A revised occupant compartment takes the Hyundai Santa Fe Sport from a marginal to a good rating in the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s (IIHS) small overlap front test. When equipped with optional front crash prevention, the 2017 Santa Fe Sport is a Top Safety Pick+ winner.
Prior to the changes, the midsize SUV’s structure failed to hold up in the small overlap test, which replicates what happens when the front corner of a vehicle collides with another vehicle or an object like a tree or utility pole. Intrusion measured as much as 10 inches at the lower door hinge pillar. The dummy’s head barely contacted the front airbag before sliding off, as the steering column was pushed to the right.
In contrast, the 2017 model’s driver space was maintained well, with maximum intrusion of 3 inches at the footrest. The dummy’s movement was well-controlled, and the head stayed on the front airbag until rebound.
The Santa Fe Sport also has good ratings in the moderate overlap front, side, roof strength and head restraint tests. To qualify for Top Safety Pick+, a vehicle must earn good ratings in those evaluations as well as the small overlap test. It also needs an available front crash prevention system earning an advanced or superior rating.
The Santa Fe Sport’s optional front crash prevention system earns a superior rating. The vehicle avoided collisions in IIHS track tests at 12 mph and 25 mph. The system also has a forward collision warning component that meets National Highway Traffic Safety Administration criteria.
The good small overlap rating and Top Safety Pick+ award for the Santa Fe Sport does not apply to the larger Santa Fe model.