NEW FOR 2009:

– Standard rear parking assist and audio system USB and auxiliary inputs
– New interior colours: Beige, Black and Brown leather available on Limited

For 2009, the Hyundai Veracruz receives new rear parking assist and music player auxiliary outlets as standard equipment.

Built on a stretched version of the Santa Fe platform, the Veracruz uses a 3.8-litre V6 engine and six-speed automatic transmission with manual shift mode. The GL trim line is front-wheel drive, while the GLS and Limited come with all-wheel drive. All models come with three rows of seats for seven-passenger seating.

Features on the GL include 17-inch alloy wheels, dual-zone automatic climate control, CD/MP3 stereo with auxiliary input, floor mats, conversation mirror, illuminated vanity mirrors, fog lights, front and rear mud guards, heated cloth seats, eight-way power driver’s seat, 60/40 split-folding second-row seats, 50/50 split-folding third-row seats, leather-wrapped steering wheel, heated mirrors with puddle lamps, power locks with keyless entry, power sunroof, power windows with driver’s auto up/down, rear parking assist, variable intermittent wipers, front wiper de-icer, rear washer/wiper, rear spoiler, roof rack side rails, cruise control, woodgrain interior accents, and trip computer.

The GLS adds 18-inch alloy wheels, automatic headlamps, auto-dimming rearview mirror, compass, leather upholstery, and rain-sensing wipers.

The Limited adds driver’s side memory, 115-volt power outlet, chrome exterior door handles, illuminated front door scuff plates, auto-dimming exterior mirrors, power-adjustable passenger seat, garage door opener, six-CD/MP3 stereo, power-adjustable pedals, power liftgate, proximity key, LED taillamps and rear-seat DVD entertainment system.

The largest vehicle in Hyundai’s stable, the Veracruz comes with numerous luxury features for its price. Acceleration is good and the ride is firm but pleasant, although some may find the steering a bit too light. The first- and second-row seats are comfortable; headroom in the third row can be tight, although legroom is adequate. With the discontinuation of available three-row seating in the Santa Fe, this and the Entourage minivan are Hyundai’s only vehicles with seating for more than five.

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