All versions of the Hyundai Palisade are powered by the same engine, a 3.8L V6 that makes 291 horsepower. Power is sent to the front wheels via an 8-speed automatic, though all-wheel drive is an option across the entire range. Acceleration isn't blindingly quick, but neither is the Palisade slow. It'll have no problem getting up to highway speeds reasonably quickly and never feels underpowered in any sort of normal driving.
The Hyundai Palisade is split into four trim levels with the SE representing the base trim, the SEL and Limited covering the mid-level and the Calligraphy at the top.
Base SE trimmed Palisades come with a ton of standard features including 18-inch alloy wheels, projector beam headlights with LED daytime running lights, automatic headlights with high-beam assist, an 8-inch color touch screen housing the sound system, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, Bluetooth hands free wireless audio streaming, a rear-view monitor with parking guidance and 2nd and 3rd row HVAC vents with separate controls for the 2nd row.
Hyundai also includes their smart cruise control system which features stop and go systems as well as a lane follow assist feature, meaning that the car will speed up and slow down with traffic while essentially doing much of the work of keeping the car pointed in the correct direction. It's a fantastic system for reducing driver fatigue on longer drives or even on shorter drives filled with stop and go traffic on the freeway. And since the feature uses many of the same sensors, Hyundai have also thrown in a forward collision avoidance system as standard on the base SE.
The SEL costs just a couple of thousand dollars more than the SE, but adds an 8-way power adjustable driver's seat, heated front seats, dual automatic temperature controls, a proximity key with push button start and a blind spot collision avoidance assist system.
Springing for the Limited trim will get buyers nicer, 20-inch wheels, a heads-up display projected onto the windshield, a 12.3-inch fully digital instrument display cluster, a dual sunroof roof, premium Nappa leather seating surfaces and Hyundai's Blind View Monitor system which will display video from a side mounted camera on one of the car's screens any time a blinker is activated. The Limited also gets LED headlights, LED taillights, a 10.25-inch touchscreen for the included navigation system, a Harman Kardon premium sound system with 12 speakers, heated and vented 2nd row seats, power folding, unfolding and reclining for the 3rd row of seats and puddle lamps that are projected from under the side mirrors.
The Calligraphy trim tops the line up and comes with all-wheel drive, exclusive front and rear lights, a trim specific grille, quilted leather door panels and 20-inch wheels.
Breaking off a long-term relationship is, as a general rule, tough stuff. That tends to be true when it comes to human connections, but when it comes to parting ways with long-term test vehicles, we've found it's a lot easier. While the Roadshow team has always been thankful for the opportunity to live with a vehicle for 12 months to gain a deeper understanding of their pros and cons, generally speaking, it's been easy to hand the keys back at the end. Not so with our long-term.
That's particularly unusual because you wouldn't look at the Palisade and assume it's going to be a heartstring-tugger, the way a more-focused sports car or a hardcore 4x4 might. After all, this is a mass-market, three-row crossover SUV -- a beast of familial burden. What's to get attached to?
As it turns out, plenty.
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