Hyundai Santa Cruz spy photos reveal light refresh

It’s hard to believe, but the Hyundai Santa Cruz is in its third model year. Sure enough, Hyundai seems to have a refresh just about ready to go for the little pickup truck, based on these spy photos. The changes aren’t major (at least from the outside), but we can see some of them through the camouflage on these prototypes.

The least amount of camouflage, and seemingly the most changes, are on the front of the Santa Cruz. The grille mesh has changed, featuring rectangular mesh and hidden running lights, rather than the tapered examples on the current truck. Additionally, the overall grille shape is more rectangular, without the gradual curves inward. It’s very much like the refresh Hyundai applied to the Hyundai Palisade recently. As such, it will likely look a bit more upright and truck-like. It’s still not going to be a radical update, as the shape of the headlight openings looks the same.

The rest of the truck is covered up more thoroughly, so it’s hard to spot any minor differences. But what we can see suggests that the differences will indeed be minor. The overall profile looks basically unchanged, the taillights also look the same, as do the fender flares.

With the Santa Cruz being very closely related to the Tucson, which is also going to be updated soon, the Santa Cruz will likely get similar interior changes to the SUV. That includes an interior inspired by the Ioniq cars with a low dash and monolithic dual-screen panel. The standard 2.5-liter naturally aspirated four-cylinder with an eight-speed automatic and the turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder with an eight-speed dual-clutch transmission will probably carry over from the current model. We would love to see Hyundai add the hybrid 1.6-liter turbocharged powertrain from the Tucson as a competitor to the base Maverick. It would also be great to see the plug-in hybrid powertrain, too.

We will likely know soon. With how light this refresh seems, we’ll probably see it introduced for the 2025 model year. We also wouldn’t expect a major shift in pricing, assuming trims and equipment don’t change significantly.

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