Which Used Hyundai SUV Is The Best? 4 Best Options!


Hyundai has been in the US market since the early 2000s and, while the first models weren’t great, the company has reached new levels of quality and comfort. The company started with small sedans, and now it offers a wide array of crossovers and SUVs while also offering sedans. Since the brand has become so popular and reliable, more people are interested in buying an SUV from this Korean brand. So, which used Hyundai SUV is the best? Let’s find out.

Which used Hyundai SUV is the best?

The best used Hyundai SUVs are the 2021 Palisade, 2019 Tucson and Kona, and 2018 Santa Fe. These vehicles have the fewest issues of the entire Hyundai SUV lineup and have earned the highest reliability ratings in magazines such as Consumer Reports and JD Power. We’ll go over each in this article.

The largest SUV on this list is the Hyundai Palisade, which entered the market to replace the Santa Fe XL. Since it arrived, it has earned a reputation for comfort, looks, and reliability. The best used Hyundai Palisade to buy is the 2021 model, as it has shown to have few mechanical issues.

The Hyundai Santa Fe is the second-largest vehicle on this list. The best year for a used Hyundai Santa Fe is the 2018 model. This is a surprisingly reliable year, as it has minimal issues in sites such as Car Complaints. Also, it comes with heaps of features and plenty of room for adult passengers in the back.

If you want a smaller option, you can opt for the Hyundai Tucson, one of the company’s most popular SUVs. The best year to buy a used Hyundai Tucson is 2019, as it is very reliable and has the least number of problems. It’s worth highlighting that it’s also one of Hyundai’s most reliable models, showing few issues throughout its history.

The smallest option on this list is the Hyundai Kona. The Kona is ideal if you want a practical SUV that can easily navigate the urban streets and still take you on a long weekend trip. The best year to buy a used Hyundai Kona is 2018.

In the following sections, we’ll explain why these are the best used Hyundai SUVs to buy. Also, we’ll provide other years that are worth considering. Let’s start with the Hyundai Palisade.

Best used large Hyundai SUV: 2021 Hyundai Palisade

Though it’s the newest one on this list, the 2021 Hyundai Palisade is now, technically, a used SUV. Nevertheless, this large SUV has earned awards for its comfort, features, and handling. Unfortunately, though, it won’t win any fuel economy competitions.

Magazines such as Consumer Reports and JD Power have ranked it with high scores, and the Palisade has reached top-rated lists on several websites. They have also agreed that the ideal combination has the 3.8L V6 with the AWD trim.

The Hyundai Palisade isn’t perfect, and the 2021 model suffers from windshield cracking, just like the 2020 model did. So, be sure to perform a thorough revision of the vehicle. Because it’s so new, we can’t recommend other years.

Best used midsize Hyundai SUV: 2018 Hyundai Santa Fe

The Hyundai Santa Fe is one of the brand’s oldest models and has existed since the mid-2000s. Unfortunately, it didn’t enjoy a good reputation in those first years, but Hyundai worked hard to improve it. So, now, the Santa Fe is an excellent option if you want comfort without such a large vehicle as the Palisade.

The 2018 Hyundai Santa Fe has a low number of complaints and has above-average reliability. Magazines such as JD Power and Consumer Reports rank it in the top three of its class, and it has everything you need when it comes to interior features.

The Hyundai Santa Fe has average handling and offers excellent fuel economy. Plus, it’s comfortable enough to fit adults in the back on long trips. The Santa Fe also comes loaded with driver aids, so if you’re looking for a complete midsize SUV, this is a great choice.

Other years have ranked highly in reliability, though not as high as the 2018 Hyundai Santa Fe. Some good used Santa Fe years include 2019 and 2016.

Best used compact Hyundai SUV: 2019 Hyundai Tucson

The Hyundai Tucson is one of the brand’s most popular SUVs, as it fits several purposes. It has excellent ground clearance, is comfortable, and handles well. Also, it’s great on fuel mileage and can take four adult passengers in decent comfort.

There’s one distinction that we have to make. For the third generation, which entered the market in 2016, Hyundai opted to make the Tucson bigger, which stands as a mix between a compact and a midsize SUV.

If you’re looking for a compact option, then the second generation is the one for you. If this is the case, then the 2013 Hyundai Tucson is a good used model to consider. The best combination is the 2.0L inline-4 engine, with an automatic transmission and AWD, so look for a low-mileage model with these characteristics.

If you want something bigger, then the best Hyundai Tucson to get is the 2019 model. This is because it has very few issues reported on sites, such as Car Complaints. Plus, the 1.6L turbo inline-4 engine offers adequate acceleration and torque. However, it’s best to opt for all-wheel drive.

Which Used Hyundai SUV Is The Best? 4 Best Options!

Best used crossover SUV: 2019 Hyundai Kona

The Hyundai Kona is the company’s compact crossover that has taken the market by storm. It competes with such brands as Mazda and Honda, and the 2019 model is the better year to buy. It comes with a 2.0L engine, surprisingly large for its class, which gives good acceleration at higher speeds, but it won’t win a drag race.

The 2019 Hyundai Kona also has few issues compared to the 2018 model. This reliability, comfort, and practicality made it rank close to the top in many magazines as one of the best crossover SUVs in the market.

If you want more power, then the best model to get is the 1.6L inline-4 turbo, with the 7-speed dual-clutch transmission, with all-wheel drive. This package offers the most versatility in an SUV that’s made to tackle the urban jungles. But, all the while, it’s up for adventure on the weekends.

Another excellent year for the Hyundai Kona is 2021, which again is technically a used vehicle. Make sure to look for a low-mileage option, and you have a great SUV.

Closing thoughts:

Hyundai is a brand that has raised the ranks to become one of the best in the North American market. Hence, many people want to buy a used model, and it’s common for them to ask: which used Hyundai SUV is the best? In this article, we covered different sizes, from the large to the crossover.

This article described how the 2021 Palisade, 2018 Santa Fe, 2019 Tucson, and Kona are the best SUVs for each size category. We also mentioned other years that you can consider. It’s important to note that, in general, Hyundai is a reliable brand, especially in recent years. So, it’s not a brand that we usually say to avoid.

When it first got to the US, Hyundai had to fight for its reputation. The first vehicles were basic and had nothing to write home about. This changed throughout the years, and the Korean brand is now synonym with comfort, features, and reliability. Sure, it’s not the most luxurious brand. So, it won’t compete with Mercedes Benz and BMW, and that’s fine.

Instead, think of Hyundai as a brand that opts for the practical with a hint of luxury. The Palisade is an excellent example. For the moment, we hope this article provides all the information that you need to find the best used Hyundai SUV for you.

Kern Campbell

I've had a passion for four-wheel-drive vehicles since I was a kid riding in the back seat of my Grandfather's Jeep Grand Wagoneer. I have owned a lot of vehicles over the years. They each have their pros and cons and I look forward to sharing my knowledge with you so you can find the vehicle that's just right for your needs.

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