2024 Hyundai Santa Cruz: Review, Pricing, and Specs

Jackson Wheeler
7 Min Read

Hyundai has introduced the 2024 Santa Cruz lineup, offering two distinct versions of the compact pickup. The entry-level SE and SEL trims are powered by a modest 191-horsepower four-cylinder engine and can be equipped with either front- or all-wheel drive. On the other hand, the Night, XRT, and Limited trims come with a more powerful 281-horsepower turbo-four and all-wheel drive. These higher trims offer a balance of enjoyable driving dynamics and practicality. In terms of technology and interiors, the top trims offer the best features but rely more on touchscreens and have fewer physical controls.

The 2024 Santa Cruz may not be considered a “real” truck by some pickup truck enthusiasts, but it still offers a nice package for those who understand its capabilities. It shares its platform with the Hyundai Tucson SUV, allowing for a comfortable ride similar to an SUV. However, it also boasts a cargo box and a 5000-pound tow rating, making it capable of handling everyday truck duties when needed.

2024 Hyundai Santa Cruz In terms of updates for the 2024 model year

Hyundai has replaced the SEL Premium trim with a new XRT variant. The Santa Cruz XRT combines luxurious features from the former SEL Premium with rugged elements from the SEL and the optional Activity Package. It comes with a leather-wrapped steering wheel, black faux-leather upholstery, adaptive cruise control, and Hyundai’s Digital Key. Exterior upgrades include wider fender flares, side steps, and bed rails. LED projector headlights are now standard across all trims, and haptic feedback through the steering wheel has been added for lane keep assist and blind spot collision avoidance. The SEL Activity Package now includes a 10.3-inch infotainment screen, and the Night, XRT, and Limited trims come with the screen as standard. The Night trim also features the same faux-leather upholstery as the new XRT.

2024 Hyundai Santa Cruz When it comes to pricing

and choosing the right trim, we recommend the XRT (formerly known as the SEL Premium). Although it is more expensive than the SE and SEL trims, it offers a more powerful turbocharged engine that enhances acceleration and increases the tow rating to 5000 pounds. The XRT also comes with all-wheel drive, which is a costly option on the SEL. It features rugged-looking equipment and dark chrome trim.

The Santa Cruz offers two powertrain options depending on the trim. The SE and SEL trims are equipped with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine producing 191 horsepower and 181 pound-feet of torque. This engine is paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. The Night, XRT, and Limited trims come with a turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that delivers 281 horsepower and 311 pound-feet of torque. This more potent engine is mated to an eight-speed dual-clutch transmission. All trims, except the SE, are available with all-wheel drive. The Santa Cruz’s compact size makes it easy to maneuver in urban environments, and its top-of-the-line Limited trim offers a refined ride and agile handling.

2024 Hyundai Santa Cruz When properly equipped

the Santa Cruz has a towing capacity of 3,500 pounds with the base four-cylinder engine. With the turbocharged engine, its towing capacity matches that of other unibody trucks in its class, such as the Honda Ridgeline and Ford Maverick, at 5000 pounds. In terms of fuel economy, the base engine with front-wheel drive has an EPA rating of 22 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway, while adding all-wheel drive decreases both figures by 1 mpg. The turbocharged version achieves an EPA rating of 19 mpg in the city and 27 mpg on the highway. In real-world testing, a turbocharged Santa Cruz achieved 30 mpg on the highway.

The Santa Cruz boasts an interior

that looks more upscale than its price suggests. It is the first truck in its class to offer a fully digital gauge cluster and features a traditional shifter on the center console. Passenger space in the front and back is competitive with other trucks of similar size, and the cargo bed is versatile, featuring a lockable tonneau cover and an in-bed trunk similar to the Honda Ridgeline.

2024 Hyundai Santa Cruz In terms of infotainment and connectivity

the base SE and SEL trims come with an eight-inch infotainment touchscreen. The SEL can be upgraded to a larger 10.3-inch display. The Night, XRT, and Limited trims come with the 10.3-inch screen as standard. The infotainment system features crisp graphics and smooth operation, but the lack of physical controls may be a drawback for some. Digital features include wireless device charging, wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, and Hyundai’s Blue Link services, which are provided free for three years. The Bose premium audio system is available exclusively on the Limited trim.

The Santa Cruz comes equipped with a range of driver-assistance technologies, including standard forward-collision warning, automated emergency braking, lane-departure warning, and blind-spot monitoring. For more information about its crash-test results, visit the websites of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Hyundai offers an impressive warranty package, including a five-year or 60,000-mile limited warranty, a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty, and three years or 36,000 miles of complimentary scheduled maintenance.

2024 Hyundai Santa Cruz

the 2024 Hyundai Santa Cruz offers a compelling option for those who want a versatile and capable compact pickup truck. With its range of trims and powertrains, it caters to different needs and preferences. The Santa Cruz’s comfortable ride, practical cargo bed, and towing capabilities make it a well-rounded option in its segment. With its attractive design, advanced technology, and Hyundai’s reputation for reliability, the Santa Cruz is a worthy consideration for buyers in the market for a compact pickup truck.

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Jackson Wheeler is a skilled editor at Speedofdaily.com, specializing in automotive content. With a background in Journalism and Automotive Engineering, he combines his passion for cars with his writing expertise to deliver captivating articles. Jackson's deep knowledge of automotive technology and his racing experience make him a valuable asset to the team, providing readers with informative and engaging content.
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