November 27, 2013
Not too long ago I noted that our 2014 Hyundai Santa Fe may be a sizable crossover, but with the third-row seats up it doesn't leave much space for cargo.
I found out just how much recently when it came time to haul four passengers and their related suitcases for an out-of-town trip. With only four aboard I had the leeway to fold one of the third-row seats. That opened up a good chunk of space for some of the bulkier items. After that I was able to squeeze in three carry-on size suitcases in various states of fullness, although one sat on top which partially obstructed the rearward view.
November 22, 2013
As far as issues with cars/trucks go, this is a minor one. But every time I try to open the glovebox in our long-term 2013 Hyundai Santa Fe Limited AWD to grab the fuel log, I press what looks to be the "open" button, the one with the key slot, but nothing happens.
September 27, 2013
When it comes to mid-size crossovers and SUVs, an optional third row of seats is crucial to success. Anyone with more than two kids wants the extra row, so now we have vehicles like the Santa Fe which offer both two- and three-row versions.
September 23, 2013
Recently, I bought a new mirror for the new old house I'm renovating. The mirror is not very wide (just under 31 inches), but it's quite long (just over 77 inches), so it would have been too long to fit in something like our Chevy Silverado. Good thing I had our long-term 2013 Hyundai Santa Fe and its 80-cubic-foot cargo capacity at my disposal.
August 26, 2013
OK, so the fact that the 2013 Hyundai Santa Fe swallows suitcases and large boxes isn't particularly noteworthy. Check the stat sheet: there's 41 cubic feet behind the second-row seats. That was enough to handle airport shuttle services for two passengers (plus driver), three large suitcases, a few smaller bags, and a box of stuff that, frankly, should never have been allowed through customs.
A couple of downsides: that additional weight only served to highlight the Santa Fe's upset over bumpier road rash. Pretty sure we hit the bumpstops over one particular uneven freeway surface enough that everyone let out one of those seasick groans in unison.
August 14, 2013
The complaints started within the first 50 miles of home and I've been hearing them (and echoing them) all the way to Oregon and back. Our 2013 Hyundai Santa Fe has a habit of bobbing on its rear suspension and hammering at our backsides over swales and waves in the highway. It's bottoming out over pavement features it should absorb, and we're not even full.
This is hard for me to say because I probably know the guys who tuned the suspension. But there simply isn't enough rear suspension "bump" travel, the rear coil springs are too soft and the polyurethane bump stops come in too late and too abruptly. The as-loaded bump-stop photo above was taken with my weight out of the car, too.
Our Santa Fe is the long-wheelbase 3-row 6-passenger version, the one that should have some carrying capacity. But on this trip it's doing far worse than our long-term 2012 Honda CR-V on the same northern California and southern Oregon roads. And the CR-V also excelled when I drove it at speed over much larger swales and deeper dips on uneven dirt roads in Nevada with heavier passengers on board, to boot.
The Honda CR-V was comparatively unfazed when fully loaded, even with an added burden of a rooftop cargo box, but here in the partially-loaded Santa Fe I find myself yelling "bump!" so my passengers can brace themselves. They've replied with a chorus of "Ow!" on more than one occasion.
August 1, 2013
Hauling two re-stuffed 1969 Camaro bucket seats isn't as easy as it looks. Car seats are big. Bigger than you'd think. They're also kind of cumbersome and difficult to handle.
Our long-term 2013 Santa Fe didn't even flinch. Once I folded Hyundai's third-row seat, the two black vinyl thrones fit perfectly in the crossover's cargo bay.
July 24, 2013
See that photo? That's one of our more pathetic Edmunds packing jobs, the test gear just thrown randomly into our latest long-termer, the new three-row 2013 Hyundai Santa Fe Limited AWD.
Chief Road Test Editor, Chris Walton, who isn't the least bit neurotic about test-gear loading, would've had a fit if he'd seen the haphazard mess before I pressed the power hatch button.
July 22, 2013
It's all too common to take a glance at the third row seats, shrug and say, "Well, it's just for kids." We didn't have any kids handy, so we decided to try out the Santa Fe's third row seat ourselves. My wife and I both slid between the second row captain's chairs and plopped down in the rear seats. We felt a little silly sitting in the back of a parked vehicle. But we did our best to evaluate what it would be like to sit there for kids, or even adults.
Our knees angled up, but not uncomfortably. The head room was sufficient even though the rear window was very close to the backs of our heads. For short hops this sitting position would be acceptable. For longer trips there were two things that would bother both kids and adults.
July 19, 2013
On most weekends, my 2011 Nissan Leaf SL keeps me tethered to my electric charger. But when I heard the 2013 Hyundai Santa Fe was available, and I would be one of the first drivers, I began thinking of all the places I wanted to explore. I drove down to San Diego and then visited a few new areas in Los Angeles racking up about 280 miles of driving. I even took advantage of the cavernous cargo area and hauled home an Eames chair and ottoman. Here are a few impressions of this impressive mid-sized SUV.