Hyundai’s ix35 has been around now for three years and it’s still a class leader in a very competitive market segment. It has great build quality, a stylish design, packed full of features and safety, has a powerful diesel engine and is very competitively priced. We tested the ix35 Highlander 2.0L ‘R’ series diesel producing 135Kw and maximum torque of 392Nm @ 1,800-2,500rpm mated to a 6-speed automatic tiptronic transmission.
Inside the ix35 is comfortable and you immediately feel at home. The ix35 is the type of car that makes things easy and has some personality. The driver’s seat offers six-way electric adjustment plus electric lumbar support, allowing a comfortable driving position. The 4-spoke multi function steering wheel is height adjustable only though. All instruments and gauges are backlit in Hyundai’s signature blue colour.
You have push button start function and proximity smart key allowing the car to be opened at the touch of a button. An important feature is the organ pedal accelerator, which is comfortable and reduces driver fatigue over long distances.
Features include leather seats, multi function trip computer, dual-zone climate control, rear-view camera with Smart Parking Assist System, electro-chromic rear view mirror, panoramic glass roof and multiple seating layout configurations.
Hyundai Satellite Navigation system operates from a 6.5” touch screen, integrated into the centre stack offering finger-tip control for occupants. The state-of-the-art system offers features including SUNA™ live traffic updates, a comprehensive Point of Interest (POI) database, and Navteq™ maps with a three year MapCare™ plan^.
The ix35 has heaps of storage including console storage tray, glove box, overhead sunglass storage, armrest storage compartment, two front seat drink holders, two rear centre armrest drink holders, bottle holder in each door, map pockets in each door and two seatback pockets.
Safety is key with a 5 star ANCAP safety rating and includes a comprehensive suite of advanced safety features. Standard is six airbags, ABS, EBD and ESC Stability Control incorporating TCS, HAC and DBC.
The Highlander ix35 has an advanced electronic AWD system designed by JTEKT that automatically activates under any driving condition when needed, distributing the power equally and optimising driving performance.
Under normal driving, the system only distributes power to the front wheels thereby reducing fuel consumption. The system includes a driver-selectable AWD lock allowing for a 50/50 torque split between the front and rear wheels for off-road and very slippery conditions. Just because the ix35 has AWD it does not mean it is an off road vehicle. It is great for dirt roads, trips to the snow and tracks to your favourite picnic or fishing spot but take it too far off road and it won’t end well.
You may have guessed that I like the Hyundai ix35 Highlander diesel. It has most of the goodies you could wish for, an awesome 2.0L diesel motor, 6sp automatic transmission combination with excellent fuel economy. and all for less than $44,000. Combine this with Hyundai’s 5 year unlimited Km warranty and I cannot think of a reason why you wouldn’t buy one.
What is good:
• It looks bloody fantastic
• Engine transmission combination
• Build Quality
What is not so good:
• Steering wheel not reach adjustable
• Bottle holder in door is a little impractical
• Can seem bland inside
Model Hyundai ix35 Highlander 2.0L ‘R’
Model Price $43,725 RDAP
Drivetrain AWD 2.0L ‘R’ Diesel 6 speed auto
Power 135 Kw @ 4,000 rpm
Torque 392 Nm @ 1,800 – 2,500 rpm
Safety 5 Star ANCAP
CO2 Emissions 198 g/km
Green Vehicle Rating 3 ½ Star
Economy (ADR comb) 7.5 L/100km
Tow Capacity – Max 1600 kg
Tow Ball Rating 100 kg
Servicing $399 – every 12 Months or 15,000 km
Warranty 5yr/ unlimited km with full roadside assist
Overall OzRoamer Rating 83/100
Behind the Wheel 7
Ride & Handling 8
Fit for Purpose 10
Towing Ability 6
Off Road Ability 6
Value for Money 10