2019 Hyundai Tucson Top Complaints and Problems – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Fuel system, powertrain and engine issues among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners

Hyundai has become known for its lineup of compact SUVs. The 2019 Hyundai Tucson is hailed as one of the top choices, with the newer models considered to be “the new standard.” Yet, a quick investigation reveals something horrible. It turns out that the Tucson suffers from massive engine, powertrain and fuel system failures that put occupants at risk.

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Engine

In any vehicle, the engine serves as the main component that proves whether a model is reliable or not. When this part doesn’t operate the way it should, nothing seems to go right.

That’s exactly what’s revealed in this NHTSA complaint. “Sporadic hesitation when starting from a complete stop. This has happened to me about 15 times, usually when pulling out into traffic. The car has 4000 miles and has been in service about 6 months. The service manager stated that they have no other complaints but is probably due to the ‘smart’ transmission adapting to different drivers. I understand there was a recall for 41,000 2017 Tucsons for the same issue.”

There might have been recalls on earlier models, but none have been released for the 2019 Tucson yet. Still, the automaker can’t hide the engine troubles, especially with Service Bulletin #19-01-002H-4 floating around that discusses severe engine damage in the new SUVs. To combat this, the manufacturer released a new knock sensor software to attempt and head off the problem. In the meantime, Hyundai owners across the nation are driving SUVs that will face an engine failure. Hopefully, the warranty covers it for them, but who wants to deal with this when driving a new SUV?

Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2019 Hyundai Tucson Engine Problems:

1.3 MILES AWAY FROM THE DEALERSHIP I PURCHASED THE 2019 HYUNDAI TUCSON IT STARTED TO SMOKE. 5 MINUTES LATER IT WAS ON FIRE!! IT HAD LESS THAN 400 MILES ON IT AND I?VE YET TO FIND OUT WHAT EXACTLY CAUSED THE FIRE. HYUNDAI OR THE DEALERSHIP WON?T TELL ME. THE FIRE CAME FROM THE PASSENGER SIDE UNDER THE HOOD. THE VEHICLE STARTED SMOKING WHEN I ATTEMPTED TO START IT AND CAUGHT ON FIRE WHILE OFF.

Powertrain

In conjunction with the engine, the powertrain seems to create the same issues. The transmission just can’t seem to provide a comfortable acceleration.

This NHTSA review states, “2019 Hyundai Tucson Limited. Sporadic hesitation acceleration from starting from a complete stop. I’ve had the car since June and have less than 3,500 miles on it. When you start from a red light the car will jerk and hesitate, almost like it’s out of gas but then in the middle of the intersection it will accelerate like normal. This has only happened to me while in normal driving mode. It hasn’t done this while in Sport or Manual shifting mode. I had to select a date of when this happened but it originally started around mid-July and sporadically to this day. It happens randomly but when it does it happens at consecutive stop lights and multiple times on the same day. This isn’t a DCT, so Hyundai, nor the dealer can say I’m driving the car incorrectly. Pretty disappointing to have my first ever brand new car have a serious issue like this.”

Again, this isn’t the only powertrain issue either. Hyundai talks about slipping with Service Bulletin #19-AT-012H. It might even require a repair to the transaxle, which is just another thing that new car owners should not have to deal with. If this is the “new standard” it might be better to go with the tried and true older models.

Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2019 Hyundai Tucson Transmission Problems:

2019 HYUNDAI TUCSON LIMITED. SPORADIC HESITATION ACCELERATION FROM STARTING FROM A COMPLETE STOP. I’VE HAD THE CAR SINCE JUNE AND HAVE LESS THAN 3500 MILES ON IT. WHEN YOU START FROM A RED LIGHT THE CAR WILL JERK AND HESITATE, ALMOST LIKE IT’S OUT OF GAS BUT THEN IN THE MIDDLE OF THE INTERSECTION IT WILL ACCELERATE LIKE NORMAL. THIS HAS ONLY HAPPENED TO ME WHILE IN NORMAL DRIVING MODE. IT HASN’T DONE THIS WHILE IN SPORT OR MANUAL SHIFTING MODE. I HAD TO SELECT A DATE OF WHEN THIS HAPPENED BUT IT ORIGINALLY STARTED AROUND MID JULY AND SPORADICALLY TO THIS DAY. IT HAPPENS RANDOMLY BUT WHEN IT DOES IT HAPPENS AT CONSECUTIVE STOP LIGHTS AND MULTIPLE TIMES ON THE SAME DAY. THIS ISN’T A DCT, SO HYUNDAI, NOR THE DEALER CAN SAY I’M DRIVING THE CAR INCORRECTLY. PRETTY DISAPPOINTING TO HAVE MY FIRST EVER BRAND NEW CAR HAVE A SERIOUS ISSUE LIKE THIS.

