Search Used Listings

Enter your zip code to search used Santa Fe listings in your area.

$16,607 - $26,756
$24,950 - $36,250

2016 Hyundai Santa Fe Review

The 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe has user-friendly features and a high-end interior, plus it's available with either two or three rows of seats. It's among the best used midsize SUVs, but the 3-row model has a rough ride and little room for cargo. 

Pros & Cons

  • Upscale, quiet cabin
  • Intuitive infotainment system
  • Peppy turbocharged four-cylinder and V6 engines
  • Bumpy ride in 3-row models
  • Less cargo room than 3-row rivals
  • Underpowered base engine in 2-row Sport models 

Rankings & Awards

The 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe's #2 ranking is based on its score within the 2016 Affordable Midsize SUVs category. It was a finalist for our 2016 Best 3-Row SUV for the Money award. Currently the Hyundai Santa Fe has a score of 8.5 out of 10, which is based on our evaluation of 36 pieces of research and data elements using various sources.




Critics' Rating: 8.9
Performance: 8.1
Interior: 8.1
Total Cost of Ownership: 8.7
Safety: 8.8
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2016 Hyundai Santa Fe Overview

Is the 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe a Good Used SUV?

For a small family in need of a 2-row SUV, the Hyundai Santa Fe Sport is a solid option. It has an upscale interior, lots of features, and comfortable performance. The 3-row Santa Fe is one of the least expensive SUVs with seating for seven, but it has less cargo space than most 3-row rivals, and its third row is too cramped for adults. Some competitors offer more adult-friendly third-row seats.

Why You Can Trust Us

Our 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe review includes far more than just one person's opinion. We collected professional evaluations from 36 sources and combined them with concrete data like fuel economy estimates, safety features, and performance specs to help you make an informed buying decision.

At U.S. News & World Report, we rank the Best Jobs, Best Hospitals, and Best Colleges to guide readers through some of life’s most complicated decisions. We've been ranking and reviewing the Best Cars since 2007, backed by a team with more than 75 years of combined automotive experience. To keep favoritism out of the picture, we maintain a separate advertising team and decline expensive gifts and trips from car companies.

How Much Is the 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe?

The average price for a used 2016 Santa Fe is $19,700, but you might spend as little as $15,000 or as much as $28,800. That's because the vehicle's trim, mileage, condition, and location cause prices to go up or down. These figures are based on almost 690 listings on our site and include both the Santa Fe and the Santa Fe Sport.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

How Much Does the 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe Cost to Own?

When it comes to maintenance, repairs, insurance, and fuel, the Santa Fe is more affordable than most other vehicles in our used midsize SUV rankings. On average, these costs tally up to $24,200 over five years – that's a savings of at least $1,100 compared to what you'll spend on a 2016 GMC Acadia, 2016 Volkswagen Tiguan, or 2016 Honda Pilot.

Is It Better to Buy a Used or New Santa Fe?

If you want the most up-to-date technology, you should pick a new 2018 Santa Fe over its predecessor. A 7-inch touch-screen is standard in the 2018 models, while the 2016 Santa Fe Sport comes with only a basic sound system. The 2016 Santa Fe includes a 4.3-inch touch screen (though some well-optioned 2016 models may come with an 8-inch touch screen). Additionally, advanced safety features – such as a 360-degree camera system, adaptive cruise control, and automatic emergency braking – are available in the 2018 model but not the 2016. As with any new car, you also get a warranty when you buy new.

Other than this added technology and some refreshed styling, the 2016 and 2018 models are largely identical. If you want the best bang for your buck, opt for the older Santa Fe; the price difference between the average 2016 Santa Fe and a base 2018 Santa Fe Sport is around $5,000.

Read about the new Hyundai Santa Fe »

There aren't any highly ranked new midsize SUVs priced near the average 2016 Santa Fe. However, if you are set on buying new, there are a few options to consider. To start, the Honda CR-V ($24,150) and Ford Escape ($23,940) are high-ranking five-passenger compact SUVs, with the CR-V standing out for its spacious, high-class cabin, and the Escape pairing sporty handling with a fun-to-drive turbo engine option. For something larger, there's the Volkswagen Atlas ($30,750). This 3-row SUV can carry up to seven people and is almost as spacious as a minivan inside. These SUVs are at least $4,000 more than the average price of a 2016 Santa Fe, but you may be able to offset at least some of that with a cash back bonus or other manufacturer incentive (see our new car deals for the best money saving offers of the month).

