Something strange has been going on in some 2020 Hyundai Palisade SUVs. The automaker had received complaints from some owners that the interior of the vehicles had a bad smell. The offensive odor has been discovered in some 2020 and 2021 Palisades.
Publication Cars.com had a Palisade that had the smell problem, which spent six weeks at a dealership as part of the investigation into the issue. The publication reports that the smell issue is now seemingly remedied after a second attempt. The smell is worse when the vehicle is exposed to heat.
The smell was described as a combination of garlic, onions, and body odor by many Palisade owners. All Palisade Limited and Calligraphy owners are eligible for a remedy for the situation. Hyundai traced the smell to imitation leather coverings on head restraints in the Limited and Calligraphy trim levels that feature Nappa leather on the seats.
There was a flaw in the manufacturing process that resulted in the odor. The smell reportedly worsened over time. Hyundai reportedly said that the parts that were making the foul odor came from a different supplier that used a different manufacturing process. Hyundai has modified the manufacturing process for head restraints, which should cure the problem in future models.
The fix was apparently to remove the head restraint covering and apply an odor-neutralizing solution inside. The process is covered in Hyundai Technical Service Bulletin No. 20-BD-018H. The process also directs the dealership to spray the solution into the head restraint post holes in the seatbacks. The solution reportedly doesn’t always work, and if it fails, the customer could be eligible for a set of replacement head restraints manufactured using a new method.