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2023 Hyundai Palisade Highlander Diesel AWD assessment


The Hyundai Palisade seems to have actually resonated with Australian patrons.

It sits neck-and-neck with its smaller, extra reasonably priced Santa Fe stablemate within the gross sales race, and is edging ever nearer to the Mazda CX-9. It’s nonetheless a way off the Toyota Kluger, Australia’s best-selling giant crossover, however that mannequin has a very good 20 years on the beginner Palisade.

A slightly vital replace for 2023 ought to assist the Palisade’s momentum. Costs are up and the vary has shrunk, however there are extra options, the native debut of Hyundai’s Bluelink app, and a recent new lookup entrance.

All Palisade fashions additionally get twin 12.3-inch shows and USB-C retailers inside, plus new inside and exterior color choices.

The highest-spec Palisade Highlander retains its body-colour cladding and bumpers however will get an excellent glitzier chrome grille and distinctive skid plates, whereas the Elite goes for a special look with a darkened grille.

Blink and also you’ll miss it, however the Highlander additionally will get barely completely different tail lights to the Elite – search for the strips of sunshine within the satin trim.

Maybe crucial change of all is the addition of extra security gear, which has helped bump the Palisade as much as a five-star ANCAP score.

With extra know-how than earlier than and a daring new look, the Palisade has grow to be much more of a very good factor.

How a lot does the Hyundai Palisade Highlander Diesel AWD price?

The 2023 Hyundai Palisade vary now opens at $65,900 earlier than on-roads for the Elite V6 FWD (the unnamed base mannequin is gone), and tops out with our tester: the Highlander Diesel AWD, priced from $79,900 earlier than on-roads.

In between these two variants sit the Elite Diesel AWD ($69,900) and Highlander V6 FWD ($75,900). Elite costs are up by $3700 for 2023, whereas Highlander fashions are up by $4200.

All fashions can be found with a alternative of both seven or eight seats, with the previous that includes particular person second-row captain’s chairs and the latter that includes a second-row bench. No matter which possibility you select, you’ll pay the identical worth.

Our tester, full with attractive Sturdy Emerald paint – a $695 possibility, as with all the opposite premium paints – rang up at $83,364 drive-away based mostly on a Sydney postcode.

Whereas each the Elite and Highlander are supplied with a black inside, solely the latter presents completely different inside color choices. For 2023, these are Heat Gray and Khaki Inexperienced, changing Beige and Burgundy. Every color is a no-cost possibility.

As a big crossover designed with the North American market entrance of thoughts, the Palisade is conceptually much like the Mazda CX-9, Toyota Kluger, and upcoming Nissan Pathfinder. None of these fashions, nonetheless, can be found with a diesel engine, although the Kluger presents a thrifty hybrid.

The flagship CX-9 Azami LE is priced from $73,878 earlier than on-roads, whereas the Kluger Grande Hybrid is $75,700 and the Pathfinder Ti-L, due later this 12 months, is priced at $77,890 earlier than on-roads. You may additionally rely the bottom Jeep Grand Cherokee L Night time Eagle as a rival, with a equally spacious cabin to the Hyundai however a steeper $82,250 record worth.

Whereas a big diesel-powered unibody crossover is uncommon, giant diesel body-on-frame SUVs are a dime a dozen. Their ranks embody the likes of the Ford Everest Platinum V6 ($77,690) and the Toyota LandCruiser Prado VX ($77,157).

What’s the Hyundai Palisade Highlander Diesel AWD like on the within?

The Palisade stays one of the crucial well-packaged, luxuriously appointed SUVs within the mainstream giant SUV phase. We’d go as far as to name it the category benchmark.

Take for example the third row. I’m 180cm tall, and I can comfortably sit again there. There’s higher legroom than a Kluger, plus higher headroom than a CX-9 on account of a extra upright roofline.

The Palisade is obtainable with a alternative of a three-seat bench or particular person captain’s chairs for the second row. You now not miss out on seat air flow in the event you go for the bench, with every outboard seat that includes heating and air flow.

Our tester had the captain’s chairs, which recline and will be dropped with the press of a button contained in the boot space, and in addition tilt and slide ahead with the press of a button on the seat itself.

