2019 Hyundai Santa Fe
An all-new, fourth-generation Santa Fe sits on display at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show following its world debut at Hyundai’s Motorstudio Goyang in South Korea on Feb. 21, 2018. Hyundai’s most successful SUV in the U.S. market, the new Santa Fe is scheduled to go on sale in the U.S. in summer 2018. Geneva is the first auto show appearance by the 2019 Santa Fe since it debuted in late February in Goyang, a city that is part of the Seoul Capital Area in northern South Korea.
Bolder Design Language
The new Santa Fe design features a bolder grille with circular mesh replacing the previous horizontal strakes. LED daytime running lights flank the grille, connected by a bright trim strip that runs across the top of the grille and below the running lights. The LED headlights are positioned lower and recessed to each side of the grille, creating a new front-end appearance for the Santa Fe, similar to the design direction of the new compact Hyundai KONA.
When looking at the side profile of the new Santa Fe, a distinct character line runs the length of the vehicle along the shoulder line from the rear corner of the running lights to the taillights. The wheel openings are sculpted deeper into the fenders for a more aggressive appearance. At the rear, taillights are connected by a bright trim strip and there is a more prominent rear spoiler.
For 2019 Santa Fe will be the model name for the 5-seat version, dropping the Santa Fe Sport name used for the 2018 model, while the 7-seat version will now be known as the Santa Fe XL. A new diesel version of Santa Fe will be added with a third-row seat intended for children and one-touch folding second-row seats for easy access. The third-row seat is only available in the Santa Fe diesel, but the Santa Fe XL will offer 7-passenger seating with a third row.
Larger with Improved Visibility
The new Santa Fe is larger than the outgoing Santa Fe Sport, with an increase in total interior volume for both passengers and cargo. The 2019 Santa Fe rides on
a 2.6-inch longer wheelbase with a 2.8-inch increase in overall length and an increase of almost half an inch in width. To improve visibility for the driver, the outside mirrors are mounted lower and farther back from the A-pillars, which have been reduced in size. To enhance rearward visibility, the rear quarter glass has been increased by more than 40 percent.
Inside, the interior design of the 2019 Santa Fe has what could best be described as a “horizontal” feel, intended to emphasize the more open space and improved visibility. The infotainment screen at the top of the center stack has been tilted and positioned to help reduce glare, the cupholders in the center console have been moved, and the center armrest has been increased in length. The window switches have been moved forward on the doors to increase elbow room, and the door pockets are smaller for more legroom. Instrument panel stitching and color-contrasting seat piping add a more luxurious feel.
The 2019 Santa Fe will be offered with three engine choices: a 2.4-liter GDI 4-cylinder, a turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder, or a 2.2-liter CRDi turbodiesel. Power output is estimated at this time, with the 2.4-liter expected to produce 185 horsepower and 178 lb-ft of torque, with the turbocharged 2.0-liter at 235 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque. The 2.2-liter CRDi turbodiesel is estimated to produce 190 horsepower and 322 lb-ft of torque at 1750 rpm. All three engines get a new, lighter 8-speed automatic transmissions designed in-house by Hyundai. Fuel economy ratings will be announced later.
HTRAC Advanced AWD System
The available HTRAC all-wheel-drive system offers three driver-selectable modes: Normal, Sport and Smart. The HTRAC AWD system features an electronic, variable-torque-split clutch with active torque control between the front and rear axles to vary the amount of torque delivered to each axle, depending on driving conditions such as straight-line acceleration, cornering speed and starting on a hill. The Sport mode sends more torque to the rear wheels for a sportier, more dynamic feel.
Ride and Handling
Suspension upgrades are designed to improve ride comfort, steering feel and overall stability, including repositioning the rear shock absorbers to an upright position. Optional self-leveling suspension is offered, giving Santa Fe a consistent ride height when carrying heavier cargo or towing a trailer.
Hyundai Smart Sense technologies are standard on the SE trim and above and include Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist, Blind-Spot Collision Warning, Safe Exit Assist, Lane Keeping Assist, Driver Attention Warning, Smart Cruise Control with Stop & Go, Rear View Monitor with Parking Guidance, Around View Monitor and Rear Cross-Traffic Collision-Avoidance Assist.
Rear-Seat Occupant Alert
Hyundai is debuting Rear Seat Occupant Alert on the 2019 Santa Fe — a rear-seat monitor that helps detect children and pets, reminding the driver to check the rear seat when exiting the vehicle. If the system detects movement after the driver has exited, it will honk the horn, flash the lights and send a Blue Link alert to the driver’s smartphone. Santa Fe also features a clever Safe Exit Assist, which prevents doors from being opened even when unlocked if a motorcycle, bicycle or vehicle approaches from the rear. The system sounds an alert, a warning gets posted on the center cluster and the doors remain locked.
To help improve driver attention to the road, an available Head-Up Display uses mirrors and a TFT LCD display to project an 8.5-inch virtual image onto the windshield. Information that can be displayed includes speed, Smart Cruise Control status, navigation, Blind Spot Collision Warning, Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist, speed limit, Lane Departure Warning and audio system information.
The base trim includes a standard 7-inch interface with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay; Hyundai’s latest AVN 5.0 navigation system is available on upper trim levels. Available Blue Link Connected Car System includes technologies such as Remote Start with Climate Control, Remote Door Lock/Unlock, Car Finder, Enhanced Roadside Assistance and Stolen Vehicle Recovery. Blue Link features can be accessed via buttons on the rearview mirror.