Sunday Drive: Flocking to the snow geese in a Hyundai Palisade
We drove our first Palisade back in 2020 just after it arrived in the U.S. market for the 2020 model year. It has been a very popular choice for many here in the U.S. In fact, even our oldest son has a 2020 Palisade, which works perfectly for him and his family (two kids, 8 and 4).
As we recall, at the time it arrived here, it was quite a popular item. We remember that our son got a call from a friend who sold Hyundais who informed him they would be receiving three that week if he was interested. He had to act quickly in order to secure one, and he has loved it ever since.
We were excited to get into the top-of-the-line Calligraphy Edition of the newly refreshed version of Hyundai’s largest SUV to date. For 2023, the front end has been revised and the infotainment system has been greatly updated to include a 12.3-inch display. It can also be had with a 12.3-inch driving display, which was what our loaner was equipped with.
We thought there was no better way to get really engaged with the new Palisade than to take it on a long Sunday drive. We had missed the annual Snow Goose Festival, which is held the first week of March in Delta. However, we figured the geese would likely still be in town during the second week of March when we had the Palisade. So, on a sunny Sunday afternoon, we headed to Delta with the hope of seeing the geese.
The Calligraphy edition of the Palisade came equipped with all the great creature comforts we expected as well as many we did not expect at this price point.
One huge surprise to us was what Hyundai has dubbed an Ergo-Motion driver’s seat. It was hard to determine what exactly that meant while reading the literature we received in advance of our test drive. We thought it would most likely be a more comfortable seating surface designed to keep the driver’s position ergonomically correct.
About an hour into our ride, Craig was suddenly surprised by a massage function that came on automatically to help with his lower lumbar support and bottom end on the drive. This system can be set to do this every hour and/or turned on with the push of a button near the seat controls on the bottom left-hand side of the seat.
Surprising as this may have been, it was an awesome addition, especially as we learned how to use it without having to wait an hour to get a lower lumbar massage.
On the safety side, the Palisade is loaded and again exceeded our expectations. Adaptive cruise control is becoming more and more the norm in the auto industry; however, getting a vehicle that will see all its surroundings on the freeway and change lanes by itself is not.
On its heads-up display, the Palisade would show the vehicles in front and to the sides of us while we were driving on the freeway. When we engaged the turn signal, as long as we kept contact with the steering wheel, the SUV would automatically change lanes when it was safe, then find the lines and center of the new lane and switch off the turn signal all on its own. This is a feature we have only experienced in a very high-end and very expensive Mercedes-Benz sedan.
Again, Hyundai is setting the standard for other manufacturers to follow and putting technology into the hands of most anyone out there. Having an SUV change lanes all by itself is amazingly cool!
There is plenty of space inside of this mid-sized SUV; in fact, maybe it should be considered a full-sized SUV as it will seat up to eight people with a bench seat in the second row.
Our test ride came with captain’s chairs, and our grandkids said they liked it better that way as it made access to the rear seat or their stuff easier for them. Hey, we gotta go with the experts in this case.
In the Calligraphy, the second and third rows of seats were also heated, which makes for a much nicer winter, and the grandkids became experts in getting that rear heat going when they were with us.
There is enough space behind the third-row seating for two or three carry-on pieces of luggage plus whatever else can be piled in there. With the use of the camera option of the rear-view mirror, it didn’t matter what was in the SUV. The driver had a clear view of what was behind at all times.
Equipped with a 3.8-liter V-6 engine producing 291 horsepower and 262 foot-pounds of torque, this SUV was fun to drive. It can pull up to 5,000 pounds, making it ready for any weekend adventures a family has in mind.
Our only disappointment with the Hyundai was it did not support wireless Apple CarPlay. It did, however, have a wireless charger for our phones and would allow two phones at a time to be hooked up to the SUV.
In case you were wondering, the geese were indeed still in Delta. After our 90-minute drive, it was awesome to see them out on Gunnison Bend Reservoir. It proved to be a great day for a Sunday drive!
Base price: $50,800
Destination charge: $1,295
Price as driven: $52,310