Fuel System

When it comes to the fuel system in this vehicle, it’s clear that this system is just making matters even worse.

Another NHTSA complaint says, “I purchased a new 2019 Hyundai Tucson Ultimate this May. In the first week the Service Engine lit up. I took it to dealer and 2 days later the vehicle was returned as fixed. Based on dealer’s resolutions it was an evap leak code and they just had to replace the cap. Week later the sign came back again and I dropped off vehicle for another 4 days, dealer stated it was same code again and it won’t happen again. I took it back and two weeks later the light came back on again and disappeared after three days. The fourth time light came back again and I will be dropping off the vehicle again. The dealer is still unable to find the cause and unable to fix the issue. Based on the discussion with service manager, it is a minor problem for them, but the issue keeps coming back and I have to keep bringing the vehicle back to the dealer to fix it.”

This is one situation that Hyundai doesn’t want to discuss. It’s possible that the company already gave up enough information by talking about the engine and powertrain troubles. Instead, customers are left to speculate about what might be wrong with the fuel system. One thing is for sure; this model is not “the new standard.” If it is, it might be time to start taking the bus to work instead.

Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2019 Hyundai Tucson Fuel System Problems:

VEHICLE STOPPED AND CUT OFF COMPLETELY IN THE MIDDLE OF THE BUSY INTERSTATE. ACCELERATION SLOWED UNTIL VEHICLE DIED AND ALL ERROR LIGHTS APPEARED AND FLASHED ON DASH WITH A “SERVICE NOW” ALERT. PLACED THE VEHICLE IN PARK, AND TURNED THE SWITCH TWICE BEFORE IT WOULD CRANK AGAIN. UPON STARTING- THE SAME “SERVICE NOW” LIGHT APPEARED AND CAR WAS ABLE TO DRIVE. “SERVICE NOW” LIGHT VANISHED ABOUT 10 SECONDS AFTER VEHICLE WAS DRIVING AGAIN.

UNCONTROLLED SPEEDING. HARD IMPACT ON BUMP VERY LOW SUSPENSION SYSTEM. HIGHER MPG THAN ADVERTISED

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About the Author:

Brian Jones spent more than 20 years working as an ASE Certified Master Tech and Parts Specialist at multiple dealerships. Brian has become an authority in the industry, traveling across the country to consult for car dealerships and contributing his expertise as a writer for several major automotive publications. In his spare time, Brian enjoys working on pickup trucks, muscle cars, Jeeps and anything related to motorsports.

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12 COMMENTS
  • Kalin

    Yes I just bought my Tucson from carmax
    With 18000 miles 1 hour after got home the car won’t turn on
    Next day took vihicle to dealer they said to buy the battery they will reimburse me the money
    Bicause service is closed on Sundays
    I love the way it drives it’s just I’m afraid and have to carry my jumpers. Just in case.

  • Eric A

    2019 Hyundai value edition, miles at 43,726, No engine light on or warnings. While stopped at red lights it feels like someone has bumped me from behind. The back end dips and feels like the car wants to move forward with the breaks on. Kinda scary when there is a car in front of you at a stop. Taking it to the dealership.

  • john m

    This is a Nice Blog, Thanks For sharing your knowledge!! I replaced my worn out car engine with a Used used HYUNDAI Tucson engines. Now my cars performance is very smooth. I bought this engine from Autoparts-miles.com one of the best site to buy Used car Engines online.

  • Dwayne

    I bought a 2019 Tuscon Value. At 50,000 miles the car started using oil. Even after regular 5,000 mile oil changes. The motor would start running real hard and then go back to working normal. Check engine light and oil light came on. Checked oil and there wasn’t a drop in it. At I took it into the Hyundai service center and told them what was going on but they could not find anything. I had the 60,000 service done at $800 and figured that would help. But at 58,000 the engine started running rough and the oil light came on, once again bone dry. This was only after 3,000 miles after previous engine service. I traded it 3 weeks after the oil light came on. Will never buy another Hyundai again. Beware of Hyundai! They look sleek and are inexpensive but buy at your own risk. Engine using oil is not something you want to deal with.

  • Margit

    So upset! We own a 2019 2.0 liter Hyundai Tucson with 62,000 miles on it. We bought it used which voided the warranty and we’ve used up the warranty given to us from the dealer due to exceeding the allotted mileage as we travel a lot. Last weekend we were on the road, over 200 miles from home, and our engine died. No warning at all other than some loud banging moments before the car died. We ended up having it towed to a local garage and needed to have my daughter drive the 200 miles to pick us up. Currently our Tucson and sitting in a garage, 200 miles away, waiting for a new engine due to bearing damage. We have absolutely NO idea why this happened and we personally think the damage was brought on by a defect. The repair is going to cost us thousands of dollars! We have no choice in the matter and unfortunately have to deal with it as there’s no recall. Is this just bad luck? I mean really bad luck? I don’t see a Hyundai in my future. This all sucks so much!

