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2020 Hyundai Palisade Pros vs Cons

Why Buy a 2020 Hyundai Palisade?
Reviewed & fact checked by
James Murdoch

Are You Considering a 2020 Hyundai Palisade? Here Are Some Reasons For and Against

For nearly two decades, the Hyundai Santa Fe has maintained immense popularity in the U.S. market. So much so, the company has had supply troubles to meet demand. Yet, it has continued to remain in the top 10 within the smaller SUV category.

One of the models offered during its run has been the Santa Fe XL. This was a midsize crossover SUV with additional seating. For this model year, the XL has been replaced with the brand new 2020 Hyundai Palisade. Does this new SUV have the same staying power as the standard Santa Fe? If so, how does it compare to other models currently available?

What's New for 2020?

Being the first year of release in the U.S. market, everything is new in this model. In addition, as is the case with many up to the minute models, Hyundai has packed it with its best technology, safety features, and powertrain. Thus, the Palisade might be considered a conglomeration of the company's other SUVs and sedans.

Ten Reasons You May Like the 2020 Hyundai Palisade – The Pros

1. Comfortable Eight-Passenger Seating

The biggest advantage to the 2020 Hyundai Palisade is the number of passengers it can carry at one time. It features two rows of seats that fit three people each for a total of eight passengers. This puts it in a class of that only a dozen or so other midsize SUVs are part of.

How do passengers get out of the third row? Whether it’s a second row or a pair of captain's chairs, one-touch access allows the middle area to fold down. No need to manually shift seats around to get the best access point.

2. Roominess for all Passengers

The fact the 2020 Hyundai Palisade has three rows in a midsize SUV doesn't mean it's cramped. On the contrary, everyone receives ample room. For instance, thanks to a simple design that maintains an even roof line, everyone gets 40 inches of headroom. This means no ducking or slouching for taller guests.

They also won't feel cramped around their legs. The second-row passengers get 42 inches of space while the third row gets 31 inches. This is more than enough leg room for everyone. Furthermore, passengers have no need to fear being packed like sardines since there's close to five feet of shoulder room in the second and third rows.

3. A Strong Powertrain Across the Board

Regardless if the consumer purchases the standard SE or the upscale Limited, the 2020 Hyundai Palisade comes with one engine style. In this case it's a six-cylinder, 3.8L fuel-injected engine with Hyundai's own 24-Valve Dual Continuous Variable Valve Timing (CVVT). This provides the driver with an impressive 291 horsepower and 262 pounds per foot of torque. It is all linked to a standard eight-speed transmission with the ability to shift into manual mode.

4. Comparable Fuel Efficiency

When you put it all together, the powertrain gives the 2020 Hyundai Palisade EPA mileage estimates that should keep it in the top 10 of midsize SUV crossovers. Under front-wheel drive, the Palisade gets 26 miles on the highway and 19 in the city. The all-wheel drive options gains a combined mileage of 21 mpg. Thus, a driver can go pretty far on a 19-gallon tank.

5. Multiple Safety Options on all Trims

Along with ABS and daytime running lamps, the 2020 Hyundai Palisade works toward a safe journey for passengers and those around them. Thus, standard options include Rear Occupant Alert to ensure no one is left behind in the back seats. This is immensely important during severe bouts of cold or heat.

Also standard are several airbags placed in strategic locations in the Palisade's cabin. The most efficient of these are in the first row. They feature an Occupant Classification System (OCS) that delays deployment if the front passenger is under a certain weight.

6. A Goal of Collision Prevention

The 2020 Hyundai Palisade contributes to a general industry standard of zero collisions. Therefore, all trims come standard with a number of accident-prevention technologies. For example, a Parking Distance Warning activates when the onboard computer senses imminent collision with a parked car.

Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist helps avoid front-end collisions with other cars as well as pedestrian detection. The SEL and Limited trims offer standard or optional driver assist features like blind spot avoidance, cross-traffic collision avoidance, and highway drive assist.

7. Ample Storage Capacity

Even with a third row, the 2020 Hyundai Palisade has an ample amount of storage. With the third row up, the SUV has 18 cubic feet available to handle several carry-on pieces of luggage. When the second and third rows are folded flat, the amount of storage space increases to nearly 87 cubic feet.

