What is becoming a benchmark for Hyundai is its ability to develop attractive designs and still keep their prices affordable for the average buyer. The 2008 Hyundai Veracruz, a 7-passenger SUV, does just that with its sleek styling and competitive price. Not only that, Motor Trend ranked the Veracruz above the much more costly Lexus RX 350 and comparable to the Suzuki Grand Vitara. Now that's telling you something about Hyundai's quality. While Veracruz's three trims vary significantly in price, a buyer should not worry. Just as Hyundai has done with its other 2008 models, a higher price means higher quality and superior performance.
The Veracruz has pulled away from the pack with its aerodynamic exterior, unlike its competitors that seem to be on a quest to build the most bulky and boxy SUV on the market. Also, while other manufacturers are making their grilles more and more prominent, the 2008 Veracruz's grille blends in well with the front end and is almost unnoticeable. The grille is elegant and slim, in contrast with other maker's grilles that appear to be large sharp-teethed jaws ready to take a bite out of the car in front of them. The rear design also gets high marks with dual exhaust, available back-up warning program and power tailgate, and graceful lines.
Not to fret, Hyundai hasn't forgotten about the interior. Its elegant and luxurious design is translated throughout the entire SUV. Standard on the SE and Limited trims are a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shifter knob. An Infinity surround-sound stereo system is an optional addition on the SE and Limited trims as well. A rearview dimming mirror equipped with HomeLink is standard on the higher trims. Homelink is a system that remotely connects the vehicle with the driver's garage door, gate, or even a house's lighting program. Another added feature is the Proximity key which allows the driver to simply press the fob to a button on the exterior to unlock the doors or a button on the steering mount to start the car. There is an immobilizer feature on the key that allows the driver to immobilize the vehicle at the touch of a button. This is a perfect addition for owners that only have on-street parking or simply want to further protect their vehicle when not in use on the road. The 2008 Veracruz has ample seating for up to seven passengers with four available upholstery colors.
Standard on the GLS, SE, and Limited trims is an impressive 3.8L Lambda DOHC 24-valve V6 that gets a massive 260 horsepower. All-wheel drive is optional, and all trims come with a 6-speed electronic automatic transmission. 17 or 18 inch aluminum alloy wheels are also available. The front-wheel drive version gets an estimated 16 city and 23 highway MPG, while all-wheel drive is slightly less with 15 city and 22 highway MPG.
With an MSRP ranging from $26,900 to $34,050, the 2008 Hyundai Veracruz either meets or beats its competitors. Both its interior and exterior are well-designed and are comparable to high-end luxury SUVs. Exceptional added features enhance an already overall top-quality SUV. If a buyer wants the style of a Lexus without the price, the Hyundai Veracruz should be their vehicle of choice.