2019 Honda CR-V vs. 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

Both the CR-V and the Santa Fe have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, rear cross-path warning and driver alert monitors.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the CR-V the rating of “Top Pick” for 2018, a rating granted to only 85 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Santa Fe has not been tested, yet.

Warranty

There are over 24 percent more Honda dealers than there are Hyundai dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the CR-V’s warranty.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates rated the CR-V third among compact suvs in their 2018 Initial Quality Study. The Santa Fe isn’t in the top three in its category.

Engine

The CR-V EX/EX-L/Touring’s standard 1.5 turbo 4 cyl. produces 5 more horsepower (190 vs. 185) and 1 lbs.-ft. more torque (179 vs. 178) than the Santa Fe’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the CR-V gets better fuel mileage than the Santa Fe:

 

 

 

MPG

CR-V

 

FWD

2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

26 city/32 hwy

 

 

1.5 turbo 4 cyl.

28 city/34 hwy

 

AWD

2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

25 city/31 hwy

 

 

1.5 turbo 4 cyl.

27 city/33 hwy

Santa Fe

 

FWD

2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

22 city/29 hwy

 

 

2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

20 city/25 hwy

 

AWD

2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

21 city/27 hwy

 

 

2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

19 city/24 hwy

The CR-V has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Transmission

The CR-V has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer a CVT.

Chassis

The Honda CR-V may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 300 to 850 pounds less than the Hyundai Santa Fe.

The CR-V is 7.2 inches shorter than the Santa Fe, making the CR-V easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

For excellent aerodynamics, the CR-V has standard flush composite headlights. The Santa Fe has recessed headlights that spoil its aerodynamic shape and create extra drag.

The front grille of the CR-V uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

The CR-V uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Cargo Capacity

The CR-V has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the Santa Fe with its rear seat up (39.2 vs. 35.9 cubic feet). The CR-V has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the Santa Fe with its rear seat folded (75.8 vs. 71.3 cubic feet).

A low lift-over cargo hatch design makes loading and unloading the CR-V easier. The CR-V’s cargo hatch lift-over height is 26 inches, while the Santa Fe’s liftover is 31.2 inches.

A standard locking glovebox (which can’t be accessed with the valet key) keeps your small valuables safer in the CR-V. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

Ergonomics

If the windows are left open on the CR-V the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows at the outside door handle or from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Santa Fe can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

Recommendations

The Honda CR-V has won recognition from these important consumer publications:

 

CR-V

Santa Fe

Consumer Reports® Recommends

TRUE

n/a

Car Book “Best Bet”

TRUE

n/a

The CR-V was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Five/10Best Trucks” for 3 of the last 17 years. The Santa Fe has never been a Car and Driver “Top Five/10Best Truck” pick.

Motor Trend selected the CR-V as their 2018 Sport Utility of the Year. The Santa Fe has never been chosen.

The Honda CR-V outsold the Hyundai Santa Fe by almost three to one during the 2018 model year.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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