Next-Generation Hyundai Santa Fe: New Look and Interior, as Well as Hybrid Variants

The Hyundai Santa Fe SUV has been updated just two years after its release. How deep was the modernization?

Hyundai has already prepared an update of the model, and the restyling turned out to be very large-scale. According to presentation photos, the updated Hyundai Santa Fe flaunts in white and in the beautiful Luxury Package. So, there is almost no unpainted plastic now. The SUV can be distinguished by an even more extraordinary front end design.

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A massive chrome plated bar is moved from the bumper fascia to the bottom. Two-level headlights are fused with a radiator grille. The latter, in turn, has a different shape and decorative pattern. In order to make headlights look more solid, the company combined them with T-shaped daytime running lights. The rear end has minimum changes: attention was paid to design elements, especially to those located on the bottom of the bumper.

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Despite the fact that design has not changed fundamentally, the Hyundai Santa Fe is now based on the new platform used for the KIA Sorento and Hyundai Sonata. The new platform has improved safety issues of the SUV. Thanks to the use of hot stamping technology and the integration of a heavy-duty steel plate into the chassis structure, the car body better absorbs the impact energy in the event of a collision. Handling is also improved, although the suspension scheme remained the same: a MacPherson suspension in the front and a multi-link one in the back. The center of gravity is now reduced.

Among the technical innovations is Terrain Mode for the proprietary HTRAC AWD drivetrain. It has as many as 7 driving modes: 4 city modes — Eco, Comfort, Sport and Smart; and 3 off-road modes — Sand, Snow and Mud.

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What is more, the Hyundai Santa Fe will be the first car of the company to be sold with Smartstream powertrains in Europe. This means that the line-up will include both a hybrid modification and a plug-in hybrid. Hyundai promises to publish detailed specifications soon, but we already know that the hybrid variant will be equipped with a 1.6 turbocharged petrol engine.

The interior of the new Hyundai Santa Fe has changed the most. There are now more displays and buttons. The instrumental cluster has become fully digital (now there is a combined version). It has a beautiful optimized graphics and considerable size, since its diagonal is 12.3 inches.

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The infotainment display has also increased in size; its diagonal is now 10.25 inches instead of the previous 8 inches. Now, there are no buttons on the display sides, although some of them are located on the center console, which is now strongly tilted and actually forms a single unit with the tunnel console. Yes, it is now much higher, but it looks like being “floating”, i.e. there is small space under it. Contrary to the universal tradition of reducing a button number, there are even more of them here. Even the gear shifter has buttons. This beautiful rotary knob is the one responsible for Terrain Mode.

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The new Hyundai Santa Fe will soon be released in South Korea. European sales will start in early autumn.

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