2012 Hyundai Veracruz Review
By KBB.com Editors
KBB Expert Rating:
What's New for 2012
To prove just how good the 2012 Hyundai Veracruz SUV really is, Hyundai invited a group of us to its proving grounds where there was also a Lexus RX 350 for comparison. While the Lexus clearly is the better SUV, it isn't by much. The 2012 Hyundai Veracruz's ride, handling and acceleration all matched or bested the Lexus, and its interior truly is as quiet, at least at highway speeds. And, while Hyundai was also quick to point out the Veracruz has more cargo room than a Mercedes Benz GL (with the rear seat folded down, of course), we think it's more likely people will be comparing it to the cargo hold of the Mazda CX-9, Honda Pilot and Chevrolet Traverse. With its three-row seating, the 2012 Hyundai Veracruz can fit up to seven people, although the rear-most seat is a bit cramped for two adults. Best of all, the 2012 Hyundai Veracruz offers near Lexus-like levels of luxury at a price starting well below Lexus territory.
You'll Like This Car If...
The 2012 Hyundai Veracruz stands apart from more truck-like SUVs with its smooth, sleek design and plush interior. If a seven-passenger Honda Pilot or Toyota Highlander is a bit too rugged or conservative for your taste, the 2012 Hyundai Veracruz will likely hold strong appeal.
You May Not Like This Car If...
If your demands require the third-row seat to be in use full-time, you'll find there is very little room behind said seat for luggage or equipment. You might be better off in a Chevy Traverse or Honda Pilot, both of which have significantly more cargo space behind the third-row seat than the Veracruz.
The 2012 Veracruz receives a new European-inspired grille, some new wheel designs and, on the Limited trim, standard heated second-row seats. A new Alpine navigation unit is available on the Limited trim level; the Alpine navigation unit includes HD Radio, Pandora internet radio for iPhone, Bluetooth, and a 7-inch touch screen display, as well as a 605-watt Infinity amp and 10 speakers.
Driving the Veracruz
Thanks to its one-piece unibody construction and 4-wheel independent front and rear suspension, the 2012 Hyundai Veracruz 7-passenger SUV is as comfortable climbing a winding mountain road as it is...
effortless cruising long stretches of highway. Even in city driving, where larger SUV's can feel like ponderous dinosaurs, the 2012 Hyundai Veracruz SUV is lithe and nimble. Thanks in part to its smaller turning circle and minimal length, the Veracruz is easily maneuvered in all but the tightest parking situations. While we enjoyed the cruising capabilities afforded by the powerful and smooth V6 engine, the Veracruz's 6-speed automatic transmission demonstrated a reluctance to quickly kick down into a lower gear when we needed an immediate burst of power. Our time in the Veracruz included everything from short commutes to interstate road trips, and it never failed to impress us as effortless and comfortable.
The 2012 Hyundai Veracruz SUV's remote-sensing unlock and start feature allows you to get in and go without ever touching the key that remains in your pocket or purse.
A feature that seemed like such an indulgence only a couple years ago - and one we wouldn't have expected on a Hyundai - has become one of the features we miss the most on any vehicle with a liftgate that is not powered.
2012 Hyundai Veracruz Details
While it's clear that Hyundai used the Lexus RX 350 as a benchmark for the Veracruz's interior, they didn't copy it part for part. The 2012 Hyundai Veracruz's upscale appointments include soft-lined bins, a soft-touch console and armrests and even overhead ambient spot lights. The 2012 Hyundai Veracruz's third-row seat offers about the same accommodations as others in this segment, which is to say it's suitable only for kids or for short trips with two adults. And, while Hyundai likes to boast about the Veracruz's roomy cargo area, that boast is referring to the total cargo space with the second- and third-row seats folded; when the third-row seat is in place, however, there is precious little space to spare.
Although not much larger than the Toyota Highlander and Honda Pilot, the 2012 Veracruz doesn't share the latter's somewhat rugged, off-road-ready look. The stylish lines may seem conservative to some, but nice touches such as the 18-inch hypersilver wheels, dual chrome exhaust tips and integrated rear spoiler help impart a slightly sporty demeanor. Other high-end features include side mirrors with integrated turn signals and puddle lights that shine down to reveal possible hazards hidden by the dark of night.
The standard equipment list of a 2012 Hyundai Veracruz GLS includes a 6-speaker AM/FM/XM/CD/MP3 audio system with USB/iPod auxiliary inputs, power driver's seat, fog lights, automatic headlamps, air conditioning, rear-seat climate controls, steering-wheel audio and cruise controls, power windows/locks/heated mirrors and remote keyless entry. The Limited adds leather seating surfaces, proximity key, a 314-watt Infinity audio with CD changer, power passenger seat, heated front and second-row seats, tilt-in-reverse side mirrors, power tilt/telescopic steering wheel, power sunroof, 115-volt outlet, windshield wiper de-icer and memory settings for the driver's seat, exterior mirrors and steering wheel. Standard safety equipment includes front, front-side and three-row side-curtain airbags plus Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist (BA).
The Veracruz GLS offers a Premium Package that adds a power tilt-and-slide sunroof, power tailgate, auto-dimming interior mirror with HomeLink and compass, auto-dimming exterior mirrors, heated front seats and windshield wiper deicer. The Limited has only one option: The Alpine navigation package, which includes DVD navigation and the 605-watt Infinity Logic7 audio system with 10 speakers. Both the GLS and Limited are available with all-wheel drive (AWD).
Under the Hood
The 2012 Hyundai Veracruz SUV's sophisticated powertrain comprises an all-aluminum V6 with continuously variable valve timing, vibration-reducing electronically controlled engine mounts and a 6-speed automatic transmission, The Veracruz is offered with either front- or all-wheel drive (AWD).
260 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
257 lb-ft of torque @ 4,500 rpm
EPA estimated fuel economy: 17/22 (FWD), 16/21 (AWD)
To compare current market prices, check out KBB.com's car classifieds to view the new and used
Hyundai Veracruz vehicles for sale near you.