A while back, we brought you the Kia Telluride SUV, which I loved. Today we look at its sister, the 2020 Hyundai Palisade, a 3-row SUV that competes with the Toyota Highlander, Ford Explorer, and Honda Pilot just to name a few.
I am driving the top-of-the-line Limited, but you can step down to the SEL, or the base model SE, which starts at $31,550.
While the Telluride looks more rugged, this Palisade looks more sophisticated. The exterior is attractive with a large grill, upper running lights and the LED headlights sit low on the front fascia. Chrome runs between the wheels down low, while up high, chrome surrounds the side windows. A rear spoiler and dual exhaust finish out the exterior appearance.
All Palisade models come with a 3.8-liter V6 and an 8-speed automatic that puts out 291-horses. My tester is all-wheel drive, but you can get it in front-wheel drive only.
It is important to note that everything I show you and point out on this vehicle is standard equipment, there are no extra charge options.
Open the door to the Palisade and you’ll see beautifully quilted Nappa leather seats and gorgeous door panels with elegant Harmon Kardon speaker covers.
When you hit the start button, bright colorful gauges come to life that you can configure and that changes with each drive mode you choose. One of the coolest features I have ever seen is when you turn on the left blinker, the speedometer turns into a left side blind spot camera, and the right blinker will activate a right side camera that replaces the tachometer, to aid with changing lanes. There is also a terrific head-up display.
There is a nifty console with a sliding cover, two really cool cup holders that fold out of the way, and a cell phone charger. There is a pass-through storage area under it that is accessible to the driver and passenger. Another compartment is covered and serves as your armrest.
Higher up, you’ll find transmission buttons which look great, buttons for the heated and cooled seats, the heated steering wheel, the auto hold button, and you can turn off the start/stop system.
This is also where you change the drive modes from snow, to eco, to comfort, to sport, and finally smart. Smart mode will change between Eco, Comfort, and Sport depending on the way you are driving it.
At the highest point on the dash is a 10.25” touchscreen that runs everything, including navigation, audio, Bluetooth, Apple Carplay and Android Auto. A swipe to the left gives you more apps including all the vehicle settings.
Unlike many SUVs on the market, the Palisade is extremely comfortable for the second and 3rd row passengers. The second-row captain chairs are heated and cooled, and they slide up and back and they also recline. There are 3 cup holders in each back door and, in fact, throughout the vehicle you’ll find 14 total cup holders.
The third-row seat reclines, is quite comfortable, and access is easy thanks to buttons on the second-row seats that slide them easily out of the way.
As you go to the rear cargo area, Hyundai says it has the fastest rear lift gate in the industry going up or down in five seconds, and it is motion-activated. There is really good cargo area behind the third-row, and even a hidden compartment under the floor.
The biggest difference between the Telluride and this one is power-fold third row seats that go completely flat, and from the rear area you can flip the second-row seats down if needed.
There are seven total USB ports for phone charging including two in the back of the front seats for second row occupants.
Other standard features include dual power sunroofs, parking sensors, adaptive cruise control with stop and go, forward collision avoidance, blind spot monitoring in the mirrors, lane keeping assist, and attention warning.
There is a Quiet Mode button that turns off the rear speakers if you have sleeping kids, or you can hit the Driver Talk button so the driver can amplify his or her voice to the third row through the radio speakers.
Finally, there is an ultrasonic rear occupant sensor. Once you lock the vehicle, it will remind you on the dash to check for occupants. If there is any movement in the rear area after the doors are locked, the horn will blow, the lights will flash, and you’ll get a text immediately.
Another couple of neat features are there are clips built into the vehicle to hold the 2nd and 3rd row seat belts to keep them from hitting the Palisade and making noise. Also, when you use the remote start, you don’t have to put your foot on the brake and hit the start button like every other vehicle I’ve been in. Once you sit down and put your seat belt on, the vehicle is ready to go.
Ride and Drive
The Palisade rides and drives as good as it looks, it is very quiet inside, and it will tow 5000 pounds. Fuel economy is rated at 19 City and 24 highway. Acceleration is ample and I would go so far as to say it’s good in Sport Mode.
What You’ll Pay
The best thing about the Palisade is the price. Total MSRP is $47,605 and based on the competition today, this may be the best value out there, and it comes with a 10-year/100,000 mile warranty.
I have to hand it to Hyundai, with the Palisade, they thought of everything.
2020 Hyundai Palisade Limited
- What I liked most: Everything, but mainly the features for the price.
- What I would change: I tried and can’t think of a thing.
- MSRP: $46,560 base price, total MSRP with transportation: $47,605.
- Fuel Economy: 19 city/24 highway/21 combined.
- Official Color: Moonlight Cloud.
- Odometer reading when tested: 7800 miles.
- Weight: Curb weight 4231 pounds, GVWR is 5871 pounds.
- Final Assembly Location: Ulsan, Korea.
- Spare Tire: Compact temporary.
- Length-Width-Height: 196.1” long/77.8” wide/68.9” high.
- Fuel Tank Capacity: 18.8 gallons with the filler on the driver’s side.
- Towing Capacity: 5000 Pounds.
- 2020 Palisade in a few words: A Hyundai homerun that will make all automakers sit up and take notice.
- Warranty: 5-year/60,000 mile bumper-to-bumper with roadside assistance, and 10-year/100,000 mile power train warranty.
- Manufacturer’s website: www.HyundaiUSA.com
- Up Next: 2020 Chevy 2500 LTZ 4x4