• Jul 7, 2008

In a trend that is sure to prove popular, Hyundai will add a less powerful and more fuel efficient four-cylinder to the available engine lineup on its Santa Fe model when it is redesigned for 2010. As of today, the four-door crossover is available with a choice of either a 2.7-liter or a 3.3-liter six-cylinder powerplant mated to four- or five-speed automatics (a five-speed manual is optional on the smaller engine). Both are rated at 24 mpg highway in the current model. The next-gen Santa Fe will offer a new six-speed automatic with the 2.4-liter four-cylinder that is currently powering the 2009 Hyundai Sonata. Under the hood of the lighter Sonata sedan (and mated to a five-speed automatic), the second-generation Theta engine squeezes out 32 mpg on the highway. While we don't think the Santa Fe will pull a number that impressive, fuel economy in the high-20's shouldn't be out of the question.

[Source: Autoweek]



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  • 25 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      about time! they would have gained more sales if they did this at the models intro.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Of course, there wasn't $4.00 a gallon gas at the intro either.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Kind of harsh w/ insults, Poopy...especially since you didn't mention Hyundai's third crossover, the Veracruz, that compares more closely to the Highlander than the Santa Fe does.

        The Tucson and RAV4 are competitors, but not quite directly...the RAV4 is almost a foot longer than a Tucson. The RAV4 and Santa Fe are closer to each other in size than the Tucson and RAV4.

        In model/engine/feature structure, I'd say the Santa Fe and RAV4 are much closer together.
        Poopy
        • 6 Years Ago
        The Tuscon is the direct competition to the Rav4.

        The Sante Fe is the direct competition to the Highlander.

        The Tuscon can be had with a 4 cylinder dumb@ss, just like the Rav4. The Sante Fe and the Highlander come with V6s.

        But you obviously care to compare apples and oranges, so I'll leave you to your pool of stupidity.
      • 6 Years Ago
      We actually looked at the Santa Fe recently. It is currently offered with a 4-cylinder engine and a 5-speed stick. The big problem for us was that it wasn't offered with the interior trim packages we wanted. If we had picked Santa Fe as the vehicle, I would have happily gone with it if we could have got it with the Limited trim.
      Michael D.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I don't really see this as a good idea - a vehicle this size and mass is too large for a four-banger, and this would be a lot of labor for a four, especially under a full load and negotiating steep grades.

      The four would have to work harder to maintain the same demands which the two available V6s would handle in confidence, and, as a result, I really don't see an advantage and the harder working four I don't see achieving so much greater MPG.

      I see marketing calling this shot for the public perception is that the the I-4 is greater economy and higher MPG than a greater cylinder-count. I also see a 4-cyl. Santa-Fe sold to more fleets.

      Also, funny thing about the Santa Fe, with 17 or 18 inch wheels, it appears solid and sharp, but with the base and smaller 16 inchers, it appears cheaper and top-heavy. Sometimes wheels can make-or-break a good design. I suppose the I-4 version will be entry-level.
        • 6 Years Ago
        @Michael D.
        its not for off roading. Its meant as a family hauler. The majority of people with SUVs just use them as big cars. Now it just won't chug at 4.00+ a gallon
      • 6 Years Ago
      @ angeloD

      i just went through your previous posts and couldn't help notice your bashing comments on every kia/hyundai posts. you own gm stock or something?
      • 6 Years Ago
      Hey look! It's the 2010 Hyundai Highlander-Forester!
      • 6 Years Ago
      Hyundai's legit and their designs, altho not cutting edge, will, like every consumer product, win some and lose some.

      Their build quality and commitment to providing the consumer with a world class product can not be question. Every single redesigned Hyundai is at or near the top of the class, their initial quality is near the top of the class and their long-term reliability is better than average and also leap-frogging other manufacturers every survey. And they weren't at the bottom either in the 2006 survey but more mid-pack.
      Hyundai is legit and their product line-up, if driven and tested, rather than mocked thru a pre-2001 lense, is as good as the worlds best when one looks at the whole package. I would bet that the harshest critics have neither driven or even sat in a Hyundai in the last 5 years, or they are just trolls working for the competition. Anyway, drive a Veracruz or better yet a Genesis, as I have and you'll wonder why Hyundai's competition sees Hyundai as a world class threat to their sales goals. Hyundai isn't even really going hard yet. Wait til they offer 7 new vehicles in the next 24 months like they just recently did and you'll see some increased sales.
        Poopy
        • 6 Years Ago
        Hey Brian,

        Toyota recalled more vehicles than they sold last year. What's your point? Right now a comparable 2009 Sonata in comparison to a 2009 Camry SE is $4000 cheaper after incentives AND if I finance, I will save additional money because I had a lower principle value AND therefore will pay less interest given the same rates.

        On top of that, your quality quibbles are just dumb. The warranty is almost twice as long! And lets be honest. The Camry hasn't exactly been perfect since it was redesigned.

        Hyundai/Kia increased their sales versus last year in June, Toyota tanked.
        • 6 Years Ago
        better yet wait for the model face-lifts!!! have you seen the new 2009 sonata ( little changes made a worlds difference)
      • 6 Years Ago
      I don't mind the Santa Fe... it looks more like a dimestore Porsche Cayenne than anything from Subaru (mostly referring to the side profile, anyway).

      I suppose it looks a bit like the new Forester (whose design it predates) but nothing like the old boxy one.

