The Hyundai that makes a Porsche seem dull

First introduced in 2004, the Hyundai Tucson quickly became one of the company’s most popular vehicles. A more modern, second-generation model was launched in 2009, while the third-gen version was unveiled for the 2016 model year. This time around designed by Peter Schreyer, the Tucson adopted the company’s latest design language and a more upscale interior. A favorite among many tuners for SEMA Show projects, the Tucson is set to return to the event in 2017 with a comprehensive upgrade developed by Hyundai and Vaccar.

The already eye-catching crossover was overhauled inside and out for this project. Gifted with many race-inspired design elements, a custom paint job, a luxurious interior, and many drivetrain upgrades, the Vaccar Tucson Sport concept was conceived to demonstrate that the small crossover has great potential when it comes to performance upgrades. However, this doesn’t mean that Hyundai is planning a performance-oriented model, so don’t get your hopes up on seeing it in showrooms. As disappointing as it may sound, the Vaccar Sport concept is worthy of your attention as it can provide valuable hints if you’re looking to modify your Tucson in the future.

Continue reading to learn more about the Hyundai Vaccar Tucson Sport Concept.

  • 2017 Hyundai Vaccar Tucson Sport Concept
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    1.6 L
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  • Custom two-tone paint from BASF
  • Sporty bumper, side skirts, and diffuser
  • Honeycomb mesh grille
  • Aggressive front bumper design
  • Concept One wheels
  • Continental performance tires
2017 Hyundai Vaccar Tucson Sport Concept
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AEM CAI System, Cat-back Exhaust, Boostec Turbo
Should make at least 300 hp and 320 lb-ft of torque
Hyundai and Vaccar creates a Tucson that could put any Porsche Macan out there to shame

The cool thing about modding a Hyundai Tucson is that you have a good base to work on. I don’t know about you, but to my eyes, the Tucson is one of the best looking crossovers on the market. It has an aggressive front fascia, muscular side panels, and a sleek roofline. And, Hyundai and Vaccar just managed to take that up a few notches and create a Tucson that could put any Porsche Macan out there to shame.

The front end is downright menacing to look at thanks to the new grille that ditched the horizontal bars for a fine honeycomb mesh. The Hyundai badge seems to float, while the visible radiator behind the mesh makes this Tucson look as if it’s about to swallow everything in its path. The lower bumper is actually very similar to the standard model, but the Vaccan spoiler lip further enhances the crossover’s sporty look.

2017 Hyundai Vaccar Tucson Sport Concept
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Interior gets custom Guages, Katzkin leather, Suede, and Blue Stitching
The front end is downright menacing to look at thanks to the new grille

Moving onto the sides, most standard features remained unchanged, but the lowered ride height and the new side skirts give the Tucson a new, aggressive stance. Vaccar also ditched the regular wheels for a set of Concept One rollers. The 20-inch forged rims come in a thin, 10-spoke design with a two-tone finish and low profile, Continental Extreme Contact Sport tires.

Around back, there’s a new diffuser to talk about, but the initial rendering doesn’t show the vehicle’s rear end. But it’s safe to assume that this Tucson sports a large aero element and bigger exhaust pipes.

The show car is rounded off by a special paint livery from BASF. It combines a blue metallic hue for the lower body with a dark silver on the roof and most of the engine hood, as well as matching accents in the front grille and bumper, wheel arch extensions, side skirts, mirror caps, and rear bumper.


  • Katzkin leather and suede
  • Blue stitching
  • Nine-inch infotainment screen
  • Nine-inch rear-seat displays
  • 12-inch subwoofer
  • Custom instrument gauges
  • WiFi boost
2016 - 2017 Hyundai Tucson
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Note: Standard Hyundai Tucson pictured here.

The interior is focused on luxury rather than sportiness

While the exterior is decidedly more aggressive than a standard Tucson, the interior is focused on luxury rather than sportiness. The seats are wrapped in fine Ice Grey leather by Katzkin, but some surfaces are wrapped in Fog Suedezkin, which is Katzkin talk for grey suede. Blue stitching keeps everything together and adds a bit of contrast.

The standard infotainment system was replaced by a Vaccar-made, Android-powered multimedia unit with a nine-inch screen. There’s also a WiFi head unit with AutoMeter Airdrive WiFi Boost, while the rear passengers get to enjoy the nine-inch Soundstream LCDs integrated into the front headrests.

Moving over to the instrument cluster, Vaccar added a new dash-top triple gauge pod, as well as new oil and Wideband A/F gauges. There’s also DVD-MobileLink, while the soundtrack is provided by a 12-inch Picasso subwoofer and a Nano 520-watt, four-channel amplifier. Unfortunately, there are no photos of the interior yet so we can’t see any of these features.


