2025 Hyundai Santa Cruz

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The “barely” revised Hyundai Santa Cruz is out. And it seems the few changes to the 2025 model were not really what anyone was asking for, except more physical buttons on the dash. (3rd photo is the current model).

But their buttons come with a new interior design that now looks almost the same as the cheaper Hyundai Kona. (The 2025 Tucson is getting that same new interior). They could have just added a few switches to the previous interior and it would have been great.

There are still no folding rear seats. Although I understand it would have required some structural changes and was probably never in the cards. But it would have made the Hyundai Santa Cruz an even better “lifestyle pickup”. There is also still no Hybrid option. The Santa Cruz came out around the same time as the Ford Maverick, and the lack of a hybrid option was noticed by everyone. You would think they would finally offer one now. Especially since the closely related Tucson is offered as both a Hybrid and PHEV. But no…

Besides the new interior, the biggest change to the Hyundai Tucson is more changes to the rugged XRT trim. Which now comes with off-road tires and has tow hooks and 18-inch wheels.

I guess they had to get that new dash in there since the Tucson jas it. Otherwise, none of these changes seem to improve Santa Cruz in any meaningful way. I guess if you’re interested in one and don’t mind sliders instead of buttons, a 2024 model could be a much better deal. With a nicer interior…

Conversation 2 comments

  1. They are trying way too hard with this restyling in making the Santa Cruz look more “butch” than it really is. It comes off looking very poser. They are really emphasizing those off-road red tow hooks. The rims have a bead lock-appearance to them. The new grill is trying to make it look aggresive. It just comes off looking desperate because the most off-roading this will ever see is maybe a gravel bike path. Ford nailed the looks of the Maverick by making it a little “trucky”, but it’s still cute and fun, and doesn’t try making it aggressive looking.

  2. While similar, I think the new Santa Cruz interior is better than the new Kona. It reminds me more of the refreshed Sonata interior. I’m just glad they left the DCT shifter in the center console, instead of placing it on the steering column like the Kona and Sonata. The steering wheel imo is the only real improvement. The 24 Cruz’s interior design is much more interesting and appealing to me overall. The 25 is just too generic anymore.

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