An upmarket, spacious SUV from Hyundai, the Santa Fe impresses.
The Hyundai Santa Fe has morphed from a big, good value, caravan- or horsebox-towing SUV to something you could genuinely consider instead of one of the premium models. Good to drive, and still capable, the Santa Fe’s a desirable, refined and spacious seven-seat SUV you’ll be proud to own.
What is it?
No car better demonstrates Hyundai’s strive upmarket; the Santa Fe is not just a smartly-styled, capable SUV, but a desirable one, too. That’s elevated it to a position where it can justifiably be considered an equal for mainstream alternatives like Honda’s CR-V, but also cars from premium marques. It’s still a relative bargain too thanks both to an excellent warranty offering and lots of standard equipment. There's one diesel engine choice, a 2.2-litre diesel, with emissions ranging from 147- to 178g/km - the latter for the auto.
What is it like?
Striking styling outside appeals: it’s a good-looking car. Big, too, the Santa Fe a seven-seater, with a pair of pews in the boot. They’re best considered occasional chairs, for children, but it does up the Santa Fe’s versatility. The engine is smooth and refinement high, while opting for four-wheel drive only adds 2g/km to the CO2 output and does nothing to your tax bill. An easy drive, it’s not as sharp as some, but it’s comfortable and able and the interior is nicely finished, too.
Carzone verdict: 4/5
The Santa Fe’s a great SUV, with lots of space, fine build and a drive that’s as good as its mainstream rivals'. It's quiet too and refinement is impressive, adding to its feeling of comfort. Hyundai hasn’t forgotten its value-laden past, loading even the entry-level car with climate control, alloy wheels and a heated steering wheel. Basic models make do with two-wheel drive, though the walk to 4x4 and a higher specification isn’t much, and you’ll not pay any more tax, either, making it a better choice.