After unveiling the 2010 Tucson at the Los Angeles Auto Show in December, the Koreans knew that they were on to another success. This week, Hyundai announced it will increase production at its Ulsan, South Korea factory to meet demand, says autonews.com. Hyundai dealers from all over the US saw a 128% year-over-year increase in January.
“We're going to see a huge jump this year,” U.S. chief John Krafcik said without disclosing projections. U.S. demand for the Tucson fell from 52,000 in 2006 to just over 15,000 last year. As the dealers’ inventory is now low, Hyundai plans to rise the Tucson production in March. “We'll ramp it up as long as necessary to satisfy market demand,” Krafcik said.
The Tucson is powered by a Theta II 2.4-liter DOHC inline four-cylinder engine that generates 176 horsepower and 168 lb-ft of torque. Hyundai says that its Tucson is more fuel efficient than Honda CRV, Nissan Rogue, Toyota RAV4 and Ford Escape four-cylinder engines, returning a fuel consumption rating of 23 mpg city and 31 mpg highway for the 2WD model. With AWD, Tucson records 21 mpg city and 28 mpg highway.
A new addition to the Tucson range will be the Blue option, due to be released for the 2011 model year. The Blue model will comprise a Theta II 2.0-liter engine that is 22 pounds (10 kg) lighter as compared to its predecessor.