2023 Hyundai Santa Fe Trims: Want, Buy, Pass

The 2023 Hyundai Santa Fe is an affordable midsize SUV with great trim options. The 2023 Santa Fe will compete with some of the best in its segment for 2023. Which Santa Fe SUV trims should you want, buy, and pass on?

The 2023 Hyundai Santa Fe Calligraphy: Want

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Hyundai’s Calligraphy trim is one of the best final trim levels in the game. Regardless of the model, Calligraphy trims usually scream opulence. From Nappa leather seats to innovative driver assistance and safety tech, the 2023 Hyundai Santa Fe Calligraphy checks all Hyundai final trim level boxes.

The Santa Fe Calligraphy starts at $42,050. It’s below the average new vehicle price, but you couldn’t tell by its standard features. The Santa Fe’s final trim comes with a perforated leather-wrapped steering wheel, a windshield Head-up Display, and expanded interior accent lighting.

It includes a massive 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, wireless device charging, and a surround-view monitor. The tech on the Santa Fe Calligraphy is bonkers. It even includes remote smart parking assist and navigation-based smart cruise control with stop-and-go and curve control.

If you’re looking for a midsize SUV for long-term ownership, the 2023 Santa Fe Calligraphy’s value proposition works out in the long run. Factor in the Santa Fe’s slightly above-average fuel efficiency (26 mpg combined) and its 18.8-gallon tank, and you get one of the best values in its segment for the money for long-term ownership. The Santa Fe is still no Hyundai Palisade, but the Calligraphy trim clearly brings the heat.

The 2023 Hyundai Santa Fe Limited: Buy

A white 2023 Hyundai Santa Fe midsize SUV is driving off-road.
The 2023 Hyundai Santa Fe | Hyundai

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The 2023 Hyundai Santa Fe Limited is the trim to get over other trims because it’s the perfect sweet spot between affordability and capability. Only the Limited and Calligraphy trims come standard with Hyundai’s turbocharged four-cylinder engine (which is arguably a must for a pleasant driving experience). The 2023 Santa Fe Limited’s engine saves the midsize SUV from being dramatically underpowered compared to rivals.

It starts at $40,050. The Santa Fe Limited makes 281 horsepower and 311 lb-ft of torque, a significant improvement from the base engine’s 191 horses and 181 lb-ft of torque. Edmunds praises its quick acceleration.

The 2023 Hyundai Santa Fe Limited comes standard with heated side mirrors with LED turn-signal indicators, leather-trimmed seats, and heated rear seats. It includes dynamic voice recognition, a blind-spot view monitor, and proximity key entry with push-button start. The midsize SUV comes with a panoramic sunroof, rain-sensing windshield wipers, and LED interior lighting.

Pass on the Hyundai Santa Fe’s lower trim levels

A white 2023 Hyundai Santa Fe midsize SUV is parked off-road.
The 2023 Hyundai Santa Fe | Hyundai

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The 2023 Hyundai Santa Fe is affordable, but its base trims are too barebones for most consumers. The SEL trim isn’t necessarily a huge upgrade. Hyundai’s Santa Fe XRT trim is a decent off-roader, but there are too many superior midsize off-road SUVs (like the Toyota 4Runner) for the XRT to be a first choice.

Pass on the Santa Fe SE, SEL, and XRT because the Limited and Calligraphy provide the most value for the money. Since the Calligraphy comes with many unnecessary creature comforts, the 2023 Santa Fe Limited is the perfect trim for the average consumer.

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