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2014 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport Preview

Pros: Officially a Crossover Utility Vehicle, the Santa Fe Sport design is fresh, functional, and packed with popular features. A limited edition 2.0T package promises more power and even more comfort.

Cons: The Hyundai Santa Fe Sport is limited to five passengers, after that you must move to a different model. Entry level may be well–equipped, but nearly every buyer will step up at least one trim level, so base MSRP can be misleading.

Price: MSRP for a 2WD unit starts at $26,599 and rises through to the 2.4 Premium FWD, 2.4 premium AWD, 2.4 Luxury AWD, 2.0T Premium AWD, 2.0T SE AWD, all the way up to the 2.0T Limited at $38,899.

Fuel Economy (city/highway/combined in L/100km):
• 2.4 FWD:10.2/7.3/8.9
• 2.4 AWD:11.0/7.9/9.6
• 2.0T AWD:11.4/8.2/10.0

Hyundai Santa Fe Sport 2014
Photo: Hyundai

Improvements and Changes: To increase cargo carrying capacity, roof rails are now included with the panoramic sunroof option. Blind Spot Detection (BSD) and an Integrated Memory System (IMS) for the driver’s seat and mirror settings have been added to the 2.4 Luxury and the 2.0T Limited models. 2.0T Limited models get LED taillights and an optional saddle-coloured leather interior.

Exterior Styling: The outside of the 2014 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport is unchanged from last year. Accent lines on the sides give it the look of being tilted forward so as to be a bit sporty in appearance. The new LED taillights in the Limited will fit in the regular housing, so although the light will look different the shape will remain the same.

Interior: The Hyundai Santa Fe Limited gets an optional saddle-coloured leather interior that brightens everything up. The second-row seat is a folding 40/20/40 split that slides fore and aft, as well. Hyundai retains the Driver Selectable Steering Mode (DSSM) where the driver can select a tightening of ratios for different types of driving.

Cargo/towing/payload capacity: Maximum towing capacity is 1,588 kg (3,500 lb). Cargo volume behind the second-row seat is 991 litres (35 cu.-ft.).

Powertrain: The 2014 Hyunda Santa Fe uses a 2.4L direct-injected four that puts out 190 horsepower and 181 lb-ft of torque as the standard engine on entry-level vehicles. It is hooked to a 6-speed automatic with shiftronic that may be AWD or FWD.

The optional engine, which is standard on higher trim levels, is a direct-injected 2.0L four that is turbocharged, producing 264 horsepower and 269 lb-ft of torque. A 6-speed automatic with shiftronic is used.

Both transmissions use an activeECO system to save up to 7% in fuel economy.

Safety:
The 2014 Hyundai Santa Fe sports seven airbags including a driver-side knee airbag. Four-wheel disc brakes with ABS, Electronic Brake Force Distribution, traction control, and stability control are standard. The LATCH system to anchor child seats and three-point seat belts are standard. Child-proof rear door locks are standard. A blind spot detection system is standard on 2.4 Luxury and 2.0T Limited models.

Comparables: Chevrolet Traverse, Mazda CX-9, Nissan Murano, Dodge Durango, Ford Edge, Kia Sorrento, Toyota Highlander, and Honda Pilot.