The Car Connection Hyundai Veracruz Overview
The Hyundai Veracruz is a five-door crossover vehicle introduced in the 2007 model year. Sized and priced to compete with the Ford Flex, Chevrolet Traverse, Toyota Highlander and Honda Pilot, the Veracruz gets some of its mechanicals from the smaller Hyundai Santa Fe. It hasn't been a sales home run, but it does give Hyundai a seven-seat crossover vehicle to offer to folks who find the Santa Fe's seven-passenger model a bit too small.
The Veracruz has offered a single powertrain in its four years on the market: it's a 3.8-liter V-6 engine with 260 horsepower, teamed to a six-speed automatic transmission with Shiftronic manual gear selection. The big crossover offers optional all-wheel drive, though for most driver the front-drive edition is a fine choice for all-weather driving, though it's far from exciting to drive.
The Veracruz has a sleek look that's no longer as distinct as it was back in 2007, but still it's nicely executed and detailed, especially inside, where the soft, flowing dash wears soft-touch plastics and big, well-lit instruments. Some of the interior trim doesn't hold up to the highest standards under close scrutiny, but anyone who's driven a Toyota Highlander or the Traverse will see the Veracruz' interior as competitive.
With three rows of seating, thecan seat up to seven, though the third row won’t be an option for many adults; kids will be just fine back there, though entry and exit is difficult. The first two rows are comfortable, with enough headroom and legroom for all and plenty of storage spaces for small items; cargo space is sacrifices in the name of form, due to the sloped hatch. Seat comfort is particularly good, compared with the flatter cushions you'd find in the contemporary Highlander, though the chairs in the Ford Flex are probably the best in the class.
Nearly every vehicle in this class is a top performer, and the Veracruz follows that trend. Crash-test results from the insurance industry-sponsored IIHS are top-notch, and the standard equipment list includes stability control, anti-lock brakes, front side airbags, and side-curtain bags.
Hyundai has trimmed the Veracruz lineup to two models, the GLS and Limited. The base vehicle has power features, a CD player, satellite radio and USB connectivity. The upmarket version offers Bluetooth, a 605-watt audio system and leather seating, along with a sunroof, a navigation system, a rear-seat DVD entertainment system and a power liftgate. Satellite and HD radio are new additions, but they're in a bundle with a rearview camera and a touchscreen nav system--and only available on the Limited model.