2019 Hyundai Santa Fe Spied Testing For The First Time
Exclusive: first spy shots of the 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe SUV hit the web!
The next-generation Hyundai Santa Fe is still over a year away, but that hasn’t stopped eagle-eyed photographers trying to snap some pictures of the prototype as it goes through testing.
The latest spy shots were taken in Sweden, where the vehicle is being put through it’s cold weather paces.
There is a lot of camouflage in place, but there is enough visible to give us an idea of what to expect when the Santa Fe is released as a 2019 model year.
2019 Hyundai Santa Fe redesign
The camouflage cannot hide the fact that there appear to be some big changes ahead for Hyundai’s big-selling crossover, with the biggest changes taking place up front.
The current horizontal chrome bars on the grille will be replaced by a honeycomb design, while the headlights will be split into two parts.
The upper half will be comprised of slim LED lights, with larger lights sitting either side of the new grille.
What makes that particular detail so interesting is that the new look up front appears to be the same as those seen in spy shots taken of the new smaller Hyundai SUV that will be coming to market later this year.
The prototype of the new Hyundai Santa Fe comes with extra camo around back to hide what is going on there, although we can’t help but feel that this will become the largest crossover in the Hyundai line-up.
There has already been talk that the next-generation model would hold 8 passengers as opposed to the 7 that the current model can hold, and the extra lump in back would suggest that room is being made for a second bench.
Changes under the hood
Any talk about engines right now would be pure speculation, but we do expect that there will be a naturally-aspirated V6, as well as several inline-4 options in the Santa Fe Sport.
FWD should remain as standard, with AWD added as an option.
Other news that you may have missed includes Hyundai plan to make the Santa Fe and Santa Fe Sport two distinct nameplates when the new generation model arrives.
The 7-seat Ssanta Fe will add space for another passenger, while the 5-seat Santa Fe Sport will get a little larger, but with an eye on ruggedness as opposed to passenger space.
The changes will take effect between 2018 and 2020.
2019 Hyundai Santa Fe release date
The next-generation Santa Fe is set to arrive in 2018 as a 2019 model, although there is no word on when the official launch date will be.
Our best guess is that the new model will be officially unveiled at either the Detroit Motor Show next January, or the 2018 New York Auto Show next April.