Is the 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe Plug-In Hybrid a Good Car?

Looking to buy a midsize crossover that is easy on the environment? The 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe plug-in hybrid is a top choice! Here’s why.
Written by Brittni Brinn
Reviewed by Kathleen Flear
Jul 4, 2022
For a midsize crossover SUV that will save you money at the gas pump, the 2022
Hyundai Santa Fe
plug-in hybrid is an excellent choice. With an 8.5/10 rating and an Editors Choice award from Car and Driver, the Santa Fe provides a comfortable and stylish ride the whole family can enjoy.
With a starting price of $28,495, the Hyundai Sante Fe comes with a host of features—including the optional plug-in hybrid powertrain. Although the plug-in hybrid is only available in some states, Santa Fe’s will soon have a PHEV model available nationwide. 
Want to know more about the 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe plug-in hybrid? Here with the full tour is
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2022 Hyundai Santa Fe plug-in hybrid

Electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) are becoming more and more common as car manufacturers prioritize alternatives to gasoline-powered vehicles. Hyundai has some ambitious goals for future EV production, but for now, they are shining in the PHEV sector with the Santa Fe making top ten lists for reliability and style.
Some of the highlights of the Sante Fe plug-in hybrid are its five-star safety rating from the NHTSA and 31 miles of range using the battery alone. The interior is stylish without being gaudy and provides ample room for passengers and cargo.
The 2022 model is the first time that a plug-in hybrid option of the Santa Fe has been available. The main drawback is that the plug-in hybrid is currently only available in a few states:
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Maine
  • Massachusetts
  • Maryland
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Oregon
  • Rhode Island
  • Vermont

Pricing

The 2022 Santa Fe Plug-In Hybrid comes in two trim levels. Here’s the MSRP for each of them:
  • SEL trim: $40,535
  • Limited trim: $46,545
These price tags are a bit pricier than Hyundai’s other Plug-In Hybrid, the
Hyundai Ioniq
, but the trim levels for the Santa Fe may offer more of what you’re looking for. We’ll get into the bells and whistles included with each trim in a bit!
For now, let’s talk about price—even though the plug-in option is quite a bit higher than a base model Santa Fe, buying a hybrid will save you a considerable amount at the gas pump. Plus, your new Hyundai Santa Fe Plug-in Hybrid may also be eligible for a federal tax credit!
Depending on your budget, a Santa Fe Plug-In Hybrid may be a worthwhile investment.

Performance and fuel economy

The Santa Fe Plug-In Hybrid boasts a turbocharged 177-hp 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine and a 90-hp electric motor coupled with a 12.4 kWh battery.A six-speed automatic transmission and AWD system rounds out the engine.
The Santa Fe PHEV has decent fuel economy. According to the EPA, when the battery is fully charged, the Santa Fe Plug-In Hybrid gets 76 MPGe.Running on gasoline without support from the electric motor, the Santa Fe Plug-In Hybrid puts out a combined 33 mpg fuel efficiency rating.
Run out of gas? No problem! The Santa Fe Plug-In Hybrid can run for 31 miles on electric power alone. That’s seven miles longer than the
Toyota Prius Prime
’s driving range!
Speaking of running out of juice, you’ll have to charge up your Santa Fe if you want to take advantage of its impressive driving range. To get your battery up to 100%, you’ll need at least three and a half hours if you’re using a Level 2 wallbox charger. If you use a Level 1 or domestic socket, it will take over six and a half hours to get to a full charge.
If we had to use a word to describe the driving experience of the Santa Fe, it would be relaxed. You’re not going to win any races with this crossover, but for a comfortable, everyday ride, the Santa Fe delivers.

Exterior styling

The exterior of the 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe Plug-In Hybrid doesn’t scream futuristic—its solid and more traditional styling blends right in with the SUV crowd. Apart from its bold front grille, that is! 
You can still personalize your Santa Fe’s appearance to make finding it in the grocery store parking lot a little bit easier! Here are the eight exterior colors you can choose from:
  • Shimmering Silver
  • Twilight Black
  • Portofino Gray
  • Lagoon Blue
  • Quartz White
  • Hampton Gray
  • Stormy Sea
  • Calypso Red

Interior and comfort

The interior of the Santa Fe Plug-In Hybrid may not be luxurious, but it is definitely comfortable. Depending on which trim you choose, your interior options include a digital gauge cluster, a head-up display, heated rear seats, and ventilated front seats. There’s no fussiness about the interior—it’s solid, attractive, and accommodating for long road trips.
Another highlight of the Santa Fe is how spacious the interior is! With roomy passenger seating and space to fit 15 carry-on bags with all of the seats in use, the Santa Fe is ready for adventure! 
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Technology