  • christine o

    my 2019 will suddenly swerve to the right and then left’had it to the garage and they can find the trouble the aligment check and it was good .had tires changed and installed 4 new wheels and tires to no avail

  • Linda l

    I purchased what I thought was an amazingly beautiful Tuscan from A local dealer which shortly after purchasing it I was involved in an accident With my 2019 Hyundai Tuscan. I was hit by a drunk driver with his insurance agreed to pay for there preferred collision center, to fix the suv… wich they have done a really bad repair on the passenger front end of the car even the passenger door has broken (sheered off ) bolts in the hinges. As if that assent enough when I got the car back I took it in for a routine service that was due in January, I took it to the local dealer who did the oil change and basic service, wich they tryed to get me to buy an expensive 5000 mile service package and then they said it had a recall with the cpu/pcm/ecu ( abs type recall) wen I got the car back the check engine light came on and the car (on its own) from a complete stop, it would start out taking off extreamly slow followed by a really hard shift, then the car would drive normal once it got up to speed. So I called the manufacturer Hyundai corporation and they got me I touch with the service manager another location for the same dealer I purchased the Tuscan from wich (at that time), I was told that there was a recall they they corrected, and insisted that there was nothing wrong it so I drove it homemade parked it. As I went to get in the car the next morning to go somewhere, I started the car, I shifted from park to reverse & as I released the brake peddle the car (bolted) backwards causing it to hit a tree. and then I took it to the dealer location where I purchased the car from they took it & then told me that there was an issue with the car then they notified me that they looked it over and there was nothing wrong and then I called my insurance who payed to have the rear damage fixed and yes it looks as good as new (thanks Hansen’s in Richfield Utah) there amazing then wen I got the car back from Hansen’s they’d told me that the code for the check engine had been cleared by the dealer there for they can’t see what’s wrong with the vehicles check engine then I got the car check engine light is not on but it still has sporadic take off and hard shifting

  • Harry z

    2018 hyundai tuscon has 56k bought it with 22k and now the engine had catastrophic failure. First started out as a knock like rod bearing or piston slap . Stop driving it till hyundai could fit us in week and half later with out vehicle. Talked to service tech he said to drive it so we did it lasted about another 20 miles till the engine completely failed . Luckily we were close to home . So now we are still waiting for our appointment which is another 3 days away . And the vehicle is financed no rental car offered yet from dealer and the tuscon is under warranty. I was hesitant about buying hyundai in the first place , but I will never own a hyundai again even if it’s free , complete junk. Now I can only imagine what kind of bs there gonna pull to put the blame on me at dealer . The battle is just beginning. Just want to say hyundai you SUCK ! God bless America ????????

  • Jeannette H

    This car is complete junk, there’s not enough power That’s why it hesitates. It’s the middle of winter and if I have my radio on I can’t have my heat on if I have my heat on I can’t have my radio on or anything else. My USB plug intermittently works my brakes are always grinding but there’s nothing wrong with them okay there is a hum and a vibration sound coming from under the hood maybe a pulley or a loose connection somewhere I don’t know. I have 11,000 mi on my car and have been to the dealership four times and they always say nothing’s wrong something’s wrong I hate this car I can’t wait till I am rid of this car. I got this car because it was supposed to be reliable and safe and it wasn’t as expensive as everything else boy was I wrong.

  • Wanda A

    After 5000 miles my Hyundi Tucion started to display the front collision lights and at one point after having the car at the dealers for a week it started again and this time I felt a hard thump as if I hit something in the road but nothing there? Then the car would not accelerate no mater how hard I pushed the gas pedal and then sudenly it just stopped so I took it back to the dealer again and this was after just picking it up from the dealer who stated they could not find anything wrong? So they have my car for the third time. I think they have had this problem ongoing but dont want to admit it. They dodnt say anything about diagnostics they just drove it every day for a week?????? What do you know about this same complaint?

  • Deloris

    I purchased my 2019 Hyundai Tucson in June of this year and I having issues with it starting! I have taken this vehicle 3 times to the dealership and they still saying they can’t find anything wrong with it!! I’m currently sitting in the dealership now waiting! I’m tired of being stranded and going back and forth with these people! They aren’t friendly at all and stated that they can’t give me a loner until they figure out the issue!!!

  • Selamawit W

    I have bought a brand new Hyundai Tucson 2019 model in January 2020. The weather condition in the country i sm living is different from the rest of the world. I.e. from September to june it is summer sunny season and july and august is rainy season. So i drove the care smoothly till july and now i have found the car leaks the water from the rain from the roof!!!! I am very disappointed. It has sun roof but the leakage is from the side of the rear mirror.

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