In-depth reviews

Hyundai Santa Fe review - Interior, design and technology

Quality and design have taken a step forward, with all models displaying an impressive amount of tech

With a much bolder appearance than the previous generation Hyundai Santa Fe, the latest facelift moves things on further with a larger hexagonal grille, flanked on either side by new LED headlamps and a new lower bumper design. At the rear, the tail-lamps are now connected by an LED light bar, and there’s also a redesigned rear bumper.

Wheels range from 17 on the Premium to 19-inches on Ultimate spec cars, and sit within obligatory pumped-up wheel arches. The overall look is one of a more upmarket offering than before, and one that compares favorably to handsome, fashion-forward rivals like the Peugeot 5008 and Skoda Kodiaq

The usual array of silvers, greys and blacks make up the bulk of the car’s colour palette, with Lava Orange, Stormy Sea blue and Horizon Red offering welcome splashes of colour. We’re particularly fond of Rain Forest – a greenish-blue metallic grey. Metallic paint is optional across the range; all models get chrome and dark chrome-coloured exterior trim, with Lava Orange and Phantom Black models boasting more dark chrome trim elements.

The makeover continues inside where the Santa Fe’s vast cabin gets a curvaceous dashboard with a swoopily redesigned centre console with new drive mode control and push button gear selector, comfortable seating and up-to-date infotainment displayed on an improved 10.25-inch screen. There’s a new 12-inch configurable digital instrument cluster for hybrid models too, and while many manufacturers are adding more touchscreen menus to move away from buttons and switches for ancillary functions, the Santa Fe has an initially daunting array of switchgear on its console for climate controls, audio and the like - but don’t worry, you soon get the hang of them.

Sat-nav, stereo and infotainment

As a brand, Hyundai has come on in leaps and bounds when it comes to its infotainment offerings. In the Santa Fe, there’s a 10.25-inch touchscreen display that features crisp graphics and lots of functions. The button-heavy centre console features a strip of physical shortcut buttons below the touchscreen, and this means it’s easy to access the functions that you want. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard across the range.

The home screen has two rows of buttons that allow you to access a number of options, from monitoring energy flow within the hybrid system, to making calls and adjusting the Krell 10-speaker audio system. As with some rivals, Hyundai offers live services via its Bluelink system, and this runs for five years.

A 12.3-inch dial display is also included, which features a comprehensive trip computer and configurable instruments.

Next Steps

Which Is Best

Cheapest

  • Name
    2.2 CRDi Premium 5dr 4WD
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £37,476

Most Economical

  • Name
    2.2 CRDi Premium 5dr 4WD
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £37,476

Fastest

  • Name
    2.2 CRDi Premium 5dr 4WD Auto
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £40,626

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