Need Cargo Space? Look at Hyundai SUVs

Hyundai SUVs have some of the best cargo space in their class. How do they stack up against other similar SUVs?
Written by Andrew Kidd
Reviewed by Kathleen Flear
SUVs have far surpassed their sedan cousins in terms of cargo and people capacity. But now that that distinction holds less weight, it’s time to compare apples to apples.
One brand in particular—
—has excelled in carrying whatever it is you need to haul on your commutes. Three of Hyundai’s SUVs—the Tucson, Santa Fe and
—were all top or near-top of their segments when it came to interior cargo space, according to

The breakdown of cargo space in the Hyundai Tucson, Santa Fe, and Pallisade

The 2022 Hyundai Tucson Limited and Tucson Limited Hybrid topped the small SUV segment for cargo space, measuring in at 21.7 and 21.5 cubic feet of space behind the backseat, respectively.
The 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe Calligraphy measured in at 25.3 cubic feet of space behind the backseat, topping other more luxurious SUVs in the mid-size two-row segment.
The 2020 Hyundai Palisade Limited came in second in the midsize three-row SUV segment at 26.2 cubic feet behind the second row and 11.2 cubic feet behind the third row. Only the 2021 Volkswagen Atlas SEL Premium beat it out for first with measurements of 29.9 cubic feet and 14 cubic feet.
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How big is a cubic foot?

A cubic foot is pretty much what it sounds like: an imaginary cube with dimensions of 12 inches by 12 inches. A cubic foot of water, for instance, would be about 7.5 gallons of water, or roughly equivalent to one and a half of those 5-gallon jugs of water you find in an office water dispenser.
For example, the Hyundai Tucson would be able to carry roughly 32 of those 5-gallon jugs of water in its 21.7 cubic foot cargo area, while a Hyundai Palisade could fit just shy of 40 of them. 
Now that’s probably more water than you’ll ever need unless you’re prepping for the next big natural disaster or something similar, but it’s a good visualization of how much cargo space you’re working with here.
MORE: Avoid the 2021 Chevy Blazer for an 'Under the Radar' Hyundai

What if I need more cargo space?

These numbers from don’t account for “maximum” cargo volume, which is what you’d get when you calculate the cargo space behind the driver and passenger seats when the second (and maybe third) rows are folded down. That’s because there isn’t really a good way to measure them consistently, taking into consideration the complex geometries involved.
So while you’re likely able to squeak out some more cubic footage by folding the seats down, the actual numbers (and methodology for calculating that) will vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, which can make it difficult to compare with other models. 
Your best bet to determine an SUV’s total cargo space before you commit is for you to see it in person and gauge it for yourself.

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