The 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe is a SUV packed with healthy amount of technology in it. Let’s start with the safety aspects of the vehicle:
- You get autonomous emergency braking which will bring the Santa Fe to a stop if it detects an object in front of it, and you take no action to avoid said object.
- Blind spot monitoring is included. Not only does it warn you when you are about to do an ill advised lane change, but it also alerts you based on distance and relative speed.
- Rear cross traffic alerts as well as rear parking sensors present to make either parking or reversing out of a parking space easier.
- One real highlight is that lane departure warning and assist functionality is included. It is one of the better systems that I have tested lately and I say that because any steering corrections that it makes are gentle and don’t freak you out. Plus if it has to make an audible warning, it does so in a way that doesn’t freak out you or your passengers.
- There’s an attention assist feature which monitors your driving and will suggest that you should take a break if it thinks you are getting tired.
- You get automatic headlights so that you never forget to turn the headlights on or off. You also get automatic windshield wipers as well.
Now, the cool tech starts with this:
You get a heads up display that is in color and displays speed, speed limits, blind spots info, and a host of other info that allows you to better focus on driving.
Another piece of cool tech is the cruise control. It’s radar based which allows the car to slow down and speed up based on what the car in front of you is doing. On top of that, it has the ability to deal with stop and go traffic by itself. I will note that in stop and go conditions if the car comes to a complete stop for a few seconds, you have to get it going again by tapping the accelerator.
Next up is this:
There’s a top view 360 degree camera that is very very good. Everything from the various cameras that feed images into this system is very well stitched together and it made me easy to park in any situation. The only catch is that cameras are exposed which means that dirt or water can obscure the view as I discovered when it rained late in my test of the Santa Fe. For bonus points, there’s a button on the center console that allows you to activate this view at any time.
A ground breaking piece of tech is that the Santa Fe has the ability to detect cyclists who are rolling up to you when you are parked and are about to exit the car. In short, the Santa Fe will alert you if you try to open a door and a cyclist is approaching. This is a feature that really matters to me because about 20 years ago I was hit by a door that was opened from a parked car while I was riding my bike, which resulted in a trip to the hospital and three weeks to recover from the accident. I tested this in downtown Toronto and it worked flawlessly. Actually it worked better than I expected as it also detected a jogger that decided to run up on the drivers side of the Santa Fe for reasons that I don’t fully understand. Quite simply, this is tech that should be in every single car.
One final piece of tech that I want to speak to:
You get an alert if someone is in the back seat of the Santa Fe. That will hopefully keep you from leaving a child in the back seat on a hot day. That’s very cool. But it doesn’t stop there. If you have Hyundai BlueLink, which this vehicle has, it will generate an alert on your smartphone as well as honk the horns if it continues to detect something in the back seats. That’s pretty clever.
Other tech includes:
- Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are included. It gets served up on an 8″ screen which is extremely sharp, has great contrast and is viewable in all lighting conditions. The infotainment system user interface was easy to navigate and didn’t display any lag whatsoever. That was completely in line with other Hyundai products that I’ve tried recently.
- There’s a 12 speaker Infinity audio system that sounds good as I had no complaints when I was listening to radio or tunes from my iPhone. You can serve up AM,FM, audio from your phone via USB (which will also charge your phone) or Bluetooth, or SirusXM Radio. It was very good at playing my current audio torture playlist which needs updating.
The final part of this review will tie up some loose ends and I’ll give you my closing thoughts on the Hyundai Santa Fe. Stay tuned for that tomorrow.