No, you’re not looking at an updated Land Rover Defender. Under this camouflage is what’s believed to be the next Hyundai Santa Fe, set for a reveal in 2023 ahead of a 2024 arrival in showrooms.

    The next Santa Fe is expected grow larger than the current model, and will gain an upright look more in keeping with cars from Land Rover than Hyundai.

    This particular prototype features heavy camouflage, but even beneath the black cladding we can see similarities with a previous prototype of which we’ve snapped pictures.

    The sides are upright, the C-pillar appears to take inspiration from the Defender’s chunky graphic, and the tailgate is close to vertical beneath that hunchback camouflage.

    Based on previous spy photos, it looks as though the new Santa Fe will feature a single rectangular slab housing both the digital instrumentation display and infotainment touchscreen inside.

    The interior door panels feature flat, rectangular padded arm rests, and come equipped with large, square metal-style door handles.

    It’s unclear which drivetrains will be offered with the new Santa Fe, but Hyundai Australia has confirmed the current model will be offered with a 169kW/350Nm 1.6-litre turbo hybrid drivetrain from the fourth quarter of this year.

    This will join 148kW/440Nm 2.2-litre turbo-diesel, and 200kW/331Nm 3.5-litre V6 in the local range.

    Overseas the Santa Fe is offered with other engines, including a 142kW naturally aspirated 2.5-litre four-cylinder, and a turbocharged 207kW version of the same engine. There’s also a 195kW/350Nm 1.6-litre turbo plug-in hybrid.

    According to The Korean Car Blog, the new Santa Fe will grow in size, and will be classified in its homeland as a “large SUV” rather a medium-sized one.

    At present there’s only a 100mm difference between the 4670mm long-wheelbase Tucson and the 4770mm Santa Fe. The growth will, of course, reduce the size difference between it and the 4995mm Palisade.

    MORE: Everything Hyundai Santa Fe

    Scott Collie

    Scott Collie is an automotive journalist based in Melbourne, Australia. Scott studied journalism at RMIT University and, after a lifelong obsession with everything automotive, started covering the car industry shortly afterwards. He has a passion for travel, and is an avid Melbourne Demons supporter.

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