Both trims of the Santa Fe Plug-In Hybrid include an impressive spread of entertainment and safety features. 
The entry-level SEL trim provides an 8-inch display screen, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Bluetooth connectivity, steering wheel audio and phone controls, dual front USB ports, wireless device charging, and more, with six speakers and two front LCD screens.
The Limited trim upgrades to a 10.25-inch wide touchscreen,12 speakers including subwoofer, and adds a navigation system.
In terms of safety tech, the Santa Fe is decked-out with a suite of cameras, airbags, and driver-assistance features including:
  • Lane Following Assist (LFA)
  • Electronic Stability Control (ESC)
  • ABS And Driveline Traction Control
  • Blind-Spot Collision-Avoidance Assist (BCA) Blind Spot
  • Lane Keep Assist (LKA) Lane Departure Warning
These safety features are just the tip of the iceberg—the Santa Fe received a five-star safety rating from the NHTSA. With this SUV, you can drive with confidence knowing that you and your passengers are well-protected.

Warranty coverage

All Hyundai drivers know that the brand is unbeatable when it comes to warranty coverage. Here’s a quick look at the standard limited and powertrain warranties that apply to the Santa Fe Plug-in Hybrid, including the PHEV battery warranty: 
  • Limited warranty: 5 years or 60,000 miles (whichever comes first)
  • Powertrain warranty: 10 years or 100,000 miles (whichever comes first)
  • Battery warranty: A lifetime warranty for the original owner
As a bonus, Hyundai now offers complimentary maintenance for three years or 36,000 miles.

Trim levels

You’ll have your choice between two trims: the SEL and the Limited. The base SEL trim has a digital key, the Smart Sense safety features listed above, a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster, and an 8.0-inch infotainment screen
With the Limited trim, you’ll add a 360-degree camera, ventilated leather seats, and will upgrade to a 10.3-inch infotainment screen.
Whichever trim you choose, you can enjoy the uniqueness of the Santa Fe. Not only is it the only plug-in hybrid in its weight class, it's only available in certain states.

The bottom line

As far asPHEVs go, the 2022 Santa Fe is a solid choice. With high ratings in terms of safety and overall performance, the Santa Fe functions exceptionally well as a daily driver. Add the Santa Fe PHEV’s decent price point, impressive driving range, and all-around comfort, and you’ve picked yourself a winner! 

2022 Hyundai Santa Fe PHEV vs. 2022 Toyota Prius Prime

We’ve sung the Santa Fe PHEV’s praises but now it’s time to see how it measures up to the competition. Let’s start with Hyundai’s main rival when it comes to plug-in hybrids: the
Toyota Prius Prime
The Prius Prime dominates when it comes to fuel economy, no question about it. Compare the Prime’s 54 mpg combined fuel economy and 133 MPGe hybrid ratings with the Santa Fe’s 33 mpg and 76 MPGe—see what we mean?
However, the Prime only has an electric driving range of 25 miles—seven miles short of the Santa Fe’s range.
Here’s a quick look at which of these two plug-in hybrids come out on top:
Model
Starting price
Fuel economy (gas only)
Fuel economy (gas + electric)
Driving range
Charging time (Level 2)
Hybrid battery warranty
2022 Hyundai Santa Fe Plug-in Hybrid
$41,295
33 mpg
76 MPGe
31 miles
3.5 hours
Lifetime
2022 Toyota Prius Prime
$29,245
54 mpg
133 MPGe
25 miles
2 hours
10 years or 150,000 miles

2022 Hyundai Santa Fe PHEV vs. 2022 Toyota RAV4 Prime

Another Toyota PHEV, the
RAV4 Prime
is closer in size but is a little more flexible in terms of price than the Santa Fe PHEV. The RAV4 Prime’s MSRP ranges from $30,790 to $44,840 depending on which trim you choose. 
The RAV4 PHEV wins out over the Santa Fe in terms of speed and engine performance, hitting a 7.4-second 60-mph time. The RAV4 also excels over the Hyundai in terms of driving range and fuel efficiency. If you’re looking for a crossover that can thrive on the highway, the RAV4 may be the better option.
The Santa Fe has more cargo space and arguably a nicer interior than the RAV4. You’ll also benefit from the fancier tech features and longer warranty provided for Hyundai plug-in hybrids.
Here’s a side-by-side comparison of the key features of the Santa Fe PHEV and the RAV4 PHEV:
Model
Starting price
Fuel economy (gas only)
Fuel economy (gas + electric)
Driving range
Charging time (Level 2)
Hybrid battery warranty
2022 Hyundai Santa Fe Plug-in Hybrid
$41,295
33 mpg
76 MPGe
31 miles
3.5 hours
Lifetime
2022 Toyota RAV4 PHEV
$30,790 to $44,840
40 mpg
94 MPGe
42 miles
2.5 hours
8 years or 100,000 miles
 

How to save money on car insurance

With rising gas prices, driving a plug-in hybrid is a great way to keep car costs low. Here’s another way to save on
an even bigger car-related expense
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