2013 Hyundai Santa Fe Revealed in New York

2013 Hyundai Santa Fe Revealed in New York

2012 New York Auto Show

2012 New York Auto Show

Just the Facts:
  • Hyundai will offer two versions of the Santa Fe, a five-passenger and a seven-passenger.
  • The five-seat Santa Fe Sport uses four-cylinder engines and goes on sale in September.
  • The V6-equipped Santa Fe will launch in January 2013 and replaces the Veracruz.

NEW YORK — Hyundai actually unveiled two vehicles at the 2012 New York Auto Show. There's the 2013 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport, which seats five and uses exclusively four-cylinder engines. Then, there's the standard-size 2013 Hyundai Santa Fe. It has a 4-inch-longer wheelbase (110.2 inches) and is 6.5 inches longer overall (193.1 inches). It seats seven and comes with a V6 only.

This seven-passenger crossover SUV is Hyundai's replacement for the Veracruz, which will end production when this larger Santa Fe goes on sale in January 2013. The Santa Fe Sport goes on sale this September.

With these new crossovers, Hyundai will more aggressively go after "families with two or more kids," John Krafcik told the crowd at Javits. And indeed, the new Santa Fe siblings appear to offer the same combination of style, performance, features and impressive EPA ratings that have made the Sonata and Elantra so likable.

The base engine in the Santa Fe Sport is the familiar direct-injected 2.4-liter inline-4 rated at 190 horsepower and an estimated 181 pound-feet of torque. Optional is the company's turbocharged and direct-injected 2.0-liter inline-4 rated at 264 hp and 269 lb-ft.

On the regular-size Santa Fe, you get the direct-injected 3.3-liter V6 from the Azera rated at 290 hp in this application; Hyundai has not yet released a torque rating. A six-speed automatic is standard with all three engines, and an all-wheel-drive system is optional. At first glance, it's just your typical light-duty AWD system that drives only the front wheels until more traction is needed, but Hyundai has included a torque-vectoring feature to make it more versatile. We're still waiting for more details on how it works, but Hyundai officials tell us it's more than a simple brake-based setup and is capable of transferring torque between the wheels.

Projected fuel economy ratings are 23 mpg city/31 mpg highway/25 combined with the base 2.4-liter engine and 22/31/25 with the 2.0T engine. Hyundai hasn't made any predictions for the V6-equipped Santa Fe just yet.

A significant weight loss should help performance across the board. The base front-wheel-drive Santa Fe Sport is 266 pounds lighter than a comparable version of the outgoing model, as 38 percent of the unit-body is high-tensile steel compared to just 8 percent previously. An all-wheel-drive, seven-passenger Santa Fe tops out at 4,000 pounds — about 400 pounds lighter than our long-term 2008 Veracruz.

The standard equipment list on all versions of the 2013 Hyundai Santa Fe models includes a driver knee airbag, a 40/20/40-split second-row seat, Bluetooth, a USB input and the BlueLink telematics system. Options include a panoramic sunroof, a heated steering wheel, a heated rear seat, a navigation system, and on the V6 Santa Fe only, blind spot monitoring.

Edmunds.com says: Expect the Santa Fe siblings to shake up the balance of power in the family crossover segment.

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