Perhaps the only downside to the Santa Fe offering is that other cars of this size have better handling and are cheaper to run too. Also, there's just the one diesel engine, a powerful 2.2 litre CRDi which should return 36mpg and offers lots of torque which means the vehicle would be a good choice for towing.
For most of the time, the Santa Fe runs on two-wheel drive and will switch on demand to an all-wheel drive set-up, the system reacts when it detects there has been a loss of grip, for instance on slippery conditions. It's also possible to select permanent four-wheel-drive at speeds of up to 25 mph with power split equally between the front and rear wheels.
Despite the size, the Santa Fe is an agile performer and its firm suspension delivers a comfortable ride; it's also nippy around town but more comfortable cruising on a motorway.
To help attract buyers to what has previously been seen as a budget brand, Hyundai offers a lot of equipment including rear parking sensors, dual zone climate control and for those who tow regularly there's trailer stability assistance too.
The Hyundai Santa Fe is available with seven or five seats with the rear row offering space for children and young adults and makes for an ideal alternative to those looking at MPVs.
Essentially, the Hyundai Santa Fe offers sleek good looks in a seven seater that is packed with equipment. However, while the lower end models are value for money with the five-year warranty, the higher spec models are pushing into a price band where better known and better performing rivals would be a better choice.