2020 Ford Ecosport vs. 2020 Hyundai Tucson: Compare Crossovers

April 29, 2020

We’re suckers for conveniences. Our kitchens are cramped with enough gadgets as proof.

Two pint-size crossovers, the 2020 Hyundai Tucson and 2020 Ford Ecosport, promise efficiency and practicality at a relatively low price—the one-pot pressure/sauté/rice/slow cookers of the car world.

Our TCC Rating indicates a clear winner: The 2020 Hyundai Tucson earns a 6.5 TCC Rating compared to the 2020 Ford Ecosport’s 4.0 TCC Rating.

It’s a decisive victory for the Hyundai, if not a landslide. The question may come down to price, however, and the Tucson may be short on answers on paper. The Ecosport starts at $2,000 less than the Tucson, but it’s a base model that we don’t recommend. Apples-to-apples, the Tucson closes that gap—and discounts are a different question—but the details on how to get there are worth chewing. Now we’re hungry, again.

MORE: Read our 2020 Ford Ecosport and 2020 Hyundai Tucson full reviews

2020 Ford Ecosport

2020 Ford Ecosport

2020 Ford Ecosport

2020 Ford Ecosport

2020 Hyundai Tucson

2020 Hyundai Tucson

2020 Hyundai Tucson

2020 Hyundai Tucson

The Ford Ecosport is a step down smaller than the Hyundai Tucson and it’s more than a foot shorter, bumper to bumper. That space is mostly reflected in the cargo area for the Ecosport, it offers 20.9 cubic feet of cargo room compared to the Tucson’s 31.0 cubic feet.

The cargo area for the Ecosport is tall, too. That means items that can’t be stacked, such as groceries or bulky items, may require tumbling one or two seats forward to fit. And the side-swinging tailgate could be an issue for city dwellers in small parking spots. (We’re not sure what they were thinking, either.)

Fitting four or more adults aboard favors the Tucson, too. The Tucson has a few more inches of rear seat leg room and, when the rear seats are reclined, we’d feel comfortable with four adults aboard. (Five is a stretch, there’s just not enough shoulder room.) Getting four riders aboard the Ecosport requires some horse-trading between front- and rear-seat riders, we’re not sure anyone wins in the end. Fitting four inside the Ecosport is possible, five is fantasy unless one of the riders is a child—or acts like one.

2020 Hyundai Tucson

2020 Hyundai Tucson

But the tale of the tape was always going to favor the Tucson—it’s just bigger.

Where the two measure more directly is square in the pocketbook.

The 2020 Ford Ecosport costs $21,240 to start and includes front-wheel drive, a 1.0-liter turbo-3 engine, automatic transmission, power features, cruise control, cloth upholstery, 16-inch wheels, Bluetooth streaming, two USB ports, and not much else—no touchscreen, no active safety features. That base Ecosport is slow, not very well equipped, and not much of a deal compared to small sedans that offer more except a tall ride height.

2020 Ford Ecosport

2020 Ford Ecosport

The Ecosport SE we’d recommend costs $24,695, including destination, and adds a 6.5-inch touchscreen, steering wheel controls, parking sensors, and automatic climate control. Opting for all-wheel drive, which costs $1,500 more, upgrades the engine, too. A 2.0-liter inline-4 is more confident in all-wheel-drive Ecosports, even though it’s not appreciably quicker.

That means the Ecosport we’d recommend costs $26,195, before options. A popular equipment package that adds blind-spot monitors, navigation, and upgraded audio adds $1,495.

And that puts it squarely into the Tucson’s wheelhouse. The Tucson starts at $24,675, including destination, for a front-wheel-drive version powered by a 2.0-liter inline-4 and automatic transmission. It’s not fast either, but it’s adequate.

The base Tucson includes cloth upholstery, 17-inch wheels, a 7.0-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, a USB port, automatic emergency braking, lane-departure warnings, power features, and cruise control. All-wheel drive is a $1,400 option on every trim level.

2020 Hyundai Tucson

2020 Hyundai Tucson

The Tucson we’d pick is the Tucson Value edition, which costs $26,125, and adds blind-spot monitors, heated front seats, a power-adjustable driver’s seat, and keyless ignition. Add all-wheel drive and the 2020 Tucson Value costs $27,245.

Compared to the Ecosport SE with all-wheel drive and popular equipment, which costs $27,190, the Tucson may be a better deal. Better still, Hyundai backs the Tucson with a 5-year/60,000-mile warranty that Ford doesn’t match.

We’re sweet on the Tucson for its value and size. Like our Instant Pot, they’re both do-all appliances.

Summary

4.0
Expert Rating
The 2020 Ford Ecosport is not particularly good value, not particularly efficient, and not particularly good.
6.5
Expert Rating
What the 2020 Hyundai Tucson lacks in distinctiveness, it makes up for in value, safety, and features.

Styling

3.0
Expert Rating
The 2020 Ford Ecosport wears its humble origins on its sleeve.
Read More
5.0
Expert Rating
The 2020 Hyundai Tucson is both handsome and uninteresting at the same time, like a daytime soap opera star.
Read More

Performance

3.0
Expert Rating
The 2020 Ford Ecosport has decent power for its size, but it’s cancelled out by its portly weight.
Read More
5.0
Expert Rating
The 2020 Hyundai Tucson is down on power but delivers on ride quality.
Read More

Comfort & Quality

4.0
Expert Rating
The 2020 Ford Ecosport has decent passenger room but a low-rent cabin and compromised cargo room.
Read More
7.0
Expert Rating
The 2020 Hyundai Tucson is not as spacious as rivals but features good material quality and comfort.
Read More

Safety

4.0
Expert Rating
The 2020 Ford Ecosport gets subpar crash test ratings and offers no active safety features.
Read More
8.0
Expert Rating
The 2020 Hyundai Tucson features some standard active safety features and great crash test scores.
Read More

Features

5.0
Expert Rating
The 2020 Ford Ecosport offers the basics, and not much more.
Read More
9.0
Expert Rating
The 2020 Hyundai Tucson is well-equipped in mid-level trims, but gets expensive when fully loaded.
Read More

Fuel Economy

5.0
Expert Rating
The 2020 Ford Ecosport fails to impress in the efficiency department despite its small engines.
Read More
5.0
Expert Rating
The 2020 Hyundai Tucson manages only average fuel economy despite being down on power and turbochargers compared to rivals.
Read More

MSRP

from $19,995
from $23,550

Invoice

from $19,595
from $22,669

Fuel Economy - Combined City and Highway

28
25

Engine

Intercooled Turbo Regular Unleaded I-3, 1.0 L
Regular Unleaded I-4, 2.0 L

Drivetrain

Front Wheel Drive Read Full Specs
Front Wheel Drive Read Full Specs
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