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2014 Hyundai Santa Fe Review

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2014 Hyundai Santa Fe Expert Review

By

KBB Expert Rating: 7.4

The 2014 Hyundai Santa Fe comes to play against a very solid field that includes the Honda Pilot, Ford Explorer and Nissan Pathfinder. An extended version of the popular Santa Fe Sport, the 7-passenger Santa Fe offers more interior room, a long list of standard comfort and safety features and the most powerful V6 engine in the segment. The Santa Fe can be ordered with front- or all-wheel drive (FWD, AWD) and, with the exception of the missing DVD entertainment system, can generally match its competitors item for item while still undercutting them by a few hundred dollars. Of course, Hyundai doesn't skimp to keep the Santa Fe's price low, as witnessed by the handsome interior and elegant styling.

You'll Like This Car If...

Needing room for seven but the budget says, "better shop used?" The 2014 Hyundai Santa Fe may just surprise you with its bang-for-the-buck content.

You May Not Like This Car If...

Big jobs sometimes require a V8 engine. If you're towing more than 5,000 pounds or require off-road readiness, the Jeep Grand Cherokee or a full-size SUV such as the Chevrolet Tahoe makes a better choice.

KBB Expert Ratings

  • 7.4
  • 6.9
  • 7.2
  • 7.2
  • 7.9
  • N/A
How It Ranks

#36

out of 57

Fuel Economy

#7

out of 56

Horsepower
View all rankings

Consumer Rating

10 out of 10
View all
consumer ratings
2014 Hyundai Santa Fe Low/wide front photo What's New for 2014

The Hyundai Santa Fe for 2014 now offers Blind Spot Detection on all trims, while the Technology package adds rear parking assist. Other new options include HID headlights and LED taillights.

Driving the Santa Fe
2014 Hyundai Santa Fe Front angle view photo

Driving Impressions No one expects a big crossover SUV to excel in the areas of handling and acceleration, but the 2014 Hyundai Santa Fe actually might surprise a few diehards....

... On the open road, the Santa Fe glides along with little effort. The 3-mode steering setup tracks straight and true and the compliant ride walks a fine line between jarringly harsh and marshmallow mush. Inside, wind and road noise are minimal, although we think the Nissan Pathfinder and Ford Explorer are a tad better insulated. Power for the Santa Fe comes from a 3.3-liter V6 offering 290 horsepower, but only 252 lb-ft of real hardworking torque. But, thanks to a significantly lighter body than most of its competition, the 2014 Santa Fe accomplishes swift takeoffs and passing maneuvers with ease. When the all-wheel-drive system is added, however, climbing hills and making mid-range passes (40-60 mph) feel more like work.

HYUNDAI BLUE LINK
Beyond the expected concierge services, SOS emergency assistance, news, weather and turn-by-turn navigation help, Blue Link's 3-level telematics system includes a parent-centric app that sends you a text if your Santa Fe is driven over a preset speed, past a curfew time or beyond a preset "geofence" perimeter.

PANORAMIC SUNROOF
A 1-touch power tilt/slide sunroof is cool, but one with a sky view that spans all three rows is triple cool.

2014 Hyundai Santa Fe Details
2014 Hyundai Santa Fe Dashboard, center console, gear shifter view photo Interior

There's plenty of room in the 2014 Hyundai Santa Fe, and the driver's view to the front is panoramic (the rearward view is less broad, but you're never reduced to driving purely with the mirrors). The base Santa Fe's stain-resistant cloth fabric feels good, plus the audio and climate-control knobs and buttons are glove-friendly big. All the materials are impressive right down to the rubber that lines the inside of the door pulls. The first two rows are completely livable for adults, while the third row is a decent kid's row. The Santa Fe does give up some cargo area compared to the competition, however.

Exterior
2014 Hyundai Santa Fe photo

Looking for all the world like what it is – an extended-wheelbase Santa Fe Sport without the sporty rear-side-window kick-up – the new Santa Fe has more to say about handsome, contemporary styling than it does about swooping lines that characterize the shapes of Hyundai passenger cars. Nice touch 1: Even in base Santa Fe GLS form, the outside mirrors and bumpers are body color. Integrated fog lights, roof rails and 19-inch aluminum-alloy wheels are the exterior differences between the GLS and upscale Limited versions. Nice touch 2: The Santa Fe GLS gets smaller 18-inch wheels, but they, too, are of aluminum alloy.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Santa Fe GLS drivers with a long journey ahead will appreciate the multi-adjustable front bucket seats with power-adjustable lumbar support. Passengers farther back will give thanks to the 3rd-row controls for the air conditioning and heating. Stepping up to the Santa Fe Limited includes luxuries like leather seating – power-adjustable and heated for the driver and front passenger – push-button starting and heated captain's chairs for the second row. The Limited also upgrades the audio system with a 4.3-inch color display and adds a rearview camera. Sweet as ever, Hyundai's confidence-inspiring 5-year/60,000-mile bumper-to-bumper and 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranties cover the new Santa Fe.

