Review: 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.0T Ultimate AWD – Part 3

The interior of the Hyundai Santa Fe 2.0T Ultimate AWD has a very compelling interior that Hyundai mostly got right. To be clear, it’s a very, very good interior. But there are areas where Hyundai could have taken this from very, very good to perfect. Let me walk you through the interior.


Normally I start with the drivers seat. However this caught my eye. You get an extra window between the A pillar and the side mirror to improve your vision. And it does make a difference when driving.


The door has all the controls for the windows, mirrors, and on the top right there are the buttons for the custom seat settings.


The drivers seat is made of leather and is heated, vented, and extremely comfortable. You get all sort of customization including thigh extensions which will be welcomed by taller drivers such as yours truly. Once you dial it in, it is a great seat to spend your driving time in. One interesting trick is that if the car detects that the outside temperature is cold, it will turn on the seat warmer for you and leave it on for about five minutes so that you’re not sitting on cold leather. That’s a nice touch!


On the top left you see the buttons for the electronic overseers and the panel lighting. You can also see the pedals which are pretty plain and I think that Hyundai could have put some sport pedals in to make things a bit cooler.


The gauge cluster is impressive. The gauges on the left and right are real. However, everything else is a large and very customizable LCD screen that is bright and sharp.


The steering wheel is leather wrapped, heated and feels good in your hands. It also has controls for the infotainment system as well as the cruise control system.One interesting trick is that if the car detects that the outside temperature is cold, it will turn on the steering wheel heater for you and leave it on for about five minutes so that you’re not sitting on cold leather. That’s a nice touch!


You get a tablet style 8″ screen for the infotainment system and below that are the HVAC controls. I should also note that most of the top of the dash is hard plastic. But closer to the front seats there is soft touch material.


Below the HVAC controls is this cubby with a pair of USB ports. The one of the left is the one for the infotainment system. The right is simply for someone to charge a phone. An audio jack as well as a 12v outlet is present as well. There is also a QI compatible wireless charger that fit my iPhone XS with room to spare.


The shifter is leather wrapped, and below it, you get the parking brake as well as buttons that controls for various functions. You also get two very serviceable cupholders.


They passed the Starbucks Venti coffee test with ease.

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The arm rest which is topped with leather has a deep storage area that has a small tray inside it.


You get a useful glove box. My wife pointed out that it wasn’t lit while the one in our Tucson is lit. Thus she felt that Hyundai could have made this lit as well. I think that she might have a point here.


My wife really liked this shelf on the passenger’s side as you can drop small items in there. For example, my iPhone XS fit in their easily.


There is a massive dual panel sunroof that seriously adds style to the Santa Fe.


Plus for the back seat occupants, there are sunscreens for the windows.


Beneath the HVAC vents is a cubby big enough for a phone and a pair of USB ports for charging said phone.


If you don’t need to seat three people (Which when I tried that with three adults it was very tight. Two adults or three children would work though), you an use these handy cupholders.


The Santa Fe has a ton of space if you fold down the second row seats (which move forwards and backwards to create extra legroom by the way). One thing that I should note is that most of the interior is covered by nice white LED lighting. Except for the cargo area which is covered by yellow incandescent lighting. Ditto for the lights in the vanity mirrors. Hyundai might want to consider making all the lights LED to make the look more consistent and to ensure that the bulbs outlast the life of the car.


But with the seats up there’s a ton of space for my groceries.


To help to flip down the seats, there’s a pair a buttons in the back on the right hand side to allow that to happen easily. You do have to flip them up manually though. There’s also a 12V outlet back here as well.


I was able to flip down the “40” portion of the 60/40 seats to facilitate picking up our cross country skis from being prepped for the upcoming ski season.

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There’s also underfloor storage that did come in handy during the week that I had the Santa Fe.


There’s another storage area to the right as well.

Overall this is a nicely executed interior. I do think that Hyundai could have done some little things to take this from great to perfect. But I doubt that you’d have any problems spending time in this vehicle. The next part of this review will cover the technology in the vehicle. It has a fair amount of it. Tune in tomorrow to find out what the Santa Fe has to offer from a tech perspective.

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