Next-Gen Hyundai Santa Cruz 2024 Pickup Truck USA Models, Update – The 2024 Hyundai Santa Cruz is Hyundai’s first-ever entry into the truck segment. This all-new car is a hybrid of every type of vehicle you can think of, including a sports sedan, crossover, SUV, and pickup truck. For argument, let’s call it a compact pickup truck, as evidenced by the open box on the back. Hyundai says that Santa Cruz will be appealing to a wide range of customers, such as adventurers, people who like being outside, and people who drive for work.
The brand-new Hyundai Santa Cruz for 2024 is a fantastic addition to the compact pickup truck segment. The Santa Cruz has a luxurious interior, plush front seats, an intuitive infotainment system, and tech and safety features. It has excellent payload and towing capacities, and its four-cylinder engine lineup is fuel-efficient. Though the original engine isn’t potent, the turbocharged update adds extra oomph.
Next-Gen Hyundai Santa Cruz Redesign
Because of the similar approach in the underpinnings department, most people will compare the Santa Cruz to the Honda Ridgeline. Those individuals, however, are missing the point. The Ridgeline is a more comfortable alternative to work trucks that are also frequently used as lifestyle trucks, such as the Toyota Tacoma and Nissan Frontier. The Santa Cruz is a smaller vehicle than the Ridgeline, and it doesn’t claim to be used for gardening or towing an ATV out to the desert. The new Ford Maverick will be its most direct competitor. On the other hand, the Maverick still tries to look like a traditional truck, which is clear from how it looks.
Hyundai’s designers have been free to let their imaginations run wild because they aren’t bound by convention. As a result, Santa Cruz is one of the most incredible trucks we’ve seen in a long time. The typical Etch-A-Sketch-inspired blocky design is tossed out the window. Instead, you’ll get a front resembling a Mandalorian helmet, a back with appealing light clusters, and the Santa Cruz brand stamped into the sheet metal. LED daylight running lights and taillights are standard from the base model forward, while bi-LED headlights are only available on the SEL Premium and Limited. Dual-tone 18-inch alloy wheels are standard on all versions. The Limited model has 20-inch alloy wheels, dark chrome accents, and a luxury fascia design.
The 2024 Hyundai Santa Cruz cabin is more luxurious than that of most of its tiny pickup truck competitors. With a dashboard that runs smoothly from door to door, the interior provides a modern and sophisticated feel. The layout is similar to that of the comparably opulent Hyundai Tucson SUV. There are some soft-touch surfaces and some more rigid plastics, but everything feels substantial and well-made. The Santa Cruz is primarily quiet inside, with only a little wind noise at higher speeds.
The optional 10.2-inch touch screen complicates things by replacing the traditional controls with a touch-sensitive surface. The display is prone to accumulating fingerprints and dust in direct sunlight, and the individual touch points can be difficult to perceive. The same can be said for the simultaneous digital gauge cluster, which tends to wash out in direct sunlight (analog instruments with hoods are standard).
A 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine is standard on all versions. It’s naturally aspirated on the SE and SEL, with a turbocharger added for good measure on the SEL Premium and Limited. The naturally aspirated four-cylinder engine is paired with an eight-speed torque converter automatic transmission, while the turbocharged machine is paired with an eight-speed dual-clutch transmission. At 6,100 pm, the normally aspirated engine produces 191 horsepower and 181 lb-ft of torque at 4,00 pm. When Hyundai adds a turbocharger, these numbers jump to 281 horsepower at 5,800 rpm and 311 pound-feet of torque at 1,700 pm.
The base 2.5-liter engine produces slightly more horsepower and torque than the Tucson’s, and we doubt it will be anything less than adequate in the somewhat bigger Santa Cruz. Our experience has been with the turbocharged variant, which has plenty of oomph for commuting and securely merging into motorway traffic. The low-down torque is apparent and welcome, instilling a sense of security for when things get rough. The drivetrain is swift and clean in its moves, and it always seems to be in the right gear at the correct time when paired with the eight-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.
Next-Gen Hyundai Santa Cruz Price and Release Date
The base MSRP of the 2024 Hyundai Santa Cruz is $23,990, making it one of the most affordable new trucks in the United States. The SEL trim level raises the price to $27,190. The SEL Premium and Limited variants with turbochargers cost $35,680 and $39,720.