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Used Hyundai Santa Fe review

For families that extend well beyond the ‘nuclear’ size, fitting everyone and everything in can be a problem if your car only has the usual 5 seats. Hyundai’s award-winning Santa Fe 4x4 SUV solves that issue with ease, offering comfortable, safe and stylish seating for up to 7 people. It’s good looks might mean you want one even if it’s just you and the dog.

Looks?

Once upon a time, if you wanted to transport 7 people you had to buy a traditional MPV (or Multi Purpose Vehicle). Early versions of such “cars” looked about as visually appealing as a shrunk down minibus. Well, not anymore.  

Hyundai’s Santa Fe isn’t just one of the best looking 7-seater SUVs around - it’s one of the best-looking vehicles on the road. 

Hyundai introduced the fourth generation of the Santa Fe in 2018 and then gave it a facelift it in 2021, showing just how quickly things move within the car industry these days. Don’t worry, the changes were only minimum, and the 2018 car is still a stunner.  

With its crisp, modern lines, ultra-narrow headlamps and deep front grille, it packs a very strong visual punch. 

With its crisp, modern lines, ultra-narrow headlamps and deep front grille, it packs a very strong visual punch. 

What’s it like to drive?

As with all 7-seaters, deciding how much boot space you want comes down to whether you have the back seats up or down. Even with 7 people on board, the Hyundai’s boot is still big enough to accommodate a couple of medium suitcases or a picnic basket and a few bags of goodies.   

The boot features some nice design touches like the fact that you can store the parcel shelf underneath the floor. All the seats are quick and easy to fold down – simply pull a strap to pull the third row down, while the second row can be folded at the press of a button. With all the seats down, the Santa Fe is almost the size of a small van, and you can get a bicycle in without having to remove the front wheel. 

All the seats are quick and easy to fold down – simply pull a strap to pull the third row down.

Inside?

Hyundai likes to see its cars as ‘new premium.’ Are they as good as Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz inside? Not quite, but they are getting close, as you will find out inside the Santa Fe’s cabin. The dashboard looks crisp and modern, and most of the plastics are high quality. While many of the functions can be controlled via the touchscreen, there are proper buttons for you to use. Clickety, click.  

Storage is excellent throughout the cabin, thanks to a big central cubby locker with a removable shelf. The glovebox isn’t the largest, but there’s a handy shelf above it and the door bins are impressive.  

The entry-level SE model comes well equipped with adaptive cruise control, which allows the Santa Fe to automatically speed up and slow down to keep its distance from the car in front on the motorway. Automatic emergency braking is also fitted as standard, to help keep you from driving into the car in front in town, if it stops suddenly.  

Premium models are equipped with a larger touch screen, spaceship-like digital instruments and plush leather, heated seats. If you go for the Premium SE model, you can even keep your posterior nicely chilled in hot weather, thanks to cooled front seats, while a panoramic sunroof makes sure you get your daily sun shine.  

There is stacks of space inside the cabin and the back seats even slide and recline so your passengers can get as comfortable as possible. Three adults can fit in the back seats and two adults can also fit in the Santa Fe’s back third row seats, which unlike those found in some 7-seaters are not strictly for kids only. 

Practicality

As with all 7-seaters, deciding how much boot space you want comes down to whether you have the back seats up or down. Even with 7 people on board, the Hyundai’s boot is still big enough to accommodate a couple of medium suitcases or a picnic basket and a few bags of goodies.   

The boot features some nice design touches like the fact that you can store the parcel shelf underneath the floor. All the seats are quick and easy to fold down – simply pull a strap to pull the third row down, while the second row can be folded at the press of a button. With all the seats down, the Santa Fe is almost the size of a small van, and you can get a bicycle in without having to remove the front wheel. 

Running costs and reliability

The Santa Fe comes with a 5-year unlimited warranty, which obviously means if you buy a 3-year-old car, you are still covered for another 2 years. The Santa Fe normally fares well in customer satisfaction and reliability surveys. If you’d like a little extra peace of mind, you may want to consider cinchCare.   

In terms of fuel economy, there’s not much between the diesel engine and the later petrol hybrid engine, and with careful driving you should be able to get close to 40mpg. 

What cinch loves

The Santa Fe is proof that if you need to carry6 to 7passengers around on a regular basis, you don’t have to sell out and drive a utilitarian-looking vehicle. Far fromitin fact, for the Hyundai Santa Fe is super cool looking and lets you drive your family and friends around in style.   

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Verdict

Good

The Santa Fe is highly sought after, so you may have to pay a little more for it than some of its rivals. It’s worth it,though. This is a stylish, modern SUV that’s relaxing and comfortable to drive. It’s well equipped with the latest safety technology and offers the flexibility to deal with families who like to live life large. 

This review was

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