Jones Ford Casa Grande Compares 2017 Ford Explorer VS 2017 Hyundai Santa Near Casa Grande, AZ

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2017 Ford Explorer

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VS

2017 Hyundai Santa

Safety Comparison

The middle row seatbelts optional on the Explorer inflate when a collision is detected, helping to spread crash forces over a much larger area of the body and limiting head and neck movement. This can help prevent spinal and internal injuries. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer inflatable seatbelts.

Both the Explorer and the Santa Fe have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front-wheel drive, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all-wheel drive, collision warning systems, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, front and rear parking sensors and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty Comparison

There are almost 7 times as many Ford dealers as there are Hyundai dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Explorer’s warranty.

Reliability Comparison

The Explorer has a standard “limp home system” to keep drivers from being stranded if most or all of the engine’s coolant is lost. The engine will run on only half of its cylinders at a time, reduce its power and light a warning lamp on the dashboard so the driver can get to a service station for repairs. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer a lost coolant limp home mode, so a coolant leak could strand you or seriously damage the truck’s engine.

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without their vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports predicts that the Explorer’s reliability will be 28% better than the Santa Fe.

Engine Comparison

The Explorer’s optional 2.3 turbo 4 cyl. produces 58 lbs.-ft. more torque (310 vs. 252) than the Santa Fe’s 3.3 DOHC V6. The Explorer Sport/Platinum’s standard 3.5 turbo V6 produces 75 more horsepower (365 vs. 290) and 98 lbs.-ft. more torque (350 vs. 252) than the Santa Fe’s 3.3 DOHC V6.

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

The Explorer has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the Explorer’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Santa Fe:

 

Explorer

Santa Fe

Front Rotors

13.85 inches

12.6 inches

Rear Rotors

13.5 inches

11.9 inches

The Explorer’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Santa Fe are solid, not vented.

The Explorer stops shorter than the Santa Fe:

 

Explorer

Santa Fe

 

60 to 0 MPH

123 feet

125 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the Explorer has larger standard tires than the Santa Fe (245/60R18 vs. 235/60R18). The Explorer’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Santa Fe (255/50R20 vs. 235/60R18).

The Explorer’s optional tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Santa Fe Ultimate’s 55 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Explorer offers optional 20-inch wheels. The Santa Fe’s largest wheels are only 19-inches.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Explorer’s wheelbase is 2.6 inches longer than on the Santa Fe (112.8 inches vs. 110.2 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Explorer is 2.9 inches wider in the front and 2.5 inches wider in the rear than on the Santa Fe.

The Explorer Limited 4WD handles at .80 G’s, while the Santa Fe Limited AWD pulls only .74 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Explorer Limited 4WD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the Santa Fe Limited AWD (27.7 seconds @ .63 average G’s vs. 28.4 seconds @ .59 average G’s).

Chassis Comparison

The front grille of the Explorer uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space Comparison

The Explorer has 4.9 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Santa Fe (151.5 vs. 146.6).

The Explorer has 1.5 inches more front headroom, 1.6 inches more front legroom, .6 inches more front hip room, 2.1 inches more front shoulder room, 1.2 inches more rear headroom, 1.4 inches more rear hip room, 2.7 inches more rear shoulder room, 2.1 inches more third row headroom and 2.4 inches more third row legroom than the Santa Fe.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The Explorer’s cargo area provides more volume than the Santa Fe.

 

Explorer

Santa Fe

Behind Third Seat

21 cubic feet

13.5 cubic feet

Third Seat Folded

43.9 cubic feet

40.9 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

81.7 cubic feet

80 cubic feet

The Explorer has a standard third row seat which folds flat into the floor. This completely clears a very large cargo area quickly. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer seats that fold into the floor.

Pressing a switch automatically lowers or raises the Explorer Sport/Platinum’s optional second and third row seats, to make changing between cargo and passengers easier. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

Ergonomics Comparison

The Explorer offers a remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

On a hot day the Explorer’s driver can lower the front windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Santa Fe can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

In case you lock your keys in your vehicle, or don’t have them with you, you can let yourself in using the Explorer XLT/Limited/Sport/Platinum’s exterior keypad. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer an exterior keypad entry system, and its Blue Link can’t unlock the doors if the vehicle doesn’t have cell phone reception or the driver can’t contact the service.

The Explorer’s standard speed-sensitive wipers speed up when the vehicle does, so that the driver doesn’t have to continually adjust the speed of the wipers. The Santa Fe’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted. The Explorer’s optional wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically according to the amount of rainfall on the windshield.

The Explorer offers optional automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Santa Fe offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

The Explorer (except Base/XLT/Sport)’s optional Enhanced Active Park Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Economic Advantages Comparison

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Explorer is less expensive to operate than the Santa Fe because it costs $63 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost less on the Explorer than the Santa Fe, including $17 less for front brake pads.

Recommendations Comparison

The Ford Explorer outsold the Hyundai Santa Fe by almost two to one during the 2016 model year.

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