See the Best New Car Deals »

See the Best New Car Lease Deals »

How Reliable Is the 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe?

The Santa Fe has a reliability score of four out of five. That's above average for a used vehicle and better than the ratings of most other 2016 affordable compact and midsize SUVs, including the Mitsubishi Outlander and Nissan Pathfinder.

Read more about Santa Fe reliability »

2016 Hyundai Santa Fe Recalls

This SUV's chief recall – affecting many vehicles and encompassing both Santa Fe and Santa Fe Sport models – is for a faulty hood latch, which may cause the hood to accidentally open. Some Santa Fe models may also have a defective seat belt warning for the front seats. These are the only two Santa Fe recalls at the time of this writing.

See more information on Hyundai Santa Fe safety recalls »

Which Model Year of the Hyundai Santa Fe Is Best?

The 2016 model is part of a generation that began with the 2013 model and includes the 2018 Santa Fe. In our rankings, scores for the Santa Fe increased noticeably in 2014, so we recommend starting your search there. Blind spot monitoring and rear parking sensors became options for 2014, and the Santa Fe received a significant refresh for 2017. As there are no major differences between the 2014, 2015, and 2016 models, consider purchasing an older model to save some cash.

Compare the 2014, 2015, and 2016 Santa Fe »

Which Used Hyundai Santa Fe Model Is Right for Me?

If you want a 2-row Santa Fe Sport, go for the 2.0T trim. It has the more powerful turbocharged engine, along with desirable features like leather upholstery, dual-zone automatic climate control, a touch-screen infotainment system, and a couple active safety features. More features are available in the Technology package and the Ultimate package. Drivers considering a 3-row Santa Fe should stick with the base SE trim since it's very well-equipped. Models with option packages have more features.

See 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe trims and specs »

What Does Hyundai's Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Cover?

Hyundai offers a certified pre-owned program for vehicles five years old or less and with fewer than 60,000 miles. Eligibility is determined by the vehicle’s initial sale date. Certified pre-owned Hyundai vehicles receive the balance of the original new-car 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty, as well as the remainder of the five-year/60,000-mile comprehensive warranty. Hyundai CPO vehicles must pass a 173-point inspection. Additional benefits like towing, roadside assistance, and rental car reimbursement may be available, so read Hyundai’s warranty page carefully.

Hyundai has one of the best CPO programs among affordable car manufacturers, according to our analysis. Only Kia, Buick, and Mitsubishi have better programs.

See the best CPO programs »

How Safe Is the Santa Fe?

In crash tests, the Santa Fe earns a slightly below-average rating for the class. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the Santa Fe a top Good score in four crash test categories but only a Marginal score (the second lowest) in the small overlap front test. 

A rearview camera is the only standard advanced safety feature in 3-row Santa Fe models (it's optional in the Santa Fe Sport), but a few advanced systems, like blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, and rear parking sensors, are available.

See Santa Fe safety scores »

2016 Hyundai Santa Fe Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe or 2016 Kia Sorento?

The Kia Sorento is available with either two or three rows of seats. It has a high-end cabin that wouldn't be out of place in a luxury SUV, and its tech features are easy to use. Like the Santa Fe Sport, the Sorento doesn't have a potent base engine, but its available engines deliver much more power. The Sorento's fuel economy estimates are better than the Santa Fe's, and it's available with many more advanced driver assistance features. Overall, the Sorento is the better SUV.

Which Is Better: 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe or 2016 Toyota Highlander?

The Santa Fe and the Toyota Highlander are similar in many ways, but in the end, the Toyota beats the Hyundai. Both models have upscale cabins, though you should stay away from the Highlander's underpowered base four-cylinder engine. The Highlander has higher crash test ratings and significantly more cargo space as well.

Which Is Better: 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe or 2016 Honda Pilot?

If you're thinking about the 3-row Santa Fe because of its extra seating capacity, consider the Honda Pilot instead. Unlike the Santa Fe, the Pilot has plenty of space for adults in the back, and it has more cargo space as well. The Honda's safety scores are higher, and the Pilot gets better gas mileage than the 3-row Santa Fe. The Pilot does have an Achilles' heel: Its touch-sensitive center-stack controls can be frustrating to use.