Optional Equipment

Beyond a laundry list of individual options like a heated steering wheel, navigation system, premium audio and all-wheel drive, Hyundai is pushing option packages. For the Santa Fe GLS, the Leather and Navigation Package includes said leather and navigation plus a host of comfort and convenience upgrades. The Limited's Technology Package scores you navigation and a 12-speaker Infinity Logic 7 audio system, plus that wow-inspiring Panoramic Sunroof, a heated steering wheel, rear backup sensors and manual rear-side-window sunshades. Sadly for mom and dad, no rear-seat-entertainment/DVD pacifier is available on the 2014 Santa Fe (but an iPad or two would be cheaper than most such systems, anyway).

Under the Hood
2014 Hyundai Santa Fe Engine photo

Hyundai makes it simple to shop for a 2014 Santa Fe: one engine, one transmission. In front-drive form, the SUV's 290-horsepower 3.3-liter V6 is very well matched to the 6-speed automatic transmission, with good throttle response, smooth pickup and clean, easy shifts. The AWD Santa Fe, though, could do with some more low-end grunt to get it moving. All that said, the 2014 Santa Fe is comfortable towing up to 5,000 pounds of trailer, boat or anything else you'd like to haul.

3.3-liter V6
290 horsepower @ 6,400 rpm
252 lb-ft of torque @ 5,200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/25 mpg (FWD), 18/24 mpg (AWD)

A 2014 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS comes out of the gate with a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of around $30,000 – a number the new Nissan Pathfinder SUV can compete with, but the popular Honda Pilot misses by more than $1,000. The Santa Fe Limited starts under $35,000. If you find yourself loading up an all-wheel-drive Santa Fe Limited with options, you'll still find yourself under $40,000, an area that the Hyundai pretty much has to itself in this class. Check out KBB.com's Fair Purchase Price for what shoppers are actually paying for the Santa Fe in your area. It's still a little early to predict the 2014 Santa Fe's resale outlook, but Hyundai SUVs consistently rank well versus their competition.

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2014 Hyundai Santa Fe Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
10.0
Out of 10

Based on 10 Ratings for the 2013 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.8/10
    Quality
    9.9/10
  • Reliability
    10.0/10
    Performance
    9.9/10
  • Comfort
    10.0/10
    Styling
    10.0/10

Best vehicle in its Class! By Far!

By on Saturday, November 01, 2014

I own this car

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Everything - power, electronics, looks, & comfort!"

Cons: "No cup holder on the 2nd row bucket seat style"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"We just purchased the 2014 Santa Fe Limited Ulitimate with the saddle leather seats and all the options and we are having a BLAST!! We currently have only about 500 miles to our credit on the odometer and have found nothing that we are dissapointed about with one exception - no cup holders for the 2nd row bucket seat configuration. Kid's are grown and on their own so who really cares anyway! The cockpit area of this car is amazing and we are still finding incredible features about this car that make the overall driving experience one to be remembered and cherished for a long time to come. You will not be dissapointed and I have personally driven all the competition prior to making my decision to purchase this vehicle and none of them, for the price and warranty coverage, compare to this Crossover SUV. Go try one if you are in the market - you will not be dissapointed!"

13 people out of 17 found this review helpful

fantastic SUV

By on Saturday, October 18, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "value, looks, size, features, MPG, power, warranty"

Cons: "daytime running lights poor exterior color choices"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"my wife and I had the 2007 Hyundai Veracruz, we just bought the 2014 santa fe GLS AWD with ultimate package. I researched 12 SUV's and the santa fe beats them all, including luxery models like the acura mdx, and the lexus rx350 Incredible value, great looks, and the best power and mileage combination. Also, the size is perfect, fits in our garage Highly recommend, make sure you test drive the santa fe, before you decide on a brand"

18 people out of 35 found this review helpful

Awesome Car...Limited Ed. !!

By on Friday, October 17, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 25,500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Smooth, Fun, Easy and Accommodating (Limited Ed)"

Cons: "None at this point"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"You won't regret this purchase. I have had it over a year and I truly LOVE everything about my car (Limited Edition)."

1 person out of 3 found this review helpful

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