We were planning to attend a full week’s schedule at the Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco this past week, and had arranged an appropriate clean energy vehicle for that. Sadly that vehicle was suddenly unavailable, so we had to switch and decided on renting a car. We got this Hyundai Santa Fe Sport, which in a way was good since we never had driven this before, so here was a chance to at least make use of an unfortunate situation. You take what you can get, right?
I never really understood the need for 2 versions of the Santa Fe. I understand the third row of seating, but that is really cramped seating space. Wouldn’t it be more logical to make a minivan for that audience. But then I also realize that the audience for it really don’t want minivans, since that would be too obvious. They don’t want to be seen as the soccer mom’s they rerally are, so the LWB Hyundai Santa Fe is a good hiding place. And this SWB Sports version is what it really should be.
I realize that this is the 2017 model, and that a replacement has been introduced recently, so I won’t go in to too much serious analyses, but I have made a list of items of which I want to see if the next generation has resolved them. That would be interesting to see.
I thought the interior was still very up to date, the quality and fit and finish looking modern and fitting well. I got a global impression of robustness, a solid car with a lot of substance. It felt more heavy than it probably is, but the perceived quality was that it could hit a wall and I would be safe. That is very good for anyone carrying a family, so that was a high score on my list.
The exterior design has all of the Hyundai brand identity elements logically and clearly visible, and I do really like the kick-up of the third light to make it look a bit more dynamic that the LWB version, but admittedly, the body surfaces and character lines are showing their age already. Totally logical since Hyundai replace the model already.