In terms of transformations this one is quite big. Not quite on the same scale as the whole caterpillar to butterfly thing, but it’s still an unexpectedly radical change. When it comes to a large family SUV, the Hyundai Santa Fe has been a dependable choice for more than 20 years. In that time, it’s grown in size, gained a lot of new technology, and continued to offer great value for money. And the fifth generation Santa Fe that will go on sale next year has taken all of that to a whole new level.
If you’re considering leasing a seven-seat SUV it might be worth the wait to get your hands on the thoroughly 21st century Hyundai Santa Fe.
First things first….just look at it.
There was absolutely nothing wrong with the styling of the outgoing model but the all-new Santa Fe has gone in a totally different direction anyway. The front end features a high bonnet, sharply defined edges, and distinctive H-shaped headlights. The H-shaped theme is repeated in the rear lights that are incorporated into a full-width tailgate designed to increase practicality and ease of access. It’s also higher and longer than the current model so expect quite a bit of extra room all around.
The H-shape is mirrored on the interior too, with dashboard and air vents designed to enhance the sense of space.
The all-new Santa Fe’s contemporary interior is highlighted by a variety of high-tech features, including a Panoramic Curved Display and dual wireless charging. The curved display connects the 12.3-inch digital cluster and infotainment system and enhances driver visibility while delivering a sense of luxury. It also features “Relaxation Seats” in the middle row that are designed to be so comfortable they simulate a weightless experience.
High-spec versions also get heated seats, push-button start, multi-zone climate control and a digital rear-view mirror that can be used when the luggage space is full and the traditional glass mirror is only showing you how much stuff you’ve got to unload when you arrive at your destination. It's even got a UV-C Sterilisation Tray in the glove compartment so you can sterilise frequently used items, such as cell phones, wallets, etc. The whole thing is then finished in leather and suede and wood for a light and luxurious feel.
In Europe, Hyundai is making the new Santa Fe available with two powertrain options at launch.
You can choose from a mild-hybrid 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine, or the same 1.6-litre engine in a plug-in hybrid version. With power outputs of around 180bhp and 160bhp respectively, fuel economy should be pretty good for a large SUV. Other markets outside Europe are also getting a more powerful 2.5-litre version that may or may not become an option in the future.
The all-new Hyundai Santa Fe is due to go on sale in Korea this month with European order books opening in the first half of 2024.
If you are on the lookout for your next lease, and you can hang on for another few months before having to make a final decision, the new Hyundai Santa Fe is definitely going to be worth the wait. If you value modern design, the latest technology, and enough space to be able to ignore the noise of the children on long journeys, it has to feature on your list of possibilities.
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