Stupendous value, strong cargo versatility and straightforward controls drive the Santa Fe to the top
CHICAGO – The results of Cars.com’s (NYSE: CARS) 2019 Mid-Size SUV Challenge are in, and the 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe Ultimate 2.0T AWD won top honors, beating out five hot contenders. The 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe received the highest score based on 17 separate categories including front- and backseat comfort and amenities, ride quality, handling, braking and value. More modern features were considered as well, such as touchscreens, media and connectivity, which address audio and smartphone mirroring like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
“The mid-size SUV market is definitely heating up, as evidenced by the return of competitors such as the 2019 Chevrolet Blazer, 2019 Honda Passport and 2019 redesign of the five-seat Santa Fe,” said Cars.com Editor-in-Chief Jennifer Newman. “We gathered these three along with old standbys including the Ford Edge, Jeep Grand Cherokee and Nissan Murano for a week of testing to inform in-market car shoppers where each model is strongest and weakest, so they can decide based on what’s most important to them.”
Like many Hyundais, the Santa Fe’s strongest selling point is value, which helped it win over the Passport. It also dominated in cargo with unsurpassed scores in our measurements of cargo space and liftgate angle, plus a wealth of other cargo-friendly features.
“The Santa Fe is a home run for value, with the most generous buffet of luxury features and advanced tech in the mid-size group for the lowest price by a lot – barely more than some top-trim compact SUVs,” said Fred Meier, Washington, D.C., bureau chief of Cars.com and one of the Challenge’s judges. “The touchscreen design is a master class for others, with a widescreen, fast response, line-of-sight placement and real shortcut buttons and knobs packaged around the screen.”
“The Santa Fe includes advanced safety, comfort and convenience technologies as a direct result of our listening to customers’ needs,” said Scott Margason, director of product planning for Hyundai Motor America. “The recognition by Cars.com placing the Santa Fe as the leader in the mid-size SUV field in a highly competitive product landscape further emphasizes Hyundai’s commitment to our customers.”
Cars.com requested models that offered many features for the Challenge, which resulted in V-6 engines for four contestants and turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinders for two others. All six contenders were top trim levels except the Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited X, which is now mid-level, and the Ford Edge Titanium that’s less expensive than the performance-oriented Edge ST. Every SUV included four- or all- wheel drive, and sticker prices ranged from $39,905 to $51,975. Testing resulted in the following ranking:
- 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe Ultimate 2.OT AWD
- 2019 Honda Passport Elite AWD
- 2019 Ford Edge Titanium AWD
- 2019 Nissan Murano Platinum AWD
- 2019 Chevrolet Blazer Premier AWD
- 2019 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited 4X4
For more information, including scoring details, photos and videos from the Cars.com 2019 Mid-Size SUV Challenge, visit /articles/whats-the-best-mid-size-suv-of-2019-407980.
Cars.com is a leading digital marketplace and solutions provider for the automotive industry that connects car shoppers with sellers. Launched in 1998 and headquartered in Chicago, the Company empowers shoppers with the data, resources and digital tools needed to make informed buying decisions and seamlessly connect with automotive retailers. In a rapidly changing market, Cars.com enables dealerships and OEMs with innovative technical solutions and data-driven intelligence to better reach and influence ready-to-buy shoppers, increase inventory turn and gain market share. In 2018, Cars.com acquired Dealer Inspire®, an innovative technology company building solutions that future-proof dealerships with more efficient operations, a faster and easier car buying process, and connected digital experiences that sell and service more vehicles.
Hyundai Motor America
At Hyundai Motor America, we believe everyone deserves better. From the way we design and build our cars to the way we treat the people who drive them, making things better is at the heart of everything we do. Hyundai’s technology-rich product lineup of cars, SUVs and alternative-powered electric and fuel cell vehicles is backed by Hyundai Assurance—our promise to create a better experience for customers. Hyundai vehicles are sold and serviced through more than 830 dealerships nationwide and nearly half of those sold in the U.S. are built at Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama. Hyundai Motor America is headquartered in Fountain Valley, California, and is a subsidiary of Hyundai Motor Company of Korea.