2008 Hyundai Veracruz
2007 Hyundai Veracruz
2007 Hyundai Veracruz
Hyundai Veracruz, 2007–2012. Click image to enlarge

Review by Justin Pritchard

Vehicle Type: Luxury SUV Crossover

History/Description: Hyundai’s shot at luxury crossover models from Lexus, Infiniti, Acura and Lincoln was called the Veracruz. Taking the Korean automaker’s penchant for naming utility vehicles after warm places to the posh-ute scene, this luxuriously equipped model provided affordable access to upscale styling, world-class feature content and decent performance.

Veracruz launched for model-year 2007 and was chopped from the product portfolio after 2012 – making room for the ever-popular Santa Fe in its brand-spanking-new XL configuration.

Look for your used Veracruz with leather memory seating, a leather steering wheel and shift knob, heated front and second-row seats, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, dual-zone automatic climate control with an Air Quality Control System, a power tailgate, and plenty more. Wood grain trim and metallic interior accents dial up the atmosphere, and a high-performance Infinity audio system with full multimedia connectivity was also on board.

A back-up sensor system, automatic headlights, rain-sensing wipers and distraction-busting Bluetooth phone interface add even more peace of mind and confidence on the move. With available all-wheel drive, it should prove an admirable performer when Mother Nature tosses us a snow day. Note that a driver-engaged ‘Lock’ function can pre-emptively clamp down the centre bits in Veracruz’s AWD system to dial up traction ahead of extra-greasy conditions.

Interior space was generous, especially with a total of 2,458 L of cargo hauling available with the rear rows of seats folded down. That’s more than a Mercedes-Benz GL-Class from the same era. If you’ve got young (or otherwise easily bored) passengers, seek out a model with the rear-seat entertainment console with DVD player for easy playback of the viewer’s favourite documentaries/movies/Spongebob episodes/whatever.

Engine/Trim: The Veracruz was powered and trimmed thusly: all units got a 3.8L four-cam V6 engine with Continually Variable Valve Timing (CVVT) and an automatic transmission with manual shifting mode. Output was rated at 260 hp and nearly as much torque.

Some units were equipped with front-wheel drive only. Note that the GL is a more basic unit, with the GLS being the high-value, high-feature model, and the Limited and Limited With Navigation models topping the range with all of the proper hardware for budget ballin’.

2008 Hyundai Veracruz2008 Hyundai Veracruz2008 Hyundai Veracruz2008 Hyundai Veracruz
Hyundai Veracruz, 2007–2012. Click image to enlarge

What Owners Like: Owners taking to the web to share their experiences tend to rate the Veracruz’s performance, interior styling, exterior styling and ride quality highly. It seems this machine struck a well-loved balance between ride quality and handling. The Infinity sound system, seats, and even rear-row legroom on three-row models were commonly praised, too. One owner referred to his Veracruz as a “wonderful-riding powerhouse” that was one of the “best vehicles” he’s owned in nearly 40 years.

2007 Hyundai Veracruz
2007 Hyundai Veracruz
Hyundai Veracruz, 2007–2012. Click image to enlarge

What Owners Dislike: Mandatory SUV fuel consumption complaints aside, the Veracruz owner community seems to wish for a better navigation system, an iPod jack, and a little more at-reach storage. Some drivers wish for more steering feel, too.

Here’s a list of Hyundai Veracruz owner reviews from autoTrader.ca

Common Issues: Since this wasn’t a sales superstar, information pertaining to reliability is somewhat limited and patchy. Still, a few checks are advised – as is careful and patient shopping.

According to the reports of numerous owners online, a used Veracruz should be scrutinized for signs of worn-out suspension components, brakes and even wheel-bearings. Here’s some discussion.

A mechanic can ascertain the condition of all of the above in a few minutes during a pre-purchase inspection on his hoist, but shoppers are reminded to open their ears and listen for, as well as feel for trouble signs.

Squealing brakes, a throbbing pulsation from the brake pedal and a spongy pedal, possibly with a long press required before deceleration, can all indicate brake system problems. Some owners say that a poorly lubricated rear caliper set caused premature brake wear and early rebuilding or cleaning of the rear brakes. Other owners say the factory-equipment rotors warp easily if used heavily. Be on the lookout, confirming that the seller isn’t trying to pass off a brake job. Frequent cleaning and lubricating of the Veracruz’s brake system components should increase reliability and durability.

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