Making huge news at the New York Auto Show, the all-new 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe was unveiled with the expected style and swagger, but the big news was under the hood where a diesel engine will now be available.
Hyundai is on a roll and with the complete redesign of their best-selling Santa Fe crossover SUV, they are making some key strategy shifts to keep it there. The new 2019 Santa Fe looks bigger than before because it is, about two-inches longer.
More upright and bold in its presentation, it has larger windows and more sculpting in its shoulder line which speaks to a more premium look overall, a bit more upscale in its details. Featured are LED daytime running lights and LED headlights – all the rage now. Shown here are are 19-inch alloy wheels
With its increase in size, the Santa Fe gets larger inside now offering class leading space in terms of leg room and cargo for the two-row mid-size class. The new dash and cockpit have a layered and sculpted design that itself creates a sense of space and commanding view – bolstered by the larger glass areas.
Premium materials and switchgear have become expected with Hyundai of late and this trend continues. So also goes the trend of high standards of infotainment. Base systems have a 7-inch screen and have standard Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. It all goes up from there with several options for high-end audio and navigation. A new head-up-display will also be available.
The Hyundai Santa Fe will be now primarily a two-row five-passenger model with the existing three-row Santa Fe staying around for a while renamed as the Santa Fe XL. That model will be replaced soon with an all-new full sized three-row SUV with a new name.
The 2019 Santa Fe Diesel model will however have what Hyundai calls an “occasional use” third row seat for up to seven passengers. This means it will have a small third-row that’s good enough in a pinch.
That gets us to powertrains because here is where the big news is. The 2019 Santa Fe will offer three engines staring with the existing 2.4-liter four-cylinder with 185 horsepower. Also available again will be the smooth and powerful 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder with 235 horsepower.
New is a 2.2-liter four-cylinder turbodiesel that will have an impressive 190 horsepower and downright astounding and 322 pound-feet of torque. This new option should offer excellent fuel efficiency and even an impressive towing ability. All three engines will be mated to a new 8-speed automatic and be available with front-wheel drive or all-wheel-drive.
While the chassis is stretched and widened, the platform architecture is largely evolutionary with only minor changes in geometry and tuning. Availabile now is a self-load-leveling rear suspension that adjusts for various loads.
Obviously final specs and pricing are of major interest, particularly for the new Hyundai Santa Fe diesel. We’ll have to wait for that and a test drive closer to this summer when it goes on sale.