2024 Hyundai Santa Fe Aims to Out-Box the Competition
Hyundai's 'tweener SUV gets a dramatic reinvention for its fifth generation.
Boxy is in. We've seen it all over, from the recently revealed Lexus GX, the Land Rover Defender, and the retro-futurist Hyundai Ioniq 5. Now the Korean brand is doubling down, as it has shown the first images of the 2024 Hyundai Santa Fe.
The Santa Fe was the brand's first SUV, debuting at right at the tail-end of the last millennium. Right up to the one you can currently find in dealerships, there's been a roundness to the rig. No longer. Hyundai's designers have adopted (near-)right angles all over the place, for a blocky SUV that shares zero visual DNA with what's come before. The front end is all rectangles, with an H-shaped motif in the lower bumper as well as the LED daytime running lights. Dramatic, angular wheel arches frame clean flanks, with "floating" metallic trim marking out the C- and D-pillars. A subtly tapering roofline is giving Range Rover, and it terminates in a long rooftop spoiler above a square tailgate.
This is where things get very unusual. Hyundai has been slowly moving rear turn signals and reverse lights low down on its SUVs; the Santa Fe ships the entire light cluster down, wholesale. Like the front-end, the lights have a pixelated H look to them, which is admittedly pretty cool. The shape of the tailgate suggests serious storage space, and Hyundai says the Santa Fe offers "best-in-class terrace-like space that’s great for urban life and even better for the outdoors."
The wheelbase is longer than the 108.9-inch (2,765-millimeter) of the existing model. Multi-spoke, 21-inch wheels anchor the Santa Fe. It's hard to get a bead on the overall size given the new look, but to our eyes, it's got to be close to big brother Palisade. To that end: the Santa Fe will once again have three rows of seats. Curiously, Hyundai's release says "Santa Fe’s first full model change since 2018," even though the fourth-gen moved to a new platform in 2021.
Moving inside, the cabin design is much cleaner than before, both literally and visually: Hyundai will be using multiple recycled materials for the Santa Fe's innards. In addition, there's quilted Nappa leather seats, "wood patterned garnish," and a curved display housing twin 12.3-inch digital screens. The center console is very interesting, housing multiple USB-C ports and two wireless charging pads.
Hyundai will debut the 2024 Hyundai Santa Fe in a dedicated show on the brand's YouTube channel next month. We expect more details on the platform, drivetrain, and market availabilities then.
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