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Cause of Bad Smell in Some Hyundai Palisades Identified

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Some of you may recall that last summer, we reported a rather unusual problem that some Hyundai Palisade owners were experiencing: a very bad smell in the interior of their vehicle.

At the time, Hyundai was at a loss to identify the source of the stink. The week, however, the automaker announced it has determined where originated the smell, which was mostly found inside the Limited and Calligraphy models. What’ more, it claims to have a solution to remedy the problem.

Note that in Canada, the variant beneath the Calligraphy in the model range is called Luxury and that the problem described refers to the situation experienced in the United States.

The smell, Hyundai spokesperson Miles Johnson told Car and Driver, comes from the leather-covered headrests. He added there is now a treatment process available at dealerships to neutralize the odour coming from those components. Palisade owners noticing a rank odour can take their vehicle to their dealer to have the headrests treated.

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While the treatment should resolve the odour, this is not always the case. The Cars.com website reports having had to simply replace the headrests of the model it owns. However, Hyundai’s Miles Johnson stated that this will probably not be necessary in most cases.

Initially, it appeared that the smell was exclusive to the Limited and Calligraphy versions with brown interiors, but many people reported that the black draped interiors were also getting stinky. Nappa leather, which seems to be at the root of the problem, was available in both.

Hyundai identified the offending supplier and has now switched to another, according to Cars.com. Meaning newly manufactured Palisades should not have this problem, regardless of what trim they are. As for the smelly Palisades already out there, if the solution proposed by the company does not produce the desired results, it will always be possible to have the headrests replaced.

See also: 2021 Hyundai Palisade Calligraphy Edition Revealed: Onwards and Upwards

2020 Hyundai Palisade
Photo: Hyundai
2020 Hyundai Palisade