Hyundai is working on a complete overhaul for the Santa Fe. We have new spy photos with a prototype of the SUV testing in winter conditions with heavy exterior camouflage. There are fake body panels attached front and rear but we can at least see the model’s overall shape.
This isn’t the first time in which we share spy shots of the 2024 Santa Fe but this is the first occasion in which we see it testing on snow. Unfortunately, the South Korean automaker keeps a huge amount of camouflage, which most likely suggests we are witnessing the relatively early stages of on-road evaluations. Even with all the fabric and vinyl camouflage, you can’t miss the Santa Fe’s boxy shape.
To a certain extent, this early sighting of the Santa Fe makes us feel as if we are looking at a significantly larger Kia Soul. The flat roofline, big overhangs, and edgy overall lines hint at a radically new design for the SUV compared to the model that is still on sale. Those wheels may seem a little small for the vehicle, though we bet they are at least 18 inches in diameter.
We don’t know much about what is going on under the skin, through. We know for sure the new Santa Fe will share its underpinnings with the Kia Sorento, but it is unclear whether this new generation model will bring substantial changes under the hood. Currently, the Santa Fe is sold in the United States with gasoline and hybrid engines, while Europe also gets a turbodiesel powertrain.
We expect the Santa Fe to continue to be offered in five- and seven-seat versions. As a reminder, the model is sold in South Korea in a six-seat variant featuring captain’s chairs for the second row. The current generation of the SUV was introduced in 2019 and Hyundai was quick to give it a refresh in 2021.
Earlier this week, Hyundai officially confirmed the next-generation Santa Fe will be launched this year. We don’t know the exact time schedule of the debut but word on the street is we will see the model in the summer with sales likely to begin before the year’s end as a 2024 model.