  • Boostec turbocharger, R50 Blow-off Valve
  • AEM Air Intake System
  • Mishimoto G-Line intercooler
  • Vaccar cat-back exhaust
  • Magnaflow performance mufflers
  • XS Power battery
  • Vaccar-Power Stop brake kit
  • Vaccar-Gecko G-Street coilovers
2017 Hyundai Vaccar Tucson Sport Concept
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Aggressive Front Bumper, Honeycomb Grille, Two-tone Paint
A beefed-up Boostec unit with an R50 blow-off valve was strapped to the four-cylinder mill

Drivetrain modifications are just as diverse, and by the looks of things, Vaccar didn’t retain too much of the standard unit. Interestingly enough, the press release doesn’t mention whether the concept uses the naturally aspirated, 2.0-liter or the turbocharged, 1.6-liter unit, but judging by the upgrade list, Vaccar went with the latter.

The standard turbo was ditched and a beefed-up Boostec unit with an R50 blow-off valve was strapped to the four-cylinder mill. The air intake system comes from AEM and including a charge pipe kit. The SUV also features a Mishimoto G-Line intercooler, VMS Racing baffled oil-catch tank, can, and fender washers, and Vaccar-developed front-mount piping and cat-back exhaust.

If I were to take a guess, I'd say that output has increased to at least 300 horses and 320 pound-feet

The builder also fitted Magnaflow Performance mufflers and stainless kit, and XS Power D Series 3400 Battery, and uses AMSOIL Signature Series synthetic oil and filter. What does it all mean in terms of output and performance? Unfortunately, we don’t know because Vaccar has yet to release any information. But rest assured that the 1.6-liter four-pot now cranks out more than the standard 175 horsepower and 195 pound-feet of torque. If I were to take a guess, I’d say that output has increased to at least 300 horses and 320 pound-feet. And Vaccar says that performance gains have been obtain without sacrificing reliability.

Upgrades continue in the chassis with a Vaccar brake kit for both axles, a VMS Racing forged lugnuts, and Vaccar-Gecko G-Street coilovers. So the concept isn’t just faster, but it should be able to handle some track racing too.


2017 Hyundai Vaccar Tucson Sport Concept Exterior
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Makes a Porsche Look Dull Doesn’t it?

Stunning is the best way to describe the Vaccar Tucson Sport concept, at least as far as looks go. I can’t say the same about the interior and the drivetrain since there aren’t any photos and proper information, but if the styling is any indication, this concept should be a solid piece of work in just about any department. This vehicle will probably remain just a concept, but its exterior design would make for a great performance-oriented version of the Tucson. And why not, maybe even inspire an upcoming Genesis crossover.

  • Leave it
    • Just a concept car
    • No drivetrain information and no photos


Hyundai Tucson

2016 - 2017 Hyundai Tucson
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Read our full review on the 2017 Hyundai Tucson.

2017 Chevrolet Traverse SUP Concept
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2017 Chevy Traverse SUP Concept

Read more 2017 SEMA Show news.

Press release

Hyundai has partnered with Vaccar to develop the Vaccar Tucson Sport concept for the 2017 SEMA show. This eye-catching concept builds upon the affordable, OEM-level performance and style of the Tucson Sport crossover and adds considerable powertrain, design, infotainment, suspension and a full aero kit for impressive looks and performance.

“The Vaccar Tucson Sport Concept takes the Tucson far beyond its OEM roots without sacrificing reliability,” said Aaron Vaccar, President of Vaccar. “By building upon the well-developed Tucson platform, powertrain and design, we’ve given enthusiasts a vision of just where this affordable crossover aspires to go.”



Boostec Turbocharger, R50 Blow-off Valve
AEM Air Intake System and Charge Pipe Kit
Mishimoto G-Line Intercooler
VMS Racing Baffled Oil-Catch Tank, Cap and Star Fender Washers
Vaccar Front-mount Piping and Cat-back Exhaust
Magnaflow Performance Mufflers and Stainless Builder Kit
XS Power D Series 3400 Battery
AMSOIL Signature Series Synthetic Oil and Filter


Concept One Forged Wheels 20x9.5” CF-003SX
Continental ExtremeContact Sport 255/35R20 tires
Vaccar-Power Stop Front and Rear Z23 Evolution Brake Kit
VMS Racing Forged Extended Lugnuts
Vaccar-Gecko G-Street Coilovers


BASF R-M Paint Systems, Blue Metallic color change with Silver partial 2-tone
Vaccar Front Lip, Side Skirts, Rear Diffuser and M&S Mesh Front Grille
Diode Dynamics RGB LEDs, wireless WiFi Controller


Katzkin Ice Grey Leather, Fog Suedezkin, Blue Stitch
AutoMeter AIRDRIVE WiFi Boost, Oil, Wideband A/F Gauges Dash-top Triple Gauge Pod
Vaccar Android-powered 9” Multimedia, WiFi Head Unit
Soundstream 9” Headrest Mount LCDs, DVD-MobileLink, Picasso 12” Powered Subwoofer Enclosure, 6.5″ 2-Way Component Sets, Nano 520w Class D 4ch Amplifier

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