Compare the Santa Fe, Sorento, and Highlander »

2016 Santa Fe Performance

How Does the 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe Drive?

The 2-row Santa Fe Sport is available with a 190-horsepower four-cylinder engine or a 265-horsepower, turbocharged four-cylinder. The base four-cylinder feels underpowered, so go for a model with the turbocharged engine if you don't want to be relegated to the slow lane. The 290-horsepower V6 that comes in the 3-row Santa Fe has plenty of grunt. All engines are mated to a six-speed automatic transmission.

The Santa Fe Sport has a comfortable ride over broken pavement, but the larger Santa Fe is more unsettled, with some bumpiness felt in the cabin. Both models are reasonably composed for midsize SUVs, and they feel controlled corners. Front-wheel drive is standard in both models, and all-wheel drive is available.

Does the 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe Get Good Gas Mileage?

The 2-row Santa Fe Sport with the base four-cylinder engine gets up to 20 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway, which is a bit low for a 2-row SUV. The V6-powered Santa Fe gets 18 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway, which is comparable to other 3-row SUVs.

2016 Hyundai Santa Fe Towing Capacity

The maximum towing capacity of the Santa Fe Sport is 3,500 pounds, whereas the V6-powered Santa Fe can tow up to 5,000 pounds.

Read more about Santa Fe performance »

2016 Santa Fe Interior

How Many People Does the 2016 Santa Fe Seat?

You can seat seven people in the 3-row Santa Fe and five people in the 2-row Santa Fe Sport. Aside from the number of seats, these models have essentially the same cabin. High-end materials line the interiors, and the build quality is excellent. The front seats are comfortable and supportive, and the second-row seats provide generous legroom. The Santa Fe's cramped third row has only enough space for two children.

How Many Car Seats Fit in the 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe?

The outboard second-row seats each have a full set of LATCH connectors for securing child safety seats, and the middle seat has an additional upper tether. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the 2016 Santa Fe an Acceptable rating – the second-best – for ease of use.

2016 Hyundai Santa Fe Features

Both the Santa Fe and Santa Fe Sport come standard with a USB port, Bluetooth, a six-speaker audio system, and satellite radio. The base 3-row Santa Fe SE also comes standard with a 4.3-inch infotainment system, HD Radio, and a rearview camera. These features are available in the Santa Fe Sport. An 8-inch touch screen with navigation is available. The infotainment system is intuitive, and the physical controls for climate and audio settings are easy to use and have a straightforward layout.

See 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe specs »

Read more about Santa Fe interior »

2016 Hyundai Santa Fe Dimensions

Hyundai Santa Fe Cargo Space

The 3-row Santa Fe – with 13.5 cubic feet behind the rearmost seats and 80 cubic feet overall – has a typical amount of cargo room for the class. The Santa Fe Sport has a large cargo area compared to its 2-row rivals. Because it deletes the third-row seats, this model offers 35.4 cubic feet of cargo space when every seat is in use.

Hyundai Santa Fe Length and Weight

The Santa Fe is just over 16 feet long, and the Santa Fe Sport is almost a foot shorter at 15.4 feet long. Curb weight is roughly 4,000-4,400 pounds, depending on the body style and trim level.

Where Was the 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe Built?

Hyundai built the 3-row 2016 Santa Fe in South Korea. The smaller 2-row Santa Fe Sport was built in Montgomery, Alabama, alongside the Sonata and Elantra.

Find the Best Price

Enter your zip code to get local pricing.

Get Dealer Quotes

To get dealer quotes, enter your zip code.

Search Used Listings

To search used listings, enter your zip code.

Change Location

Enter your zip code to see listings near you.

Please enter a valid zipcode

Santa Fe Shoppers Should Also Consider...

Chevrolet Traverse 2016 2016 Chevrolet Traverse

#1 in 2016 Affordable Midsize SUVs

Buick Enclave 2016 2016 Buick Enclave

#3 in 2016 Affordable Midsize SUVs

Mazda CX-9 2016 2016 Mazda CX-9

#4 in 2016 Affordable Midsize SUVs

Nissan Murano 2016 2016 Nissan Murano

#4 in 2016 Affordable Midsize SUVs

Best Price Program

Interested in a New?

Use the U.S. News Best Price Program to find great deals and get upfront pricing on the.