2008 Hyundai Tiburon Hatchback Review | Edmunds.com

2008 Hyundai Tiburon Hatchback

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Hyundai Tiburon Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 2.7 L V 6-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 4-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 172 hp @ 6000 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 17/24 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats No

Review of the 2008 Hyundai Tiburon

  • Though affordable, the 2008 Hyundai Tiburon's age, lack of power and tame handling put it near the bottom of our list for a sport coupe.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Clean interior styling, affordable price, long warranty.

  • Cons

    Handling not as sharp as most rivals, weak engines, dated design.

  • What's New for 2008

    Satellite radio and an upgraded Kenwood stereo system are now standard on every 2008 Hyundai Tiburon.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (5 total reviews)  |  Write a Review

08 tiburon gt limited

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Vehicle: 2008 Hyundai Tiburon GT Limited 2dr Hatchback (2.7L 6cyl 4A)

I got this car new from carmax, it was a gift for my soon to be wife, i didnt even know carmax sold new cars, great bang for the buck. at first she said HYUNDAI!!! what but with in a few weeks she started loving it whats not to love leather seats v-6 engine alloy rims, navigation, sun roof, etc. We loved this car unfortunately had to give it to my mom in a trade since we had a baby and there isnt much room for a baby seat. I would recommend this car to anyone and say look beyond the badge on the hood, hyundai makes capable cars for a lot less then most. Take a look do some research and see dollar for dollar they make great sense, trust me im a business man and i always look 4 a value!!!


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Vehicle: 2008 Hyundai Tiburon GT Limited 2dr Hatchback (2.7L 6cyl 4A)

Bought this 2008 used in 2009 a week ago with 40 (forty) miles on the odometer. What a steal!!! The car is sporty/fun/economical. Anyone driving this car that is over 6'1" might not have enough headroom. I got the GT LTD, and it has plenty of power, and being front wheel drive it seems to have more power than I need. The price cannot beat, and the GPS,Stereo,Auto Air conditioning are all great features that came with car. I highly recommend this vehicle.


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Vehicle: 2008 Hyundai Tiburon GT Limited 2dr Hatchback (2.7L 6cyl 4A)

I now have over 1200 miles on my Tiburon, and thought I'd give an update. I finally broke in the engine, and starting at about 500 miles, my usable power increased dramatically. The engine now responds much more quickly when I hit the accelerator. The car is listed at 17 mpg in the city. That is what I get. It is listed at 23 mpg on the highway, but on a recent trip I got over 30 mpg at 75 mph. I still wish the GT Limited had an available 6-speed manual, or at least a 5-speed auto.

Sharp car, very comfortable

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Vehicle: 2008 Hyundai Tiburon GT Limited 2dr Hatchback (2.7L 6cyl 4A)

I just bought this car a week ago, so keep that in mind. I immediately took a 200 mile trip. The seats are fantastic! Very comfortable. I have a bad back, and my back did not hurt at all. The ride is surprisingly smooth, especially given the low-profile tires. The 4-speed manual is not real sporty, and acceleration is not blazing. The engine sound on acceleration is sweet. There is a lot of room under the hatch. The rear seat is for children only, but holds a booster seat comfortably. If you want quicker response and acceleration, try the SE with 6-speed manual. I drove it, and it was smooth with great pick- up. I only got the Limited because my son will learn to drive on this car.

Great car for the money

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Vehicle: 2008 Hyundai Tiburon GT Limited 2dr Hatchback (2.7L 6cyl 4A)

You're not going to get the styling & features for the money in any other car. My main complaint is I could use a little more headroom. The sun roof takes away some of the headroom. I'm used to driving cars in this price range & I have to say this is the sportiest car I've had in a long time. Gas mileage could be better. I don't think I get the mileage advertised. Seems like I don't get very far on a tank of gas.

Full 2008 Hyundai Tiburon Review

What's New for 2008

Satellite radio and an upgraded Kenwood stereo system are now standard on every 2008 Hyundai Tiburon.


