2002 Hyundai Santa Fe SUV Review | Edmunds.com

2002 Hyundai Santa Fe SUV


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Hyundai Santa Fe Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 2.7 L V 6-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 4-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 173 hp @ 6000 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 17/23 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2002 Hyundai Santa Fe

  • An impressive combatant in the mini-SUV realm with more cabin room than competing models. Now, if we can only overlook its exuberantly, uh, different, sheetmetal.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Relatively inexpensive price, super warranty, roomy interior.

  • Cons

    Unimpressive four-wheeling capability, underwhelming powertrain performance.

  • What's New for 2002

    Entering its second year of production, the Santa Fe gets four-wheel disc brakes as standard equipment as well as an optional upgraded…

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (246 total reviews)

2 of 6 people found this review helpful

Bulletproof! - eulogy to an

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Vehicle: 2002 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS AWD 4dr SUV (2.7L 6cyl 4A)

Just sold my '02 GLS V6 Santa FeAWD a few days ago.(Feb 2012). I was 2nd owner. It was HANDS DOWN the best car I've ever owned, When I sold it it had 246K!! miles on it, and get this - not a SINGLE rattle or loose panel, etc. inside. Completely amazing.Unheard of for me who had always owned Ford's. YES I had to repair the engine, tran. etc along the way...but what a trooper! I hesitated before buying it-semed too utilitarian - grew over the years to totally respect its design integrity and heartiness. Went shopping for another-an '07 90k yesterday to replace it-what a DISAPPOINTMENT, SO cheaply made. Might just have to scout around out there for a low miles'02 again.What happened Hyundai?

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Best car ive owned, too

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Vehicle: 2002 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2WD 4dr SUV (2.7L 6cyl 4A)

I bought my 2002 SantaFe in that year brand new. Its been very reliable and ive babied the car on doing maintenance which i do myself. It routinely gets a combined 21 MPG with 23 on the Highway at 70 mph. It is very peppy and in fact, the front tires will spin from a start if you take off real quick. I upgraded the crummy LongTrail Tires to Michelin LX Tires and went from 225's to 245's -- the extra width makes it handle superbly and they dont rub on anything. The Factory radio / tape/ cd player went out at 75,000 miles so i went with a new Pioneer from BestBuy. Other than that, i had a Temperature Sensor go out around 80,000 miles...and thats been it for failures. Its been good.

Worst car i ever owned!!

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Vehicle: 2002 Hyundai Santa Fe LX 2WD 4dr SUV (2.7L 6cyl 4A)

When I purchased my 2002 Santa fe in 2006 I thought I had found a great deal. It had only 45k miles on it with one previous owner. The first couple years were great...then the problems began. At 80k my transmission was replaced. At about 100k everything started leaking from engine coolant to power steering fluid. Then to top it all off I was driving on the freeway 2 days after an oil change and my engine started knocking and I as I was trying to get over to pull off the road it began to smoke. When I popped the hood there was a small engine fire. Needless to say I needed a new engine, but opted to get rid of it. I had already spent close to $5,000 in repairs and was done.

Love my hyundai santa fe

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Vehicle: 2002 Hyundai Santa Fe 2WD 4dr SUV (2.4L 4cyl 4A)

I have 191,000 miles on my 2002 Santa Fe. This is by far the best, most reliable vehicle I have ever owned. Only complaint is that this vehicle has an issue with every belt. The timing belt had been replaced 2x and I often had to have other belts replaced or tightened. Failure to do so immediately resulted in a loud squeeling every time I started my car. The good thing is, nothing EXPENSIVE ever went. This car is fun to drive, GREAT Gas Mileage, and cheap to maintain. I am on the road a lot, and I love being in this car. It is so comfortable that my MANY long trips per month (ranging from 2 hours one way to 12 hours one way) are always a breeze. HIGHLY RECOMMEND THIS VEHICLE

Best i've ever owned!

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Vehicle: 2002 Hyundai Santa Fe 2WD 4dr SUV (2.4L 4cyl 4A)

Bought my 02' used as a third owner and had to do a complete overhaul to front end and engine after oil leak showed rings were bad BUT overall, she has been AMAZING for me and at 165,000 miles I've only had to replace the alternator that I actually broke. I drive her from CA to GA 3 times a year and sometimes further. Gas mileage is good for an SUV. Just needed to fix prior owner(s) misuse of her and now I have no problems whatsoever. I'm getting ready to by a Tiburon because of the great results I've had with my Santa Fe.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Best vehicle i have ever

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Vehicle: 2002 Hyundai Santa Fe GLS 2WD 4dr SUV (2.7L 6cyl 4A)

Everyone in the deerwoods lauged at me when I left camp to buy my wife this veh. But now 3 of them have one also, yes it's an 02 and finally were waiting for the 2011's I'm 100% sure I will buy another, the only problem we had with ours was a tail light going out, it was fixed 4 yrs ago and now it has 80,000 miles and she wants another so spring we will, I will not even look at another brand, a bad taillight in 9 yrs. Why would I, by far the very best I have ever owned, I'm 50 and I look for comfort when I travel with my wife, just got back from a trip to padre island and round trip was 1802 miles long and I was fine the whole trip, I hope this will help

Gas Mileage


  • 17
  • cty
  • 23
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs

Full 2002 Hyundai Santa Fe Review

What's New for 2002

Entering its second year of production, the Santa Fe gets four-wheel disc brakes as standard equipment as well as an optional upgraded stereo system. In May 2002, Hyundai responds to customer requests and makes a power sunroof optional for GLS and LX models. Besides that, all models benefit from midyear interior upgrades, among these larger air conditioning vents; a center stack-mounted clock; illumination for the power window buttons and glovebox; chrome accents; ISOFIX child-seat anchors for the outboard rear seating positions and an improved rear-seat recliner and folding mechanism. In September 2002, Hyundai announced that it had misstated the horsepower ratings for all of the models in its lineup -- the Santa Fe's 2.4-liter four-cylinder is now rated for 138 hp and its V6 is now at 173 hp. To compensate, the company is offering Hyundai owners (of 2000 models and newer) three options: 10 years of roadside assistance, 6-year/72,000-mile basic warranty coverage or 12-year/120,000-mile powertrain coverage.

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