2022 Hyundai Santa Fe XRT 2.5 Is a Gradual Fake Off-Roader

September 8, 2022

Like Honda, with its new TrailSport badge, and Subaru, with its budding Wilderness line, Hyundai has noticed a rising marketplace for mainstream SUVs cosplaying as critical off-roaders. This prompted the introduction of the rugged-looking XRT trim throughout Hyundai’s SUV lineup, beginning with the 2022 Santa Fe. However whereas the Honda and Subaru entries obtain a minimum of some gear upgrades—like chunkier tires or a slight suspension elevate—the Santa Fe XRT is solely gussied up with bulkier bumpers and difficult styling cues to domesticate a trail-ready persona. Beneath, it stays mechanically an identical to different Santa Fe fashions. Look previous the bolder look and the XRT adjustments little concerning the Santa Fe’s driving expertise, with the strong steering and dealing with undercut by the one obtainable engine, a lackluster 2.5-liter inline-four.

The XRT’s brawn comes through chunkier plastic cladding, revised bumpers, and a redesigned grille. Sidesteps and crossbars for the roof rails are normal. The XRT-exclusive black 18-inch wheels put on street-oriented tires, and the XRT’s declare to off-road credibility is additional undermined by the truth that in base type, it is front-wheel drive. Our take a look at automobile was outfitted with all-wheel drive, a $1700 add-on to the $34,045 beginning worth.

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This was our first probability to pattern the Santa Fe’s base powertrain, a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter four-cylinder. With simply 191 horsepower, the two.5-liter lags far behind the non-compulsory 277-hp turbocharged engine and the 226-hp hybrid setup. And the XRT was among the many slowest 2022 automobiles we have examined. It plodded to 60 mph in 9.6 seconds, whereas a turbocharged 2021 Santa Fe hit 60 mph in a brisk 6.0 seconds.

HIGHS: Bolder design, strong steering and dealing with, abundance of inside options.

The true drag is that reaching 70 mph takes a further 2.7 seconds, making freeway merging a white-knuckle expertise. Passing on two-lane roads additionally requires superior planning, with the 30-to-50-mph bounce lasting 4.6 seconds and the 50-to-70-mph run taking 6.2 seconds. Whereas that’s glacially gradual by fashionable requirements, the Santa Fe would not really feel as torpid in metropolis driving, the place the two.5-liter is peppy sufficient to maintain up with site visitors.

Regardless of the shortage of engine gusto, the Santa Fe delivers strong, if not particularly thrilling, driving dynamics. The steering is correct and feels weighty for a mainstream crossover, and the Santa Fe handles curvy roads impressively for a car of its measurement, minimizing physique roll nicely. On the skidpad, we recorded 0.85 g of grip, a reasonably good exhibiting simply shy of the sporty Chevy Blazer RS’s 0.87 g.

The eight-speed automated gearbox typically shifts easily, however whenever you mat the throttle in Consolation mode, the transmission sometimes hunts for gears or will get flustered. Sport mode, in the meantime, holds revs for so long as doable, emphasizing the engine’s unrefined groan but failing to make the Santa Fe really feel extra athletic. The brake pedal, in contrast, gives a progressive, predictable really feel, making it simple to gradual the SUV easily. We measured a 178-foot cease from 70 mph, which betters the Honda Passport TrailSport’s 184 toes however is nicely behind the Blazer’s quick 165-foot cease.

Whereas the Santa Fe handles competently, the journey might be improved. For probably the most half, the Hyundai is a cushty commuter however was jittery over the rougher patches of pavement that dot Michigan’s roads. Whereas the steering wheel stays remoted from these bumps, larger jolts are felt very clearly by way of the seat. The road-oriented tires might dilute the XRT’s all-terrain picture, however beefier off-road rubber would have worsened the dealing with and elevated tire noise on the freeway.

LOWS: Crawls to 60 mph, no extra off-road means, ineffective sidesteps.

The choices checklist for the XRT is kind of quick, with our take a look at automobile tacking on $400 for Calypso Crimson paint and $195 for carpeted ground mats. The XRT is predicated on the Santa Fe SEL with the comfort bundle, and its facilities embody a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, heated entrance seats, dual-zone local weather management, a wi-fi charging pad, and two USB ports for the entrance passengers. The XRT comes with an 8.0-inch touchscreen, however we by no means discovered ourselves wishing for the larger show that different trims supply. The infotainment system additionally helps wi-fi Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and rear passengers are handled to 2 USB ports and a pair of A/C vents.

Whereas some exhausting plastics might be discovered among the many inside, there are smooth supplies in many of the locations that matter, and construct high quality feels robust. The cabin is not probably the most eye-catching, however the buttons are organized nicely, and the design is practical. We discovered the eight-way power-adjustable fabric driver’s seat pretty comfy, if a bit flat. With out the panoramic sunroof that comes on higher trims, headroom is respectable within the entrance and rear, and passengers within the again get pleasure from loads of legroom as nicely. The XRT’s sidesteps complicate climbing aboard—the mannequin has no enhance in journey peak, so the steps aren’t vital, and except you wish to take any additional step to exit the car, it is advisable swing your legs uncomfortably far to clear them.

As a result of the XRT bundle would not deliver mechanical upgrades, its worth is doubtful. Some might discover the extra adventurous styling interesting, however they’d need to put up with the slothful acceleration of the two.5-liter engine. We might decide both of the opposite obtainable powertrains and a unique Santa Fe trim.



2022 Hyundai Santa Fe XRT AWD

Car Sort: front-engine, all-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door wagon


Base/As Examined: $35,745/$36,340

Choices: Calypso Crimson paint, $400; carpeted ground mats, $195


DOHC 16-valve inline-4, aluminum block and head, direct gasoline injection

Displacement: 152 in3, 2497 cm3

Energy: 191 hp @ 6100 rpm

Torque: 181 lb-ft @ 4000 rpm


8-speed automated


Suspension, F/R: struts/multilink

Brakes, F/R: 13.6-in vented disc/12.0-in disc

Tires: Kumho Crugen Premium

235/60R-18 103H M+S


Wheelbase: 108.9 in

Size: 188.4 in

Width: 74.8 in

Peak: 67.3 in

Passenger Quantity: 112 ft3

Cargo Quantity: 36 ft3

Curb Weight: 3858 lb


60 mph: 9.6 sec

1/4-Mile: 17.2 sec @ 82 mph

100 mph: 26.9 sec

Outcomes above omit 1-ft rollout of 0.3 sec.

Rolling Begin, 5–60 mph: 9.7 sec

High Gear, 30–50 mph: 4.6 sec

High Gear, 50–70 mph: 6.2 sec

High Velocity (mfr’s declare): 115 mph

Braking, 70–0 mph: 178 ft

Roadholding, 300-ft Skidpad: 0.85 g


Noticed: 21 mpg

75-mph Freeway Driving: 29 mpg

75-mph Freeway Vary: 540 mi


Mixed/Metropolis/Freeway: 24/22/25 mpg


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