Hyundai ix35 Review

Phil Hall

Written by

Phil Hall

Hyundai ix35
Hyundai ix35


1 / 8

heycar rating
"No frills spacious family car"
  • Launched: 2009
  • Crossover
  • Petrol, Diesel

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Quick overview


  • Excellent value
  • Quiet and comfortable for its price
  • Available with four-wheel drive


  • Not exactly inspiring to look at
  • Or particularly memorable to drive
  • Plasticky interior is drab

Overall verdict

On the inside


Cost to run

Prices and Specs

Overall verdict on the Hyundai ix35

"The Hyundai ix35 is effectively the replacement for the dated Tucson, but it's an altogether different car in every department. It's a huge improvement in design, quality and comfort, but retains the typical Hyundai strengths of generous equipment levels and value for money."

Hyundai ix35 driving

It may look like an off-roader but most people choose two-wheel drive versions of the ix35. However, even if you opt for the 4x4, CO2 emissions and fuel consumption are both low, helping to keep running costs down. It's a genuinely good alternative to 'crossovers' such as the Nissan Qashqai or Ford Kuga and does a great job on the road too.

Sit behind the wheel and you could be forgiven for thinking that you're in a Volkswagen, with upmarket, well-finished materials and a smart design. It's incredibly well equipped with air conditioning, Bluetooth and heated seats in the front and back. And if that wasn't enough, it even comes with a five-year/unlimited mileage warranty.

Add in a great range of engines, including a refined and punchy 2.0-litre CRDi diesel that returns a claimed 51.4mpg and the ix35 begins to stand out against more expensive competition. In fact, there's very little to criticise. Good looking, easy to drive and cheap to run, the Hyundai ix35 is one of the best family cars on the road.


Comfort and design: Hyundai ix35 interior

"Inside, the ix35 not only feels substantial, but also exudes quality. The materials used are high quality and there's a real attention to detail, from the subtle blue backlighting to the Audi-esque leather stitching. The dash is modern and stylish, with easy-to-read dials and switches that are easy to use on the move."

Hyundai ix35 interior

You sit high and get the impression of a lot of metal around you, with space for three in the back and comfortable seats for longer journeys. The 591-litre load area is 41 litres bigger than a Ford C-MAX. Yet at 4,410mm, it's actually 9mm shorter than the latest model Vauxhall Astra. Disappointingly, the rear seats don't fold completely flat in the clever cantilever manner of the Hyundai Tucson.

Yet under the load floor there's a full size alloy spare wheel, an exact match for the road wheels, allowing you to rotate and even out tyre wear if you want to. On the move, the ix35 is generally quiet with only a small amount of road noise. One nice touch is that front and rear heated seats are standard - something only top-end executive cars can usually boast.

Handling and ride quality: What is the Hyundai ix35 like to drive?

"The majority of buyers opt for the excellent 134bhp 2.0-litre diesel, which develops a handy 320Nm of torque at 1800-2500 rpm. There's plenty of pulling power on offer from low revs and ix35 is quiet as it goes about it, with impressively low levels of noise."

Hyundai ix35 rear

The 2WD base mode on 225/60 R17 tyres is noticeably more refined than the 4WD premium model on 225/55 R18s. The penalty is that it lets go at the front a bit early on rain-slicked roundabouts. On bumpy, rutted, pot-holed country road corners it's better, but this is not a car you push into bends. As a two-wheel drive, it gets to 60mph in a shade under 10 seconds.

In contrast, the 4WD hangs on better at the penalty of more noise, especially at around 2000rpm and 60mph in 6th. Usable engine torque doesn't come in until quite late, about 1750rpm. You can trickle down at about 1250rpm, but no lower, or it starts jerking and the gearshift indictor flashes at you to change down. That actually means you can't use 6th below about 45mph, and you can't use 5th below 30mph. Four-wheel drive mode is activated by a button on the dash. This locks the car into permanent four-wheel drive and works up to 25mph, splitting power equally between the front and rear wheels.

The 161bhp petrol engine lacks the low-down pull of the 2.0-litre, but it's a lively and a good engine for buyers who don't rack up mega mileages. The petrol is available as a two-wheel drive only and has a five-speed gearbox, where the 2.0-litre diesel is a six-speed.

The entry-level 1.6-litre petrol and a 1.7-litre diesel engines were available from later in 2010.

MPG and fuel costs: What does a ix35 cost to run?

"The 136PS 2.0-litre diesel as a two-wheel drive is capable of 50mpg, the four-wheel drive version will knock a minimum of 5mpg off of that."

Hyundai ix35 side

The 163PS petrol engine offers some decent economy with 38mpg on offer provided it isn't revved too hard. 

CO2 emissions span from 135g/km (1.7-litre two-wheel drive diesel) to 189g/km (2.0-litre four-wheel drive, automatic diesel), which means you'll pay between £150 and £305 to tax the ix35. 

How much should you be paying for a used Hyundai ix35?

"The Hyundai i35 was available in two trim levels – Style and Premium."

Hyundai ix35 UK

Style models have 17-inch alloy wheels, ESP, air conditioning, active head restraints, Bluetooth connectivity with voice recognition, those heated front and rear seats, downhill brake control, electric windows front and rear, electric heated door mirrors with integrated LED-type side repeaters, six airbags, glove compartment with cooling function, ‘follow-me-home' headlamp function, Hillstart Assist Control, leather steering wheel and gearknob, remote central locking with alarm, steering wheel audio controls, stereo-radio CD with MP3 and iPod connectivity, reverse parking sensors and a trip computer.

Premium models offer add 18-inch alloys, a full-length panoramic glass sunroof, automatic headlights, chrome door handles, chrome interior trim, cruise control, dual zone climate control with humidity sensor and Ioniser, electric folding door mirrors, front windscreen wiper de-icer, keyless entry with engine stop-start button, rear privacy glass, rain-sensing wipers, part-leather upholstery and smart roof rails.

You can pick up a 2011 1.6-litre petrol Hyundai ix35 Style for the less than £6000 with 50,000 miles on the clock. At the other end of the scale, a 2015 2.0-litre diesel automatic with four-wheel drive and in posh Premium trim will cost around £12,000 with less than 20,000 miles on the clock. 

Hyundai ix35 cars for sale on heycar

Number of cars available
£7.5K - £10K
Price bracket of these cars
BlackWhite+ 3 more
Colours available on heycar
5 doors
Door options available

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