. What’s more, the Tucson’s interior, while not as roomy and upscale as the CR-V, is well laid out and everything is right where it should be.

The Tucson features a smaller body, making it easier to zip in and out of traffic. Plus, it’s traditional six-speed automatic transmission and seven-speed dual-clutch transmission feel more familiar and less droning when compared to the CR-V’s continuously variable transmission. Finally, the Tucson’s torque-vectoring all-wheel drive makes it feel more stable in the corners.

Tight Parking? Get the Hyundai

While 4.4 inches may not mean much to most buyers, those in large cities with tight parking will love the 4.4-inch-shorter Tucson. Sure, you're giving up some cargo room in the process, but parking ease may matter more to some.

Verdict: Honda CR-V

The Hyundai Tucson comes very close, but the Honda CR-V takes out another competitor with its surprisingly roomy cabin and upscale feel.

Take a closer look at the Hyundai Tucson »

Take a closer look at the Honda CR-V »

Side-by-side comparison of features, pricing, photos and more!

, Automotive Editor

Justin Cupler has specialized as an automotive writer since 2009 and has been published in multiple websites and online magazines. In addition to contributing to CarsDirect, Justin also hosts a web-series car-review show and dabbles in the world of personal-finance writing.

His specialty is in the high-performance realm, but he has a deep love and understanding for all things automotive. Before diving into the world of writing, Justin was an automotive technician and manager for six years and spent the majority of his younger life tinkering with classic muscle cars.

Follow On: Twitter | Website

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