Whether your family requires five- or up to seven-passenger seating, and you’re looking at new crossovers, the all-new 2013 Hyundai Santa Fe models just revealed at the 2012 New York Auto Show have you covered.
Yes, we said models, plural, since Hyundai is introducing two new Santa Fe models for the 2013 model year.
The first to come out, arriving this fall in dealerships, is the two-row, five-passenger Santa Fe Sport. That’s the more familiar configuration, similar to the current Santa Fe. Early next year, the three-row Santa Fe comes out, which can be configured for six or seven passengers.
2013 Hyundai Santa Fe SportEnlarge Photo
Aggressive exterior styling
The Korean automaker calls the third-generation Santa Fe crossover family’s styling “Storm Edge,” and, as we’ve commented before, we’re not sure exactly what that means, but we do know we like it. In fact, we’re inclined to want to get behind the wheel just from the crossover’s aggressive new look.
Our sister publication TheCarConnection says the new Santa Fe models “wear their revised sheet metal well, from the hexagonal grille to the deep character lines in the doors.”
How can you tell the two versions apart? Hyundai says that the shape of the side window is the single differentiating element, with the larger, long wheelbase Santa Fe sporting a window shape that highlights the increased passenger room and cargo room behind the third-row seat. Oh, and the Santa Fe also has its own bodyside character lines, grille design, 18-inch alloy wheels and dual exhaust tips.
“Flowing” interior design
On the inside, the Santa Fe Sport and Santa Fe share the same interior design, one that the automaker dubs “flowing.” The idea is to convey the new crossover’s roominess and flexibility, functionality and comfort.
An optional panoramic sunroof adds to the feeling of openness.
The three-row Santa Fe increases second-row legroom by nearly two inches, while cargo room gets an increase of 5.6 cubic feet to total 41.0 cubic feet of volume.
The 2013 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport comes with a choice of two four-cylinder powertrains. Santa Fe Sport is powered by a 190-horsepower 2.4-liter gasoline direct-injection (GDI) four-cylinder engine, while Santa Fe Sport 2.0T gets the 264-horsepower 2.0-liter turbocharged GDI four-cylinder engine.
Fuel economy is estimated at 23 mpg city/33 mpg highway/26 mpg combined for Santa Fe Sport and 22/31/25 mpg for Santa Fe Sport 2.0T.
The long-wheelbase Santa Fe, meanwhile, will be powered by a single V-6 engine, the same 290-horsepower 3.3-liter V-6 found in the Azera sedan. As for fuel economy, the larger Santa Fe still manages to deliver an estimated 19 mpg city and 26 mpg on the highway.
All engines are matched with a six-speed automatic transmission with Shiftronic manual control. Front-wheel drive (FWD) is standard, with all-wheel drive (AWD) available on all models.
All FWD Santa Fe Sport and Santa Fe models have a standard Vehicle Stability Management system, which manages electronic stability control and electric power steering. Seven airbags are standard across the board, including side curtain airbags and a driver’s knee airbag.
Other standard safety features include four-wheel disc brakes, an anti-lock braking system (ABS) that includes brake assist and electronic brake-force distribution, three-point seat belts for all positions, and Lower Anchors and Tethers for CHildren (LATCH) system for child seats.
The three-row Santa Fe offers the first Blind Spot Detection system in a Hyundai vehicle.
Want more details? Be sure to check out the full review of the 2013 Hyundai Santa Fe in TheCarConnection.