Trucks & SUVs

3 Reasons to Pass on the 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe

Is the 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe worth waiting for? The answer that that question is maybe. The Hyundai Santa Fe did receive a much-needed refresh, but are new looks enough to justify purchasing it? 

Is the 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe a good SUV? 

While critics and fans are still waiting to get their hands on the 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe, it’s easy to conclude that it will be a great SUV. The Santa Fe has been a reliable SUV for years, and the 2021 model received significant upgrades. 

The 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe is the brand's newest SUV.
2021 Hyundai Santa Fe | Hyundai

However, those upgrades come at a price that may not make it worth buying compared to rivals. Hyundai hasn’t released a majority of the specs yet, so waiting could be a gamble.

We are waiting to discover if the Hyundai Santa Fe Hybrid will have a competitive range, improved ride quality, and more to compete with rivals. However, we do know three potential reasons to pass on the Santa Fe. 

1. The Hyundai Santa Fe is small for families 

The 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe doesn’t have three rows of passenger seating. The Honda Pilot and Kia Sorento are two hot rivals that provide a third row. Other midsize SUVs in the same category can haul up to seven or eight passengers, but the Hyundai Santa Fe can only fit five. 

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Also, SUVs with third rows allow you to fold the seats flat if you need more space. But with only two rows of seating, you may have more passenger space in the backseat.

The 2020 Hyundai Santa Fe has 35.9 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seat, with up to 71.3 cubic feet of cargo space total. The figures for 2021 haven’t been released yet, but the numbers probably haven’t changed much.

The 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe is the brand's newest SUV.
2021 Hyundai Santa Fe | Hyundai

For comparison’s sake, the 2021 Honda Pilot only has 16.5 cubic feet of cargo space with up to 83.9 cubic feet total. If you want a bigger trunk and don’t have extra kids to haul around, then the Santa Fe will work. But if you want more space overall, a rival might be better. 

2. The price will increase 

The 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe got a total makeover, inside and out. It’s new looks seem to be incredibly luxurious compared to older model years, especially with the addition of the Calligraphy trim. According to TheCarConnection, this could increase the price. 

The 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe is the brand's newest SUV.
2021 Hyundai Santa Fe | Hyundai

You could snag a 2020 Hyundai Palisade with the starting price of about $26,275. But the new design could raise the price to about $30,000 or higher. This would make it closer to the high starting price of the 2020 Honda Pilot for $32,250. 

3. We don’t know what comes standard 

You may have to pay more for the new Hyundai Santa Fe’s luxurious features. Plus, if the 2.5-liter inline-4 base engine only has 191 hp how much will it cost to get power that’s worth the price? The available 2.5-liter turbo-4 is definitely the sportier option with 277 hp and 311 lb-ft of torque. 

The 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe is the brand's newest SUV.
2021 Hyundai Santa Fe | Hyundai

Then the hybrid engine could cost even more. Will the towing package also hike up the price? On top of that, the Hyundai Santa Fe can only tow up to 3,500 lb while the Honda Passport can tow up to 5,000 lb. 

Other features that could drive up the price include the Hyundai Digital Key, surround-view monitor, wireless device charging, the 12.3-inch fully digital cluster display, and more. Until we know the pricing and what comes standard, we aren’t confident that the 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe will be worth it.