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I have a biege Hyundai Santa Fe which i puchased as a part exchange vehicle approximately two years ago. I have never owned a Santa Fe nor read any reviews before buying it but wanted a four wheel drive vehicle that was quite cheap. I have also used it in the snow and it feels very safe to drive. It is a 2.0 litre and for its size has quite good pick up speed. The boot space is very big and mine came with a dog mat which is very handy for transporting my dog without causing damage to the interior. The vehicle itself is quite basic which in my opinion means less can go wrong. I have had to change the headlight bulbs and there is plenty of space to do this unlike my Peugeot 307 where you need very small hands. My overall opinion is that the Hyundai Santa Fe is a basic four wheel drive car which feels safe to drive and has plenty of interior room. It is very good value for money.
We have owned a Hyundai Santa Fe from new since 2002. Firstly for a "4 x 4" its quite cheap to buy new and comes with a lot of features which count as extras on other cars and having owned Hyundai's in the past this seems to be the running theme with Hyundai's. It is a big, sturdy car and it feels good to be higher than other cars on the road. It drives quite well, it has some speed on it but in my opinion it is quite cumbersome to manouvre, and it is a bit of a gas guzzler. It is a spacious car and we regularly do runs to the cash and carry in it and kind of use it as a van. I do feel like I have to park it in the furthest away parking spaces where there are less cars as it only just fits into a normal parking space. We have a few dints on the sides from cars parking too close and opening their doors. The 5 year warranty was good, we had few small problems in the 5 years which were rectified without any hassle. Recently our Santa Fe broke down and had to be towed to a garage by the AA. It turns out the problem was a crankshaft sensor which failed and meant the cars computer would not allow the car to start. This small problem cost us over £600 to repair, the part was £150 plus approx £100 for other parts related to this but because of the position of this sensor, the whole engine had to be removed which was labour intensive hence the total £600 garage bill. We had to wait for over a week for the part to arrive from Hyundai too! In summary, it's a nice car but a little cumbersome to drive and uses a lot of fuel. I don't think we'll be buying another Santa Fe any time soon but we will certainly consider another Hyundai.
I will hold my hand up now and admit I drive a 4x4. I do not live in the wilds of scotland or up some inaccesible lane but I do have an excuse, I tow a family caravan. I need my vehicle as a work horse as dragging the caravan (very slowly) behind a Mondeo up a hill once was enough to send me out to the car dealerships for something stronger! I am now on my second Santa Fe. The first one I had from new for 5 years. Ihad a problem when it was quite new and the clutch kept slipping whilst towing. This was a recognised fault and the whole clutch was replaced under the warranty. In the later years it developed an electrical problem with the dashboard lights which irritated but didn't effect the performance of the car. The only reason I changed to the newer model was because family commitments meant that sometimes 5 seats were just not enough. I chose the 2.2 CRTD CDX, this had the stability programme that made it safer for towing. I opted for the 7 seat model. Like many 7-seaters the seats lift up out of the boot space in the back. They are not huge but are adequate for my teenagers and are very easy to put up and down. When they are up there is a small boot space. When they are down the boot is HUGE! The interior is leather which I would not have out of choice as it is soooo cold or hot depending on the weather. The front seats do have interior heaters but there are always moans coming from the back in winter! The interior looks really nice and has been upgraded a lot from the very plasticky interior of the previous model. The car has a good safety rating and unlike the previous model the 4x4 is "on-demand". This has made it much more fuel efficient. The listed combined fuel consumption is 38.7, I use it for towing every few weeks and my average is about 35 so I think that is pretty good. I try not to use it for local trips, I either walk or we use our smaller car. I find the car very easy to drive. Obviously it is quite big so it will not fit into every carparking space and watch the height barriers, I have never hit one yet but I always find myself ducking! It is very easy to manoeuvre and I can park it in most places as long as I go in backwards. The only problem I have is that it has privacy glass in the back and I find it hard to park at night as it is hard to see through when it is dark, the reversing lights are perhaps not strong enough. For a diesel engine it is quite refined and not at all noisey. What I particularly like with Hyundai cars is that the spec level is good, you don't have to pay for every little extra. This model has everything I would expect, roofbars, luggage net,cruise control heated windows etc. They also come with a 5 year warranty and if the experience with my previous car is anything to go by they do seem good at honouring it! There were several reasons why we chose this over a lot of other 4x4s on the market. These vehicles are competitively priced compared to others of a similar class. I have had this one a year so bought it just before used car prices fell (isn't that typical?), it was 9 months old and cost £15,000. It has a huge towing capacity of 2.2 tonnes although I would only ever tow up to about 1500 as that is 85% of kerb weight (a safe limit). I am only just over 5 ft and I can reach all the controls with ease and the visibility is good. We looked at a Discovery and I couldn't reach in the boot which wasn't a good start! I loved the colour-very girly I know but it is a lovely metallic blue! Good aftersales service. All in all I would not hesitate to recommend this car. It does not drink anywhere near the amount of fuel people think it does. I have friends with saloon cars which are far less fuel efficient. It is comfortable to drive and as a passenger and it has the extra seats when required.
