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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I'm looking to order a new Tucson in a limited trim, but was at least hoping to get to do a test drive. The local dealer has gas models, and we did a very brief drive in that but now that we're serious about getting one I need to do a more extensive drive, preferably with the model I'll be buying. However, certain aspect of this car shopping game have changed due to, of course, the continued relative lack of availability - at least at my local dealer.

I saw several Tucson hybrids appear on their website the other day and so immediately contacted the salesman I've been working with to see if I could stop over and drive. But, most frustratingly, I'm told that all the Tucson hybrids listed (2 or 3 of them) are "already spoken for" and thus not available to drive. I can understand that but what I do question is the way they're handling the website inventory. The manager told me that rather than only have a dozen cars listed (as apparently was the case recently) that are actually on the lot, they artificially bulk up the inventory lists by including cars that are inbound or else already sold and waiting for customer pick-up. Then, when the inbound arrive, they also are apparently already sold to people who plunked down a $2500 deposit and have been waiting. Having not bought a car in 27 years - and having never ordered (let alone waited) for one, this whole thing just seems so weird to me. How is a client who is perusing the website's "new vehicle" listings to know which are there and which aren't? It's most frustrating. I'm not much of a buy 'sight unseen' sort of person but it appears that's exactly what folks are doing. I'm astounded at tales of people who have even flown to buy a new car at some location. Can't quite imagine that level of desperation though I suppose in some cases there are compelling enough reasons.

So..the salesman tells me that the "2023 gas and hybrid models basically drive the same. It is just how they are powered that truly is different".......Seriously? We're talkiing about a different engine in both cars for starters. It's the difference between a 187 hp 2.5L (gas) and a 226 hp "Smartstream" 1.6L Turbo. So..these two will feel and respond the same way? What about braking...won't that feel different in the hybrid? From what I'm told here and also read elsewhere, the hybrid version has much quicker acceleration. Me thinks the sales guy is simply trying to push a gas model, especially since I know he's not really a fan of hybrids to begin with.

Bottom line...should I just order this without having driven one? Or at least do a more extensive test drive with the gas version and go on that? The chances of a hybrid arriving that isn't already spoken for (or so I'm told) is apparently slim. I don't mind waiting but neither do I want this process to drag on forever. Wonder if inventory will pick up in the new year?

Thoughts?
 

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The gas version is a Smartstream not the Hybrid. The Hybrid is a turbo charged 1.6 gas liter engine paired with electric power giving it 226 horsepower.
The gas version is a naturally aspired 2.5 L with multi-port injection. 187 HP.
If your dealer or one close enough does not have one for you to drive I don't see any options but to buy without driving or move on to a gas model or some make you can drive. If you can put a deposit with no commitment to buy do that but I'm guessing it will be wait for one.
The models are going to be similar the Hybrid a little quicker off the line.

There are dealers that have them and available to drive if you are willing to travel to do it.
 

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Consumer Reports rates the Hybrid (and, by extension, the PHEV) much higher than the ICE version. The Tucson Hybrid is their highest rated compact SUV.

 

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Consumer Reports rates the Hybrid (and, by extension, the PHEV) much higher than the ICE version. The Tucson Hybrid is their highest rated compact SUV.

I'm not seeing a big difference in ratings. Where are you seeing that at Consumer Reports?
Gas Version score 89.
Reliability 5/5
Owner satisfaction 5/5
Best Value in Class
Hybrid Version score 92
I don't see a full review on their site.
That link does not indicate what you are saying and their online site does not that I can find. Here is what they say praise for both...
"I liked the 2022 Tucson the first time I drove it last year and some time in the PHEV version just reinforced my feelings."

The only difference I see in any reviews not just CR is more power for the Hybrid and less by a little reliability.

