Hyundai’s move to rework its notoriously car-heavy lineup with a batch of new, redesigned or freshened crossovers is paying off. The brand has seen record sales performance this year among its crossovers, which topped the 30,000-a-month mark for the first time in June.
The second half of 2018 will see reinforcements with the redesigned Santa Fe, an electric version of the Kona and the freshened Tucson. Next year, two new crossovers could be added to the mix. Also, Hyundai’s N performance subbrand will make its U.S. debut this year.
Accent: The sixth-generation subcompact sedan hit the market last fall as a 2018 model. There’s speculation that the discontinued hatchback model could be replaced by a yet-unnamed small crossover, spotted during road tests in July, that’s positioned beneath the Kona. The Accent will be due for a freshening in 2020.
Elantra: The compact sedan, now in its sixth generation, was freshened for the 2018 model year. It now has six trims to accommodate various driver tastes. A redesign could come in 2022.
Sonata: The midsize sedan, with its versatile lineup, was heavily freshened for the 2018 model year. The gasoline version went on sale in the spring. The conventional hybrid, powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and a 38-kilowatt electric motor that combine for up to 46 mpg on the highway, also was released in the spring.
The plug-in arrived this summer. The base plug-in model gets a $1,300 price cut from the 2017 model. A redesign could be on the way next year for the 2020 model year. Next gen Sonata DN is currently under development, and won’t arrive before Summer 2019.
Veloster: The redesigned quirky three-door hot hatch arrived in dealerships for a summer push, just ahead of its high-octane turn in the Ant-Man and the Wasp superhero flick. The speedier N variant, which sports a turbocharged 2.0-liter 275-hp engine, is scheduled for a fall release.
Ioniq: The 2018 editions of Hyundai’s electrified-car nameplate arrived in stores this summer with new and broader applications of active-safety technologies, enhanced voice-recognition features and standard remote charge-management for the plug-in and electric models, while a facelift model is in the works.
A-segment crossover: Hyundai’s utility blitz will continue in 2019 with another crossover addition, this one in the smaller A-segment that resides below the Kona.
Kona: The brand’s first “cute ute” hit stores in the first quarter of 2018. An electric version will get a targeted rollout in the fourth quarter, looking slightly different from its gasoline counterpart. Instead of using Hyundai’s cascading grille, the electric Kona gets a closed-up front with a debossed design. A freshening of the gasoline and electric versions may happen in 2021.
Tucson: The freshened compact crossover will be one of eight new or updated Hyundai crossovers debuting by 2020. The 2019 Tucson gets a new cascading grille and modified center stack, along with more advanced safety features. The 2019 model, unveiled at the New York auto show, is expected to go on sale this fall. A redesign could take place for the 2021 model year.
Santa Fe: The 2019 model year ushers in a redesign and some naming changes: The five-passenger Santa Fe Sport of years past will be called the Santa Fe. The three-row, seven-passenger version of the outgoing model carries on as the Santa Fe XL. The gasoline version of the redesigned model hit U.S. showrooms in July, while a diesel variant is due in 2019. The new Santa Fe and Santa Fe diesel are two of the eight new or updated crossovers Hyundai is debuting by 2020. The brand confirmed during the Geneva auto show in March that hybrid and plug-in hybrid models are on the way. A few weeks before that, Hyundai said during a media event in Korea that a hybrid possibly could debut when the Santa Fe is freshened, which would be around 2021.
Palisade: Hyundai’s answer to the Ford Explorer, Toyota Highlander and Chevrolet Traverse was spotted again in July by a spy photographer in Arizona. The eight-seat crossover is built on a new platform that’s front-wheel-drive-based but will offer optional all-wheel-drive capabilities.
The Palisade will be the biggest Hyundai crossover since the Veracruz was dropped in 2013. It will slot above the midsize Santa Fe and possibly replace the three-row Santa Fe XL after the 2019 model year. Its official debut is slated for sometime in 2019.
Nexo: The fuel cell crossover is built on a dedicated platform. It is expected to go on sale in the U.S. this year. Hyundai is using a crossover as the host for its fuel cell technology, just as it did with the Tucson. Hyundai said in January that the Nexo’s estimated driving range is 370 miles, a significant jump from the Tucson Fuel Cell’s 265 miles.
Santa Cruz: Hyundai execs reportedly have greenlighted the development of a pickup. The brand teased the possibility of a pickup with the Santa Cruz concept shown in 2015. It could hit the market for the 2021 model year.