Hot on the heels of the launch of the updated Hyundai Tucson, the company has released the fourth-generation Santa Fe in South Africa that features a new all-wheel drive system and eight-speed gearbox along with upgraded tech inside the cabin.
This “ambassador for the brand’s new design language”, as Hyundai Motor Group’s new design chief Luc Donckerwolke refers to the new Santa Fe, was first launched in 2001 and 5 331 units have been sold in South Africa since then.
The new-generation Santa Fe is introduced in South Africa in three derivatives:
• Santa Fe R 2.2 Premium automatic (with front-wheel drive);
• Santa Fe R 2.2 Executive automatic (with front-wheel drive); and
• Santa Fe R 2.2 Elite automatic (with HTRAC all-wheel drive).
The new-generation Santa Fe features an advanced four-wheel drive system in the Elite derivative with an enhanced torque application depending on wheel grip and the speed of vehicle, called HTRAC. Hyundai’s next generation all-wheel-drive technology controls the torque distribution and braking power of the front and rear wheels variably. It supports drivers in all kinds of driving situations, whether on slippery roads or in regular road conditions and enhances stability in cornering.
The power for the new Santa Fe’s drivetrain comes from the 2,2-litre CRDi engine that delivers 142 kW maximum power and 440 Nm maximum torque. Linked to the newly developed 8-speed automatic gearbox, which is engineered with a transversal layout, it delivers enhanced fuel efficiency of 3% to 4%.
The new gearbox layout offers a more compact set-up and an increased gear span for enhanced performance and reduced fuel consumption. The gear ratio is widened by 18,3 %, resulting in an improved engine response during start and acceleration.
The fourth-generation Santa Fe offers one of the best-in-class safety packages and industry-first safety features. The innovative Rear Occupant Alert (in the Elite derivative) monitors the rear seats to detect passengers and alerts the driver when leaving the car. The Elite also comes with an Electronic Child Safety Lock.
The Rear Cross-Traffic Collision-Avoidance Assist ¬– a standard feature in the Executive and Elite derivatives – is a Hyundai first. When reversing out of areas with low visibility, the system not only warns the driver if vehicles approach from the rear side – it also applies the brakes automatically. The Executive and Elite also boasts a Blind Spot Detection system.
The Safety Exit Assist, also standard in the Executive and Elite derivatives, prevents accidents when vehicles approach from behind by temporarily locking the doors before being opened, so that passengers will exit the car safely.
All derivatives have anti-Lock Braking, ESP (Electronic Stability Program), DBC (Downhill Brake Control) and HAC (Hill start Assist Control).
The new-generation Santa Fe benefits from superior rigidity through the application of high strength steel, high impact energy absorption and minimised distortion in order to protect passengers in the event of a collision.
Thanks to hot stamping being applied over an enlarged area along with larger weld diameters, the car’s overall weight is reduced while providing top-level crashworthiness. The Santa Fe features more high-strength steel than any other Hyundai vehicle with 57% – that is 15% above the previous model.
Around the interior of the Santa Fe a total of six air bags are installed (two front ai rbags, two side air bags and two curtain air bags from first to second row protecting both driver and passengers).
The 7-inch infotainment system in the Santa Fe – which is a standard feature in all three derivatives – integrates all media and connectivity features, allowing drivers to always stay tuned to the traffic ahead.
The Display Audio offers customers accessible connectivity with the seven-inch high-resolution colour LCD touchscreen to connect their smartphones via Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. Passengers can also use the navigation applications of their smartphone, to be displayed on the touch screen. The system recognises the passenger’s voice allowing them to dictate messages or to make phone calls. The Display Audio also features an integrated rear-view camera with dynamic guidelines.
For further connection of customer’s devices, the Santa Fe comes standard with a USB port and an AUX jack.
The front introduces the Cascading Grille design that is complemented by the Composite Light – a design comprising LED Daytime Running Lights positioned on top of the headlights. The Elite and Executive have full LED headlights, while the Premium derivative is equipped with halogen lights. The Elite’s headlights have dynamic bending into a corner as an added feature.
The exterior dimensions make the new Santa Fe appear even more prominent. With a length of 4 770 mm, a width of 1 890 mm and a longer wheelbase of 2 765 mm, the Santa Fe has an even stronger stance on the road and provides more comfort for its passengers.
The new Santa Fe increases comfort on short and long trips for passengers in the second and third row – even for adults. In the second row, leg room is increased by 38 mm and the seat is 18 mm higher. The new one-touch walk into the third row eases passenger access to these seats. Headroom in the third row has been improved by 22 mm.
Standard luggage capacity is increased by 31 litres to 547 litres behind the second row of seats, and can be extended to 1 625 litres with both the third and second row of seats folded down.
The prices of the new Santa Fe range are:
• Santa Fe R 2.2 Premium automatic – R599 900
• Santa Fe R 2.2 Executive automatic – R659 900
• Santa Fe R 2.2 Elite automatic – R749 900.
All prices include Hyundai Automotive SA’s 7-year/200 000 km manufacturer’s warranty (consisting of the standard 5-year/150 000 km warranty plus the additional 2-year/50 000 km drivetrain warranty extension).
An additional part of the package is a 5-year/90 000 km service plan, and roadside assistance for 5 years or 150 000 km.