Hyundai Santa Fe-2.4 CDX (petrol) Now you wonder why would I go for a 4x4 well try spending a winter in Livingston then you will see. Last January we had some major snow fall and because I work in Edinburgh I tend to drive in. Well I had a Hyundai Coupe and let me tell you that car did not like the snow . Looked out my window in the morning and the snow was about 6/7 inch deep. Tried to get it out of the street with no luck so had to take the day off work. That's when I decided I would get the 4x4. I went to my local Hyundai dealer as they have provided me with excellent service in the past and explained to them my dilemma. They suggested the 4x4 Santa Fe. So took it out for a spin and loved it straight away it got off it's mark quick enough this is important for me as I stay in a place with lots of roundabouts so pick off speed is important. Took a bit of getting used to after having a 2ltr coupe as I could not throw it round bends as fast for fear of it toppling over. The drive itself was very comfortable and there are lots of leavers for the seat adjustment you can angle the seat pad and move up and down (for us short people)forward back and there is lumbar support witch you can adjust also. Visually it is quite rounded and not as square as the land rover I bought a nice silver color which surprisingly enough hides dirt well have only washed it twice in about 8 months. Now getting in and out of it can be tricky if your small as it does not come with a wee step. I did twist me knee once getting in to it so may not be a good choice for someone with limited movement. My wee nephew had a bit of bother trying to get in also. There are lots of nice touches inside two cup holders in the front and space for sat nav witch you can buy as an extra when you purchase this. This car as new comes 5 year unlimited mileage warranty 6 year anti-perforation warranty 3 years' Hyundai RAC assistance Which I found useful as I did not have to pay extra for RAC. Another wee perk was I can take my car in for a free health check they top up your washer fluid and oil and wash it at anytime during this 5 years. Now for the technical stuff -Specs (taken From My Manual) 4-cylinder DOHC 16-valve 0-62mph in seconds-11.4 Top speed mph---108 - (dunno about this I'm sure I have got 115 in my car but this is what the manual says.) Alloys-6.5J x 16- very nice alloys for a big car I thought. Price New: £15,995.00 This is a good price but I bought mine second hand at £12500.00 Safety Features:( Taken from my Manual) 3 x 3 point rear seatbelts> there are nifty wee holders for the seatbelts to stop them moving about in the back also. 4WD system - rear limited slip differential unit> the 4 wheel drive unfortunately is on all the time this is one drawback as it does suck up the petrol. Adjustable head restraints - front & rear Adjustable steering column - height Airbag - side Airbags - driver and front passenger Anti-lock brakes (ABS) with Electronic brake force distribution (EBD) Childproof rear door locks Engine immobilizer Height adjustable seatbelts - front High mounted brake light ISOfix child seat anchorage - rear only Lockable glove box Locking wheel nuts Oxidisation catalyst Power assisted steering Remote central locking with alarm Retractable load cover..>This is handy when you are putting lots of stuff in your boot I moved my sister from one flat to another and did it all in one trip with my Santa Fe it holds lots of stuff and you can take the load cover off altogether to gain even more room. Seatbelt pre-tensioners with load limiters. Final Thoughts: I do like this car it's very comfortable to drive and you can see over other cars in front so great for seeing to overtake the slowbies. But you do have to keep it in higher gears to overtake. I used to get upset in my wee coupe when people tailgated me but with the Santa Fe it does not bother me as I don't see them and if they do bash into me their car will come out allot worse than mine he he. It's nice being up high and you get used to it very quickly the size of the car just folds round about you. The air conditioning is nice when it's a warm day as the car does heat up allot with all the windows and sunroof. Another good thing is people tend to stay out of your way as you're a bit bigger than them. It also has a window that opens at the back as well as the boot. Only major down side I see to the Santa Fe is it's petrol consumption I drive roughly 368 miles a week and it takes about £53 at the moment to fill her up and I get about 390 to a tank so it's not the most economical car around. So have started to get the train into work. So would definitely recommend this car but only if you have the cash to keep her filled with petrol as she is a greedy one. Thanks for reading, Cheers Maggie. Review also on Ciao.