Entry to the third row is pretty simple, with a decently sized opening, however choosing the captain’s chairs offers you a centre walkway making it even simpler to get to the farthest row.

Having taken an influence nap in one of many captain’s chairs following an extended drive, I can affirm they’re comfy.

With both second-row possibility, you take pleasure in an nearly utterly flat ground and subsequently loads of legroom for all second-row occupants. Headroom can be wonderful.

Each occupant within the second and third rows has a USB-C outlet and two cupholders, whereas there’s a 12V outlet for every row along with two up entrance.

The inside isn’t excellent. The bizarre wood-look trim stays even with the 2023 replace, and appears as unconvincing as ever. Nicer fake woodgrain can be appreciated or higher nonetheless, a continuation of the engaging, tactile metal-look trim on the centre console.

The indicator stalk additionally lacked the standard damping we normally anticipate in a Hyundai product, although this will likely have been unique to our tester.

In total atmosphere, nonetheless, the Palisade shades the fussier Kluger and largely matches the CX-9 in upscale really feel.

The dashboard is completed in soft-touch supplies, which prolong to the perimeters of the centre console, whereas the pillars and headliner are completed in tender suede trim.

All that’s lacking when it comes to atmosphere is ambient lighting, despite the fact that colour-adjustable ambient lighting is accessible within the North American market and was additionally enhanced for 2023.

The brand new digital instrument cluster appears a lot the identical as in different Hyundai merchandise, although like numerous up-spec Hyundai and Kia fashions it options the intelligent Blind Spot View Monitor – this tasks footage of the car’s blind-spot to the instrument cluster everytime you activate the indications.

There’s a bigger touchscreen for 2023, up from 10.25 inches to 12.3 inches. The voice immediate button now works for extra than simply smartphone mirroring, permitting you to make use of prompts for options just like the heated and ventilated seats. You may nonetheless long-press it to make use of voice prompts for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

The voice recognition for the native infotainment is a bit patchy. It alternated between completely understanding lengthy, uncommon place names that even Google Assistant struggled to grasp, and utterly botching them. On one event, the system understood my meant vacation spot completely, solely to ship me to a special location in the identical suburb.

The infotainment system additionally contains features like a Driver Discuss perform, which transmits the motive force’s voice to a microphone within the third row, plus a quiet mode that reduces stereo quantity for components of the cabin, and voice memo and Sounds of Nature apps.

Whereas Android Auto nonetheless continues to solely take up solely the left two-thirds of the display screen, the bigger display screen measurement means it now not appears frustratingly small. Apple CarPlay takes up the entire display screen, as earlier than.

There’s just one USB-A outlet left within the automobile, and it’s what you’ll use for smartphone mirroring as Hyundai continues to go with out wi-fi mirroring. Each different USB outlet within the automobile – six in complete – is the newer USB-C format.

The entrance seats are comfy, with the motive force’s seat boasting a thigh extender. Lacking, nonetheless, is the motive force’s seat therapeutic massage perform accessible in markets just like the US. In order for you a therapeutic massage when you drive, you’ll want to take a look at the pricier, unrelated Genesis GV80.

The Palisade’s inside isn’t simply elegant, it’s purposeful, too. The centre stack sticks with standard buttons as a substitute of du jour touch-capacitive switchgear, they usually’re well-sized and tactile.

The local weather controls specifically are logically laid out and positioned in a manner that makes them simple to learn and attain.

The continued presence of exhausting shortcut buttons for the infotainment touchscreen can be appreciated, and Hyundai designers have managed to keep up a big quantity of standard switchgear with out the dashboard wanting complicated and button-heavy.

Storage is great. Beneath the centre console is a sizeable storage space the place you’ll additionally discover charging retailers, whereas the centre console itself accommodates a coated bin and a concealable pit.

The bin is so cavernous it will possibly swallow a 600ml bottle standing up and have clearance to spare, whereas the pit options intelligent, retractable cupholders, a wi-fi charging pad, and the USB-A outlet for the smartphone mirroring.

