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2008 Hyundai Santa Fe Review

Note: This review was created when the 2008 Hyundai Santa Fe was new.

The Santa Fe delivers safety and value, but still can't match the performance of competitors. Overall, it ranks near the middle of its large class and in the bottom half when compared to other affordable crossovers.

8.3

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 8.4
Performance: 6.8
Interior: 7.7
Safety: 9.8
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

Pros & Cons

  • Excellent crash test scores make it an IIHS "Top Safety Pick"
  • Competitive sticker price for a midsize SUV
  • Well-designed interior
  • Generous Hyundai warranty
  • Below average resale values
  • Handling and power are unremarkable
  • Braking distance longer than other vehicles in class

2008 Hyundai Santa Fe Overview

Redesigned in 2007, the new Hyundai Santa Fe is a value-priced family hauler that just doesn't stand out in a competitive segment. Still, Car and Driver says, "For an SUV that costs well under 30 grand, you get a lot here: a roomy interior, decent feature content, reasonable refinement, and V-6 power. The Santa Fe is definitely worth checking out." For 2008, the Santa Fe gets a few more standard features and an optional navigation system. The Santa Fe seats five in two rows and comes with an optional third row to accommodate up to seven passengers. Despite its mediocre performance, most reviewers feel that the Santa Fe is a solid choice for those who need room for kids or gear.

The Santa Fe comes in three trims -- the GLS, SE and Limited -- with either a 2.7-liter or 3.3-liter V6 engine. It comes standard in front-wheel drive, but all-wheel drive is available.

  • "Here is a top-notch mid-size SUV with solid features, a good ride, a great warranty that I understand is not costing as much as had originally been feared, and a ton of attributes that make other manufacturers' mouths water." -- The Auto Channel
  • "Bigger than the outgoing model, the Santa Fe is a well-rounded and capable vehicle that offers a third row of seats, improved fuel economy and power, and a host of standard features and options. ... There are, however, competing SUVs that offer slightly more power, slightly better fuel economy, or slightly more room, and some that offer other benefits in critical areas for a slightly lower price." -- Autobytel
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