David Motton

See other tow car reviews written by David Motton

Practical Caravan's expert team reviews the Hyundai ix35 2.0 CRDi 4x4 Premium, a tow car with striking looks that represents brilliant value for money

Overview

You get a lot of car for your money in a Hyundai showroom, especially if it’s the ix35 you have your eye on.

For not much more than £20,000 you get four-wheel drive, a long list of standard kit, and a healthy kerbweight which makes most mid-sized caravans suitable matches. So how did this Hyundai ix35 2.0 CRDi 4x4 Premium fare in the tough Practical Caravan tow car review?

Towing

For this tow car test we paired the Hyundai with a Swift Expression 470 which has a 1310kg MTPLM. The ix35 pulled the Swift from 30-60mph in 14.5 seconds. That’s rather leisurely, but around our road test route we found performance acceptable so long as the driver was ready to change down a gear or two on hills.

Through the lane-change test the ix35 was solid but unspectacular. The car leaned heavily and vague steering didn’t help place the car with precision, but the Hyundai remained in control of the caravan.

We found the handbrake needed to be pulled on very firmly before it would stop the outfit rolling backwards down a 1-in-10 slope. However, this complaint aside, the ix35 pulled cleanly up the hill in first gear and in reverse.

The stopping distance of 11.8 metres is more impressive than it first seems, since the test track was soaking wet at the time of our test.

Running costs

You can pick holes in the ix35’s ride and handling, which fall some way short of the fluency which Ford Kuga owners enjoy. However, shop for a Ford Kuga and you’ll pay a lot more to buy a car with comparable equipment. Even then, it won’t have the Hyundai’s five-year warranty.

Technical specs

Kerbweight1679 kg
85% KW1427 kg
Towball limit80 kg
Maximum towing limit2000 kg
Power134.0 bhp
Torque236.0 lb ft
Official MPG47.9 mpg
CO2154 g/km

Verdict

The Hyundai ix35 2.0 CRDi 4x4 Premium gives buyers a lot of kit, wrapped in a good looking body with acceptable if not outstanding performance. It's not perfect, but it is blinding value for money.

Conclusion

Pros

  • Superb value for money
  • Hyundai's five-year warranty
  • It was well controlled when towing

Cons

  • In terms of handling and ride it falls short of its rivals
  • The steering lacks precision
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