It's easy to get excited about redesigned vehicles. Hell, we're guilty of that sin every year. But for the average human, it doesn't quite make sense to pay top dollar for a brand new redesigned model before they've really been tested (and possibly recalled, for that matter).
It's actually better to wait for the mid-cycle refresh, so manufacturers can iron out the problems. That said, there are plenty of top-notch 2020 vehicles that are still out there. Most importantly, you can haggle since they're outgoing models that will (or have already been) replaced by the redesign. Here are the four best in our book.
2020 Hyundai Santa Fe
The 2020 Santa Fe ($26,275 base MSRP) is getting a refresh for the 2021 model year rather than an actual redesign, but you can still take advantage of the fact that most folks want the latest and greatest. The good news is that most of what's in the 2021 is already in the 2020, which was actually totally redesigned in 2019. Not only does it look far more premium than the 2018, the 2020 Santa Fe boasts a ton of standard features, excellent safety ratings, and one of the best cabins at this price.
All trims come standard with a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine (185 horsepower, 178 lb-ft of torque), but you can upgrade to the Limited with its optional turbocharged 2.0-liter engine (235 hp, 260 lb-ft of torque). Options include a digital gauge cluster, head-up display, heated rear seats, ventilated front seats, optional wireless charging, and a 630-watt, 12-speaker audio system.
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2020 Acura MDX
The all-new MDX for 2021 will be the best yet, based on what we've read. But the 2020 MDX ($44,500 base MSRP) also happens to be one of the best premium three-row crossovers in existence. It's powerful thanks to its 290 horsepower 3.5-liter direct-inject V6, and it has the kind of handling and performance other crossovers can only dream of. Couple that with features like power liftgate, Jewel Eye LED headlights, heated seats in both rows, the AcuraWatch safety feature set, and 90.9 cubic feet of cargo space, and you have the makings of a truly capable SUV.
Opt for the A-Spec package, and you get some fancy, sportier trim bits that make the MDX look more aggressive to match its performance. Finally, the excellent Super Handling All-Wheel Drive (SH-AWD) system is one of the best in the industry, and it will ensure surefootedness no matter what the situation.
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2020 Genesis G80
We've seen photos of the upcoming redesigned G80, and what a looker it is. But we were already smitten by the 2020 G80 ($42,550 base MSRP), especially in 3.3T Sport trim. It's not only powerful and roomy, but it's also one of the best all-around sports sedans on the planet. The fact that practically no one owns it means you'll stand out in a crowd. The G80 also happens to come in all-wheel drive, which means you won't be spinning your tires when the weather gets bad. Upgrade to the 3.3T Sport, and you get retuned suspension bits, special trim pieces inside and out, and the excellent twin-turbo V6 that's good for 365 horses.
Avoid the 5.0-liter V8 version of the G80, since the V6 is almost as powerful and more affordable. Also, get peace of mind with the fact that the G80 nails crash tests with flying colors, and it comes with a 5-year/60,000 mile basic warranty and a 10 year/100,000 mile powertrain warranty.
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2020 Kia Optima
This is the family sedan everyone forgot (except for us). The Optima ($23,390 base MSRP) will end its current form when the new one emerges. It's is getting redesigned (and renamed as the K5) for the 2021 model year. It might not be the biggest or the fastest, but it presents a tremendous value that's well put together. Opt for the punchy 178 horsepower 1.6T engine that provides good acceleration that also happens to mate with the Optima's smooth and quiet ride.
The interior is user-friendly thanks to an easy infotainment system, traditional shift knob, great seats, crisp analog gauges, and an excellent racing-style steering wheel. Add options like the premium Harman/Kardon audio system, navigation, and wireless charging, and you've got yourself the makings of a great sedan that will be up to date for years.