Optional headlights make 2020 Hyundai Palisade a Top Safety Pick Plus

The Palisade is a safe thing, but the added safety will cost buyers.

Emme Hall/Roadshow

The insurance industry-funded IIHS has dished out its top honor to Hyundai’s new three-row SUV. The 2020 Hyundai Palisade has earned a Top Safety Pick+ after scoring well in the IIHS’ barrage of crash tests and other exams.

The automaker said in a Friday release the SUV earned “Good” ratings in all six crashworthiness tests. To be considered for the award, any vehicle must earn “Good” marks in all six categories, including the passenger-side small overlap front test. Lesser Top Safety Pick award only require a vehicle earn an “Acceptable” rating in the passenger-side overlap test.

With the crash tests aced, the Palisade extended its winning streak with a “Superior” rating for front-crash prevention — the highest rating. The IIHS requires vehicles score at least an “Advanced” rating for front-crash prevention to be eligible for the award. The SUV’s standard automatic emergency braking system stopped crashes as 12 mph and 25 mph when tested.

Now, here comes the asterisk. Only Palisade models with optional LED headlights actually qualified for the award. The IIHS rated the LED headlights with high-beam assist “Good.” Other models receive basic halogen projectors the safety group scored “Marginal,” which does not qualify for either a Top Safety Pick+ or lesser Top Safety Pick.

Therefore, buyers will need to opt for a Palisade SEL trim with the Premium Package or the Limited trim. The former adds the LED headlights as optional equipment, while they’re standard on the Limited trim.

The least expensive way to drive off with a Palisade with the Top Safety Pick+ will be $40,095 after adding the SEL’s optional Premium Package and calculating a $1,095 destination charge into the final price. That’s nearly $7,500 more than a base Palisade. The Limited trim starts at $45,795 after destination.

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