Should I Buy a Hyundai Santa Fe or a Land Rover Freelander?


Should I buy a Hyundai Santa Fe Elite or a Land Rover Freelander SD4 SE?

Regards, Kon.


If it were me, I’d be going with the Hyundai Santa Fe every time (it’s a far smarter consumer choice). The Land Rover Freelander seems impressive on paper but Land Rover has real reliability challenges and only a three-year warranty (Hyundai: five-year warranty). Land Rover is now owned by Tata, and Indian company, and I’m not sure whether they’re a net asset or liability.


2015 Land Rover Freelander.jpg

Price: $56,600 (RRP)
Safety: five-star
Manufactured: United Kingdom
Warranty: 3yr/100,000km
Seats: five
Engine: 2.2-litre diesel 4cyl
Power: 140kW @ 3500rpm
Torque: 420Nm @ 1750rpm
Fuel: diesel
Economy: 7.0L/100km
Length: 4.50m
Width: 2.005m
Height: 1.740m
Kerb weight: 1955kg
Towing: 2000kg
Tyres: 235/60R18 on 8.0-inch alloy
Full-sized alloy spare wheel & tyre


2015 Hyundai Santa Fe.jpg

Price: $53,240 (RRP)
Safety: five-star
Manufactured: South Korea
Warranty: 5yr/Unlimited km
Seats: seven
Engine: 2.2-litre diesel 4cyl
Power: 145kW @ 3800rpm
Torque: 436Nm @ 1800-2500rpm
Fuel: diesel
Economy: 7.3L/100km
Length: 4.69m
Width: 1.880m
Height: 1.69m
Kerb weight: 1968kg
Towing: 2000kg
Tyres: 235/55R19 on 7.5-inch alloy
Full-sized alloy spare wheel & tyre

One thing about which I am certain is that Land Rover they will sting you heavily for options and extras. Land Rover Freelander SD4 options include premium paint $3400 (Hyundai: $595), 19-inch alloys $850-$1275 (Hyundai 19-inch alloys are standard), sunroof $3300 (Hyundai: panorama glass roof is standard), etc. Outrageous. They're charging you like a Range Rover owner for gear that should come either standard or a lot cheaper.

Frankly Land Rover has never been on a winner with Freelander. It's been a card-carrying dog since Day One. It's so on the nose as a badge that they're changing the name to Discovery Sport with the next one, in the hope that it will bark and scratch less. (Trying to repeat the success of Range Rover Sport. Let's see how that goes...)

Beware the runout discounts on the last-ever Land Rover Freelander nameplate. The depreciation on them is likely to rival Dresden on February 15, 1945. Any up-front discount will be quickly eroded by the rapid depreciation.

In comparison, I have no hesitation whatever in recommending the Santa Fe to you - it's a great vehicle.


Many thanks for your advice, I had no idea that Land Rover was now owned by Indians - it makes a difference to me. I, like you, have concerns about whether Indian ownership will be an asset, I will have serious concerns regarding quality of workmanship and durability of the vehicle - always a trade mark of Land Rover.

As you may realise I am looking at a mid size AWD or 4x4 and have looked at many, discounted a few and left with following as contenders (less the Land Rover now) - the Outlander, Challenger, Kuga, Santa Fe and a couple of undecided, the Jeep Cherokee and Renault Koleos, Any comments on any of these would be appreciated, otherwise I'll discuss with your brokerage team. Thanks for putting me in touch with them. 

Many thanks, Kon


I really think the Santa Fe is ahead of the others you mentioned - it is just awesome value for money. X-TRAIL is the only other one I’d consider, but Santa Fe beats it in many tangible ways (diesel engine performance, for example).