With an increased number of rivals, we expect the 2025 Hyundai Santa Cruz to be upgraded to stay competitive. For many years, the Korean company was developing the pickup truck. Surprisingly, Santa Cruz ended up being a small vehicle. Ford was faster and launched Maverick after a short development process. Now, more such pickups are on the way – Ram 1200, Toyota Stout, Chevy Montana…
The vehicle debuted late in 2022. It is early for the update, especially with the market being unexplored for the compact segment. Anyway, if all those announced vehicles show up, Hyundai will have to do something about the 2025 Santa Cruz. A hybrid drivetrain is one of the biggest wishes. A turbo-four does a great job with 5,000 pounds of towing capacity. It is more than the mid-size Honda Ridgeline can do.
All in all, Hyundai has a cool vehicle with a sleek design and cozy interior. It is also capable of working and saves fuel. Those are important things for a compact pickup.
Under the hood of the base 2025 Hyundai Santa Cruz will still be a naturally-aspirated engine with four cylinders. A 2.5-liter mill is capable of delivering 191 hp. The same amount of power is coming from Maverick’s hybrid unit, but this system is way more efficient when it comes to the gas mileage. Santa Cruz returns 24 mpg. An all-wheel drive is optional and consumes a bit more fuel. The base plant also creates 181 lb-ft of torque.
You are not getting a maximum towing capacity with an entry-level drivetrain. Still, 3,500 pounds will be more than enough for most tasks. The turbocharged setup increases all numbers for the small truck. First of all, the outputs are 281 hp and 311 lb-ft of torque. An all-wheel drive is standard for the turbo unit. The towing capacity is now 5,000 lbs and the pickup consumes more fuel.
The only rival for now is Ford Maverick, available with a similar turbocharged engine, and a hybrid system as the base configuration. Hyundai and other companies will have to do something about it. A 1.6-liter turbo engine with electric motors is producing 225 hp for the Santa Fe SUV. Such a setup can do a lot of good things for the pickup truck as well. The gas mileage won’t be at Maverick’s level, but 34 mpg is way better than any petrol system can do. The towing capacity is going to suffer. But again, Maverick hybrid is not the best hauler either.
2025 Hyundai Santa Cruz Trim Levels
The Korean company will definitely update the lineup with new grades, optional packages and individual features. Four trims will be back – SE, SEL, SEL Premium and Limited. Night should be also there. In 2024, we won’t see any novelty, so a few special things will be saved for the 2025 Hyundai Santa Cruz.
The base SE model comes with a base non-turbo engine. Highlights are also an 8-inch screen, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a 6-speaker audio system, and a nice package of safety features. Worth mentioning are lane keep assist, a blind-spot monitor, and a rear cross-traffic warning.
Upgrading to the SEL version adds heated exterior mirrors, push-button start, power driver’s bucket and heated front seats. For a more convenient towing, the storage bin in the cargo bed can be locked. Also, you unlock the Activity package with a tonneau cover, sunroof, power outlet, LED lights in the box, digital cluster and wireless charging pad. Not a bad option for $3,270. Also, you can replace the base engine with a turbo-four for $1,500.
When the price exceeds $35,000, that means we are getting some serious upgrades. The SEL is still under $30k. The Turbo engine and AWD are standard for the 2025 Hyundai Santa Cruz Night Edition. As its name suggests, some parts are darker and the appearance is cooler than for the standard version. For example, there are unique 20-inch wheels and grille. This version of the truck also comes with side steps.
The SEL Premium is even more luxurious. All goodies from the SEL are there, as well as the Activity bundle. Plus, buyers are getting a dual-zone climate control (automatic), leather steering wheel, a huge 10-inch screen, navigation and cruise control.
The only model that tops this offer is – Santa Cruz Limited. Hyundai adds leather seats with a cooling function, USB ports for the second row, Bose audio and a surround-view camera. Before you start upgrading it, the price exceeds $40,000.
Competition and Why Buy 2025 Hyundai Santa Cruz?
There is only Ford Maverick currently competing with Hyundai in the compact truck market. But more vehicles are coming. We expect the most from Toyota Stout and Ram 1200 Dakota. Kia might be out with the pickup truck soon.
Reasons why you should buy the 2025 Hyundai Santa Cruz is its availability now. The new model will fix flaws of the current edition, while Stout and Dakota will be test mules for new owners. The company also offers plenty of features. So, if you like this kind of vehicle, you can build a perfect model.