In Spanish, Tiburon means "shark." In Hyundai speak, Tiburon is a compact sport coupe that does what the Korean carmaker is best known for -- offer a generous warranty and a lengthy features list at a low price. Beyond these aspects, though, the 2008 Hyundai Tiburon is a mere sea bass in an ocean filled with more competent, vicious predators.

That's not to say the Tiburon isn't without merit. Appearance counts for a lot in the sport coupe world, and the Hyundai Tiburon has the sort of sharp lines that make a car stand apart from the pack. In profile, it's especially eye-catching, with a rising beltline, scooped outside detail and a sweeping roof line. The Tiburon's upscale look is topped off with side sculpting and slick alloy wheels shod with performance tires. Sadly, a midlife styling refresh robbed it of its nifty sharklike side gills.

The current-generation Tiburon debuted back in 2003. This is a fairly long time for sport coupe design; as a result, the Tiburon can't keep up with newer sport coupes. Its suspension is on the soft side, resulting in lackluster handling that driving enthusiasts will certainly notice in a simple back-to-back test-drive with other sport coupes like the Honda Civic (especially the Si), Mitsubishi Eclipse, Mini Cooper and Saturn Astra. For those who value comfort over performance, the Tiburon's ride is rather forgiving, but those buyers may find the also-comfy Scion tC provides them with a more complete package.

A more serious problem is engine power, as even the Tiburon's V6 is now outclassed by the four-cylinders of many competitors. And though standard equipment is plentiful, you're not going to find some of the more recent high-tech features like Bluetooth or navigation. Given these weaknesses, we think shoppers would be better served by the competitor coupes, which have a lot more bite than this aging shark can muster.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2008 Hyundai Tiburon is a compact coupe available in GS, GT, SE and GT Limited trims. Standard equipment for the GS includes 16-inch alloy wheels, a rear spoiler, foglamps, full power accessories, air-conditioning and a six-speaker Kenwood stereo with CD/MP3 player and satellite radio. The GT adds 17-inch wheels, automatic climate control, cruise control, a trip computer, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, cloth upholstery with black leather inserts, and chrome interior accents. The SE reverts back to manual climate control but gains a higher spoiler, red leather upholstery inserts and aluminum pedals. The GT Limited adds a sport suspension, red brake calipers, a sunroof (optional on other trims), full red leather upholstery and automatic climate control.

Powertrains and Performance

The GS comes with a 138-horsepower 2.0-liter inline-4. Step up to the GT, SE or GT Limited and you'll get a 2.7-liter V6 rated at 172 hp and 181 pound-feet of torque. Although smooth, the V6 is considerably down on power for this segment. The GS and GT are available with a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission, while the SE can only be had with a six-speed manual. The GT Limited comes only with the automatic. Fuel economy for an automatic-equipped V6 2008 Tiburon is 17 mpg city and 24 mpg highway.


All Tiburons come standard with side airbags for front occupants and antilock brakes. Traction control and electronic stability control are standard on the SE, but aren't available on other models. In government crash tests, the 2008 Hyundai Tiburon earned a full five stars for driver protection in frontal impacts and four stars for the front passenger. The Tiburon earned a four-star rating for side crash protection.

Interior Design and Special Features

The Tiburon has a simple but handsome cockpit. At first glance, it's evident that the interior designers wanted to impart a high-quality look and feel to the cabin. Everything is laid out in a straightforward fashion, free of gimmickry. Fiddle with the climate-control knobs and the silky fluidity with which they move would do a Honda proud. Bolstered sport seats help keep occupants in place during enthusiastic cornering, and the large speedometer and tachometer are easy to read at a glance.

Driving Impressions

The four-cylinder engine provides barely adequate power for this 3,000-pound coupe, so upgrading to the V6-powered GT, GT Limited or SE is strongly encouraged. When the Tiburon is driven hard, it lacks the athleticism of its more nimble competitors. The SE offers a sport-tuned suspension for more responsive handling and a tauter ride, but even that Tiburon is not as light on its feet as the class leaders. The 2008 Hyundai Tiburon is confident but not eager, and its steering is a bit slow and numb. However, when driven in a relaxed manner, this Hyundai performs capably and delivers a smooth ride.

Talk About The 2008 Tiburon

Gas Mileage


  • 17
  • cty
  • 24
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs