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Hyundai Santa Fe, SUV
#114 of 3003 Considering a Hyundai
Jan 25, 2004 (1:01 pm)
I currently drive a 2002 Mazda MPV LX with lots of nice features. I am tired of the minivan, but love sitting up high and won't ever go back to a car. My dream car is a Yukon Denali, but my husband and I refuse to pay more for a car than we did for our first house, if you know what I mean. We are a little wary of the Hyundai name but have liked the Santa Fe better than anything else we have driven so far. We have checked out all the compact SUVS plus the Pilot and the Kia, and like the Pilot but really want to stay around 25,000 out the door. My questions are:
2WD vs. 4WD? We live in East Tennessee and don't have all that much snow. How much benefit is there for rainy weather in having 4WD? We have never owned anything that had 4WD. We would plan on keeping the Santa Fe for a while-probably our daughter will start driving it in about 2 1/2 years when she starts college.
What about the leather seats? They sound wonderful at this time of year when the heat option, but how is leather in the summer? I have some uncomfortable childhood memories of bare legs sticking to vinyl seats in the car we had then. As you can guess, neither of us have ever owned a car with leather seats.
Any advice on these 2 things and also on a fair price to pay for this vehicle would be greatly appreciated, especially if you live anywhere around this area. We live in Knoxville.
#115 of 3003 Re: considering
Jan 26, 2004 (9:52 am)
We have an '01 Santa Fe LX FWD with the heated leather seats - interestingly enough we're considering an MPV for when we outgrow the Santa Fe, but that's a ways off yet. My two cents on your questions:
FWD vs. AWD - In your situation I'd suggest that FWD would be perfectly fine for you. Even in the snow the FWD with traction control has never gotten us stuck. The 2.7L engine in the Santa Fe is marginally underpowered for the size of the vehicle. This is a bigger problem on the AWD model, since it's heavier and has more driveline friction than the FWD model. I test drove both an AWD and FWD model and the AWD was noticably slower. The FWD gets somewhat better gas mileage. If you do get AWD go with the 3.5L engine and learn to live with somewhat poor mileage.
The leather is actually quite nice. I didn't want it but as this is my wife's car I let her make that call. The leather is perforated and breathes pretty well in the summer, so it doesn't stick to your legs. Boy are the bun warmers ever nice to have in the winter. Only problem is that my wife has decreed that every car we ever buy from now on is going to have to have them, so consider yourself warned!
Can't tell you much about pricing as we bought ours 3 years and 43k miles ago. You get a lot of car for the money, though.
#116 of 3003 response to bharrell
Jan 26, 2004 (1:43 pm)
I have a '04 GLS with FWD. I agree with Jaserb. The FWD should work just fine. My Santa Fe is about 3 months old now and it seems to have been snowing here in New Jersey since the day we bought the car in November. This FWD Santa Fe replaced a Jeep Grand Cherokee and has been on the road everyday that it has snowed and so far there have been no problems with its ability to get around. It's also equiped with traction control, so that probably helps. Anyhow, we wanted better gas mileage, more power, and better handling, so we went for the FWD. So far, no regrets.
The problem with going up to the 3.5 and also AWD is that now you have an SUV that's not much cheaper and gets the same gas mileage as some other bigger competition.
As far as the leather goes, the Jeep had leather and my wife said "Never again". Hot in the summer, freezing cold in the winter. Seat warmers helped, but she had had enough. The Santa Fe has cloth which she loves.
Anyhow, here are the specifics on the price I paid: 2.7liter, ABS, 6 disc changer, moonroof, roof rails. Paid $21,800 after $500 rebate in Langhorne, Pa.
Best of luck.
Jan 26, 2004 (2:46 pm)
Thanks to both of you for the advice so far. We are leaning toward the larger engine with FWD. Our kids have to approve of anything we buy, so we still have to take another test drive and start negotiating if they like the Santa Fe.
Jaserb, I find it interesting also that you would be thinking about the MPV. We have loved both of our MPV's but with one child getting ready to drive (in May) and another one not that far off, we are ready to leave the minivan scene behind. The times we are together in a vehicle are becoming fewer and further between every day. Make sure you check out the message boards about the MPV-there are transmission problems in some of the models. We have had only one problem in 40,000 miles. It is great when your kids are younger, but keep in mind that as they start to get older, it is a small van. Leg room in the 2nd row is an issue for my son and he is just 5'4".I would definitely get traction control and rear air and the larger wheels if they still offer 2 sizes. The ride is much better.
#118 of 3003 I'm on the other end...
Jan 27, 2004 (8:44 am)
with a 2-yr old girl and another kid on the way. We figure the Santa Fe will be plenty big for two kids, but maybe a little tight for three. We're hoping to be able to keep the Santa Fe long enough to use up the powertrain warranty but we're not sure when/if we'll be getting number three. Of course, this could be twins which would change the whole situation!
We like the MPV because it's very space efficient for its size and my wife hates driving big vehicles - she made me promise to never make her drive a Suburban. She still loves the Santa Fe to pieces and it's held up really well so far.
Feb 17, 2004 (10:19 am)
I am looking to buy a 2.7 GLS FWD with the following:
accessory group 4 (ABS)
front and rear mudguards
The local dealer is quoting me a price $20,100 before taxes and title.
Sounds like a good deal. Any comments?
#121 of 3003 In the market for a Santa Fe
Feb 28, 2004 (6:52 am)
I live in LI NY and I am looking at the GLS 3.5 with sunroof.I am considering the FWD instead of AWD and would like to get your opinion on this matter. I recently read in Consumers that the FWD doesnt handle well in the rain. Has anyone encountered this? Also I was quoted a price of 23,000 everything included how does this sound? Thanks for any help you can give me.
#122 of 3003 khrn from Long Island....
Feb 28, 2004 (5:42 pm)
My husband is also in the market for a Santa Fe and we were quoted 23K for an LX AWD model, minus the sunroof from Atlantic Hyundai in West Islip. Which dealership did you go to? We were quoted the same price at Hustedt Hyundai in Centereach.
Also my husband works with someone who owns an FWD and she does not have any problem handling the car in the rain.
Hope this helps.
#123 of 3003 Santa Fe
Feb 28, 2004 (6:11 pm)
Thanks raygur1957 for the info. I too went to Atlantic Hyundai and that was the price quoted me for the GLS model. You seem to have gotten a better deal, which is great. Have you checked out the info on the message board, regarding Santa Fe problems? What are your thoughts? Its such a big decision buying a car, and with all this information available, it can make you a little nuts. Thanks for your help.