Eight-seat vehicles are popular with big families or people who like the ability to carry kids and their friends. The Hyundai Palisade is the latest entrant into the market and brings heaps of room and a high-tech cabin.
The Palisade not only provides an eight-seat alternative to Hyundai’s own Santa Fe, it’s tasked with stealing sales away from petrol-powered family haulers such as the Mazda CX-9 and Nissan Pathfinder, along with diesel body-on-frame off-roaders like the Toyota Prado.
If you are carrying lots of people around regularly the Palisade makes a lot of sense for the looks alone. This is the perfect opportunity to see if the kids fit comfortably in the third row and by all means, take them with you for the test drive and see how they like it.
At 4980mm long, 1975mm wide and 1750mm tall, with a 2900mm wheelbase, the Palisade is 295mm longer and 76mm wider than the Santa Fe, previously the largest SUV in the Hyundai stable.
Boot space is 311L with all three rows of seating in place, and 711L with the third row folded.
Where some carmakers work with Recaro to develop bucket seats for their sports cars, it feels like Hyundai has teamed up with La-Z-Boy to develop the vast, comfortable front seats.
They’re perfect for whittling away hours on the road, especially in the Highlander we have here where they’re heated and cooled. Combined with the broad, raised centre console and tablet-style infotainment display, they make the front of the Palisade feel a bit like mission control.
The base engine in the Palisade is a 3.8-litre naturally-aspirated petrol V6 with 217kW of power and 355Nm of torque, mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission and front-wheel drive.
Although all-wheel drive is available with the petrol overseas, Hyundai says it’s not compatible with right-hand drive. It drinks 91RON petrol, and claimed fuel economy is 10.7L/100km.
The more expensive option is a 2.2-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel with 147kW of power and 440Nm of torque, mated with an eight-speed automatic and all-wheel drive.
If those figures sound familiar, it’s because the engine is shared with the pre-update Santa Fe. Claimed fuel economy is 7.3L/100km on the combined cycle.
Hyundai says the latest version of the 2.2-litre engine and dual-clutch transmission featured in the latest Santa Fe isn’t currently available in the Palisade, but didn’t rule out bringing it as part of an update.
Braked towing capacity is 2200kg, down on the 2500kg on offer from the Santa Fe.
The Palisade will be covered by Hyundai Australia’s five-year, unlimited-kilometre new vehicle warranty with roadside assistance for the same period and lifetime capped-price servicing.
Maintenance is required every 12 months or 15,000km. The first five services in the 3.8-litre petrol Palisade will each cost $399, while the 2.2-litre diesel is more expensive at $469 per service.