You too can cowl it fully for a cleaner look, with the lid completed in the identical engaging metal-look trim as the remainder of the centre stack. The door pockets may also match 1L bottles.

By way of youngster seat anchor factors, there are two ISOFIX factors for the second row (no matter whether or not you choose the seven- or eight-seat possibility), plus top-tether factors for every second-row seat. Within the third row, there are solely two top-tether factors and one ISOFIX level.

There’s 311L of boot area with the third row erect, rising to 704L with the third row dropped.

The third row should be dropped manually, despite the fact that a power-folding third row is accessible in different markets, however you’ll be able to drop the second row seats with the push of a button within the cargo space.

The Palisade has a full-sized alloy spare, whereas the cargo cowl will be stashed in a useful compartment below the boot ground.

We’d be remiss if we didn’t point out the brand new Bluelink linked automobile companies, accessible through the Bluelink smartphone app.

For too lengthy, automobile corporations have largely left this stage of connectivity in Australia to Tesla regardless of providing this tech in different markets. Hyundai’s newest era of connectivity know-how debuts domestically within the Palisade, with plans to progressively roll it out to different Hyundai fashions.

Contained in the automobile, the Bluelink suite contains an SOS emergency name button, voice management for the infotainment system, calendar syncing and dwell climate and visitors data. The Bluelink menu on the touchscreen additionally contains car diagnostics.

The headline act, nonetheless, is the smartphone app which lets you view the car’s standing and management numerous features. For instance, you’ll be able to test remotely if the automobile is operating, the place it’s parked, whether or not it’s locked or unlocked, and if the home windows are open and the air-conditioning is operating. You too can test the remaining vary.

Not solely that, you’ll be able to management a raft of features as effectively. For instance, you can begin or cease the car through the app, activate the hazards, sound the horn, open or shut the home windows, and modify the local weather management.

The app isn’t excellent – we discovered it laggy at occasions, and in the event you’re in key fob vary of the car we wouldn’t trouble utilizing it to unlock the automobile. The dwell surround-view digital camera feed perform additionally wouldn’t work for us. Nonetheless, that is a formidable stage of connectivity we really feel many homeowners – notably these with households – will respect.

What’s below the bonnet?

Whereas the smaller Santa Fe moved to a brand new platform and gained a trio of turbocharged four-cylinder engines, together with hybrid and plug-in hybrid choices, the Palisade’s powertrains are carryover for 2023.

Hyundai continues to limit front-wheel drive in Australian-market Palisades to the petrol V6, and all-wheel drive to the diesel.

Our tester had the 2.2-litre turbo-diesel four-cylinder engine, which produces 147kW of energy at 3800rpm and 440Nm of torque between 1750 and 2750rpm. These outputs are down 70kW on the petrol V6, however up 85Nm.

Over a loop comprising a mixture of inner-city, suburban and freeway driving, we averaged 7.9L/100km – we averaged 10.8L/100km on the identical loop within the pre-facelift Highlander V6 FWD. Over 586km of driving the 2023 Palisade Highlander, we averaged 8.8L/100km.

The official mixed cycle claims for the petrol and diesel engines are 10.7L/100km and 7.3L/100km, respectively.

No matter engine, towing capability is 2200kg braked and 750kg unbraked – although solely the diesel can have its most towball obtain upped from 100kg to 180kg.

It’s no match, then, for the likes of a body-on-frame Prado or Everest with their 3.5t towing capacities, but it surely holds its personal in opposition to a CX-9 or Kluger, each of which is able to tow as much as 2t.

How does the Hyundai Palisade Highlander Diesel AWD drive?

The turbo-diesel might price an additional $4000 over the V6, however the inclusion of all-wheel drive – to not point out the superior gasoline economic system – makes this powertrain the choose of the Palisade vary.

The petrol V6 is significantly thirstier and a heavy proper foot can provoke wheelspin off the road. With the all-wheel drive diesel, there’s extra grip up entrance and safer dealing with, plus higher gasoline economic system.

Whereas it has a little bit of a workmanlike engine word and a slight delay off the road, the turbo-diesel 4 idles easily and has loads of grunt even with a number of further our bodies on board.

