Hyundai’s Santa Cruz con­cept a dream bakkie

The Witness - Wheels - - MOTORING - AL­WYN VILJOEN

THE Santa Cruz con­cept, which Hyundai showed at the Detroit Auto Show, will give bakkie lovers in South Africa heart pal­pi­ta­tions.

Even more so con­sid­er­ing that this amount of tech­ni­cal de­tail avail­able for the con­cept — like cen­tral lock­ing diff — sug­gests it is ready for pro­duc­tion.

Hyundai said their de­sign­ers did not set out to make a work­horse with this dou­ble­cab. In­stead they cre­ated a bakkie to meet the spe­cific needs of “ur­ban ad­ven­tur­ers”.

The rear doors open from the C-pil­lar to make it easy for three pas­sen­gers to get onto the rear bench. Tie-down cleats on the wheel arches, roof, and bed rails makes se­cur­ing any type of load easy. The load bed is also ex­pand­able and can be eas­ily re­con­fig­ured for longer cargo, us­ing a unique drawer-like slid­ing func­tion.

Un­der the hood a 2,0-litre turbo diesel pow­er­train de­liv­ers good fuel econ­omy, us­ing an all-wheel drive sys­tem.

While the con­cept looks big and men­ac­ing, its over­all foot­print is sim­i­lar to a small cross-over ve­hi­cle, mak­ing it easy to park in spots any other pickup in Amer­ica has to pass by.

PHOTO: SUP­PLIED

A Hyundai bakkie we want in South Africa, the Santa Cruz con­cept, which seems ready for pro­duc­tion.

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