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Every once in a while, an SUV comes along that actually sparks joy in for those who own it. For the 2020 lineup of SUVs, one such vehicle has inspired the reviewers. The Hyundai Palisade is a surprisingly affordable and competent contender that owners can be totally happy in owning. Today, we’ll uncover just how Palisade neatly packages happiness with a bow.

There is some steep competition in this SUV class

There are a few heavyweight contenders in the SUV category offering third-row seating. The Honda Pilot, Ford Explorer, and Toyota Highlander all bring serious capability in various terrains, plenty of cargo room, and top-notch luxury to the game. With tech and infotainment upgrades and all-new redesigns for some models, the Hyundai Palisade has worthy adversaries.

What Kelley Blue Book likes about 2020 Hyundai Palisade

KBB notes the Hyundai Palisade is a pleasant surprise. This midsize, third-row seating SUV offers a welcoming interior and tons of features. It rides smoothly and is priced competitively across all trim levels and options.

KBB has two favorite features of all. One is the standard, one-touch sliding second row. Accessing the third row of seats can be a pain with the traditional lever releases for the second row of seats. Palisade offers simple release buttons, making it easy for even the little guys to handle.

A second favorite for KBB is the power-operated third row. It’s safe to say the Palisade has plenty to offer. It’s enough for some to find total happiness.

Palisade has a hefty configuration roster

Under the hood, Palisade gets its muscle from the 3.8-liter V6 engine. Paired with the eight-speed automatic transmission, Palisade offers 291 horses and 262 lb-ft of torque. Front-wheel drive is standard, but all-wheel drive is available on all trims.

It’s a tow-ready vehicle that, when properly hitch-equipped, can pull 5,000 pounds. Use the steering wheel paddles for manual shifting or trust the gearbox to handle the shifting for you.

The features that matter most

Palisade is available in three trims, SE, SEL, and Limited. But even the base model comes with tons of great features. Every trim has rear parking sensors, forward collision warning, and a rearview camera. You’ll enjoy Apple CarPlay or Android Auto capability, Bluetooth, and plenty of USB ports.

The safety, tech, and luxuries only enhance with each upgrade at the trim level. Limited, for example, comes with a dual-pane sunroof, 12 speakers, and a Harman Kardon surround sound. The Palisade offers beautiful ambient lighting to set perfect the mood for a pleasant ride. Drive and ride in complete comfort with ventilated front and rear seats. You’ll have head-up display, a surround-view parking camera, as well as a blind spot camera.

What the reviewers and consumers say about the 2020 Hyundai Palisade

KBB isn’t the only fan of the Hyundai Palisade. Car and Driver calls Palisade’s ride, ‘silky’ and cites the premium interior appointments. Others love the spacious rows of seating (up to eight) along with the much-appreciated driver assistance tech.

The Palisade is considered a bold replacement for its predecessor, the Santa Fe XL. Consumer reviews give Palisade a 4.5 out of five stars, calling it beautifully stylish and a home run for Hyundai.

It’s not often you find an SUV that offers the best of comforts, performance, and competitive pricing. The others are great vehicles too, but there’s something about finding the sweet spot. Kelley Blue Book said it was much like the first Mac users saying what they liked most about their Apples — it just works.

For the 2020 Hyundai Palisade, it just works for people too. Move over Marie Kondo; the 2020 Hyundai Palisade sparks all the happiness and joy.