Hyundai Santa Fe winter vehicle of the year
Keith Griffin's picture

Does Winning Winter Accolades Help Santa Fe, Sorrento?

The New England Motor Press Association, where I am an active member and immediate past president, has bestowed two major awards on Hyundai and Kia. The two brands need to exploit the accolades for Santa Fe and Kia Sorento.

For its winter vehicle awards, in the category Best All-Weather SUV/Crossover Under $28,000, the Hyundai Santa Fe Sport and Kia Sorento

Once known only as value leaders, the Santa Fe and the Sorento share many of the same qualities that put them ahead of their competitors in the 2014 Winter Car competition. Both are “right-sized,” with comfortable seating for five, and boast high levels of standard equipment, as well as ample power and winter-taming all-wheel drive.

“This award from NEMPA recognizes the careful detail our engineers put into building the Santa Fe,” said Trevor Lai, Product Manager, Hyundai Motor America. “With features like the Active Cornering Control All-Wheel-Drive (AWD) system and Vehicle Stability Management (VSM) system, Santa Fe drivers can operate their vehicles in confidence in a wide range of weather and road conditions.”

“Every year during Official Winter Vehicle of New England judging, NEMPA members are looking for vehicles that perform well in a number of different segments. Competitors in this particular segment have it tough,” said Craig Fitzgerald, NEMPA president. “Not only do they have to offer outstanding winter performance, but they have to provide all the qualities New England drivers are looking for in a crossover – cargo capacity, room for six-plus – and then do it at a price under $28,000. That’s a tall order that Hyundai managed to pull off with the Santa Fe.” (And I'm sure his sentiments were similar for the Sorrento.)

Hyundai and Kia need to start putting the push on that these two models are great for handling in all types of weather conditions. It's not something associated with the brands. Winter may be behind us but spring rains and other meteorological challenges lie ahead.

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