Hyundai’s new stylish SUV will be available in the US this summer.
After teasing us with design sketches, Hyundai has revealed the new Santa Fe. The Santa Fe is the Korean automaker’s best-selling SUV in America, so the new fourth-generation model has a lot to live up to. Featuring a bold new look, the new SUV features design cues taken from the quirky Kona crossover, such as split headlights LED daytime running lights positioned on top of the LED headlights. Compared to some of the more generic-looking SUVs on the market, the Santa Fe looks undeniably handsome, with its wide stance and subtly sloping roofline.
Metallic trim around Hyundai’s signature Cascading Grille also gives the new Santa Fe a more premium look than its predecessor. For the 2019 model, Hyundai is revising the model names. The five-passenger Santa Fe Sport will now be called the Santa Fe, while the long wheelbase three-row, seven-passenger model will be renamed Santa Fe XL. Hyundai says an even larger three-row, eight-passenger model is also in development under a new name. Compared to the outgoing model, the 2019 Santa Fe has a longer wheelbase at 108.9 inches compared to 106.3 inches. Overall length is now 187.8 inches, instead of 185 inches.
As a result, passenger volume has increased to 110.7 cubic feet compared to the outgoing model’s 108 cubic feet. Three powertrains will be available for the 2019 Santa Fe, including a 2.4-liter inline four-cylinder GDI engine with an estimated 185 horsepower and a more potent turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine with around 232 horsepower. A 2.2-liter CRDi turbodiesel engine also joins the line-up, producing an estimated 200 horsepower at 3,000 rpm and 320 lb-ft of torque at 1,750 rpm. The diesel option will also be the only model with optional third-row seating. All engines are mated to a new eight-speed automatic transmission, which replaces the six-speed in the current model.
Hyundai says the new transmission is lighter and more efficient, despite having two extra gears, providing “quick and crisp shifts for a more engaging and efficient driving experience.” Power is sent to all four wheels via Hyundai’s multi-mode HTRAC all-wheel drive system, with Normal, Sport, and Smart settings. Inside, the new Santa Fe’s spacious cabin has been given an overhaul. Hyundai says there is more room behind the second-row seats when second-row seats are folded, and the leg room has been lengthened to be best-in-class. A seven-inch infotainment system comes as standard with support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, which has been tilted to reduce glare.
There’s an assortment of safety assists available too, including high beam assist, forward collision avoidance, blind spot warning, lane keep assist, adaptive cruise control, rear view monitor, and park distance warning. In what Hyundai says is a world-first, the new Santa Fe also features a rear seat alert. The system monitors the seats using an ultrasonic sensor that detects the movement of children and pets. If it detects movement in the rear seats after the driver exits, it will honk the horn, flash the lights, and send an alert to the driver’s smartphone. The Hyundai Santa Fe will arrive in US dealers this summer, with prices to be revealed at a later date.