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Hyundai Santa Fe I with mileage: reliable V6 and even more reliable automatic transmissions – they will survive the body (part 1)

From the first part of the review of the first generation of Santa, we already realized that almost certainly you, as a buyer of a used copy, will have to deal with the body – either restoration repair or preventive maintenance. To the joy, the power units of this machine in the bulk are extremely successful. What, however, does not make the car “indestructible” – there are also disadvantages. We will describe them in detail below.
Brakes, suspension and steering
A sure sign of the car, developed in the late 90’s: ESC is not there at all in any trim levels, and in some places there is not even an ABS. The rear axle can have both discs and drums, depending on the motor and the presence of ABS.
Simple brakes from Mando with runs for 200 thousand usually have already undergone repairs once with the replacement of anthers and fingers, as well as all fittings. If not, then you have to do it after the purchase. Perhaps – with the replacement of brake hoses of the front wheels. But the brake pipes hold well: the gasket is successful, even in the rear they often rust.

There is no need to be afraid of the drums on the rear axle, their resource is even better than that of disc brakes, especially when traveling on dirt. At the same time, the car slows down with them about as badly as with disk ones.

The suspension of the cars is also simple and cheap, and this is where its advantages end – handling is very average, as is the resource. The struts of the front struts are weak – if brought to severe wear, cups can be damaged. The springs are also unexpectedly weak and can not withstand overloads – they simply break off the bars.

Front brake pads
1 744 rubles
Front levers are sturdy, and ball replaceable. Weak rubber elements required replacement even with runs of up to 60 thousand, in the first place they could not stand the support and the silent blocks of the front lever, as well as the large silent block of the longitudinal lever of the rear suspension. But now all these details are probably already unoriginal, and it all depends on the manufacturer and the style of operation of the machine. Consumables are inexpensive, but there are cars in a very poor condition, where you have to change literally everything up to the silent blocks of stretchers.

Steering with conventional rack and power steering. This combination is usually quite reliable, but in this case the amplifier armature fails. Tubes flow, especially often the lower high pressure tube. The resource of the pump is small, especially if the oil in the power steering does not change regularly, and if it is aired, it quickly fails. The rail is not happy with the abrasion of the installation site of the central oil seal and the flimsy design as a whole, it begins to knock with age due to the deterioration of the side bushes, and even “mows” it sometimes due to wear and play in the spool. With 200+ car runs, the chances of getting on the rail repair are quite large, and the used replacement rails are getting smaller and smaller, so you will probably have to repair it.

Transmission
Many people love Santa Fe for the “honest” permanent all-wheel drive with an interaxle differential and consider it a real SUV. At the same time, as I said in the first part, with the geometric cross-country ability of the car, everything is not very good, as well as with the adaptability of the body to loads.

Turning to the transmission, it is worth noting that the traditional trouble of all Hyundai two thousandth cars is the spline joints. They are also enough for front-wheel cars, because the splines of the drives can suffer from any side: for example, the splines of the SHRUS in the hub are also subject to corrosion and wear. The inner part is mainly damaged, but sometimes it breaks and cuts off the outer links of splined joints.
With all-wheel drive cars, the number of problem points increases markedly, but since the drive is full-time, the front CV joints for cars with a 2.7 engine are even less loaded than for cars with a 2.4 engine and front-wheel drive, and less trouble is required.

However, the whole moment of transmission quickly finds the “weak link” – the hollow shaft of the transfer case. The slots on the side of the gearbox gradually licks and cranks. The reason, as usual, is corrosion and stress. The part itself can be replaced, it costs 10-14 thousand rubles. But a budget machine requires budgetary decisions, so cutting into the groove under the retaining ring on the other side, welding with milling and other folk methods is used.
Unfortunately, removing the transfer case is not the easiest operation, so you won’t be able to check the shaft directly, but you can draw certain conclusions about the backlash and smudges of rust at the junction of the gearbox and the transfer case.

The Steyr-Puch razdatka itself is quite strong, the differential is reliable, the bearings honestly serve 200 thousand or more, unless, of course, the oil has leaked.

The angular gearbox and clutch on machines with a 3.5 motor are already made on Mitsubishi and BorgWarner units. This transmission option has no problems with the slots, since it is significantly strengthened, but on the other hand, driving performance and throughput, rather, have deteriorated.

The Santa Fe manual gearbox is reliable, except that with 200+ runs there may be problems with synchronizers and increased noise. But usually everything is decided by replacing the couplings, adjusting the gearshift mechanism or repairing it, in the worst case, replacing the bearings. Serious damage is rare, and the boxes themselves are inexpensive. In extreme cases, Mitsubishi has a bunch of compatible units with a “contract”.

Two-mass flywheels have a bad reputation, they have a small resource both the flywheel itself and the clutch linings. But they were set for a very limited time, until 2003, on cars with engines of 2.4 and 2.7, in practice, almost everywhere they were replaced by ordinary single-mass ones. The adhesion resource with a single-mass flywheel is usually not a record – a hundred and a half thousand. Moreover, non-original kits often have a resource more than “native” ones.

Automatic transmissions are even more reliable than manual gearboxes. The “front-wheel” F4A42 boxes and the “all-wheel-drive” W4A42 are minimally different – in case and in differential. Since the maximum load on the front-wheel drive boxes is less, then they go a little longer – so long that they survive both the body and the engine.
Only the earliest instances of the Korean assembly of the release before 2003, where there is increased wear of the planetary gear Overdrive and the destruction of its needle bearing, can throw up a number of problems. Later, the problem was solved, and it manifests itself only at very high loads and with very high runs, far beyond 250 thousand kilometers. But on cars with a 2.7 engine, big wheels and a hot guy driving, this happens. If you see such a combination, listen to the operation of the automatic transmission on the lift: you need to slightly apply the brake and raise the engine speed to 1,500-2,000, this load is usually enough to “hear the problem” with planetary gears. Along the way, we can note the likelihood of breakdown of the speed sensors and solenoids, especially if the oil has not been changed for a long time and has been operated strictly.

Extremely rare cars with a 3.5 engine are equipped with a related automatic transmission of the F5A51 series. Unfortunately, with such an engine, this transmission can no longer boast of excellent reliability. Brake bands burn, the front planetary row, Direct Clutch drum breaks down, and the differential often gives up, not withstanding the loads. Minor damage to sensors and solenoids also did not disappear. So far, in the event of such problems, they completely change the automatic transmission, since it costs no more than 20 thousand rubles and is still available.

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