2016 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport vs 2016 Honda Pilot

If you’re looking to purchase a new compact crossover SUV, you’re in luck—there are enough options within this class to suit just about any driver’s style and budget. Compact SUVs are quickly becoming more popular than even the family sedan for their combination of enhanced, versatile space and unique styling. Two of the newest models to hit showroom floors are the 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport vs 2016 Honda Pilot—and today, Carolina Hyundai of High Point has the results of the showdown.

The Pilot has the obvious advantage of third-row seating—so, if you need the extra seats for a growing (or grown) family, there’s really no way around dishing out the extra cash. With a more class-appropriate exterior and modern interior, Honda has stepped up its game with 2016 Pilot to compete more directly with more streamlined competitors. So far, the Pilot’s combination of ride quality and luxury-level available features position it as a strong member of the large crossover class. However, if you need the extra space, there are more economical choices (namely the Hyundai Santa Fe), and if you don’t need the space, you can free up some funds for more features on a compact crossover—like the 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport.

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2016 Santa Fe Sport vs 2016 Honda Pilot
$24,950 MSRP $29,995
27 mpg highway Fuel economy 27 mpg highway
35.4 cu. ft. Cargo volume (all seats in place) 16.5 cu. ft.
3459 lbs. Curb weight 4054 lbs.

Customizable higher trims

2016 Santa Fe Sport comes stacked with impressive base specs, but one of the most impressive things about this vehicle is its customizable higher trims. The 2016 Santa Fe Sport outshines its competition in standard horsepower; Santa Fe Sport’s GDI 2.4L 4-cylinder makes 190 horsepower and 181 lb.-ft. of torque—that’s more than Honda CR-V, the Pilot’s smaller sibling, and Chevy Equinox.

Whether to buy a compact or large crossover SUV of course comes down to your individual needs—if you would otherwise be looking at a minivan to haul your troops, a large SUV might be just the compromise you’re looking for between your desire to stay stylish and your space needs. If you can get away with the 2016 Santa Fe Sport’s ample 71.5 cu. ft. of maximum cargo space, then why not opt for a fuel efficient, lighter vehicle with a better turn ratio and available top-of-the-line technology?  

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