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With the latest spy photo of the Santa Cruz's body being released, I've been thinking about what its biggest competitor is going to be once it hits the market.

My guess is that it's going to be the Ridgeline because it looks the most similar. But I can easily see it giving the Nissan Frontier, Chevy Colorado and the GMC Canyon a run for their money. Especially if Hyundai makes it very durable.
 

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Now that the real deal has been released and it's more 4-door SUV with a open trunk bed, I'm in the "there really isn't any direct competitor" camp (yet). It will compete with many other vehicles in the family "second car" market. Price comparisons will be key. In fact, IMHO it's all about price with this SAV.

One of the big attractions about the HSC when it debuted was the stated small diesel motor it was to get. That didn't happen. I find myself cross-shopping this with the much more expensive MB Sprinter with new 2.0L Diesel motor. The two vehicles are not really competitors at all.

The other vehicle I currently like is the tried and true last year before another redesign Jeep Grand Cherokee with proven Pentastar V6. The Limited-X trim caught my eye and heart back when it first came out. Again, not a direct competitor at all and much more expensive in the trim I'd even consider it.

Small SUV and economy oriented truck buyers that don't need a true "truck" are the most likely cross-shoppers.
 

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Small SUV and economy oriented truck buyers that don't need a true "truck" are the most likely cross-shoppers.
Agreed. The mid-size truck market and smaller SUVs shoppers should be giving the SC a look. The Maverick is likely the most direct competitor however we don't have its dimensions, power or pricing yet.

The Ridgeline is bigger and more expensive, thus I only see it competing with the higher end SC trims.
 

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If priced properly (and no unpleasent surprises turn up,) I think the SC will siphon off a decent portion of the Ridgeline market.

Why many folks want/need a smaller pickup has been well-discussed. Actual hands-on test drive experience with the Santa Cruz (and possible arrival of the Maverick, etc.) will continue to keep us all guessing.
 
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