2004 Hyundai Santa Fe Urban 2.4 petrol
Excellent value for money
No mechanical complaints so far, this being a new car.
A few of the fittings do feel a little "plasticky" and Hyundai would do well to improve on this for the Santa Fe - just like they did for the Sonata.
As such, there seems to be a bit of noise coming from one or two of the fittings (e.g. the cargo shade) when the car is on the move. Hopefully, this won't worsen as the car clocks more miles.
Lastly, for a family SUV, there are not as many nooks to store little items in the passenger compartment as one would have hoped for.
This is my third Hyundai.
The first was a Stellar which didn't disappoint me at all - in spite of advice from well-meaning friends against buying it.
The second was a Sonata which proved to me again that, unless you're very brand-consciousness, a Hyundai is well worth owning.
Now to the Santa Fe itself:
I was pleasantly surprised by its good pickup, usually pulling me ahead of other cars at the traffic lights.
Its roomy interior is comfortable for a family of five, with (manual) seat height adjustment for the driver.
The electric side mirrors are big and give a good view of rear traffic.
Auto transmission was relatively smooth, and its "tiptronic" or H-matic switch (for switching between auto and manual or "sports" modes) are a breeze to use.
The car came with almost every feature and accessory that anyone on a budget would be glad to have as standard: roof racks, extended bumpers, spotlights, rear parking sensors, Pioneer hi-fi set including a 12-CD disk changer, vanity mirrors (with light) for both driver and passenger sides, cargo shade and cargo floor netting, leather seats, remote central lock, ABS, airbag (driver side only), 17-inch alloy sports rims with Falken 512 tires (great for road-holding).
Finally, consider that I viewed several other brands of MPVs and SUVs before settling on the Santa Fe.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 9th June, 2004