HYUNDAI SANTA FE ELITE DIESEL

These two SUVs from sis­ter brands have much in com­mon but feel very dif­fer­ent. Joshua Dowl­ing sweats the de­tails.

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Head To Head -

VALUE

The Elite is the mid­dle of the Santa Fe range and comes with leather seats, nav­i­ga­tion, sen­sor key with push but­ton start, au­to­matic tailgate, and a chilled glove­box. Ser­vic­ing cost over three years is $1137, about $200 cheaper than the Kia. The ser­vice in­ter­vals are 12 months or 15,000km. Note: the fouryear/60,000km ser­vice jumps to $499.

EN­GINE

The 2.2-litre turbo diesel four-cylin­der has been around since the pre­vi­ous gen­er­a­tion Santa Fe but is still a good op­er­a­tor. It de­liv­ers de­cent power (145kW/436Nm) and good econ­omy (7.3L/100km com­bined). Against this com­pany, how­ever, it’s

a lit­tle noisy.

DE­SIGN

The Santa Fe was de­signed by Hyundai’s US styling stu­dios and still looks fresh af­ter three years on sale. It has one of the most up­mar­ket in­te­ri­ors in the Hyundai range, with good qual­ity switches and di­als. There’s plenty of odd­ment stor­age and a de­cent sized cargo area (516L front two rows of seats up, 1615L back two rows of seats down). The only thing miss­ing: a dig­i­tal speed dis­play.

SAFETY

Six airbags and a five-star safety rat­ing. A rear-view cam­era and sen­sors are stan­dard fare. It also has good road hold­ing for a sev­enseat SUV.

DRIV­ING

The SantaFe feels se­cure on the road and the sus­pen­sion copes well with bumps and thumps. It has nicely weighted steer­ing and the turn­ing cir­cle is sur­pris­ingly tight (10.9 me­tres). Tow­ing ca­pac­ity is lim­ited to 2000kg, but the down weight on the tow ball is only 100kg, which tow­ing ex­perts say, in ef­fect, lim­its the tow­ing ca­pac­ity to 1000kg, as the down weight on the ball is sup­posed to be 10 per cent of the load.

From $48,490

+ on-road costs

17pts

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