Is the upcoming Hyundai Santa Cruz pickup be American-made? According to an company executive it might be.
Adding a pickup truck to the Hyundai lineup has been an open secret since the automaker unveiled the Santa Cruz prototype at the Detroit Auto Show in 2015. Automotive News learned earlier this week that the more leisure-oriented pickup – a bit like the Honda Ridgeline for example – should be assembled in the United States.
That’s what Michael O’Brien, vice president of product, corporate and digital planning at Hyundai USA, said in an interview with Automotive News.
O’Brien did not want to make waves by stating that the production of this highly anticipated model should be in a US factory, especially taking into account President Trump’s policy of imposing a 25% tariff on imported pickups. And as Hyundai’s VP says, the majority of the vehicles will be sold in the US anyway.
Michael O’Brien also reiterated that the vehicle would be very versatile and had the potential to create a whole new category of buyers. Let’s remember that the prototype shown in 2015 was equipped with a 4-cylinder turbo diesel engine, a powertrain that should not be offered here, in theory at least.
Like the other midsize pickups available on the market today, the future Hyundai Santa Cruz – if it keeps this name of course – would be more aimed at an audience interested in the fun side of the vehicle (for expeditions away from the city), rather than its utilitarian aspect for the job as is the case with full-size pickups.
One thing is certain: this future pickup is still talked about a lot and with the emergence of this category of vehicles, Hyundai certainly may hit another home run.