We have owned a new 2013 Santa Fe Sport for one month now. We have traveled from Chicago to Mackinac down thru Wisconsin and a week later from Chicago to Branson, Memphis, Nashville, Gatlinburg and back. Approx. 3000miles all together. On the low side we got 22.5 mpg to 28 mpg on the high side. This was done in moderately hilly terrain and a tight new engine. My wife loves it. The standard 4 cyl engine has good pep and 6 speed transmission works well. A VERY quiet ride for a SUV. Leather seats are comfortable with good adjustments. Handles and brakes with good feel. While the steering is on the light side with not a lot of feel, I personally wouldn't call it dangerous.
Bought the 2.0T after an extensive search and reading reviews. Test drove the 2013 Equinox, Grand Cherokee, Highlander, RDX, Pathfinder, and Edge and Escape. All were good vehicles but the 2.0T was the most impressive - size, space, speed, gas mileage, amenities, looks and at a decent price. Out the box the 2.0T is an excellent redesign. I am getting about 24 mpg combined after about 700 miles but my goal is to get closer to or exceed the EPA estimated 27 mpg by playing more with the ECO setting. Took a road trip of about 500 miles last weekend and the 2.0T never struggled (no whining at all) when going up hills or passing vehicles going up hills at 75 -80 mph…I was thoroughly impressed.
The 2013 Santa Fe Sport 2.0T AWD is a good all round suv and does attain a fair gas mileage if driven below 70 with the econo engaged. I have one concern regarding the engine as it has happened several times where it feels like the engine has stalled and when you try to engage the gas pedal the engine does not respond. It is quite disconcerting when you are trying to cross traffic when making left hand turns and there is no acceleration. If you wait one or two seconds or feather the gas it will seem to engage the fuel system and you are good to go. It has also done this on the interstates when you are drivng without cruise and the gas pedal just goes dead.
Bought 2013 in January 2014. One week later heard knocking in the engine, took it to dealer was told that the GDI engines make this noise, normal. 2 weeks later took it back as knocking is not normal and there has been numerous reported engine failures with same noise, vehicle throws random emission codes which there is a tsb for but not all dealers know this so I have to put up with a defective SF. I loved it at first but that ended within 3 weeks. I think the 6 cylinders are more reliable than the 4's. Traded in for SF XL limited, has the 6 cylinder. Update Feb 2017; the SF xl limited has performed excellent.
This isn't a review about mechanical issues since it's too new to tell. I've had my new Santa Fe 2.0T (FWD, base package, no frills) for a couple of weeks now. I love it. It is a comfortable, quiet, fun car to drive. The 270+ hp turbo engine has no problem pushing up the steep inclines of the Texas hill country. It doesn't even blink. You'll take a bit of a hit on gas mileage over the non-turbo model, but it's worth it. The non-turbos are just sluggish. The interior is very comfortable, has great looking trim, and the standard options on the base package are impressive. Heat seaters, power everything, bluetooth, all of the things you want.