The fifth-generation Hyundai Santa Fe has now made its official premiere, following an early online leak of the SUV’s initial photographs. The 2017 Santa Fe is Hyundai’s most versatile family SUV, with a boxy appearance intended at the off-road ‘lifestyle’ market.
The Santa Fe’s design has been completely redesigned in comparison to the previous model, ditching the curving lines of its predecessors in lieu of clean-cut edges and large wheel arches. The look is reminiscent of Land Rover and Jeep 4x4s and clearly emphasises the new vehicle’s image as a more tough offering.
The new design distinguishes the Santa Fe from the rest of Hyundai’s lineup, continuing the aesthetic approach introduced with the Hyundai Ioniq 5 and enhanced with the curving Ioniq 6. Some aesthetic aspects on the new Santa Fe, such as the H-pattern signature for the lighting elements, are also shared with the Hyundai Exter SUV, which debuted in India recently.
The wheelbase of the Santa Fe has been lengthened, resulting in what the automaker claims is class-leading interior capacity. When the second and third rows of seats are folded down, the tailboard has been expanded to provide a “terrace-like” space with room for a modest workstation or lounge area.
Nonetheless, because the front overhang has been reduced, the SUV’s length is unlikely to grow substantially. However, Hyundai has yet to publicly reveal the new model’s dimensions.
Inside, there is a strong emphasis on use and practicality, with tactile buttons and dials for important functions such as climate, radio, and drive mode settings. There are numerous USB ports and wireless charging pads around the cabin, as well as numerous storage cubbies and cupholders.
A curved 12.3-inch touchscreen is positioned in parallel with a digital instrument display of the same size for infotainment. Hyundai has emphasised the use of sustainable materials within the new Santa Fe, with recycled plastics used to make the suede-like headliner, carpets, and second- and third-row seatbacks.
While Hyundai has not disclosed powertrain specs for the new Santa Fe, sources tell us that depending on the market, it will be available with the outgoing model’s turbocharged 2.5-litre petrol engine or a 1.6-litre gasoline direct injection turbo. There will be FWD, AWD, and a plug-in hybrid powertrain options available.
Although the Santa Fe was available in India in its second and third generations, there is no word on whether the fifth-generation vehicle would be available. In India, the Tucson remains the brand’s flagship model.