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Both the Discovery Sport and Tucson have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The Discovery Sport has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The Tucson’s child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can’t know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.
To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the Discovery Sport. But it costs extra on the Tucson.
Both the Discovery Sport and the Tucson have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras, driver alert monitors, available blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.
The Land Rover Discovery Sport weighs 408 to 910 pounds more than the Hyundai Tucson. The NHTSA advises that heavier vehicles are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.
The Discovery Sport’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 82 more horsepower (246 vs. 164) and 118 lbs.-ft. more torque (269 vs. 151) than the Tucson SE/Value’s standard 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. The Discovery Sport’s 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 65 more horsepower (246 vs. 181) and 94 lbs.-ft. more torque (269 vs. 175) than the Tucson SEL/Sport/Limited/Ultimate’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl. The Discovery Sport P290’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. hybrid produces 105 more horsepower (286 vs. 181) and 120 lbs.-ft. more torque (295 vs. 175) than the Tucson SEL/Sport/Limited/Ultimate’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.
Regenerative brakes improve the Discovery Sport’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Tucson doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.
In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Discovery Sport’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Tucson doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.
The Discovery Sport has 1.3 gallons more fuel capacity than the Tucson (17.7 vs. 16.4 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.
A nine-speed automatic is standard on the Land Rover Discovery Sport, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a six-speed automatic is available for the Tucson.
For better stopping power the Discovery Sport’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Tucson:
For better traction, the Discovery Sport has larger tires than the Tucson (235/60R18 vs. 225/60R17).
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Discovery Sport has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the Tucson SE/Value. The Discovery Sport’s optional 21-inch wheels are larger than the 19-inch wheels on the Tucson Sport.
The Discovery Sport offers an optional full size spare tire so a flat doesn’t interrupt your trip. A full size spare isn’t available on the Tucson, it requires you to depend on a temporary spare, which limits mileage and speed before replacement.
The Discovery Sport offers an optional driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads or off-road. The Tucson’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Discovery Sport’s wheelbase is 2.8 inches longer than on the Tucson (107.9 inches vs. 105.1 inches).
The Discovery Sport S handles at .82 G’s, while the Tucson Limited AWD pulls only .81 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.
The Discovery Sport S executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the Tucson SE (27.4 seconds @ .64 average G’s vs. 27.9 seconds @ .6 average G’s).
For greater off-road capability the Discovery Sport has a 1.9 inches greater minimum ground clearance than the Tucson (8.3 vs. 6.4 inches), allowing the Discovery Sport to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.
The Discovery Sport offers optional seating for 7 passengers; the Tucson can only carry 5.
The Discovery Sport has .2 inches more front shoulder room and .8 inches more rear shoulder room than the Tucson.
The Discovery Sport’s cargo area is larger than the Tucson’s in almost every dimension:
Length to seat (3rd/2nd/1st)
Pressing a switch automatically lowers the Discovery Sport with 5+2 Seating’s second row seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The Tucson doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.
The Discovery Sport’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Tucson’s (4409 vs. 1500 pounds).
The Discovery Sport uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Tucson uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.
When three different drivers share the Discovery Sport (except Base), the optional memory seats and mirrors make it convenient for all three. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver and front passenger’s seat positions and outside mirror angle. The Tucson doesn’t offer a memory system.
The Discovery Sport offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed and navigation instruction readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Tucson doesn’t offer a heads-up display.
The Discovery Sport’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Tucson’s power window switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully. Only its driver’s window opens automatically.
If the windows are left open on the Discovery Sport the driver can close them all from a distance using the remote. On a hot day the driver can also lower the windows the same way. The driver of the Tucson can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.
The Discovery Sport’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Tucson’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.
In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The Discovery Sport offers available headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The Tucson doesn’t offer headlight washers.
The Discovery Sport’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Hyundai only offers heated mirrors on the Tucson Value/SEL/Sport/Limited/Ultimate.
When the Discovery Sport with available tilt-down mirrors is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The Tucson’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.
The Discovery Sport offers optional automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Tucson offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.
The Discovery Sport has a standard dual zone air-conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. Dual zone air-conditioning is only available on the Tucson SEL/Sport/Limited/Ultimate.
Both the Discovery Sport and the Tucson offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the Discovery Sport has standard rear air-conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The Tucson doesn’t offer rear air-conditioning vents, only heat vents.
The Discovery Sport’s optional Park Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Tucson doesn’t offer an automated parking system.
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