You’re not going to find any trouble spotting this gargantuan SUV on the road

Hyundai is, once again, betting big on the SUV market with the arrival of the 2020 Palisade SUV. Named after the Pacific Palisade islands in California, the Palisade is the latest example of Hyundai’s commitment to bolstering its crossover and SUV lineups. Not that it needs to because it already boasts popular sellers like the Tucson, Santa Fe, and Santa Fe XL. But, bigger is better, at least in Hyundai’s eyes, and the Palisade is huge all the way around. The Hyundai Palisade is scheduled to launch in the U.S. sometime in the summer of 2019. Perfect timing, then, wouldn’t you say?

The 2020 Palisade SUV

Did you think the Hyundai Santa Fe XL was big enough? If you did, you need to feast your eyes on the Hyundai Palisade. The new three-row model doubles as Hyundai’s flagship SUV, and, certainly, it was developed to indisputably fill that role. It has more power than most SUVs in its class — literally, it edges the Ford Explorer by one horsepower — and it’s teeming with state-of-the-art technology. It’s also designed to look like a complete boss.

It even has the distinction of being the first Hyundai model to feature a new roof vent diffuser design that provides a focused, partially diffused or fully diffused stream of air to rear passengers.

All of that is fantastic, but let’s talk about its size because that’s basically the first thing you notice about the Palisade.

2020 Hyundai Palisade Exterior Dimensions

Hyundai’s new flagship SUV measures 196.1 inches long.

That makes it three inches longer than the Santa Fe XL, Hyundai’s other SUV that suddenly doesn’t justify its name. It’s also 3.6 inches longer than the Toyota Highlander. Sure, it’s beaten in the measurements by models like the Honda Pilot (196.5 inches), Nissan Pathfinder (198.5 inches), and Ford Explorer (198.7 inches), but it more than makes up for it by having a longer wheelbase than all these models except the Pathfinder, which it’s dead even with. For the record, the Palisade’s wheelbase measures 114.2 inches, well ahead of the Highlander (109.8 inches), Pilot (111.0 inches), and the Explorer (112.8 inches.) That’s something worth taking note off when we hop inside the SUV.

Before that, let’s put the spotlight on the SUV’s width and height. At 77.8 inches wide, its wider than the Highlander (75.8 inches) and the Pathfinder (77.3 inches). It also measures 68.9 inches tall, close to the measurements of the Pathfinder (69.5 inches), Explorer (70.0 inches), and Pilot (70.6 inches).

2020 Hyundai Palisade Interior Space

As far as interior space goes, the Hyundai Palisade doesn’t hold back, either.

It tops the charts in first- and second-row legroom compared to the Highlander, Pilot, Pathfinder, and Explorer. In those areas, the Palisade has 86.5 combined inches of space, more than the Highlander (82.6 inches), Pilot (79.3 inches), Pathfinder (84 inches), and Explorer (82.4 inches). It doesn’t have the best third-row legroom at 31.4 inches, but it’s still better than all its rivals except the Pilot (31.9 inches) and the Explorer (33.3 inches)

The Palisade ranks high in the headroom department, too, specifically in the first (40.7 inches) and second (40.1) rows. The only rivals that have more space in the first row are the Pathfinder (42.2 inches) and the Explorer (41.4 inches). Meanwhile, only the Pilot (40.2 inches) and the Explorer (40.6 inches) have more space in headroom space in the second row.

It’s worth noting how much more space the Ford Explorer has for its passengers. But that comes at the expense of having only 43.9 cubic feet of cargo room in the back. That’s where the Palisade gets the leg up on the Explorer, thanks to a cargo room amounting to 45.8 cubic feet. In fact, only the Honda Pilot (46.8 cubic feet) and the Nissan Pathfinder (47.4 cubic feet) have more cargo room space than the Palisade in their respective segment.

All these measurements paint a flattering picture of the Hyundai Palisade.

While it’s not the biggest SUV in its segment, it certainly ranks right up there with some of its more established rivals.

As an all-new model, that’s really all you could ask from Hyundai. Whether the Palisade’s size translates to other aspects of its SUV-ness is a different story altogether. But in this regard, it definitely looks the part of a flagship SUV.

2020 Hyundai Palisade specifications

Engine 3.8-liter 6-cylinder
Materials Aluminum block and head
Bore & stroke (mm) 87 X 96
Compression ratio 13.0 : 1
Displacement 3.8 liters / 3,778 cc
Horsepower 291 @ 6,000 RPM (preliminary estimate)
Torque (lb.-ft.) 262 @ 5,000 RPM (preliminary estimate)
Transmission 8-speed Automatic
Wheelbase 114.2
Length 196.1
Width 77.8
Height (w/ roof side rails) 68.9 (68.9)
Head room (front (w/sunroof) / 2nd row (w/sunroof) / 3rd row (w/sunroof) 40.7 (39.3) / 40.1 (38.8) / 37.4 (37.2)
Leg room (front / 2nd row / 3rdrow) 44.1 / 42.4 / 31.4
Shoulder room (front / 2nd row / 3rd row) 61.2 / 60.8 / 55.2
Cargo capacity, behind 2nd row 46.0
Cargo capacity, behind 3rd row 18.0

Further reading

Hyundai Goes Big Baller With The 2020 Palisade SUV Exterior
- image 807370

Read our full review on the 2020 Hyundai Palisade.

Kirby Garlitos
Automotive Aftermarket Expert -
Kirby’s first exposure into the world of automobiles happened when he caught Knight Rider on television as a five-year old boy. David Hasselhoff didn’t leave much of an impression on him (that happened later on in Baywatch), but KITT certainly did. To this day, Kirby remains convinced that he will one day own a car with the same ‘spirit’ as the original KITT (not the 2008 monstrosity). He doesn't know when that will be, but until then, he’s committed to expressing his love for KITT, and all cars for that matter, here at TopSpeed.  Read More
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