Review - 2023 Hyundai Palisade Highlander

By Alexi Falson on 26 Apr 2023
image for Review - 2023 Hyundai Palisade Highlander The Hyundai Palisade is the company’s flagship SUV experience, designed to meet a huge range of needs for growing Australian families.

Hyundai’s range-topping SUV experience doesn’t come particularly cheap, though, with a considerable price difference between the entry-level Palisade Elite and the range-topping Palisade Highlander.

Let’s take a closer look at what the Palisade Highlander brings to the table and see if it’s a worthy upgrade, or if you’re better off saving your money and opting for the base model.

Starting Price: $75,900

OnlineAuto Savings: Enquire now

Hyundai Palisade - HIGHLANDER (7 SEAT) Specifications

Model Date 2023
Series LX2.V3 MY23
Transmission 8 SP AUTOMATIC
Drive FWD
Engine GDi
Engine capacity 3778
Engine configuration VARIABLE DOUBLE OVERHEAD CAM / 24 valves
Engine RPM 6000 / 5200
Cylinders V6
Torque 355
KW 217
Fuel tank size 71.0
Fuel usage specs 10.7 / 0
CO2 251
ANCAP security rating 5

For more details and other variants, check Hyundai Palisade car page.

How Much Does It Cost?

Hyundai’s updated Palisade range kicks off from $65,900 for the entry-level Elite FWD V6 variant, while the Elite AWD Diesel is priced at $69,000.

Stepping up to the Palisade Highlander FWD V6 brings the price to $75,900, while the range-topping Palisade Highlander AWD Diesel is priced at $79,900.

Keep in mind that these prices are subject to change, and do not include on-road costs.

How Much Can OnlineAuto Save You?

Using OnlineAuto’s car purchasing service, one of our car specialists can help you save and find the best value model for you.

What Features Does the Hyundai Palisade Highlander Have?

Over the generous range of features you’ll find in the Palisade Elite range, the Highlander picks up a number of special features.

This includes a surround-view monitor with 3D view, a pair of sunroofs, a Highlander styling package, 10-inch head-up display, quilted Nappa leather upholstery, heated and ventilated first and second row seats, suede headliner, remote parking assistant, reverse parking collision avoidance and an upgraded leather-wrapped and heated steering wheel.

2023 hyundai palisade highlander surround view camera

2023 hyundai palisade highlander sunroof

The Highlander sits above the Palisade Elite, which receives 20-inch alloys, LED headlights, leather upholstery with heated front seats, three-zone climate control, adaptive cruise control, a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, 12.3-inch infotainment system with Apple CarPlay & Android Auto, wireless charging and a 12-speaker Infinity sound system.

2023 hyundai palisade highlander console

Range Features:

  • 20-inch alloys

  • LED headlights

  • Adaptive cruise control

  • Dual panoramic sunroofs

  • Quilted Nappa leather upholstery

  • Heated & ventilated first and second-row seats

  • 10-inch head-up display

  • 3D surround view monitor

  • 12.3-inch infotainment system with Apple CarPlay & Android Auto

  • 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster

  • 12-speaker Infinity sound system

Hyundai Palisade Colours

The Hyundai Palisade Highlander is available with Creamy White as a no-cost colour finish, while Shimmering Silver, Abyss Black, Sierra Burgundy, Graphite Grey, Olivine Grey, Gaia Brown, Moonlight Blue and Robust Emerald are available as optional colours for the Palisade Highlander.

2023 hyundai palisade highlander back

Is it Comfortable to Drive?

The Palisade casts a rather big and imposing silhouette on the road, however, Hyundai has done a great job in making its largest SUV remain user-friendly and supremely comfortable on Australia’s rough surfaces.

Power comes supplied by your choice of a 3.8-litre V6 petrol producing 217kW of power and 355Nm of torque and a 2.2-litre turbo-diesel unit producing 147kW of power and 440Nm of torque.

Both engines are great on a mix of town and country driving, and while the V6 petrol offers a hefty power premium, the diesel unit makes up for this with a healthy torque bonus that is particularly well-suited for towing up to 2200kg.

Keep in mind that the V6 petrol is offered only with a front-wheel drive, while the diesel is paired with an all-wheel drive system, so if four-paw traction is a key concern, you’ll have to reach further into your pockets and opt for the diesel.

Power from both engines is put to the ground via Hyundai’s eight-speed automatic transmission which feels intuitive as you pick up speed around town and offers impressively smooth shifts.

Around town, the Palisade remains approachable for a large SUV package, picking up a lightweight steering rack that makes it easy to manoeuvre, and a heap of safety technology to help you squeeze in and out of a tight spot.

The suspension package makes the Palisade feel like a magic carpet around town that makes for a wonderful daily driver and urban commuter, while the hardware is up for the task of Australian B-roads.

While the suspension can’t hide the Palisade’s hefty weight, it does an impressive job at minimising body roll and ironing out the majority of bumps on the road that make it a wonderfully comfortable SUV package on a mix of Australian roads.

