The fifth generation 2024 Hyundai Santa Fe takes a boxier, Land Rover Defender kind of look. It’s bigger, taller, and jumping on the outdoor enthusiast bandwagon.
If the Land Rover Defender costs too much for you, Hyundai just may have a solution. Jumping on the boxier, more rugged, off-road friendly bandwagon, the fifth generation 2024 Hyundai Santa Fe heads in a new direction. Bolder than its Palisade big brother, the Santa Fe is larger than before, offering more interior room, storage, and easier access to it.
Styling elements include H pattern head and taillights as a distinguishing mark. You also get straighter lines cutting across the front fascia and interesting contrasting shapes in the upper and lower grilles.
In profile, distinct and pronounced fender flares bulge out on both the front and rear axles and encircle 21-inch wheels. A clear, two box shape extends 67.7 inches from the ground. The Santa Fe is almost two inches longer than before, with a similarly stretched wheelbase. Width remains 74.8-inches.
bigger interior, more legroom, new tech
Inside, Hyundai increased legroom, headroom, and raised seat bottom height, especially for the third row, but I suspect that it will just feel less uncomfortable for adults than before. Hyundai also claims the Santa Fe will have “class leading” cargo capacity and a wider opening tailgate for easy access to that space.
Up front, Hyundai added two 12.3-inch screen next to each other, one for the instrument cluster, the other for the center console touchscreen, and combined them into what they call a panoramic curved display. Speaking of screens, the rear view mirror doubles as a screen for a camera mounted on the tailgate, in case you have luggage piled to the brim.
Beneath that lies two wireless smartphone chargers, followed by cupholders, and something Hyundai calls bi-lateral console storage. It’s storage that can be opened either from the front or the back. Clever.
Two powertrains. One hybrid
For us U.S. folk, Hyundai will offer two engine options. You choose between a turbocharged 2.5-liter, inline-four, plucked from the Genesis engine department and slightly detuned to deliver 277 horsepower and 311 lb.-ft of torque. That pairs with an eight-speed dual-clutch transmission.
Or go hybrid, which carries over from the fourth generation Santa Fe to offer a turbocharged 1.6-liter inline-four delivering 178 HP and 195 lb.-ft of torque. That pairs with both a six-speed automatic transmission and an electric motor to deliver 226 system horsepower and the same peak torque.
Hyundai will announce pricing closer to the on-sale date, which is coming the first half of 2024, for we still have a little while. Perhaps in between now and then, we’ll learn more about the XRT Concept. At first glance, it appears to be Hyundai’s version of Honda’s Trailsport that we see offered on the Pilot. Evidence includes the Palisade XRT.
For now, we’re left to speculate. But also appreciate what the bolder styling approach Hyundai took with the fifth generation Santa Fe. Even if, it’s a touch “on the nose” for its Defender like styling.