Hyundai Santa Fe Sport

Hyundai Santa Fe Sport

The Hyundai Santa Fe Sport is a five-passenger, midsize SUV that’s been offered since the 2013 model year. While it shares a number of similarities with the three-row Santa Fe, the “Sport” moniker indicates that this model is a two-row crossover with distinct engine choices.

2013 to Present: Hyundai Santa Fe Sport

The Hyundai Santa Fe was introduced in 2001 as a compact, five-passenger model. For 2007, a slightly larger model with a third row was introduced, providing seating for up to seven passengers.

For 2013, the redesigned, third-generation Santa Fe was released, and it marked the beginning of a naming distinction between five- and seven-passenger models. The standard-wheelbase model seating five became known as the Santa Fe Sport.

The Hyundai Santa Fe Sport is marked by a broad trapezoidal grille with horizontal slats, oversized headlamp assemblies and LED lighting accents.

The Santa Fe Sport features expressive body sculpting that’s evident across the hood, profile and rear fascia. This model boasts powerful shoulders, a sweeping roofline and a rising beltline with distinct creases flowing to the rear. The Santa Fe Sport's sheet metal is also distinguished by a liftgate spoiler, oversized wraparound taillights and reflector lights.

Inside, this model has room for five and a split-folding rear seat. All models are equipped with an audio system with a USB port and satellite radio. A tilt-and-telescoping steering column, power accessories, air conditioning, Bluetooth and cruise control are standard.

Equipment group upgrades bring in leather seating surfaces, dual-zone climate control, a panoramic sunroof, ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, an upgraded audio system and a towing package.

The Hyundai Santa Fe Sport is powered by a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine or a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. Both engines are paired with a six-speed automatic transmission. Front-wheel drive is standard, and all-wheel drive is optional.

In 2015, the Santa Fe Sport gained an upgraded steering system, including a retuned Sport setting for a firmer steering feel. In addition, the standard features list was upgraded to include daytime running lights, a driver’s blind spot mirror and an automatic up and down passenger window. Hyundai also made a hands-free power liftgate and a two-tone grille available.

The 2017 Santa Fe Sport received a midcycle update with exterior changes that include a redesigned front fascia with a new grille and headlight design. The rear fascia offers new taillights and redesigned exhaust outlets. Other changes bring in new rocker panel trim and fresh alloy wheel designs.

Interior changes for the 2017 model year include a newly available touch-screen display with Android Auto. Other changes include a standard drive mode selector with Sport, Eco and Normal modes, as well as numerous available safety features, including adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, automatic emergency braking and adaptive headlights with automatic high beams.

The Hyundai Santa Fe Sport may be cross-shopped smaller SUVs such as the Ford Escape, Mazda CX-5, Toyota RAV4 and Honda CR-V. The Ford Edge and Nissan Murano might also be considered.