The 2023 Hyundai Santa Fe Plug-In Hybrid has peppy acceleration, a roomy cabin, lots of standard features and tech, and an all-electric range of 31 miles. It’s a well-rounded family vehicle and offers good value for the money, even as more and more plug-in hybrids become available.
Base Price: $47,3700
As Tested: $48,915
Mileage: 76 MPGe combined electricity + gas / 33 mpg highway combined gas only
The Santa Fe PHEV was introduced for the 2022 model year, joining the popular gas-powered and hybrid versions of the Santa Fe. For 2023, the Santa Fe PHEV gets some additional standard features including a 10.25-inch touchscreen, voice recognition, and Highway Driving Assist, Hyundai’s semi-autonomous driver assistance technology.
The 2023 Santa Fe Plug-in Hybrid comes in two trims: SEL Convenience and Limited. Starting prices are $42,410 and $47,670, respectively. All-wheel drive is standard. There’s room for five passengers in two rows of seating.
The powertrain is a turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine, an electric motor, and a 13.8-kWh battery. Total output is 261 horsepower and 224 pound-feet of torque. The transmission is a six-speed automatic. The gear selector uses push buttons.
Acceleration is brisk from a stop and when you want to merge and pass at freeway speeds. The six-speed shifts smoothly and quickly. The transition between electric and gas power is seamless and not noticeable. Brakes have a normal fee, and steering is relatively responsive. The Santa Fe PHEV stays planted when cornering with little body lean. Visibility is limited to the rear due to the thick roof pillars. Standard all-wheel drive means you’re ready for the ever-changing weather in the Pacific Northwest. All in all, the Santa Fe PHEV is comfortable and capable, whether you’re tooling around town or cruising on the highway.
The Santa Fe PHEV has 31 miles of all-electric range. I barely used any gas during my week-long test drive – I only travelled about five miles in gas-powered mode after I depleted the electric power.
It takes about four hours to fully charge the battery with a Level 2 (240-volt) charger, and eight to 10 hours with a Level 1 (120 volt) regular household plug.
Fuel efficiency is excellent with electric and gas, and ok with gas only. EPA ratings for my tester are 76 MPGe (miles per gallon equivalent) with electric and gas power, and 33 mpg with gas only. I got 84 MPGe during my week with a mix of city and highway driving.
The cabin is attractive and upscale, especially considering the price point. Materials look and feel nice, and most are soft-touch. Seats are roomy and comfortable with decent leg- and headroom in both rows. In fact, five adults will be comfortable in the Santa Fe PHEV, even on long trips.
Standard features include proximity key system with remote start, keyless entry, push-button start, rearview camera, dual-zone automatic climate control, cabin air filter, cloth upholstery, eight-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, heated front seats, leather-wrapped steering wheel, 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, infotainment system with
10.25-inch touchscreen, navigation, HD Radio, satellite radio, Bluetooth, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, four USB ports, voice recognition, wireless device charging, manual rear sunshades, automatic high beam headlights, roof side rails, 12-volt power outlet, and Hyundai digital key which lets you use your smartphone as your vehicle key.
Available features include a surround-view camera system, leather upholstery, ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, 12-speaker Harman Kardon audio system, and a panoramic sunroof.
Standard driver assistance technologies include forward collision warning, forward automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, lane-departure warning, lane-keep assist, Blind-spot monitoring, pedestrian and cyclist detection, rear cross-traffic alert, rear parking sensors, Highway Driving Assist (Hyundais’ semi-autonomous driver assistance tech that keeps the vehicle in its lane and will adjust braking and steering in the flow of traffic), driver-attention monitoring, vehicle exit warning (alerts passengers leaving the vehicle if other vehicles are approaching), and rear-seat alert.
Available driver assistance technologies include a blind-spot camera, front parking sensors, and Remote Smart Parking (which lets you use the key fob to park the vehicle when you’re not in it).
The large 10.25-inch touchscreen dominates the dash and looks great with its sharp graphics. It’s easy to see and reach, and there are handy physical controls for common functions such as volume, tuning, climate, and heated and ventilated seats.
Cargo space is excellent for a hybrid crossover; in fact, the Santa Fe PHEV has the same amount of room as its gas-powered sibling with 36.4 cubic feet with both rows of seating in place, and 72.1 cubes with the second row folded down. The 60/40 second row folds in a jiffy thanks to power buttons, and you can stash smaller items in underfloor storage. A hands-free liftgate with auto open is standard.
The Santa Fe Plug-In Hybrid has Hyundai’s excellent warranty: five year/60,000-mile basic warranty and a 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty.
31 miles of all-electric range
Good value for the money
Loaded with features and tech
Roomy and comfortable cabin
Standard Android Auto and Apple CarPlay
User-friendly infotainment system
Fuel efficiency could be better in gas-only mode
My tester starts at $47,370. Carpeted floor mats are $210. Delivery fee is $1,335 bringing the grand total to $48,915.
The 2023 Santa Fe Plug-In Hybrid has a lot going for it with its 31 miles of all-electric range, peppy acceleration, smooth ride, roomy and comfortable cabin, and an impressive list of standard features and tech. It’s definitely worth checking out if you’re looking for a plug-in hybrid crossover.