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According to critics, the 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe is one of the more popular midsize SUVs. It’s a safe, capable model with many standard features. For most people, buying the Hyundai SUV or a competitor from Honda, Toyota, or Subaru seems like the perfect option. However, any version of the 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe is a better option than expected. In fact, experts disagree on the best Hyundai Santa Fe trim. There are too many fantastic options to choose just one. Should you buy an SE, SEL, XRT, Limited, Calligraphy, or something else?

2022 Hyundai Santa Fe off-roading in water
2022 Hyundai Santa Fe | Hyundai

According to Edmunds, the SEL trim is the most popular version of the Santa Fe. Starting roughly $2,000 higher than the base model SE at $30,745, it’s a surprisingly well-equipped option. As the most popular Santa Fe, it’s clear consumers think it’s the best version of the midsize SUV. However, not every expert believes most customers purchase the best trim for the Hyundai Santa Fe.

2022 Hyundai Santa Fe interior
2022 Hyundai Santa Fe interior | Hyundai

One of the most trusted experts for recommending vehicle trim levels is Edmunds. Moreover, the publication agrees with consumers about the best trim to buy. Edmunds recommends the 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe SEL trim.

“For not much more than the base SE, you get heated seats, a power-adjustable driver’s seat, wireless device charging, and keyless entry with push-button start. It also includes blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert,” Edmunds explained.

In addition, the reviewer says the optional Convenience package is a nice add-on if it fits into your budget. Buying the Convenience package gains Santa Fe owners many features. For example, a hands-free power liftgate, digital key, dual-zone climate control, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, a digital instrument panel, noise-reducing front side windows, power-folding rear seats, a rear seat reminder, and more.

Another expert recommends another Santa Fe trim

2022 Hyundai Santa Fe review
2022 Hyundai Santa Fe | Allison Barfield, MotorBiscuit

Next, another trusted expert in the automotive space is Car and Driver. As a result, many turn to its opinion on which version of a vehicle is best. For the 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe, C/D disagrees with Edmunds and buyers. Instead of the SEL, C/D thinks buyers should choose the Santa Fe Limited model. Unfortunately, it’s much more expensive, starting at $40,705. However, are there enough upgrades and features to make it worth your while?

“The Limited is our pick of the lineup, and not just because it adds luxury features such as leather upholstery, rain-sensing windshield wipers, dual-zone climate control, and heated and ventilated front seats. Those are nice to have, but our main reason for recommending the Limited is that it’s the lowest-priced model available with the optional turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder,” Car and Driver said.

As C/D mentioned, the engine is the primary reason to upgrade to the Limited trim level. Lower-tier Santa Fe models use a 2.5-liter four-cylinder that produces 191 horsepower and 181 lb-ft of torque. Opting for the Limited model swaps it for a turbocharged version, making 281 hp and 311 lb-ft. Of course, that’s in addition to the countless amenities, like parking sensors, cooled seats, and automated parking.

What is the best 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe trim?

Regarding the 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe, we agree with consumers and Edmunds. Although the Limited trim level is excellent for many reasons, it’s just too costly. Most people buying an SUV this size don’t necessarily need a turbocharged engine. Outside of that, customers would be paying $10,000 more for heated seats and steering wheel, and some other luxurious items. If it fits your budget, the Santa Fe Limited is the perfect luxurious version of the midsize SUV. However, those with less wiggle room are much better off with the SEL trim and the Convenience package.


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