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Both the Santa Fe and Golf Alltrack have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The Santa Fe has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The Golf Alltrack’s child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can’t know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.
In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Santa Fe are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety tests front crash prevention systems. With a score of 6 points, IIHS rates the Forward Collision Avoidance Assist in the Santa Fe as “Superior.” The Golf Alltrack scores only 3 points and is rated only “Advanced.”
The Santa Fe Limited has a standard Surround View Monitor to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Golf Alltrack only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.
The Santa Fe’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.
Both the Santa Fe and the Golf Alltrack have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all-wheel drive, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.
For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, its standard vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention system, with its optional vehicle-to-pedestrian front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Good” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Santa Fe the rating of “Top Pick” for 2020, a rating granted to only 30 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Golf Alltrack last would have qualified as a “Top Pick” in 2017.
The Santa Fe comes with a full 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Golf Alltrack’s 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 10,000 miles sooner.
Hyundai’s powertrain warranty covers the Santa Fe 6 years and 50,000 miles longer than Volkswagen covers the Golf Alltrack. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles. Coverage on the Golf Alltrack ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.
The Santa Fe’s 7 year corrosion warranty has no mileage limitations, but the corrosion warranty on the Golf Alltrack runs out after 100,000 miles.
Hyundai pays for scheduled maintenance on the Santa Fe for 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than Volkswagen pays for maintenance for the Golf Alltrack (3/30,000 vs. 2/20,000).
There are over 29 percent more Hyundai dealers than there are Volkswagen dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Santa Fe’s warranty.
To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the Santa Fe has a standard 800-amp battery. The Golf Alltrack’s 480-amp battery isn’t as powerful.
J.D. Power and Associates rated the Santa Fe first among midsize suvs in their 2019 Initial Quality Study. The Golf Alltrack isn’t in the top three in its category.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Hyundai vehicles are better in initial quality than Volkswagen vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Hyundai third in initial quality, above the industry average. With 42 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volkswagen is ranked 25th, below the industry average.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Hyundai vehicles are more reliable than Volkswagen vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Hyundai 8th in reliability, above the industry average. With 7 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volkswagen is ranked 12th.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Hyundai vehicles are more reliable than Volkswagen vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Hyundai 21 places higher in reliability than Volkswagen.
The Santa Fe’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4-cylinder produces 17 more horsepower (185 vs. 168) than the Golf Alltrack’s 1.8 turbo 4-cylinder. The Santa Fe 2.0T’s standard 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 67 more horsepower (235 vs. 168) and 61 lbs.-ft. more torque (260 vs. 199) than the Golf Alltrack’s 1.8 turbo 4-cylinder.
In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Santa Fe’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.
The Santa Fe has 4.3 gallons more fuel capacity than the Golf Alltrack (18.8 vs. 14.5 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.
The Hyundai Santa Fe comes standard with an automatic transmission, for driver comfort, especially in the city. Automatic costs extra on the Golf Alltrack.
An eight-speed automatic is standard on the Hyundai Santa Fe, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a six-speed automatic is available for the Golf Alltrack.
For better stopping power the Santa Fe’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Golf Alltrack:
For better traction, the Santa Fe has larger tires than the Golf Alltrack (235/65R17 vs. 205/55R17). The Santa Fe SE/SEL’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Golf Alltrack (235/65R17 vs. 225/45R18).
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Santa Fe 2.0T has standard 19-inch wheels. The Golf Alltrack’s largest wheels are only 18-inches.
The Santa Fe has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The Golf Alltrack’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Santa Fe’s wheelbase is 5.4 inches longer than on the Golf Alltrack (108.9 inches vs. 103.5 inches).
For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the Santa Fe is 3.7 inches wider in the front and 5.2 inches wider in the rear than the track on the Golf Alltrack.
The Santa Fe has 16.4 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Golf Alltrack (110.7 vs. 94.3).
The Santa Fe has 2.6 inches more front headroom, 2.9 inches more front legroom, 3.2 inches more front shoulder room, .6 inches more rear headroom, 5.3 inches more rear legroom and 4.4 inches more rear shoulder room than the Golf Alltrack.
For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Santa Fe’s rear seats recline. The Golf Alltrack’s rear seats don’t recline.
The Santa Fe has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the Golf Alltrack with its rear seat up (35.9 vs. 30.4 cubic feet). The Santa Fe has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the Golf Alltrack with its rear seat folded (71.3 vs. 66.5 cubic feet).
The Santa Fe’s cargo area is larger than the Golf Alltrack’s in every dimension:
Length to seat (2nd/1st)
Pressing a switch automatically lowers the Santa Fe Limited’s rear seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.
To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the Santa Fe’s power liftgate can be opened just by waiting momentarily behind the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The Santa Fe’s power liftgate can also be opened or closed by pressing a button. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer a power or hands-free opening liftgate.
The Santa Fe has a 2000 lbs. towing capacity. The Golf Alltrack has no towing capacity.
The Santa Fe SEL/Limited/Ultimate has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer a remote starting system.
When different drivers share the Santa Fe Limited, the memory seats make it convenient. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer memory seats.
The Santa Fe Limited has a standard heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer a heads-up display.
The Santa Fe’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Golf Alltrack has a lever-type parking brake that has to be strenuously raised to engage properly. It has to be lifted up more and a button depressed to release it.
To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the Santa Fe has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the Golf Alltrack only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts detailed tests on headlights for their range both straight ahead and in curves and to be certain they don’t exceed acceptable amounts of glare to oncoming drivers. The Santa Fe’s available headlights were rated “Good” by the IIHS, while the Golf Alltrack’s headlights are rated “Poor.”
Both the Santa Fe and the Golf Alltrack offer available heated front seats. The Santa Fe Limited also has standard heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the Golf Alltrack.
Standard air-conditioned seats in the Santa Fe Limited keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.
On extremely cold winter days, the Santa Fe Limited’s standard heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.
To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Hyundai Santa Fe (except SE) offers an optional wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.
The Santa Fe is available in both front-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.
Insurance will cost less for the Santa Fe owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Santa Fe will cost $405 to $2750 less than the Golf Alltrack over a five-year period.
The Santa Fe will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the Santa Fe will retain 45.92% to 47.83% of its original price after five years, while the Golf Alltrack only retains 38.44% to 40.76%.
Consumer Reports® recommends both the Hyundai Santa Fe and the Volkswagen Golf Alltrack, based on reliability, safety and performance.
The Hyundai Santa Fe outsold the Volkswagen Golf/GTI by over three to one during 2019.
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Get the best value for your car from an Asbury dealership.