"Hyundai’s redesigned Tucson leapfrogged the model it replaced, with a smoother ride, sharper handling, and a quieter cabin. This boldly-styled compact SUV now outshines several segment mainstays, including the Nissan Rogue and Toyota RAV4.
We appreciated the Tucson’s accurate, well-weighted steering and responsive, nimble handling. It’s also one of the better-riding compact SUVs, with a firm yet steady suspension that does a good job absorbing most bumps. In fact, it actually rides more comfortably than the larger Hyundai Santa Fe. The cabin is relatively quiet for the class, further contributing to the Tucson’s solid and substantial feel.
The base 187-horsepower, 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine is the Tucson’s weak spot. Although not a problem during the majority of everyday driving situations, The Tucson's hybrid version is both more responsive and quieter. It is significantly quicker, and gets an excellent fuel economy of 35 mpg overall.

The cabin is particularly well done, and a noticeable step up over the last Tucson, with quality materials, stylish controls, plenty of padded areas, and a slick, upscale appearance for the class........."
 

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I'm not seeing a big difference in ratings. Where are you seeing that at Consumer Reports?
Gas Version score 89.
Reliability 5/5
Owner satisfaction 5/5
Best Value in Class
Hybrid Version score 92
I don't see a full review on their site.
That link does not indicate what you are saying and their online site does not that I can find. Here is what they say praise for both...
"I liked the 2022 Tucson the first time I drove it last year and some time in the PHEV version just reinforced my feelings."

The only difference I see in any reviews not just CR is more power for the Hybrid and less by a little reliability.

"Hyundai’s redesigned Tucson leapfrogged the model it replaced, with a smoother ride, sharper handling, and a quieter cabin. This boldly-styled compact SUV now outshines several segment mainstays, including the Nissan Rogue and Toyota RAV4.
We appreciated the Tucson’s accurate, well-weighted steering and responsive, nimble handling. It’s also one of the better-riding compact SUVs, with a firm yet steady suspension that does a good job absorbing most bumps. In fact, it actually rides more comfortably than the larger Hyundai Santa Fe. The cabin is relatively quiet for the class, further contributing to the Tucson’s solid and substantial feel.
The base 187-horsepower, 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine is the Tucson’s weak spot. Although not a problem during the majority of everyday driving situations, The Tucson's hybrid version is both more responsive and quieter. It is significantly quicker, and gets an excellent fuel economy of 35 mpg overall.

The cabin is particularly well done, and a noticeable step up over the last Tucson, with quality materials, stylish controls, plenty of padded areas, and a slick, upscale appearance for the class........."
You do have to dig. In their ratings "grid" they only show the ICE with the score of 89. Only recently in the detailed review did they break out the ICE and HEV versions. The Hybrid is top-rated at 93, followed by a pair of Subaru's at 90, Tucson ICE at 89 and RAV4 Prime at 88.


 

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I know. I'm a CR subscriber and have been researching these cars the past 2 years. Great reviews and ratings at other sites as well. Same for Sonata hybrid, which I'm also going to order.
I posted the 93 rating for the Hybrid i did see what they said though no full report. 89 to 93 is a minor difference not a much higher rating that's what I am getting at. I drove both and when new the Hybrid had more of a power advantage than now with the ICE engine broken in. I've said it before this 2.5L Smartstream is more different after breaking in than most in my memory of new cars. No one goes back and tests so we only see results of when not broken in. (Except sometimes Motorweek)
I'll add my highway mpg beats by alot what it is supposed to get once broken in and can beat the Hybrid for highway mpg. Hybrid overall is better of course though my overall is a very good 32.9 since day 1 owning the car.

The Hybrid really is one of the best out there. I opted for the ICE because it had and still has fewer issues, I use it for travel more than around town and parts are easier to get at this point. At that time the ICE had a choice of any color and trim though if I really wanted a Hybrid I would have compromised on color, not trim.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The dealership manager just clarified (as I'd expected anyway) that there's really no such thing as "ordering" a car - like getting it built right from the manufacturer - but rather trying to get one through the dealer allocation network. He said sometimes they will still trade between dealerships. Thought that wasn't done much anymore due to inventory shortage.
 

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The dealership manager just clarified (as I'd expected anyway) that there's really no such thing as "ordering" a car - like getting it built right from the manufacturer - but rather trying to get one through the dealer allocation network. He said sometimes they will still trade between dealerships. Thought that wasn't done much anymore due to inventory shortage.
I didn't think so either but my Wife got her Nissan that way.
 

