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2021 Hyundai Santa Fe vs Toyota RAV4

2021 Hyundai Santa Fe vs Toyota RAV4

2021 Santa Fe vs RAV4 - How do they stack up? Which is Better?

Shopping for a two-row SUV? The popular Hyundai Santa Fe and Toyota RAV4 are likely on the top of your list. With multiple trims, powertrains, and capacious interiors to choose from - these vehicles have something to fit everyone's needs.

With both the 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe and 2021 Toyota RAV4 boasting similar features, prices, and tech elements - finding your perfect fit may seem like a daunting task! But don't worry – this overview provides you with all of the information needed to make an informed decision on which car will be just right for YOU.


The Powertrain

The 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe offers drivers two powerful powertrains to choose from. The first two trim levels feature a 2.5-liter engine that pumps out 191 horsepower and 181 pound-feet of torque, enough for impressive capabilities like towing up to 2000 pounds with ease – more than enough for the family road trips you've been dreaming about!

Step up to the higher trims of the Hyundai Santa Fe, and you'll be driving a vehicle with more than just impressive power. Built with an adrenaline-pumping 2.5-liter turbocharged engine capable of producing over 280 horsepower combined with 311 pound-feet worth of torque - no wonder these SUVs are so responsive! And that's not all; this beefy motor can even pull 3,500 pounds when it comes time for some serious hauling duty.

The 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe's engines provide drivers with the option to choose between an eight-speed automatic or a dual clutch transmission. Both come equipped with SHIFTRONIC, so you can switch up your driving style whenever you feel like it – from eco-friendly cruising to sport mode for more adventurous riding! Plus, Drive Mode Select gives you total control over how much power and fuel efficiency suits each situation best.

The 2021 Toyota RAV4 is equipped with a powerful 2.5L engine to deliver an impressive 203 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque, enabling it to tow up 1,500 pounds for those weekend getaways! The 8 speed automatic transmission offers smooth gear shifts plus convenient manual override capabilities when drivers require greater control over their driving experience.

The RAV4 offers drivers an exciting alternative to the traditional car - a hybrid version with all-wheel drive! This model is equipped with powerful 2.5-liter engines, electric motors and has 219 horsepower for impressive power combined. It can tow up to 1,750 pounds too – pretty incredible from such a compact vehicle. The great news? All new models come standard in front wheel drive but you have the option of upgrading it if desired - so no matter your preference there’s something available that will fit your needs perfectly.

Though the Santa Fe has the more powerful turbo engine available, the RAV4 could be seen as the more durable SUV. Those non-hybrid models equipped with all-wheel drive have a Multi-Terrain Select program. It comes with snow, mud and sand, and rock and dirt drive modes. This certainly indicates that the RAV4 has been designed to handle rugged terrain. Hybrid RAV4s have Trail mode, in addition to Sport, Eco, Normal, and EV mode. Some Toyota models have downhill assist control to limit speed when traveling down steep hills.

When climbing a hill, the Santa Fe and RAV4 have you covered with their Hill Start Assist Control. With this nifty feature, these SUVs can maintain brake pressure while transitioning between braking and accelerating so your vehicle will stay put even during those few crucial seconds needed to get going again.

The Toyota RAV4 has two trims that are designed to tackle any off-road terrain. The Adventure trim is equipped with the advanced Dynamic Torque Vectoring All-Wheel Drive system, while the TRD Off-Road takes adventure driving performance a step further by boasting an optimized suspension for unbeatable handling on those more rugged surfaces. Explore anywhere and everywhere in comfort, style and confidence with these ultimate road warriors.

With the Toyota RAV4 and Hyundai Santa Fe, a clear winner emerges for fuel efficiency. The hybrid trim of the RAV4 can go up to an impressive 41 miles per gallon in urban areas and 38 on highways – non-hybrid trims still reach 27 city mgs/35 highway! In comparison, the best that you'll get out of a Santa Fe is 25mpg/28hwy. These are great numbers from two reliable cars when it comes to saving at the pump.
Hyundai has long been renowned for its generous warranties, and the Santa Fe is no exception. This beloved model's powertrain warranty offers drivers 10 years or 100,000 miles of coverage - an unbeatable value compared to rivals like the RAV4 which only provide five year/60k mile protection on their powertrains.


With sharp handling and an athletic edge, these SUVs offer drivers a driving experience that can satisfy their need for speed. Not to mention plenty of interior space without too much bulk – the perfect combination for getting around town with ease! And when those rear seats are folded down? You've got room enough even for larger cargo loads.

The Santa Fe is the more roomy SUV option, boasting a length of 188.4 inches and wider dimensions than its competitor, the RAV4. While it's smaller in stature overall at 180.9 inches from end to end, you may appreciate that its rival has an impressive ground clearance of over eight inches; unfortunately for those seeking off-road capabilities however, The Santa Fe lags behind with less to offer when it comes to height above terrain - offering just under 8".

Step inside the Santa Fe, and what you'll find is more than enough room for passengers to stretch out comfortably. The first two rows boast generous legroom of 44.1 inches and 41.7 inches respectively - perfect for friends or family members who want to travel without feeling cramped! With its rear seats down, this spacious SUV offers an impressive 72 cubic feet of cargo capacity – plenty of space for all your luggage on your next getaway.

The RAV4 offers ample space to comfortably seat five people. With 41 inches of legroom in the front rows and 37.8 in the rear, everyone can stretch out for a pleasant ride with plenty of storage -- up to 37.6 cubic feet!