Engine noise and wind noise are additionally effectively suppressed, and at freeway speeds you’ll be able to simply stick with it a dialog.

There’s a faint quantity of tyre roar on coarser chip roads, and generally round 100km/h we noticed an occasional wind buffeting noise plus a faint A-pillar rattle on tough roads, however in any other case the Palisade’s refinement is difficult to fault.

We’d like to see a model of the Genesis GV80’s {smooth} turbo-diesel inline-six, and there’s precedent for a six-cylinder oil-burner in a flagship Hyundai crossover – the 2007-15 ix55/Veracruz – however the turbo-diesel 4 is sufficiently succesful and refined.

The Santa Fe diesel has moved to a dual-clutch automated whereas the Palisade sticks with a torque-converter, however now we have no complaints concerning the retention of this smooth-shifting unit.

The Palisade absorbs bumps effectively, with a properly damped trip that avoids feeling too floaty. It feels extra tied-down, for instance, than a Kluger, and settles shortly from bumps and undulations.

Generally you overlook how huge the Palisade is because of its balanced dealing with and its well-weighted steering. Whereas it hardly looks like a sports activities automobile, its outsized dimensions are made extra manageable via deft tuning of the suspension and steering and solely a decent parking zone or slim avenue will remind you simply how huge this bus is.

The steering is gentle and direct with out feeling disconnected and feather-light. You may activate Sport mode so as to add some synthetic weight to the steering, but it surely feels wholly pointless; Sport mode additionally holds onto gears for a contact too lengthy for my liking.

The Palisade stays good and flat in corners, with well-controlled physique roll. It’s not as nimble because the smaller Santa Fe, but it surely’s impressively poised for a big crossover.

As is the norm for Hyundai’s lane assist programs, lane-keep help proves to be considerably extra intrusive than some rival manufacturers’ programs and might tug on the steering wheel slightly assertively, whereas Lane Following Help is so assertive you nearly really feel it may drive the automobile itself – however preserve these palms on the wheel…

The lane assist programs don’t trouble me all that a lot. What does trouble me is the Palisade’s new visitors signal recognition function.

It detects indicators effectively, thoughts you, even detecting indicators for roundabouts and the like. The issue is it sounds a chime each time it detects a velocity restrict signal, and sounds a number of chimes in the event you exceed a velocity restrict by greater than 5km/h. Hyundai says this is because of a brand new European-market requirement.

The overspeed chime is considerably comprehensible, however the system’s insistence on sounding a chime each time you enter a brand new velocity zone is completely overbearing.

For instance, over the course of our week with the Palisade, we discovered it might chime nearly each single time we’d flip into a special avenue, no matter whether or not there was a velocity restrict signal.

The worst half is the system will default to on, and there’s no strategy to have simply the popularity function on with out the chimes – it’s all or nothing. After a number of days of incessant chiming, I’d discover myself going into the settings each time I began the automobile simply to show it off.

With the system off, there’s nonetheless navigation data-based signage on the infotainment system’s map display screen.

What do you get?

Palisade Highlander highlights:

  • 10-inch head-up show
  • Quilted Nappa leather-based upholstery
  • 12-way energy driver’s seat
  • Eight-way energy passenger seat
  • Heated and ventilated entrance seats
  • Heated and ventilated second-row seats
  • Heated steering wheel
  • Driver’s seat reminiscence
  • Twin sunroofs
  • Suede headliner
  • Rear door blinds
  • Rain-sensing wipers

New options for MY23 embody:

  • Digital rear-view mirror
  • Backup gentle information
  • Distant Good Parking Help (transfer the automobile along with your key fob)
  • Distant begin
  • 3D surround-view digital camera
  • Energy-adjustable entrance passenger lumbar

That’s along with options discovered within the Palisade Elite:

  • 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster
  • 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system
  • Hyundai Bluelink linked companies
  • Satellite tv for pc navigation
  • 15W wi-fi charger
  • Apple CarPlay, Android Auto (wired)
  • 12-speaker Infinity sound system
  • Driver Discuss, Quiet Mode and Sounds of Nature features
  • Tri-zone local weather management
  • Leather-based-wrapped steering wheel
  • Palms-free energy tailgate
  • Electrochromatic rear-view mirror
  • 16 cupholders
  • Tyre strain monitoring
  • 20-inch alloy wheels with full-sized spare
  • LED headlights

That’s an infinite record of normal equipment, even at this worth level, however there are some notable omissions. You may’t get ambient lighting as you’ll be able to in markets just like the US, whereas the Palisade additionally misses out on a massaging driver’s seat and a power-folding third row.

