The Hyundai Santa Cruz Was Caught Playing in Snow

Finally, there is a new sneak peek for the upcoming Hyundai Santa Cruz. This will be Hyundai’s first pickup truck, and it looks pretty exciting. As most of the country is sick of the cold and ice, the 2021 Hyundai Santa Cruz was caught playing in the snow. Honestly, these images warmed us up a little. 

The 2021 Hyundai Santa Cruz is almost here 

According to Car Scoops, the 2021 Hyundai Santa Cruz was spotted while being tested in extremely cold conditions. This is the first time any images have been leaked since the Santa Cruz was spotted at a gas station in Colorado last year. 

So now we know that this new compact truck can race in the desert and tackle slippery, icy conditions. But unfortunately, the Santa Cruz was still heavily covered under camouflage. We still don’t know what it will look like! 

Clues suggest that the grille design resembles the Hyundai Palisade instead of the Santa Fe. Also, the large-bumper has integrated headlights that flank each side of the grille and a slimmer turn signal arrangement up top. 

What do we know about the Santa Cruz? 

The 2021 Hyundai Santa Cruz is clearly a compact truck. It looks smaller than the Ford Maverick. It has larger doors in the front than in the back with a very short bed. The sloping aerodynamic design is reminiscent of the Subaru Baja, but the shark fin up top adds some sporty appeal. 

Instead of being a workhorse, this truck looks like it’s built for play. The spy photos also suggest that it’s capable of play as it zooms around in the snow without getting stuck. The Santa Cruz will most likely follow in the Honda Ridgeline’s footsteps too. 

RELATED: The Hyundai Santa Cruz is Like a Cheaper Honda Ridgeline

It will ride on the same platform as the Hyundai Santa Fe with a unibody design and all-wheel drive. AWD is excellent for driving in slippery conditions. However, it will have less suspension travel than a traditional body-on-frame off-roading truck. 

The Santa Cruz could feature the same engine and transmission options as the Santa Fe too. It’s safe to expect the 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine with 191 hp and 181 lb-ft of torque. The turbocharge engine bumps things up to 277 hp and 311 lb-ft of torque. 

When will we learn more about the Hyundai Santa Cruz? 

When aren’t sure when the 2021 Hyundai Santa Cruz will be revealed. It could be pushed back to 2022 as many automakers are facing delays due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, extreme winter weather, and semiconductor chip shortage. 

Hyundai Santa Cruz Rendering
Hyundai Santa Cruz Rendering | Auto Evolution

However, seeing it out and about provides hope. We could see the Hyundai Santa Cruz sooner than we expect. Also, because it’s smaller and probably will have less muscle than the Honda Ridgeline, it could be cheaper. 

The Ridgeline begins around $33,900, so the Santa Cruz may benign under $30,000. Also, the Ford Maverick is expected to start under $20,000. So, there is a high possibility that the Santa Cruz will be a significant bargain. But there has been no talk about a standard front-wheel-drive model. So, if AWD comes standard on each model, it could up the price.