Hyundai has released a couple of official sketches of the fourth-generation Santa Fe ahead of its world debut in February. The SUV will have its public premiere at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show in early March.
With the fourth-gen model the Santa Fe looks sharper than ever thanks to the Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 design philosophy. The front fascia is largely occupied by the plus-sized cascading grille. A thick chrome element glues together the grille and the sleek daytime running LEDs. The main lamps, on the other hand, are placed on both the sides of the grille in a separate housing, a similar setup we’ve already seen on the India-bound Hyundai Kona compact SUV. A subtle yet distinctive character line runs across the length of the SUV, connecting the DRLs with the wraparound tail lamps.
Hyundai is yet to tease the new Santa Fe’s interior or reveal any information about its powertrain options and features. However, it is safe to assume that there will be an electrified version, perhaps a plug-in hybrid model like the Sonata.
The third-gen Santa Fe was among the first models in Hyundai’s lineup to preview the second iteration of its design language, Fluidic Sculpture 2.0, with its edgier aesthetics. In fact, it was based on the ‘Storm Edge’ design philosophy, which was a derivative of the Fluidic Sculpture design language.
Consider the Storm Edge as the harbinger of the Fluidic Sculpture 2.0. Courtesy of the same, the previous-gen SUV was diametrically opposite to the one before it in terms of appearance, which is not the case now. The fourth-gen model features the Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 with refinements that Hyundai has incorporated along the way such as the new cascading family grille.
Speaking of its Indian market introduction, the third-gen Santa Fe was launched at the Auto Expo 2014 but was silently discontinued in late 2017 due to sluggish sales. Hyundai never launched the third-gen facelift, introduced in 2015, here probably because it wasn’t popular in its lineup. Now, with the market gradually warming up to monocoque-based, large seven-seat crossovers, Hyundai could reintroduce the fourth-gen model of the nameplate in a couple of years.
The new Hyundai Santa Fe is likely to come via the CKD route as before. If and when introduced, it would go up against the new Honda CR-V, Volkswagen Tiguan and the Skoda Kodiaq, along with body-on-frame offerings such as the Ford Endeavour and Toyota Fortuner.
Stay tuned for its global unveil in February.