By way of gear, the Palisade Highlander places a Kluger Grande within the shade, although the CX-9 Azami LE nonetheless has a few aces. Its second-row captain’s chairs are power-adjustable, whereas its wooden trim is actual and its LED headlights are adaptive.

Is the Hyundai Palisade Highlander Diesel AWD secure?

After being dinged with a four-star score from ANCAP earlier this 12 months for the pre-update mannequin – an outlier when most up-to-date launches have acquired 5 stars – the up to date Palisade was reassessed by ANCAP and awarded 5 stars.

It acquired scores of 84 per cent for grownup occupant safety, 88 per cent for youngster occupant safety, 62 per cent for susceptible street person safety, and 83 per cent for security help.

The improved security efficiency is essentially because of the presence of a brand new centre airbag plus a extra refined autonomous emergency braking (AEB) system.

Commonplace security options embody:

  • Autonomous emergency braking (AEB)
    • Metropolis, City Interurban speeds
    • Car, Pedestrian, Bike owner detection
    • Junction help
  • Blind-spot help
  • Driver consideration warning
  • Main Car Departure Alert
  • Excessive Beam Help (auto high-beam)
  • Clever Velocity Restrict Help
  • Lane Following Help
  • Lane-keep help
  • Rear cross-traffic help
  • Rear Occupant Alert
  • Secure Exit Help
  • Adaptive cruise management with Cease&Go
  • Entrance and rear parking sensors (x4)
  • 7 airbags incl. front-centre airbag

Palisade Highlander provides:

  • Blind Spot View Monitor
  • Encompass View Monitor (360 cameras)
  • Entrance and rear parking sensors (x6)
  • Distant Good Parking Help

We miss out on the Freeway Driving Help function present in markets just like the US, which options assisted lane adjustments and adjusts the car’s place in a lane ought to a car in an adjoining lane get too shut.

How a lot does the Hyundai Palisade Highlander Diesel AWD price to run?

The Palisade is backed by a five-year, unlimited-kilometre guarantee.

Servicing is required each 12 months or 15,000km, whichever comes first. The primary 5 companies every price $489, which is $90 greater than the petrol and works out to be $2445 over 5 years.

That’s significantly pricier than a Toyota Kluger Hybrid, for which the primary 5 companies every price $250. It compares extra favourably with the Mazda CX-9 which, whereas cheaper over 5 years at $1982, has shorter intervals of 12 months or 10,000km.

CarExpert’s Tackle the Hyundai Palisade Highlander Diesel AWD

Hyundai hit the nail on the top with the Palisade when it comes to packaging and presentation.

The updates for 2023 serve to burnish the Palisade’s credentials, including much more know-how and even bolder appears.

Its boxy form maximises inside area, whereas its exterior is daring and its inside intuitively laid-out but premium in look.

Whereas the Palisade is considerably uncommon in being a big unibody crossover with a diesel powertrain, the small four-cylinder engine has sufficient grunt for city and freeway driving and noise is well-suppressed.

The Palisade’s giant dimensions belie its tidy dealing with, whereas its trip is pliant with out being floaty.

All of this makes the Palisade a cushty, economical household hauler, with its raft of USB retailers and cupholders and ample storage making it very good for road-tripping.

All we’re left with are nitpicks: service pricing that could possibly be a bit cheaper, wooden trim that could possibly be extra convincing, and a visitors signal recognition system that must be silenced.

With a five-star ANCAP score now below its belt, the Palisade’s profitable mixture of know-how, versatility and elegance is difficult to disregard.

Click on the pictures for the complete gallery

MORE: Every part Hyundai Palisade




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