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The dealership manager just clarified (as I'd expected anyway) that there's really no such thing as "ordering" a car - like getting it built right from the manufacturer - but rather trying to get one through the dealer allocation network. He said sometimes they will still trade between dealerships. Thought that wasn't done much anymore due to inventory shortage.
Working with a single dealer doesn't work anymore. You've got to be willing to work the web, work the phones and probably travel to pick up your car. Here's a recent thread, which in turn references some older threads.
 

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Referencing your original post, IMHO the dealer sounds a little fishy to me. From my experience with the dealer I ordered mine with - I was told mine in particular receive 2 allocations a month (PHEV/HEV), doesn't count custom orders. What he DID tell me was, if I wanted mine earlier - I can look at the allocations that come in and choose that over my order. Not sure why they put up vehicles on the site that have already been allocated - that sounds like an issue between their inventory database and the website (or maybe intentional). But again - every dealer works differently. I strongly suggest reaching out to other dealers in your area if possible, especially to get a test drive in. When I went to my dealer, I was originally supposed to try a 2022 used Limited Hybrid. They put me in a 2022 new "blue" and decided to order a 2023 SEL hybrid. For reference I was asked to put $500 down when I ordered - again that's most likely by dealer.

Was also told the ICE should be coming in more regularly soon, and I'd have a 3-4 month wait for my hybrid to come in (not in any rush). I haven't tried the ICE model, but I can definitely tell there's some good power coming from the hybrid when you want to accelerate. Based on video research, I've heard it's noticeably better than the ICE.

I strongly advise not buying a car without test driving, in any case.

Hopefully some of this information helps - good luck finding the one you want!
 

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There are dealers with many Hybrid and ICE on the lot. At least now only working with one dealer may not be a good strategy. Had someone traveled some a few months ago and bought off the lot with no over MSRP which could and can be done they could have a Tucson with more options for less than now, probably for less interest rate. And if trading in a car more then for it as used cars have dropped some in value.
 

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There are dealers with many Hybrid and ICE on the lot. At least now only working with one dealer may not be a good strategy. Had someone traveled some a few months ago and bought off the lot with no over MSRP which could and can be done they could have a Tucson with more options for less, probably for less interest rate. And if trading in a car more then for it as used cars have dropped some in value.
Yup, I have traveled 2 hours (one-way) to look at, and another trip to pick up my wife's Honda Pilot a couple years ago. My thought process was - unless you're only planning on having the vehicle a couple years, it's worth it to make the travel to get what you want.
 

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Referencing your original post, IMHO the dealer sounds a little fishy to me. From my experience with the dealer I ordered mine with - I was told mine in particular receive 2 allocations a month (PHEV/HEV), doesn't count custom orders. What he DID tell me was, if I wanted mine earlier - I can look at the allocations that come in and choose that over my order. Not sure why they put up vehicles on the site that have already been allocated - that sounds like an issue between their inventory database and the website (or maybe intentional). But again - every dealer works differently. I strongly suggest reaching out to other dealers in your area if possible, especially to get a test drive in. When I went to my dealer, I was originally supposed to try a 2022 used Limited Hybrid. They put me in a 2022 new "blue" and decided to order a 2023 SEL hybrid. For reference I was asked to put $500 down when I ordered - again that's most likely by dealer.

Was also told the ICE should be coming in more regularly soon, and I'd have a 3-4 month wait for my hybrid to come in (not in any rush). I haven't tried the ICE model, but I can definitely tell there's some good power coming from the hybrid when you want to accelerate. Based on video research, I've heard it's noticeably better than the ICE.

I strongly advise not buying a car without test driving, in any case.

Hopefully some of this information helps - good luck finding the one you want!
There's a lot of confusion and/or intentional B.S. from Hyundai dealers about "orders." I was told, and experience confirms, that HyundaiUSA doesn't pay any attention to (and possibly doesn't even see) "orders" placed at dealers. The "order" just gets you on a list at the dealer to "call ya if we get one." Meanwhile you stop contacting other dealers (I learned that lesson) and the dealer makes a little interest off your deposit.
 

