We already knew the Hyundai Santa Cruz Concept is headed production, but the Korean automaker recently let a little more info slip on the budget-minded pickup.
Speaking to The Detroit Bureau, Hyundai North America CEO Kyung Soo Lee revealed he and other high-ranking executives recently held a meeting to look at the design of the production Santa Cruz. The automaker is hoping to put the pickup truck on sale in North America by 2020 or 2021 and will market it toward young “urban adventurers” that might otherwise buy a crossover, he said.
The Santa Cruz Concept was a small, two-door pickup. It’s not clear if the production version will also be a two-door, or if it will be sold in both two- and four-door variants. The concept also featured a unique bed with extending bed sides, which would allow the user to carry a little extra cargo (or longer objects) with the tailgate down, but it’s hard to say if this feature will reach production. A four-cylinder engine and available all-wheel drive will almost certainly be present in the production truck, though.
As for pricing, it’s likely that Hyundai is looking to undercut its competition with a sub-$20k base price for the Santa Cruz. It may be smaller than the Chevrolet Colorado and Ford Ranger, which would allow Hyundai to sell it for much less. This won’t be a cheap, barebones work truck, however, with Hyundai expected to position it as a comfortable crossover that just so happens to have a pickup truck bed attached to it.
Either way, we don’t think such a product will have any trouble at all finding buyers in the US. Now we’re just left wondering if VW will ever pull the trigger on the Tanoak Concept.