Hyundai starts shedding Santa Cruz's skin as V6 rumours emerge


The production spec Hyundai Santa Cruz has made yet another appearance online ahead of its debut next year, albeit this time with less camouflage than ever before.

Pictured by motor1.com hauling a fairly large trailer in the United States, the Santa Cruz confirms previous claims about its close relations with the incoming Tucson, by sporting the same grille and split headlight design that debuted on the facelift Santa Fe earlier this month.

Set to use the same unibody platform as the former, the Honda Ridgeline-rivalling Santa Cruz, as previously indicated, will be a North American bespoke model as a second body-on-frame pick-up is being developed for other markets, but according to the online publication, the apparent use of only four-cylinder engines could be offset by a V6.

Although Hyundai has touted the Santa Cruz as being a cost effective pick-up with power set to come from a normally aspirated 2.4 or 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol, the 217 kW 3.8-litre bent-six from the Palisade has been tipped as the possible range-topping engine to rival the Ridgeline's 206 kW 3.5-litre engine. Like its Japanese, American-built rival, the Santa Cruz will be offered as a double cab only with an all-wheel-drive system sending the amount of twist to the ground via an eight-speed automatic gearbox.

Production will take place alongside the Elantra, Santa Fe and Sonata at the Montgomery Plant in Alabama.

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