That's a lot for a midsize crossover. With nearly 3.5 feet of headroom, the number of items that can be transported depends on the needs and, in some cases, imagination of the driver.

8. Modern Infotainment and Mobile Technology

The infotainment and mobile device options on the 2020 Hyundai Palisade meet or exceed those of other SUVs on the market. The en-dash infotainment screen is 10.25 inches wide and sits even to the steering wheel. In turn, drivers do not need to look down to find the right icons to select on the touchscreen.

With the implementation of smartphone connectivity packages Android Auto and Apple Play, music can be streamed from one phone while a call is taken on another. Five USB ports are available for charging those smart devices. Another option is Blue Link Connected Car Services. This allows drivers to start their Palisade remotely and adjust the climate control during excessively hot or cold days.

9. Quiet Performance

It's one thing to have a SUV with the capacity for smooth handling -- something the 2020 Hyundai Palisade has. It's another when the sounds of that performance are minimized so as to not disrupt passenger comfort.

It reduces wind and surface noise with thicker windows and windshield as well as additional insulation inside the dashboard. Even the optional sunroof is protected against the roar of the wind when it's closed.

10. A Respectable Starting Price

Since its introduction to the U.S. market, Hyundai has been known as a company that keeps its costs down for consumers. This is the case with the 2020 Hyundai Palisade. The base price for the standard SE trim starts slightly above $30K, and that's with a bevy of standard features. Even a fully loaded Limited trim stays under $50K in both front and rear-wheel versions.

Reasons You May Not Like the 2020 Hyundai Palisade – The Cons

1. Optional Engines not Available

Choosing an engine for the Palisade is pretty easy. That's because there is only one version available. And while some consumers are fine with that -- saves them time and money -- others would like to see other options that are more powerful. Particularly if they decide to go with the high-end Limited trim.

2. Familiar Controls from Other Vehicles

Manufacturers tend to take from their different models when they decide to create a new vehicle. This is true for the Palisade. However, some say the controls that have been added are from less expensive models. Thus, the well-crafted interior is marred by controls that may encounter issues during the SUVs lifetime.

3. Refinement is Lacking

Though the brand signifies luxury, the 2020 Cadillac XT6 lacks the refinement to match its price. If a consumer wants to add all options to the highest-end trim, then the MSRP jumps drastically from the low 50s to the low 60s.

4. Average Handling and Acceleration

An important factor in an SUVs design is how it handles on all road surfaces. Some who have already driven the Palisade give it an average rating. It takes standard road surfaces well to provide a smooth ride. However, some turns and experiences on rougher terrains don't fare as well. In addition, it has a hard time reaching peak speeds to pass other vehicles.

5. Styling may not be Right for Some

The Palisade is not like the now-retired Santa Fe XL. It has a new design that features a large front grill, high hood, and fairly flat roof. Some who have driven the SUV already feel it doesn't work properly -- it causes aerodynamic issues when it comes to acceleration. This may be a personal decision or one that the Hyundai engineers will fix come the next model year.

How It Stacks Up to the Competition

In general, the 2020 Hyundai Palisade receives high grades across the board in power, technology, and standard safety options. In fact, it already ranks in the top ten for many categories. This makes it a capable opponent against other three-row SUVs.

For instance, when doing a comparison with the Honda Pilot, the Palisade wins in overall reliability and a stylish interior. Up against the Subaru Ascent, the Palisade steps up with its roomier third row of seats. Finally, when paired against the other major South Korean auto manufacturer, Kia, the Palisade beats the Telluride with its luxury.


This model year features the release of two midsize crossover SUVs. One is the Cadillac XT6, and the other is the 2020 Hyundai Palisade. Though the former is from a luxury manufacturer and the latter from an international firm known for economical vehicles, the Palisade wins out in performance, design, and luxury.

It has done this by taking the best of the Santa Fe and improving on it. The result is a SUV with an adult-friendly third row, top-notch design, and an overall MSRP that doesn't hurt the consumer's budget. In addition, the extra row of seats doesn't pinch the amount of cargo space on the Palisade. On the contrary, this Hyundai is tops in maximum storage space.

In the end, the Palisade is a family-friendly SUV that should be at the top of the list when deciding on a new mid-range vehicle.