Ever since it introduced the Santa Cruz concept nearly four years ago at NAIAS in Detroit, Hyundai has been rather coy on the prospects of launching a pickup truck. The good news is Autocar recently sat down and had a chat with the company’s man in charge of design, Luc Donckerwolke, who was eager to shed some details about the utilitarian vehicle.
He reconfirmed a production version the concept is being developed, adding the design component has been finalized and the process to put the pickup truck into production is currently underway. When asked about the model’s scheduled launch, Donckerwolke did not provide an exact timetable, but Autocar believes it will be out as soon as 2020.
Gallery: 2015 Hyundai Santa Cruz Concept
It’s unclear at this point whether the Santa Cruz (name not confirmed) will go after the Ford Ranger or the bigger F-150, but we do know there’s going to be an equivalent Kia version. Donckerwolke told the British magazine a Kia-badged model is in the works and will come out at a later date with different styling inside and out.
There was a report a while ago suggesting Hyundai’s workhorse would ride on the Tucson platform while another article indicated the model would be built in the United States starting 2021 alongside the crossover at the Alabama factory.
All things considered, it looks like Hyundai is getting ready to dip its toes in the hugely competitive pickup truck segment and we know for a fact the Santa Cruz will be sold in the U.S. The Kia counterpart has fewer chances of reaching stateside where a smaller crossover is already being ruled out. Orth Hedrick, vice president of product planning for Kia Motors America, said earlier this year there aren’t any plans for these two in the U.S.