I wasn’t even sure that I wanted or needed to review the 2020 Hyundai Palisade. I spent a week last summer in the Kia Telluride and figured that they were pretty much the same car (they are built on sister platforms). Although they do share a lot of similarities, they are most definitely NOT the same car.
They are both 3 row SUVs with bigger families in mind (or, in my case, smaller families that like a lot of space). The Kia Telluride offers classic comfort and sportiness for the person who wants a big ride but doesn’t want to feel like their stuck in a permanent carpool lane. The Hyundai Palisade is for the mom that feels like she IS stuck in a permanent carpool lane (even if she doesn’t want to be). But it sure makes it a lot more fun.
Let me start by sharing how the Hyundai brought me closer to my son.
Mother-Son Outing in the Hyundai Palisade
You might think that large vehicles are wasted on my little family of three. And you’re pretty much right about that. But we don’t care. We love big fun vehicles. It’s a novelty to us because we don’t usually need all that space.
And when I am testing a vehicle for a week, I use it as an excuse to get out and get around and pull my teenager away from his phone/tv/computer/any other electronic device. So while my husband was out of town, we took this big SUV into the downtown city streets of Baltimore.
We parked and ventured our way over to Miss Shirley’s Cafe, a Baltimore staple, where my son had his first sample of Chicken and Waffles. The verdict? Thumbs way up.
Then we headed over to the National Aquarium, right across the street. Fun fact: The original National Aquarium was in Washington, DC in the basement of the Department of Commerce. It was closed in 2013 and the Baltimore facility became the one and only National Aquarium. It’s definitely worth checking out if you’re ever in Baltimore.
After a full day, we watched the sunset over Baltimore’s Inner Harbor and headed home in the Hyundai Palisade.
But that’s not where my real bonding moments occurred with my son. He’s actually become a willing assistant when I set out to film my video reviews.
Reviewing the 2020 Hyundai Palisade
I have a very specific process when I do my car reviews. I spend time driving around in my daily life and then I try to do at least one outing during the week that I have cars to test.
At some point during the week, usually on the weekends, I head to a nearby park to film my review and
force ask my son to help me. He’ll oblige if I offer to pay him or he’s just really bored. But for Christmas, my husband bought the family a drone. Now the prospect of capturing some drone footage has him eager to work with me!
Sadly, the lighting wasn’t good enough and we didn’t capture any usable footage this time but we did enjoy exploring the Hyundai Palisade together. These were our favorite parts: the front, side, and rear.
Okay, okay. It’s more than just a pretty car to look at. It’s a fully functional 7 or 8 passenger SUV depending on how you have it configured and how big your passengers are. And surprisingly, it doesn’t feel like a “I can barely see over the steering wheel” behemoth like a Yukon or Suburban. As you saw above, I was able to maneuver the city streets of Baltimore without a problem.
The SUV-loving mom will really find her groove on the interior. Behind the driver’s seat, you’ll find a comfortable and high tech dash with a sleek 10.25″ touchscreen. While that sounds excessive, it offers a split screen so you can see several pieces of information at once if you want. And there are lots of options on the in-dash controls and on the touchscreen work exploring.
You’ll also find plenty of storage and connectivity up front. The SEL trim has the Qi wireless charging pad (which can be turned on or off through dash settings) as well as USB connections for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. And then there’s another USB charging port in the console. BUT WAIT… there’s MORE!
Just underneath this area is a storage compartment with MORE connectivity. I would imagine you could stick a purse of tablet or something underneath but I’m so short that my seat doesn’t really give me easy access to this space.
Also, the cupholders in the Palisade are so fun and amazing that I had to show them to you twice. They are just so functional. And fun. Did I mention how fun they are?
There are more practical things though for you and your many passengers (likely kids). And that’s where the great beyond comes into play.
The second row is fully equipped with three seats (captain’s chairs are an option), plenty of cupholders, rear climate control (that can be overridden up front), USB charging ports, and a power outlet. And there are even sunscreens for the windows. There’s really no need for the kids to ever look out the windows!
Even in the third row, which is surprisingly comfortable as the seats are power adjustable, passengers have USB outlets, cupholders, and the vents can be adjusted.
But the best part for moms everywhere is the DriverTalk option. No more yelling all the way to the back over screaming kids while competing with devices and headphones. Mom can turn on an intercom that sends a message directly to the third row. It’s still likely to go in one ear and out the other.
Now that I’ve sold you on the functionality, let’s talk details. This is what you need to know if you’re thinking about a purchase decision.
The Nitty Gritty of the Hyundai Palisade
Trim levels: SE (starting at $31.7k), SEL (starting at $33.7k), Limited (starting at $44.9k)
Seating capacity: 7 or 8 (depending on seating configuration)
Engine: 291 hp 3.8L GDI V6
Fuel economy: 22 mpg (combined), 19 City/26 Highway
What I drove: 2020 Hyundai Palisade SEL AWD
Price as pictured: $43,155 MSRP, including destination charge
And for even more details that would take too long to talk about here, I show you!
Video Review of the 2020 Hyundai Palisade
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