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2019 Hyundai Santa Fe Review

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Hyundai’s popular SUV saw some big changes this year, dropping the “Sport” from its name and the third row, which the automaker shifted to a separate vehicle known as the Santa Fe XL. But with a standard “bumper-to-bumper” warranty of 5 years, 60,000 miles and most Safety Sense driver safety features included, the Hyundai Santa Fe has a lot to offer. It does have a higher MSRP than other highly-rated midsize SUVs, so keep reading to see if it’s worth the price for santa fe

2019 Hyundai Santa Fe pricing

The base manufacturer’s recommended price (MSRP) for the Santa Fe is $25,750. But for the Ultimate 2.0T trim, that price shoots up by more than $11,000. The more features you’d like, the higher the trim and the higher the price.

What about the Santa Fe XL? Hyundai’s three-row SUV is technically a different vehicle from the Santa Fe, so we don’t focus on it here, but for the curious: The 2019 Santa Fe XL has only two trims, the SE with an MSRP of $30,950 and the Limited Ultimate for $39,650.

2019 Santa Fe
Front-wheel drive
Trim SE SEL SEL Plus Limited Limited 2.0T Ultimate Ultimate 2.0T
Base MSRP $25,750 $27,600 $39,800 $32,600 $34,200 $35,450 $37,100
2019 Santa Fe
All-wheel drive
Trim SE SEL SEL Plus Limited Limited 2.0T Ultimate Ultimate 2.0T
Base MSRP $27,450 $29,300 $31,500 $34,300 $35,900 $37,150 $38,800


You may be able to pay less than MSRP, depending on where and when you look for a vehicle. Shop around and check prices with an industry guide — Kelley Blue Book or NADAguides, for example — to find the fair market price for your area.

What’s next? What comes next after you find a car you like is to find a car loan. Car dealers not only raise car prices, they also raise customer loan APRs. Therefore, it’s important to apply for a car loan outside of a dealership. Potential lenders may include Hyundai financing, your bank, credit union or online lender. You could also fill out an online form at LendingTree where you may be matched with up to five potential auto loan offers from lenders, based on your creditworthiness. It doesn’t hurt your credit to apply to multiple lenders any more than it does to apply to one if you do all your applications within 14 days — and some credit scoring methods may even allow you up to 45 days.

2019 Hyundai Santa Fe safety

The 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe earned a five-star rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) for both the front-wheel version and all-wheel drive version. It was also named a 2019 Top Safety Pick+ by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

SmartSense is Hyundai’s driver assistance safety feature package. It is standard on all trim levels of the Santa Fe:

  • Rear Cross-Traffic Collision-Avoidance Assist. When in reverse, the car can alert the driver of oncoming passing traffic.
  • Blind-Spot Collision-Avoidance Assist. With the turn signal on, the car can alert the driver of another vehicle in the driver’s blind spot.
  • Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist with Pedestrian Detection. The car can automatically apply the brakes if it senses an imminent collision with another vehicle or a person.
  • Lane Keeping Assist. The car can make small adjustments to help stay in the lane.
  • Driver Attention Warning. If the car senses the driver is distracted or drowsy, it can visually and audibly alert the driver.
  • Safe Exit Assist. The car can alert passengers when it is unsafe to exit the vehicle due to other passing vehicles.
  • Hillstart Assist Control. The car can assist the driver in accelerating up a hill from a complete stop.

Other safety features are included on higher trim levels:

  • Parking Distance Warning–Reverse. With sonar, the car can alert the driver of the distance between it and a rear object it senses. Standard on the SEL Plus trim and up.
  • Rear Occupant Alert. The car audibly reminds the driver there may be a rear passenger. Standard on the SEL Plus trim and up.
  • Surround View Monitor. The car can give a bird’s-eye view of itself and its surroundings. Standard on the Ultimate trim and up.

2019 Hyundai Santa Fe trim comparison

The Hyundai Santa Fe has seven trim levels. Each trim builds on the one below it. For example, the SEL Plus has or improves upon all the features of the SE and SEL, plus new ones.

Trim SE SEL SEL Plus Limited Limited 2.0T Ultimate Ultimate 2.0T
MSRP $25,750 $27,600 $39,800 $32,600 $34,200 $35,450 $37,100
Standard Features SmartSense, 7″ Screen, Android Auto/Apple CarPlay, Bluetooth, Engine: 2.4 Liter, Inline 4-Cylinder Fog Lights, Heated Front Seats, Heated Exterior Mirrors, Proximity Key, Push-Button Start, Shark Fin Antenna Roof Side Rails, Auto-Dimming Rearview Mirror, Hands-Free Liftgate, Leather-Wrapped Steering Wheel LED Headlights and Taillights, Panoramic Sunroof, Side Mirrors with Turn Signal Indicators Same features as the Limited but with 19″ Wheels and a different Engine: 2.0 Liter Turbo, Inline 4-Cylinder 8″ Touch Screen,Heads-Up Display, Wireless Charging, Ventilated Front Seats, Heated Rear Seats Same features as the Ultimate but with 19″ Wheels and a different Engine: 2.0 Liter Turbo, Inline 4-Cylinder


Much like Honda, Hyundai doesn’t allow for mixing and matching while other manufacturers allow buyers to add certain features a la carte without moving to a different trim level. Some people appreciate the simplicity of this, others find it limiting.

2019 Hyundai Santa Fe competitor comparison

If none of the above makes you say, “I definitely want a Hyundai Santa Fe,” here are some of its competitors and how they all stack up.

Hyundai Santa Fe Honda CR-V Mazda CX-5 Chevrolet Equinox Volkswagen Tiguan Toyota RAV4
Base MSRP $25,750 $24,350 $24,350 $23,800 $24,295 $25,500
Expert Scores N/A 4.4 4.4 4.1 4.0 N/A
Standard Technology SmartSense, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, 7″ Touch Screen Bluetooth, 5″ Color Screen, Cruise Control, LED Daytime Running Lights Blind spot Monitoring, 7″ Touch Screen, Keyless Entry/Ignition Teen Driver System, 7″ Touch Screen, Keyless Entry/Ignition, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, 3rd Row Seating, 6.5″ Touch Screen Toyota Safety Sense 2.0, Apple CarPlay, Automatic High Beams
Fuel Economy 25 MPG 28 MPG 28 MPG 28 MPG 25 MPG 30 MPG

*Chart data is for base 2019 models. Expert score averages Kelley Blue Book (KBB) and Edmunds expert ratings when available. Standard technology refers to features included in the lowest trim level for each model at no extra cost (but is not an exhaustive list). Fuel economy is combined city/highway mileage as defined by the EPA.

The bottom line on the 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe

The Hyundai Santa Fe shines in the safety category as even the lowest trim level includes Hyundai’s SmartSense safety features. The only competitor that offers similar safety features on even the base level is the Toyota RAV4, which beats the Santa Fe in MPG, but not in warranty.

You might like the Santa Fe if you’re looking for an SUV crossover that can handle everyday driving. You might not like it if you’re looking for a vehicle with spectacular gas mileage or one that offers a third row. For that, you’ll need to look to the Santa Fe’s big brother, the XL.

MSRPs in the article are accurate as of the date of publishing.


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