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Hyundai ix35 Highlander 2.4 2014 review: snapshot

We turn the spotlight on the Hyundai ix35 Highlander 2.4 and answer the important questions, including the biggest -- would you buy one?

WE turn the spotlight on the Hyundai ix35 Highlander 2.4 and answer the important questions, including the biggest --  would you buy one?

What is it?

This is Hyundai's revamped ix35 small SUV - a big seller in the segment. They've tweaked it, added some new bits and extra kit to keep the competition on its toes. It scores tweaked exterior and interior styling and localised dynamics. The test car was the top of the range Highlander 2.4.

How much?

It sells for $38,090 but the kick off for ix35 is $26,990 for the front wheel drive 2.0 Active manual base model, now with a six-speed manual or optional six-speed auto.

What are competitors?

Heads on them like white mice - possibly 20 and counting. This segment is on fire attracting buyers who used to buy Commodores and Falcons but want more practicality.

What's under the bonnet?

The Highlander scores a 2.4-litre, direct injection petrol four cylinder, a new generation engine with 136kW/240Nm output. The 2.0-litre in the lower spec' models is also new generation and achieves some 122kW/205Nm output. Both offer improved acceleration and especially mid-range response as well as lower emissions than before and better fuel economy.

How does it go?

Really well - plenty of kick for all types of driving- city, highway, dirt roads. Make minimal vibration and is pretty quiet too. The six speed auto is a crackin' good 'box offering slick, smooth shifts and kick-down at the right time. No hunting up and down the range like some of the competition.

Is it economical?

The 2.4 gets 7.2km /100km the 2.0 better again, both on regular.

Is it green?

Relatively green rating 3.5 stars

Is it safe?

Five stars.

Is it comfortable?

Offers plenty of creature comforts including leather in the Highlander, premium audio, Bluetooth phone and audio, multi wheel controls some driver assist features and six speed auto standard across the range except for the base model

What's it like to drive?

Impressive - within the bounds of its intended purpose. Offers safe, predictable handling, impressive steering and brakes and a comfortable ride from the locally fettled suspension and steering. Revised 2.4 has heaps of poke when you need it and drinks lightly. Good to park, good visibility, roomy, smooth and quiet. The looks have been tweaked too with slight detail changes and new headlights.

Is it value for money?


Would we buy one?

Yes but not the Highlander, we'd go mid-spec' Elite 2.4 and also look at the diesel for a few grand more.


Pricing guides

Based on 229 cars listed for sale in the last 6 months
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Range and Specs

ACTIVE (FWD) 2.0L, ULP, 6 SP MAN $13,977 – 15,990 2014 Hyundai IX35 2014 ACTIVE (FWD) Pricing and Specs
ELITE (AWD) 2.4L, ULP, 6 SP AUTO $12,990 – 20,888 2014 Hyundai IX35 2014 ELITE (AWD) Pricing and Specs
ELITE (FWD) 2.0L, ULP, 6 SP AUTO $9,999 – 19,990 2014 Hyundai IX35 2014 ELITE (FWD) Pricing and Specs
HIGHLANDER (AWD) 2.0L, Diesel, 6 SP AUTO $11,530 – 25,990 2014 Hyundai IX35 2014 HIGHLANDER (AWD) Pricing and Specs
Pricing Guide


Lowest price, based on 27 car listings in the last 6 months

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