All up, the driving experience is fantastically smooth and user-friendly for drivers of all levels and makes the Palisade particularly well-suited for town and country driving here in Australia. 

2023 hyundai palisade highlander side

Is it Practical and Spacious?

The Palisade is Hyundai’s largest-ever SUV package, and as a result, it’s a strong performer when it comes to space and comfort for up to eight people in your family.

The driver and front passenger are treated to acres of space in the plush cabin, with a sizable centre console housing a heap of storage space beside the transmission buttons, drive modes and climate settings.

The layout is less complicated than you’ll find in the Santa Fe, for example, and adds to the sophistication of the front cabin which gains a heap of luxurious textiles in an interesting design that looks simple and clean while housing a generous amount of storage options.

2023 hyundai palisade highlander interior

The Palisade is available in both a seven- and eight-seat configuration, with the seven-seat layout gaining a pair of captain’s chairs in the second row for easy access into the third row.

In the eight-seat layout, the second row receives a bench seat that can recline, slide and fold for easier access into the third row, which is more suited to the small legs of younger children, but remains immensely practical.

2023 hyundai palisade highlander rear seats

The second and third rows pick up their own set of climate vents, USB ports and a sunroof that adds to the sense of space in the rear, as well as three ISOFIX and top tether mounts in the second row, and another two in the third row.

2023 hyundai palisade highlander third row seat

The Palisade’s boot measures in at a very impressive 311L with all the seats standing, and is able to expand to 704L with the third row folded, which is great for accommodating large and bulky cargo and sports items.

All up, the Palisade’s cabin feels curated specifically for families, and offers a huge amount of space, comfort and practical touches that make it an almighty offering for large families.

2023 hyundai palisade highlander boot

Is it Safe?

The Hyundai Palisade has been awarded ANCAP’s maximum five-star safety rating, scoring 84% for adult protection, 88% for child protection, 62% for its vulnerable road user protection and 83% for safety assist.

As standard, the Palisade comes fitted with autonomous emergency braking, blind-spot monitoring, multi-collision braking, lane-keep assistance, rear cross-traffic alerts, adaptive cruise control, junction-turning assistance and curtain airbags throughout the cabin.

Atop this list, the Palisade Highlander receives a rear parking collision avoidance system, a three-dimensional surround-view monitor, a digital rear-view mirror, back up light guide and a remote smart parking assist feature.

Is it Fuel Efficient?

Fuel efficiency for the Palisade range varies dramatically between the V6 petrol and the turbo-diesel variants, with the petrol Palisade returning thirsty fuel economy figures of 10.7L per 100km on a combined cycle.

Opting for the diesel Palisade variant drops fuel economy figures to a much more respectable 7.3L/100km, making it by far the best engine option for fuel-conscious SUV buyers.

Our Verdict: Is the Hyundai Palisade Highlander Worth it?

The Hyundai Palisade is a wonderfully spacious and practical SUV for large families, while the Highlander justifies its price premium with a significant amount of added equipment for the money.

The good news for buyers is that the entry-level Palisade Elite is already well-equipped with comfort, safety and entertainment features, so there’s no real need to upgrade higher into the lineup if you’re on a budget.

As a complete package, though, the range-topping Highlander treats its occupants to a truly premium SUV experience and will leave very few buyers feeling short-changed for upgrading, making it well deserving of a spot on your large SUV shortlist.

On that note, if you’re in the market for a new car, you can get a free quote and see how much OnlineAuto can save you on your next car, or call us on 1300 719 925

2023 hyundai palisade highlander rear

Five Specs You Need to Know

  1. Five-year/unlimited KM warranty

  2. 12-month/15,000km service intervals (capped at $399 for petrol & $489 for diesel)

  3. Five-star ANCAP safety rating

  4. V6 petrol offered as front-wheel drive only; AWD reserved for turbo-diesel

  5. Fuel economy of 10.7L/100km for petrol drop to 7.3L/100km in diesel variant


  • Supremely comfortable ride quality

  • Extremely family-friendly space and practicality

  • Smooth eight-speed transmission

  • Premium features and design in range-topping Highlander


  • No AWD for V6 petrol

  • Thirsty 3.8-litre V6 petrol (10.7L per 100km)

  • No hybrid offering, for now

OnlineAuto Rating: 9/10

Hyundai Palisade Competition

Hyundai Palisade

Toyota Kluger
Kia Sorento
Skoda Kodiaq
Nissan Patrol
Toyota LandCruiser Prado
Land Rover Discovery


Alexi Falson

Alexi is an automotive journalist and road tester hailing from Byron Bay. He has an affection for both cars and motorbikes, a great admiration for the simplicity of old-school engineering, and a fascination of new technology making its way to modern cars. When he's not road testing, you'll find him surfing, hiking or helping people find their dream cars.

Have any questions? Call us on 1300 719 925

car icon
close sticky hub button


Maximum of 3 vehicles