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Hyundai is gearing up for a busy end to 2018, as they prepare to launch two very important SUVs in South Africa. Together with the funky Kona compact crossover, Hyundai South Africa will be launching their fourth-generation seven-seater Sante Fe. 

Typically when one thinks of seven-seater SUVs, the first thing that comes to mind is an exorbitant price tag. Hyundai is actually one of a handful of automakers that will offer an ‘affordable’ seven-seater SUV in South Africa.

The big SUV, now fully redesigned for 2018, now sports a more rugged look than ever before, featuring Hyundai’s trademarked cascading grill, and much like the Kona, it has its headlights situated below its DRLs. The biggest chance is on the inside though, as it is now far more premium than ever before, making use of higher-quality materials, a more cohesive design and the latest available technology.

The Santa Fe will be available in three specification levels - Premium, Executive and Elite. All utilize the same 2.2-litre turbo diesel which is actually shared with the Kia Sorento. The four-cylinder powerplant produces 147kw and 440nm, and is available exclusively with a new 8-speed automatic transmission. While the Premium and Executive are front-wheel drive, the flagship Elite gains a HTRAC all-wheel-drive system. 

In combination with the drive modes, HTRAC improves acceleration, stability and fuel efficiency. The system increases traction on snow, gravel and, of course, on regular road surfaces while enhancing cornering performance. The ratio of torque distribution is changed with the drive modes and displayed in the cluster. In sport mode HTRAC delivers improved acceleration with up to 50 per cent torque distributed to the rear wheels. In comfort mode it offers improved stability with up to 35 per cent torque distributed to the rear wheels. In eco mode HTRAC provides improved fuel efficiency by sending power to the front wheels only. In slippery conditions the system automatically distributes power to all four wheels automatically.

In terms of specification, the entry-level Premium is fairly well-specced. An automatic air-conditioner, cruise control, front fog lights, LED DRLs, Bluetooth, heated side mirrors, a 7-inch infotainment system, a rear camera, keyless entry, leather seats, six airbags and ISOFIX seats are all standard equipment. 

The Executive adds to the specification of the Premium with rear fog lights, LED front fog lights, LED headlights, blind spot detection, rear cross traffic alert, an electric driver’s seat, keyless entry and a start button, a power tail gate and a rear door window curtain.

The range-topping Elite, gains everything the Premium and Executive have, as well as a moonroof, static bending LED headlights, LED fog lights, LED tail lights, front and rear cameras, ventilated and heated electric front seats, a 7-inch supervision cluster, a heated steering wheel, paddle shifters, all-wheel drive, and 19-inch wheels.

A seven-year/200 000 km warranty and five-year/90 000 km service plan are expected to come standard.

Santa Fe 2.2 CRDi Premium AT - R599 900 

Santa Fe 2.2 CRDi Executive AT - R659 900 

Santa Fe 2.2 CRDi Elite AT AWD - R749 900

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