Written by Marco Carvajal
Photographs by Marco Carvajal and Nacho Garcia
The Santa Fe is Hyundai’s best-selling SUV, with more than 1.6 million units sold.
All-New Five-Passenger SUV 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe
I flew to the city of Montgomery, Alabama, to enjoy US southern hospitality while learning how the new 2019 Santa Fe is created right there at Hyundais’s own plant in Montgomery. It was a great experience to view the process on how Santa Fe automobiles are built. I stayed at the Renaissance Montgomery Hotel and Spa, where I met Hyundai’s top executives to discover all what Hyundai is doing to create a new and better Santa Fe, to continue the success for the company’s best selling SUV.
State-of-the-art Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama plant
Hyundai motor manufacturing Alabama, HMMA, is a large project with an investment of almost 2 billion dollars. The 2-million square-foot manufacturing plant is located on 1,744 acres of land and includes a stamping facility, paint shop, vehicle assembly shop, a two-mile test track and two engine shops. Tours are available for visitors who wish to view the plant and the automotive building process. If you are near Alabama I suggest to take the tour to see the plan inside, it is totally worth it, a great learning experience.
I am impressed with Hyundai’s plant, not only produces about 400,000 Hyundai cars per year, but also produces engines for sister’s company KIA. The plant is so clean and perfectly organized and systematic. Most of the building process is done by automatic robots and machines that look like a future fiction movie. The factory is really impressive! Besides robots and an advanced automatic processes to build Hyundai cars, there is also a lot of human interaction and supervision. This plant provides jobs for about 3,000 thousands human employees that make sure each car is built to perfection. Also the plant uses services from about 72 suppliers through North America that provide jobs for approximately 5,500 employees.
Why is the new 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe better than the previous Santa Fe?
The fourth generation of the Santa Fe, the 2019 model continue its success with a new family-oriented interior, now more than ever the Santa Fe is loaded with practical cutting-edge technologies and a stronger SUV exterior look.
Hyundai’s US Best-Selling SUV, The Santa Fe is born again. Hyundai’s goal with the new Santa Fe is to provide a stronger and bolder SUV compared to the previous version. Adding more safety features, larger interior and exterior, removing the name sport from the Santa Fe name to make it the dream SUV for the average consumer. The new Santa Fe offers more space like the 60/40 power-folding seats with larger cargo area. It includes impressive smart safety features including Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist, Rear Cross-Traffic Collision Avoidance Assist, Lane Keeping Assist and Driver Attention Warning. The 2019 Santa Fe is available with HTRAC All Wheel Drive 8-speed automatic transmission. New updated technologies like Go-to apps while on the go with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. It comes with one of my favorite interior options, available heated and ventilated leather seats.
Buyers have a choice of 7 Santa Fe 2019 models:
- SEL Plus
- Limited 2.0 T
- Ultimate 2.0T
The new 2019 Santa Fe is more powerful and has better performance than the previous generation. It includes a new eight-speed automatic transmission for a more precise driving experience, and it is powered with a 2.4-liter inline four-cylinder GDI engine producing 185 horsepower and a torque of 178 @ 4,000 RPM, or with a more powerful turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine producing 235 horsepower with a torque of 260 @ 1,450 – 3,500 RPM.
The all new 2019 Santa Fe has a smart range of trims and prices for every budget, and for all kind of driver needs. Ranging from $25,500 on the base SE model, all the way to $37,100 on the top model, the Ultimate 2.0 T.
Pricing is so right that anybody would wonder how Hyundai does it? To offer such a beautiful SUV full of features for such a low price. Even the top of the line is cheaper then 40K, amazing pricing for a fully loaded SUV.
|Model||Version||Base Price MSRP (FWD)|
|2019 Santa Fe||SE||$25,500|
|2019 Santa Fe||SEL||$27,600|
|2019 Santa Fe||SEL Plus||$29,800|
|2019 Santa Fe||Limited||$32,600|
|2019 Santa Fe||Limited 2.0 T||$34,200|
|2019 Santa Fe||Ultimate||$35,450|
|2019 Santa Fe||Ultimate 2.0T||$37,100|
The Interior passenger volume and the exterior length of the 2019 Santa Fe is larger than the previous 2018 Hyundai Santa Fe Sport and than the 2018 Hyundai Tucson. In an effort to make the new Santa Fe more luxury, Hyundai has included more insulation sound-absorbing materials, extensively used on noise producing parts. There is now more cargo room behind the second-row seats. In addition to more cargo space, second-row leg room has also been lengthened to be best-in-class. The H-point distance between the first and second rows has also been increased and the floor has been lowered for even more second-row comfort. New one-touch folding second-row seats for even more cargo space. The new Santa Fe combines premium quality style and materials with a roomy horizontal design with more natural light and enhanced visibility for a better driving experience. Several details make the interior more luxury, like the layered, three-dimensional instrument panel and contrasting seat stitching.
Hyundai definitely deserves a top ranking for safety. The Santa Fe is just fully loaded with traditional and innovative safety features surpassing the competition.
Hyundai’s standard Rear Cross-Traffic Collision-Avoidance Assist (RCCA). The Blind Spot Detection system’s radar sensors when backing up system not only warn the driver if vehicles approach from the rear side, but it also applies the brakes automatically. Optional Rear Occupant Alert, which Hyundai is debuting with the new 2019 Santa Fe. It monitors the rear seats using an ultrasonic sensor that helps to detect the movements of children and pets. This new system first will remind drivers to check the rear seats when exiting the vehicle with a message on the center instrument cluster display. If the system detects movement in the rear seats after the driver leaves the vehicle and locks the doors it will honk the horn and send a Blue Link alert to the driver’s smartphone via Hyundai’s Blue Link connected car system. This great safety system is designed to prevent children and pets from being forgotten in the car, it also helps in case children accidentally lock themselves in.
Hyundai’s first standard Safe Exit Assist system, to enhance the safety of Hyundai’s passengers, Safe Exit Assist uses radar to detect cars approaching from the rear and cautions passengers looking to exit the vehicle. If a passenger attempts to open the door when a car is approaching from behind, a visual and acoustic warning on the center cluster will alert the driver. If the driver attempts to deactivate the Electronic Child Safety Lock feature, Safe Exit Assist will override the driver and ensure the rear doors remain locked until the approaching vehicle has passed. After the road is clear, then the driver can then deactivate the Electronic Child Safety Lock and successfully unlock the rear passenger doors. Just amazing safety features provided in the new Santa Fe.
The new design comes with a dynamic character line all the way from headlights to the taillights and a larger daylight opening providing a more luxury look and better visibility. Diamond-cut 19-inch wheels make it look bolder and stronger with a muscular high and taut shape design. The new Santa Fe exterior includes Hyundai’s signature Cascading Grille and enhanced Light design with LED Daytime Running Lights positioned on top of the LED headlights. The design includes a powerful wide stance and an active body.
Hyundai’s best selling SUV is born again
The New 2019 Santa Fe comes with a stronger design, new safety, comfort and convenience technologies, increased visibility, larger cabin and storage space, a cleaner name, just Santa Fe without the word Sport used on the previous version was removed from the name.