After the Hyundai Santa Cruz’s global debut last May, the Korean marque announced that it has already started the production of the aforementioned compact pickup truck.
Hyundai Alabama plant staff celebrating the Santa Cruz's start of production
In charge of making the vehicle is Hyundai’s Manufacturing facility located in Alabama, United States. There, it will be built alongside other models including the Sonata and Elantra sedans, the Santa Fe, and the Tucson.
Of note, the Santa Fe shares the same platform with the fourth-generation Hyundai Tucson. As such, the decision to build the said truck in Alabama might save the brand from further costs for factory retooling and retraining. Also, this marks the first time that the Hyundai plant in Alabama is building five models consecutively. To this end, Hyundai says that adding the Santa Cruz to its Alabama’s production lineup allows the plant to be able to adjust its vehicle production to meet the changing demands of the market.
A nearly finished Santa Cruz at the Hyundai Alabama plant
For those unaware, the Hyundai Santa Cruz is a compact, four-door pickup truck based on the Hyundai-Kia N3 platform. Propelling it are two gasoline inline-4 engines. The turbocharged version can make 275 horsepower and 420 Nm of torque, while the naturally aspirated version can produce up to 190 horsepower and 244 Nm of torque.
As a pickup truck, the Santa Cruz features a cargo bed. What sets it apart from other trucks is its bed’s array of cargo spaces, which is not just a plain old flatbed. The Santa Cruz’s bed includes a hidden storage, a lockable tonneau cover, a power-assisted tailgate, pilot lights for visibility, as well as several adjustable tie-down points.
Hyundai also does engine assembly at the said plant
With regards to its interior, it can comfortably seat five, and it features a 10-inch digital gauge cluster, an eight-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, among others. Safety is then handled by a plethora of driving assist features like cross-traffic collision-avoidance assist, blind-spot monitoring, lane-keep assist, driver attention warning, etc.
Applying paint on the Santa Cruz's shell
The 2022 Hyundai Santa Cruz will arrive in US dealerships sometime next year. In the context of the Philippine market however, we already reported that there might be a chance that we’re getting it. So, if the Philippine market did get the Santa Cruz, where will Hyundai Philippines source it?
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Cesar G.B. Miguel