Hyundai celebrated a milestone yesterday when it sold the one-millionth Santa Fe crossover, which was the Korean automaker's first-and-only SUV when it was introduced in 2000. Hyundai credits the Santa Fe as being a key factor to the company's growth and success in the US, but it didn't describe the one-millionth Santa Fe or say where it was sold.

Before Hyundai introduced the crossover, which has been offered in short- and long-wheelbase versions from the start, it was primarily known for making inexpensive economy cars. Today the majority of Santa Fes are produced at its factory in West Point, Georgia, though they were previously made at the Hyundai Motor Manufacturing plant in Montgomery, Alabama. Today the Alabama plant makes Sonata and Elantra sedans. Hyundai says it will produce nearly 500,000 vehicles in the US this year, and will sell a total of 700,000 vehicles here.

Check out the press release below, for more details.
Show full PR text
HYUNDAI MOTOR AMERICA SELLS ONE MILLIONTH SANTA FE

Industry Recognized, Award Winning Santa Fe Remains the Fastest Growing Compact SUV

COSTA MESA, Calif., July 31, 2013 – Since the moment it rocked the automotive world at its introduction in September 2000, Hyundai's Santa Fe has been a powerful player in the crossover segment. That momentum continues, with two all-new models leading the charge to a retail sales growth rate exceeding 40 percent through June, highlighted today by the sale of the one millionth Santa Fe in the United States.

"When the 2001 Santa Fe launched in the United States 13 years ago, not only was it Hyundai's first SUV, but it was one of the first compact crossovers on the market – just behind Toyota RAV4 and Honda CRV," said John Krafcik, president and CEO of Hyundai Motor America. "It was a bold move that paid off and helped position Hyundai as a brand that could innovate in design and package, not just value and warranty."

Prior to Santa Fe's arrival in the U.S., Hyundai was known primarily for building inexpensive compact cars. Santa Fe opened doors to an entire new group of car buyers and offered them a new choice in the small crossover class. Entering the market with distinctive design, great equipment and backed by industry leading quality, Santa Fe soon became one of the best-selling crossovers in the industry.

Fast forward to today, and the third-generation Santa Fe continues this trail-blazing narrative as the first U.S.-market crossover with a two-wheelbase strategy – the two-row, five-passenger Santa Fe Sport and the long wheelbase three-row, six/seven passenger Santa Fe – offering Hyundai buyers vehicle choices they can grow with through various life stages (pre-family, family, post family).

"Santa Fe has played a significant role in Hyundai's success and growth in the United States," Krafcik adds. "For many loyal Hyundai owners today, it was their entry point to the brand."

The Santa Fe is an award winner and has been right from the start. From being top-rated in the 2001 Vehicle Satisfaction Index from Auto Pacific, the first time a Korean brand vehicle lead in a satisfaction category, to being named in U.S. News and World Report the "Best 3-Row Midsize SUV" and "2013 Best Car for the Money."

Santa Fe has deep American roots with assembly today taking place in West Point, Georgia, where the majority of Santa Fes are now produced. Previously, Santa Fe was built at Hyundai Motor Manufacturing in Montgomery, Alabama, where today Sonata and Elantra are built. This year, Hyundai will make nearly 500,000 vehicles in the U.S., and sell over 700,000 vehicles here, a remarkably high ratio of U.S. production to U.S. sales. For a historical look at Santa Fe, please visit www.HyundaiNews.com.


I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 18 Comments
      reattadudes
      • 1 Year Ago
      the Santa Fe WAS NOT "offered in long and short wheelbase versions from the start". that came in Generation 3. don't mean to be critical here, but was the author even of driving age when the Santa Fe was introduced? sheesh.
        Greg
        • 1 Year Ago
        @reattadudes
        This is Autoblog. Who needs correct information and grammar from the writers? Anything goes
      Eggshen
      • 1 Year Ago
      Zzzzzz....
      blasds78
      • 1 Year Ago
      I didn't like this model's first generation. My parents had two. It was ugly - like the then-current Tiburon. The powertrain was awful, too. Hyundai has come a long way since then. I'm sure many would call this styling polarizing. I happen to like it - so much that I have the current generation Santa Fe. It's the only Hyundai I like in this "fluidic sculpture" language they've got. My sole complaint is a familiar one from the first generation: the brake pedal is touchy.
        Greg
        • 1 Year Ago
        @blasds78
        I always thought the first Hyundai Santa Fe looked cartoonish and goofy. The second Sante Fe looked much more mature and now the third Santa Fe looks like a serious vehicle. Hyundai has come a long way since 2000. Maybe they'll try to make a luxury SUV to compete with the Lexus LX next just like they have the Hyundai Equus to take on the Lexus LS.
        NightFlight
        • 1 Year Ago
        @blasds78
        One of my neighbors had one of the very first Santa Fe's in the US and sold it with 280,000+ miles without a single major failure. I'd say the powertrain was pretty decent....
          blasds78
          • 1 Year Ago
          @NightFlight
          I didn't say unreliable. It chugged gas and was weak compared to its competitors. These were both 2.7 V6s.
        • 1 Year Ago
        @blasds78
        [blocked]
      riverracerx
      • 1 Year Ago
      Great looking car, drives nice and the interior is beautiful. I almost bought one, but got the Sonata instead. 10 years ago no one would be caught dead in a Hyundai. They have come a long way. Great cars now. I have an '11 Elantra with 60k on it and it has been trouble free. Great commuter car.
      rebman70
      • 1 Year Ago
      A million? Weird, because I hardly ever see them on the road. I see the cousin Kia all the time, though.
        Gr8 Man
        • 1 Year Ago
        @rebman70
        Where do you live? I see them all over the supermarket parking lots.
      • 1 Year Ago
      [blocked]
    • Load More Comments