Hyundai Entourage Overview
In recent years, Hyundai has emerged victorious in its hard-won battle to establish itself as a credible provider of small sedans and SUVs to the North American market. With many buyers now enjoying the brand's focus on value, safety and comfort, Hyundai has decided to expand its product offerings with the Entourage, its first-ever minivan. Other Hyundai vehicles have distinguished themselves with their relatively smooth rides, and the Entourage minivan shares this desirable trait. Acceleration is another strong point. The Entourage's V6 responds with a liveliness that belies the vehicle's 4,400-pound curb weight.
Factor in outstanding crash test scores, solid build quality and a stellar warranty, and it becomes clear that the Hyundai Entourage has a lot to offer. Still, Hyundai's first effort in the minivan market isn't perfect. Interior aesthetics lag behind that of the segment kings, with a few subpar materials in evidence. Additionally, a couple of high-end bells and whistles are noticeably absent. And handling, while competent, isn't as crisp as that of other vans in this category. If you want the very best minivan money can buy and are willing to pay extra for it, the Hyundai probably isn't for you.
The Hyundai Entourage minivan is mechanically related to the second-generation Kia Sedona. Buyers may choose from three trim levels. If you're looking for a basic, well-equipped family vehicle, you'll find it in the base GLS trim, which offers Hyundai Entourage Accessories like removable second-row captain's chairs and a 60/40-split, fold-flat third-row seat with in-floor storage. Also onboard are staples like tri-zone air-conditioning and a stereo featuring a CD player, satellite radio, and USB and auxiliary audio jacks. Antilock brakes, stability control and a full complement of airbags are standard as well.
The high-line Entourage Limited model throws in amenities like heated power seats, leather upholstery, dual power-sliding doors and a power tailgate, power front seats, automatic climate control and a 13-speaker surround-sound system. Some of the Limited's features are also available on the GLS model in the Popular Equipment package. Even when fully optioned, though, the Entourage is a budget-priced alternative, and in choosing it, you forgo a few of the features that are available on costlier minivans. A navigation system isn't offered, nor is a rear back-up camera.
However, if you buy a Hyundai Entourage, you certainly won't feel like you're economizing in the acceleration department. Motivating all Entourage models is a 3.8-liter V6 good for 250 horsepower and 253 pound-feet of torque, mated to a five-speed automatic transmission. With this powertrain, Hyundai's minivan is one of the quickest vehicles in the class. In editorial reviews, the Hyundai Entourage scored high marks for its powerful V6 and comfortable ride. It was noted, however, that the van's steering and overall handling capabilities are somewhat less keen than those of the Odyssey and Nissan Quest.
Within the Entourage's doors lies an interior that's pleasant-looking, if a bit unremarkable. Materials quality is decent, but the cabin lacks the polish of some of the more expensive minivans, namely the Honda Odyssey and Toyota Sienna. There is no shortage of legroom in all three rows, though families with teenagers may find rear headroom snug. The second-row seats are easily adjustable, allowing you to divvy up space as your needs dictate. As mentioned, the second-row chairs are removable; be aware, though, that the seats weigh in excess of 75 pounds, so lifting them requires some muscle.