Monday, May 23, 2022



The Santa Fe has been a staple in the Hyundai lineup for just over two decades, but this is just the second year that the Calligraphy has served as the top-of-the-line trim for non-hybrid/plugin models.

Though a bit larger than the Tucson, the 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe offers seating for only five occupants in a spacious and upscale cabin that has a spacious storage area (36.4 cubic feet) behind the second row of seats.

In addition to the Calligraphy, a new trim debuts for 2022 with the XRT slotted in between the SEL and Limited editions. The SE continues to serve as the base model with a starting price of $27,700 of including destination and delivery. 

There are standard hybrid and plugin hybrid Santa Fe models, but this review is based on the 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe Calligraphy AWD gas-fueled model. It carries a hefty starting price of $43,885 with freight charges included, but the list of included equipment is so long as to make expensive options unnecessary. The only things added to my test vehicle were the calypso red paint ($400) and carpeted floor mats ($195) bringing the total to $44,480.

Among comfort and convenience features included were Nappa leather seating surfaces, a perforated leather-wrapped, heated steering wheel, exclusive Calligraphy headliner, 8-way driver and 6-way adjustable power passenger seats, dual climate control with rear air vents, tilt-and-telescoping steering column, proximity key with push-button start, hands-free Smart liftgate, a 10.25-inch touchscreen with navigation, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Harman Kardon Premium Sound, and 3-year complimentary Hyundai Blue Link connected services.

Safety features include a surround-view camera system, blind-spot warning, forward collision avoidance, lane-keeping assist, lane-following and highway driving assist, and navigation-bases Smart cruise control. The latter is also standard on Limited trim.

LED headlights, rain-sensing wipers, privacy rear glass, front and rear parking sensors, and roof rails also are included. The 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe Calligraphy rides on 20-inch wheels.

A 2.5-liter turbocharged inline 4-cylinder engine is standard on the 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe Calligraphy and is mated to an 8-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. Paddle shifters are included for manual gear selection  SE, SEL, and new XRT Santa Fes get naturally aspirated 2.5L 4-cylinder.

The turbo is rated at a max 281 horsepower and 311 pound-feet of torque, a significant jump over the 191/181 from the naturally aspirated 2.5L on the lower trims 

Fuel figures for the turbo 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe Calligraphy with front-wheel drive are 22 miles-per gallon city, 28 highway, and 25 combined while optional all-wheel propulsion, available on all trims, knocks the numbers down to 21/28/24.

Regular octane fuel is recommended.

It’s easy to see why the Santa Fe has been a consistent seller since its introduction as the company’s first SUV in 2001. It hit six figures in sales for the first time in 2014 and reached its all-time high of 133,171 three years later, according to figures from

In the Covid year of 2020 sales dipped to 101,513 but bounced back to 112,705 in 2021. Through April of this year Hyundai reports sales at 36,656, a slight drop from the the 39,040 from the same period the year before. Some of that likely can be attributed to the bump in sales for the redesigned 2022 Hyundai Tucson.

What I liked about the 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe Calligraphy:
The interior is roomy and upscale. Infotainment features are plentiful and also user-friendly. The turbo-charged version is very peppy. There is generous legroom front (44.1 inches) and back (41.1) and well as plenty of stowage space in the rear.

What I didn’t like about the 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe Calligraphy: There’s not really much of anything not to like about the Santa Fe. It’s not a high-performance SUV such as some of the luxury models coming from Europe but you’re not going to be embarrassed pulling away from an intersection either.

Would I buy the 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe Calligraphy? Definitely. This is a very good-looking SUV that also is very functional. If you don’t need 3-row seating it is ideal. (If you do need 3-row seating, check out the Hyundai Palisade or the Sorento from its South Korean colleague Kia.) The SEL trim, however, offers a better bargain than the Calligraphy with a starting price of $29,450 for FWD models but gets the less powerful engine.

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