From a multimedia perspective, these two models have a lot to offer. An eight-inch touchscreen is found on the lower trims of the Hyundai Santa Fe. Its higher trims have 10.25-inch touchscreens with integrated navigation and premium audio systems with 12 speakers. Every Hyundai trim has Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and Bluetooth, and most have wireless charging, Blue Link Connected Car Services, and HD Radio. Something that passengers will appreciate is Rear Seat Quiet Mode. If they want to listen to something else on their personal devices or simply want a peaceful ride, the rear-seat volume can be turned down.

A seven-inch touchscreen is standard in the Toyota RAV4. It comes with smartphone compatibility, along with Amazon Alexa, Bluetooth, and SiriusXM. The standard infotainment system can be linked with Toyota connected services, which means that people can use their phones to check on their vehicles and that the SUVs can act as Wi-Fi hotspots.

Higher RAV4 trims can have eight-inch touchscreens, 11 JBL speakers, and dynamic navigation. They can also have wireless charging. A Toyota RAV4 could have up to five total USB ports. The Hyundai Santa Fe can come with four.

Buying Tip:

To avoid overpaying on a new car, shop prices online first. Get up front pricing before you walk into a dealership. We recommend the following free services; Car Clearance Deals, NADAguides, CarsDirect & & Motortrend.
These free services will offer you the lowest prices and supply you with multiple competing price quotes. You will know the best price before you visit the dealer.


The Hyundai Santa Fe offers a unique suite of safety features that put the driver in complete control. With its surround view monitor, blind spot view monitor and heads-up display, drivers can gain maximum situational awareness while behind the wheel— empowering them to hit the open road with confidence.

Another futuristic program is remote start parking assist. By simply pushing a button, people can direct their Santa Fes to park themselves. The driver doesn't even need to be in the vehicle at the time.

Every model of the Santa Fe has forward collision-avoidance assist, and this program can detect the presence of other vehicles pedestrians, and cyclists. Every trim also has driver attention warning, lane keep assist, and adaptive cruise control. Most trims have the addition of blind spot and rear cross-traffic collision-avoidance. These features are going to help drivers stay out of harm's way even when they might not be able to see others around them.

Some similar things are found in the Toyota RAV4. Its higher models, too, can have 360-degree camera systems. While it doesn't have a remote parking system, it does have parking assist with automatic braking to take some of the guesswork out of parking when there's not much room.

Standard in the Toyota RAV4 are many driver-assist technologies. They include pre-collision braking, pedestrian detection, lane departure alert with steering assist, lane tracing assist, and automatic high beams.

The RAV4 offers drivers advanced safety systems to help them stay informed and alert while on the road. Features like adaptive cruise control, as well a unique Road Sign Assist that can detect signs along your route and remind you if necessary are conveniently displayed on the dashboard. Additionally, most models feature Blind Spot Monitoring and Rear Cross-Traffic Alerts so you know when it's time to change lanes.

Which Has the Best Value?

The RAV4 and Santa Fe provide two options for those looking to start a new car journey. The 2021 RAV4 LE opens the door at $26,150 - with Hybrid capabilities available just an extra $2,500 away! Meanwhile, if you're aiming high from day one, then consider the 2021 Santa Fe SE with its eye-catching starting price of $27k.

With eleven unique trims available, the Toyota RAV4 offers a dynamic range of diverse packages - from sporty XSE models to rugged TRD Off-Roaders and more sophisticated Limited options. At the highest point in terms of cost is the luxurious Hybrid Limited trim, priced at $37,180. Not only does it boast some of newest technology on board but also features little extras like power moonroofs for night gazing, SofTex synthetic leather upholstery for extra comfort during longer trips as well as heated front seats – with an option to upgrade rear seating and even add ventilation onto your vehicle if you so desire!

Hop onboard the Santa Fe and explore a world of luxury. The SEL offers an introduction to this experience at $28,800, while Limited takes it up another notch with its turbocharged engines - all for just under $39K! If you're looking for the top-of-the line version that features panoramic moonroofs, Digital Key tech which allows your smartphone to act as a key fob, Nappa leather seats and heated/ventilated front & rear seating then opt for Calligraphy with AWD & 19 inch wheels; coming in priced suavely at only $42k250.

Which is Better?

Just comparing the top trims, it's evident that the Hyundai Santa Fe pushes the limits more than the RAV4 does, at least in terms of sophistication. The RAV4 doesn't even have leather seats, nor does it have many other high-end amenities commonly found in luxury brands. The Santa Fe, while it's not made by a luxury brand, can definitely feel like a premium model. Remember, though, that its higher trims are attached to pretty expensive price tags.

Finding the best SUV for performance is a tough decision - both models have powerful engines, but if you're looking to turn up the adrenaline and get more bang for your buck then Santa Fe's turbo engine may be your choice. However, when it comes to efficiency RAV4 takes front seat with its incredible hybrid option that packs an extra punch yet still maintains great fuel economy even without it.

Prospective car owners have a tough decision to make - the powerful and luxurious Hyundai Santa Fe, or the practical yet affordable Toyota RAV4? With more power, second-row leg room, technology features and upscale elements in its favor, the former is sure to impress. But despite being slightly cheaper than its rival model on offer here comes with plenty of durability as well as efficiency. Both cars come highly recommended so customers can drive away feeling assured they made an excellent choice either way!

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