      Regardless, it's not a bad little family-hauler... if they added in a 5-speed stick to make up for the lack of power in the 4 cylinder, they'd have a winner. The old Mitsubishi Outlander had a 2.4L 4 banger + manual version that I really wanted; unfortunately they ditched it when they went to the new one.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Hyundai needs to stop dumpster diving outside of the Subaru design studio for their exterior designs. God what a homely beast.

      I don't know what's worse, the homeliness of the Santa Fe or the bland, nondescript nothingness of the Genesis.
        • 6 Years Ago
        I totally agree with you as well, just like homunculus. It so much looks like 2009 Subaru Forester....

        and Yes, this Santa Fe came out about.... 2 years ago???

        You are a moron, AngeloD
        • 6 Years Ago
        Could be worse, could like the new UGLY Hondas and Acuras.
        • 6 Years Ago
        I agree, it looks a lot like the 2009 Forester.

        Except this is a 2007 Sante Fe.
        • 6 Years Ago
        It's too bad the Santa Fe sold 92,421 units in 07, people must love homely. It certainly looks better than the extremely bland Tribeca.
        They had the 4cyl in the Santa Fe back when it was released but people didn't buy it. Now they'll choose it over the old 2.7L if they still will offer it, because it barely makes more power than the revised 4cyl.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Your comment had nothing to do with the posting. Why bother making a comment just to say something negative and unrelated?

        It is not a bad looking CUV and if they can get 20/28mpg out of it and price it like Hyundai does I think it will sell very well.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I wish this would be the end of the SUV, but I know it won't be. This whole "fuel price" fear is cyclical and the worries about prices will die down, and we'll get back to a "oh well, this is how it is..." mentality and we'll all be going back to buying big SUV and minivans and accepting things the way they are. Then of course once the sales pick up again, the manufacturers will start building them with big engines again until the next price spike...
      In Europe, they've been riding on $5/gallon for the past ten years... they're wishing now for $5/gallon fuel.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I have to agree with Michael on this. The 4 cyl for this crossover isn't going to cut it. I had rented one a year ago with the base 6 cyl and it was very underpowered for the amount of weight. Granted that the engine will weigh less but I doubt it will make that much of an impact to the overall amount of the entire vehicle.

      • 6 Years Ago
      Michael D.'s right. This is going to suffer from Nissan Frontier syndrome, where the little four-banger is so weak that it actually takes more fuel than it should having to work so hard to propel such a heavy mass.

      For the same reason I wouldn't buy a Frontier four-banger, I don't think I could consider a Hyundai Santa Fe four banger. These cars are just too heavy for a four.

        Poopy
        • 6 Years Ago
        The 2.7 liter V6 that it currently has is mated to a OLD 4 speed automatic. The 2.4 liter engine that they are talking about is only 300 cc's smaller. It has CVVT on the intake and exhaust while being paired up with a NEW 6 SPEED AUTO. That will in all probability make this faster than the 2.7 liter V6 model because of the flatter torque delivery. The 2.7 is lifeless until 3500 rpms.

        The Theta II Inline-4 and the Lambda V6 is made in the same factory as the Sante Fe and Sonata. It's really a no brainer that this was going to happen. Why drag a Delta/Mu 2.7 liter V6 all the way from Korea? Everything will be made in the same location.

        I thought you @ssholes would be for this. It's more American jobs, and the crap is actually being made here instead of just being assembled.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Ahem, Poopy, I like the idea, but I question whether or not it will work.

        175 HP and 168 pound-feet sounds good on paper, but remember that the thing currently weighs over 4,300 pounds. As a good example of a vehicle with that kind of power, the Ford Escape will have 170 hp and 166 pound-feet for 2009, and it weighs 3,605 pounds with its largest engine. That's 695 pounds.

        It's not just that the vehicle will be underpowered, it's that it risks being so underpowered that it loses fuel economy. I'm all for it if they can make it fuel-efficient--hell, put a four-foot cargo box on the back and call it a pickup and I might even consider one. But the Ford Escape has the same amount of room, same power, and about seven-hundred pounds less weight. Can the extra cog in the tranny make up for a seven-hundred pound difference in curb weight? In terms of price the Escape costs less, too.

        In short, the Hyundai looks nicer than the Escape interior-wise, but if I were buying a budget car that wouldn't be what I'd be looking for anyway. Overall, the Escape looks to be the better buy from my perspective.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Angelo – you are either blind or just stupid.

      The Santa Fe looked nothing like the then current Forester when it came out and doesn’t really even look much like the new Forester.

      As for the Genesis – while it is derivative, it is a rather overall, handsome design – and better than the derivative designs of the LS, the S-Class, the M45 (which has some weird parts), either the STS or DTS and whatever Acura is offering (heck, it’s even better than the bland and rather fugly Maybach).

      The only design that truly stands out is the 7 series (or the 5 series) – but it was controversial to say the least.

      The best of the lot is the A8 w/ its simple and clean Bauhaus inspired design (tho some may find it bland).

      Anyway, the retooled 2.4L 4 banger w/ its good power (for a 4 banger) and very good MPG rating has gotten some pretty rave reviews in the 2009 Sonata.

      That, along w/ a 6 speed, should slow the flow of buyers away from crossovers (note the 4 banger’s 175hp is not that different from the 2.7L six-cylinder’s 185hp) – in particular for those who opt for the lighter front-wheeled drive version.
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