The Hyundai Santa Fe has been approved for sale in Australia, initially only with hybrid power.

    The fifth-generation Santa Fe is due in Australia in May/June 2024.

    Hyundai has previously confirmed it will launch the model with an all-wheel drive hybrid setup, but government documents show a front-wheel drive hybrid version has also been approved for sale.

    While approval documents sometimes list variants which don’t end up going on sale, CarExpert understands the Santa Fe will be offered in both front- and all-wheel drive hybrid variants.

    The outgoing model offers a choice of front-wheel drive petrol V6 and all-wheel drive turbo-diesel and hybrid options in our market.

    A turbocharged 2.5-litre four-cylinder petrol option is understood to be on the cards for Australia, but no diesel will be offered globally – and Hyundai says it won’t be missed.

    Both the front- and all-wheel drive hybrid options appear in approval documents with five-, six- and seven-seat options, though a five-seat Santa Fe hasn’t been offered in Australia for well over a decade.

    There’s a choice of 18- or 20-inch alloy wheels, depending on the variant.

    Braked towing capacity is 1650kg, identical to the outgoing hybrid, while tare mass is up to 1997kg in front-wheel drive guise and up to 2062kg with all-wheel drive.

    The outgoing Santa Fe Hybrid in range-topping Highlander guise weighs 1940kg.

    The new Santa Fe measures 4830mm long, 1900mm wide and 1720mm tall on a 2815mm wheelbase.

    That makes it 45mm longer and 35mm taller than the outgoing model on a 50mm longer wheelbase.

    The hybrid features a turbocharged 1.6-litre Gamma III four-cylinder engine with 132kW and 265Nm mated with a 47.7kW electric motor, for a total system output of 173kW.

    It’s mated with a six-speed automatic transmission, and boasts a 0-100km/h time of 9.5 seconds.

    The turbocharged 2.5-litre Theta III four-cylinder engine, yet to be confirmed for our market, is mated with an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic, and produces 207kW of power and 422Nm of torque.

    It has a claimed 0-100km/h time of 8.0 seconds.

    In other markets it’s available with either front- or all-wheel drive, and would serve as a logical replacement for the FWD-only V6 option in the outgoing Australian-market Santa Fe.

    We don’t expect the base 143kW/246Nm naturally aspirated 2.5-litre four to come here, nor do we expect the plug-in hybrid that’s being targeted predominantly at Europe.

    While local pricing and specifications have yet to be detailed by Hyundai Australia, the Santa Fe is available with the following equipment in South Korea:

    • Power tailgate
    • Projector LED headlights
    • Full-width front LED light bar with welcome animation
    • LED tail lights
    • 18-, 20- or 21-inch alloy wheels
    • Dual sunroofs
    • 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster
    • 6.6-inch climate control array
    • 12.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system
      • Wireless Apple CarPlay, Android Auto
      • Augmented reality satellite navigation
      • Over-the-air updates
    • Head-up display
    • 12-speaker Bose sound system
    • Heated and ventilated front seats
    • Front relaxation seats with thigh rest
    • 18-way power driver’s seat with four-way lumbar and massaging function
    • Heated steering wheel
    • Colour-adjustable ambient lighting
    • One-touch walk-in mode for second-row seats
    • Digital rear-view mirror
    • Remote Smart Parking Assist

    There’s also a full suite of safety equipment available, including:

    • Autonomous emergency braking
      • Pedestrian detection
      • Cyclist detection
      • Junction assist
      • Reverse AEB
    • Blind-spot assist
    • Driver attention monitoring
    • Lane Following Assist (lane centring)
    • Lane-keep assist
    • Rear cross-traffic assist
    • Safe exit assist
    • Navigation-based adaptive cruise control
    • Intelligent speed limit assist
    • Multi-collision brake
    • Surround-view camera with 3D view
    • 10 airbags: driver, passenger, first-row side, second-row side, driver’s knee, front-centre, plus curtain ‘bags for all three rows
    • Reversing guide lights

    Hyundai will offer the Santa Fe with a range of interior colourways and, while it hasn’t confirmed which will be offered here, the brand has historically been more open to bringing different colour cabins to Australia than cousin Kia.

    There are Obsidian Black, Supersonic Grey, Pecan Brown, Forest Green and Black Ink options; each with its own corresponding inlay depending on the variant. The inlay options are mostly wood, though there is one black metal trim available on certain Santa Fe models.

    There’s also a wide range of exterior finishes, comprising:

    • Abyss Black Pearl
    • Creamy White Pearl
    • Creamy White Matte
    • Typhoon Silver Metallic
    • Magnetic Grey Metallic
    • Ocado Green Pearl
    • Terracotta Orange
    • Cyber Sage Pearl
    • Earthy Brass Metallic Matte
    • Pebble Blue Pearl

    Hyundai says it is continuing to manage the steady runout of stock of the outgoing Santa Fe, of which it has recently received strong supply, over the next few months.

    It’s hoping for a stronger reception from Australian buyers for the new model, with the company recently saying the Santa Fe “has never really met expectations”.

    “We look at that vehicle, we know it’s good, we know it’s good against the competition, it’s such a capable vehicle in all sorts of ways, but I think it would be fair to say we’ve never really been satisfied with sales levels of that car… current or historically,” said Bill Thomas, general manager of corporate affairs at Hyundai Australia, to CarExpert last year.

    “All car companies would always say they want to sell more cars, but with Santa Fe in particular we’ve never been particularly satisfied with its performance.”

    MORE: Everything Hyundai Santa Fe
    MORE: 2024 Hyundai Santa Fe review

    William Stopford

    William Stopford is an automotive journalist based in Brisbane, Australia. William is a Business/Journalism graduate from the Queensland University of Technology who loves to travel, briefly lived in the US, and has a particular interest in the American car industry.

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