Will be only compact pickup on market
New truck arrives on sale this summer
Hyundai has just revealed the Santa Cruz. What it calls a Sport Adventure Vehicle, but what the rest of us call a crossover pickup that’s smaller than anything currently available. Marking a new segment in a market where we didn’t think that was possible and sacrificing less utility than we had expected for a crossover turned into a truck.
The 2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz slots in at a whopping 363 mm shorter than the Honda Ridgeline at 4,970 mm long. It’s 250 mm shorter than Nissan Frontier, and similarly smaller than the rest of the current compact pickup segment. It’s about the same width as those trucks and comes with a bed that’s 1,323 mm (52-inches) long, putting it in the ballpark of those larger trucks. The bed has a locking tonneau cover to give it enclosed and secure storage.
Just one powertrain will be offered in the 2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz in Canada, a 2.5L turbo-four with 275 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque. The engine gets an eight-speed dual-clutch transmission and the vehicle has standard all-wheel drive. While Tucson based, the Santa Cruz will be able to up to 5,000 lbs, a figure that’s not out of the range of other compact conventional pickups. Canadian versions also get Mud, Sand, and Snow models, exclusive to this country. A lower capacity, lower power NA four will not be offered here. Expect the Santa Cruz to offer better fuel economy than the body on frame trucks, but that hasn’t yet been revealed.
It looks like a version of Chevrolet’s Avalanche or the Honda Ridgeline, but thanks to Hyundai’s latest styling is much more appealing than either of those. Features like the T lighting signature in the rear as well as the bold grille that hides LED running lights in Hyundai’s parametric jewel design. A skid plate under the fascia completes the look.
Hyundai SmartSense safety will be standard including forward collision avoidance with pedestrian and cyclist detection, lane keeping, attention warning, lane following, blind spot assist, and rear cross-traffic collision avoidance. Blind view monitor cameras, highway driving assist, and surround-view cameras are all optional.
The interior adds a more rugged look than other Hyundai crossovers and has a 10-inch edgeless infotainment display. It’s a crew cab, in truck talk, offering under-seat storage and much like the Ridgeline has an under-bed trunk to hold more stuff.
Built at Hyundai’s plant in Montgomery, AL, it will start production in June and be on sale in the summer. Expect pricing to follow.