What Is the Towing Capacity of a Hyundai Santa Fe?

Got yourself a good lookin' Santa Fe and don't know how much it can tow? In this article, we're going over the towing capacity of the Santa Fe and some of its features.

When it comes to the Hyundai Santa Fe, it’s known mainly for its premium interior features, darn good fuel economy, and the fact that it was designed for adventure. It’s a compact SUV and it really is a fantastic vehicle of choice.

However, it’s not our duty to create a sales pitch for you in order to convince you to go out and buy this SUV. Nope, all we really want to do is talk about the towing capabilities and performance. And as the title of the article suggests, the Hyundai Santa Fe towing capacity is the main specification that we want to focus on.

So, what can this luxury SUV tow? Can it hang with the other top competitors in the field? Let’s find out the answer to those questions and many more, shall we?

What’s the Hyundai Santa Fe towing capacity?

It’s kind of complicated. We say “kind of” as, in reality, it’s not that complicated but there are a few critical components that affect what the Santa Fe will be capable of towing. For starters, if you want to get the most out of towing with this SUV, you’re going to need the available trailer brakes and pre-wired harness.

Regardless of the trim level, if you opt against the proper trailer equipment for this SUV, it’s only going to be able to tow up to 1.650 pounds. However, and we just alluded to it, there are indeed different trims for the Santa Fe (though that’s more or less expected from a new vehicle).

Now, the different trims themselves aren’t what’s important regarding the Hyundai Santa Fe towing capacity. What’s important are the different engine options that are available, and this ties into the different trims. Let’s break this down a little bit here.

  • The 2.5L Turbocharged Inline 4-cylinder engine: This is the more powerful of the two engine options, and it comes equipped with the Santa Fe Limited, Calligraphy, and Calligraphy 2.5T with AWD trim levels. Sporting 311 lb.-ft of torque and 277 horsepower, this engine can allow you to tow up to 3.500 pounds.
  • The standard 2.5L Smartstream Inline 4-cylinder engine: The power and towing capabilities of this engine dips a little bit. It comes standard on the SE and SEL trim levels, and it produces 191 horsepower and 181 lb.-ft of torque. Altogether, the towing capacity for these trims is 2.000 pounds.

However, and this can’t be stressed enough, the integrated trailer brake system needs to be equipped with any trim level to achieve the maximum towing capacities listed. Otherwise, you’ll be stuck with a Santa Fe that can only tow up to 1.650 pounds.

Regarding how this SUV compares to the other SUVs on the market, there are certainly others that will dwarf this when it comes to towing capacity. Yet, at its max, this is more than respectable.

4 features that make the Santa Fe amazing at towing

The best modern vehicles that have any ability to tow will oftentimes come designed with a plethora of different features to help assist in that area. The Santa Fe is certainly no different, and the ultra-talented team at Hyundai added some really nice and handy performance enhancements, so to speak, to their SUV.

#1: Trailer Sway Control

It really wouldn’t matter what the Hyundai Santa Fe towing capacity was if towing with the vehicle was unsafe. One of the staple features in the towing world helps to negate that from occurring. If you’re familiar with towing technology, then you probably already know what to expect from the Trailer Sway Control system here.

Basically, when the system senses that your trailer is beginning to sway on the road, the Electronic Stability Control light will begin to flash. Then, the throttle will be reduced, and the brakes will engage. Thus, this will stabilize both your trailer and the Santa Fe.

#2: HTRAC All-Wheel Drive

Terrain and driving conditions aren’t always going to be optimal, but the Santa Fe has the ability to stray off of the beaten path. Hyundai has an available HTRAC All-Wheel Drive system that can help mightily with this. Whether you’re pulling a trailer in such conditions or are out just having a little bit of fun, the all-wheel drive can make life a lot easier (and more enjoyable).

#3: Blind-Spot View Monitor

As simple as this technology is, it can be extremely convenient while towing with your Santa Fe. The name of the system speaks for itself as the Blind-Spot View Monitor will show a feed of your blind spots on the 12.3-inch display. When attempting to switch lanes on the highway, it’s nice to have this sight right in front of you.

#4: Surround View Monitor

Coupled with the Blind-Spot View Monitor, the Surround View Monitor provides camera views from the rear, sides, and front right on the dash to deliver about as many additional eyes as you could ask for. Even while not towing, this additional tech makes driving so much safer on the road.

The cargo and storage volume for the Santa Fe

Okay, so we already got towing out of the way and thought that we’d also make mention of the Santa Fe’s cargo space and overall storage volume.

Storage space is there, no doubt about that, as there’s a total cargo volume of 72.1 cubic feet. Behind the second row, it’s around 36 cubic feet.

Each of the different trims also offers convenient cargo features such as the underfloor storage tray for much smaller belongings, and the 60/40 split fold-flat seats to account for much larger items and more storage space overall.

Final thoughts

At its peak, the Hyundai Santa Fe towing capacity can reach 3.500 pounds. However, that’s when you get the specific trims that feature the 2.5L Turbocharged Inline 4-cylinder engine. Additionally, the proper trailer equipment needs to be rigged to avoid only being able to tow up to 1.650 pounds with this SUV.

Even at its peak, the Santa Fe isn’t going to be a towing powerhouse. However, at 3.500 pounds, you could still haul some fun toys for the family, or even maybe a smaller travel trailer to sleep a few people.

If you’re looking for a much more powerful SUV capable of towing heavier loads, you may want to look into the Audi Q7. Here’s the good news. We’ve already broken down the Q7’s towing capacity and all the goods in a different post. Maybe you should check that one out!

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Tyler Jones

Tyler is much like a swiss knife. Even though he has a degree in Computer Science, he knows almost everything there is to know about camping. He has been writing for HeadlessNomad since 2021 and has contributed with over 100 articles. If you have an outdoor-related question, then Tyler much likely knows the answer.