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There's a lot of confusion and/or intentional B.S. from Hyundai dealers about "orders." I was told, and experience confirms, that HyundaiUSA doesn't pay any attention to (and possibly doesn't even see) "orders" placed at dealers. The "order" just gets you on a list at the dealer to "call ya if we get one." Meanwhile you stop contacting other dealers (I learned that lesson) and the dealer makes a little interest off your deposit.
Interesting. I guess I'll see, but it also seems other people were able to place orders and receive them in about the same timeline I was given. I was told by the sales person, that HyundaiUSA does not give many notifications/alerts, but when they do it moves fairly quickly. Was told first response would be about halfway thru the waiting period, and usually ready to pick up a couple months after. Just my experience at the dealer. I have a couple months to lose, so I'm not worried. I'll apply for my loan at my credit union during Black Friday week, and they lock the rate for 6 months.

Maybe it was worse earlier when supply was much lower and production wasn't going well? Was told people were waiting up to 10 months/1 year before their car came in.
 

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Interesting. I guess I'll see, but it also seems other people were able to place orders and receive them in about the same timeline I was given. I was told by the sales person, that HyundaiUSA does not give many notifications/alerts, but when they do it moves fairly quickly. Was told first response would be about halfway thru the waiting period, and usually ready to pick up a couple months after. Just my experience at the dealer. I have a couple months to lose, so I'm not worried. I'll apply for my loan at my credit union during Black Friday week, and they lock the rate for 6 months.

Maybe it was worse earlier when supply was much lower and production wasn't going well? Was told people were waiting up to 10 months/1 year before their car came in.
When your car does pop, check on the Hyundai web site to see if Hyundai Finance is running a promo. Last March I got 0% for 48 months. Those days are long gone, but they still might beat the credit union. The dealer/salesperson gets a small commission, which makes them happy(er).
 

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When your car does pop, check on the Hyundai web site to see if Hyundai Finance is running a promo. Last March I got 0% for 48 months. Those days are long gone, but they still might beat the credit union. The dealer/salesperson gets a small commission, which makes them happy(er).
They were last I checked, but I needed longer term to make it work in my budget. I beat the dealer's rate by almost half. Sales guy even told me take the Credit Union if they can beat it 😂. Lady at the credit union said clients were telling her they were being offered 9-10%, which is insane.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
There's a lot of confusion and/or intentional B.S. from Hyundai dealers about "orders."
Exactly! I've discovered this. Just today I perused another local dealer's website. What a difference in the level of communication! After completing a short contact form, they called back within a minute and I was just really impressed by the level of service and information provided. I wanted to find out whether or not the Tucson hybrids that they have listed are actually there and/or already spoken for. It was initially exciting in that they (at least appeared to) have a Limited in blue - exactly what I'm looking for. Turns out...no...the cars I was seeing are not there but whatever they do have is already sold. So once again this artificially bulking up the appearance of how many cars are part of the inventory. This becomes so confusing for the shopper! However, they assured me they'd let me know just as soon as one comes in to test drive that is not already sold (I'm beginning to wonder...is there such a thing just now?). Either way, it felt much more convincing and sincere than much of the communication from the one closer to me. I had a very nice conversation with the customer rep so she indicated she'd let me know. I just got the feeling that they are more on top of things. Wonder if I should let the other (closer) dealer know that I've been in contact with this (actually much larger) dealership and that the first to come up with a car for me to test drive might get the sale! Guess that's not real ethical.

but they still might beat the credit union.
I'll be paying cash anyway unless some sort of hard-to-resist 0% financing would come along. Otherwise, not paying any sort of interest.

Referencing your original post, IMHO the dealer sounds a little fishy to me
Despite more recent communications from the manager, I have to wonder this myself. I've had to tell the salesman I've been working with several times now as to exactly which vehicles I'm looking for. Don't these guys keep notes? Just a few days ago I got an email from him all excited to show me a red Sonata (not sure what trim). I've mentioned so many times that I specifically want blue - for both cars. The bigger dealership I spoke with today assured me that they've added everything to my file - just seems more sincere and 'with it'.
 
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