Hyundai owes a large part of its success to its ability and desire to experiment with different ideas, no matter how crazy. A cool and sporty utility truck is the last thing you’d expect from the makers of the Sonata, but they just unveiled such as a thing at NAIAS in form of the Hyundai Santa Cruz Crossover Truck Concept.
They say the Hyundai Santa Cruz is “a completely new interpretation of truck utility for a new generation of buyers,” as it appeals to trending “Urban Adventurer” millennial lifestyles. That’s a fairly specific marketplace they are aiming at, and apparently a very big one. Hyundai says they represent the second-largest population of car buyers.
Hyundai has clearly asked a group of young and dynamic people what would they like in a compact truck, and then applied their feedback to the Santa Cruz. So it’s wide and has a very aggressive look about it, and it has oversized wheels. Some of the features are just the designers having a bit of fun, such as the rear-hinged doors, hexagonal grille with cascading lines, center locking hubs and yellow Brembo brakes.
Boasting an expanding truck bed, the Hyundai Santa Cruz concept is powered by a 2.0-liter turbo diesel powertrain delivering 190 horsepower and 300 lb.-ft. of torque, hooked up to Hyundai’s HTRAC All-wheel drive system. It returns 30 mpg. There are no plans to put the Santa into production for now.