Korean brand’s flagship large SUV was previously only a four-star ANCAP vehicle, but 2023 facelift models score the coveted top safety mark

Hyundai’s seven- and eight-seat Palisade SUV arrives in showrooms this month freshly facelifted and now boasting a five-star ANCAP safety rating for both petrol and diesel variants.

The outgoing Palisade – introduced in late 2020 – has only a four-star ANCAP rating due to, in Hyundai’s words: “performance limitations in the Adult Occupant Protection (79 per cent) and Safety Assist (63 per cent) areas of assessment.”

To put it another way, this three-row large SUV didn’t meet ANCAP’s five-star thresholds in either crash protection or collision avoidance technology. A concern for buyers of a vehicle marketed at families with up to six children.

hyundai palisade 2023: five-star ancap rating for eight-seat large suv

The new Palisade was been awarded five ANCAP stars in safety testing

The four-star safety rating applied only to diesel variants – petrol-powered Palisades were unrated as they were never tested.

How well did the new Palisade crash in testing?

The facelifted model goes on sale this month from $65,900 before on-road costs; the entry-level Elite V6 petrol grade some $3700 over the outgoing equivalent.

The extra coin buys a raft of design and tech updates, but key are the safety improvements that have helped earn the facelifted variant a five-star rating.

Crash testing and evaluations for the new model saw an Adult Occupant Protection of 84 per cent and Safety Assist leaping to 83 per cent. The other two areas of testing returned an excellent 88 per cent for Child Occupant Protection while the Vulnerable Road User Protection score was 62 per cent – basically mirroring the outgoing Palisade’s scores.

hyundai palisade 2023: five-star ancap rating for eight-seat large suv

The new Palisade is outfitted with a centre airbag

While the ratings qualify the Palisade as a five-star car, a number of large SUV rivals have scored higher than the big Hyundai.

The Subaru Outback (tested in 2021) is impressive across the board with the four areas of assessment seeing percentages of 88, 91, 84 and 96 respectively. The Tesla Model X electric SUV may be in a different price bracket, but its 98, 86, 72 and 94 percentage scores remain highly impressive since tested in 2019.

What safety improvements have been made to the new Palisade?

There’s no centre airbag in the outgoing Palisade, while a basic auto emergency braking (AEB) system also harmed its collision avoidance score.

Updated models have an airbag between the two front seats – offering improved head protection in side impact crashes – while enhanced AEB includes car-to-car, vulnerable road user (pedestrians and cyclists) and junction assist technology.

hyundai palisade 2023: five-star ancap rating for eight-seat large suv

The new Palisade also has refined active safety aids on board

Multi-collision braking and speed limit information also join the safety party in the Palisade. The latter means the car identifies the local speed limit and the driver can set their speed accordingly.

The upgraded safety and ANCAP score are not just important to private buyers hoping to better prevent collisions and protect occupants should one occur. Many fleets and businesses will only consider a vehicle if it attains a maximum safety rating.

ANCAP’s chief executive officer, Carla Hoorweg, said: “consumers, fleets and mobility service providers prioritise the purchase and use of five-star ANCAP rated vehicles, and this upgrade now sees the Palisade become a purchasing contender for these buyers.”

Hyundai Palisade 2022: prices in Australia

All prices listed are before on-road costs.

  • Elite 3.8 V6: $65,900 (+$3700)
  • Elite 2.2D: $69,900 (+$3700)
  • Highlander 3.8 V6: $75,900 (+$4788)
  • Highlander 2.2D: $79,900 (+$5009)

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