It’s hard to know exactly what it’s going to be like when designing a car. You can always refer back to previous models, as well as their revisions, and use that as a blueprint. However, it is not always a sure thing. She found the perfect blend of what makes owners happy in Santa Cruz, however, and many were happy to flock to JD Power about it.
JD Power went directly to the owners for information
Is it a car? Truck? Or some kind of crossover? Hyundai marketed the Santa Cruz as an adventure sports utility vehicle, but positioned it in the midsize pickup segment.
, which means they have a vested interest in it. These aren’t just car experts driving vehicles to and from the office for a week or two.
Those owners have already invested a lot of money in it, and they can’t trade Santa Cruz for something else if it turns out to be worthless. Because of this, the study has a slightly larger effect among potential owners than other studies.
There were three factors that owners absolutely love about the Hyundai Santa Cruz
Owners were quick to rank their top three favorites in terms of exterior design, driving feel, and sense of safety.
Setup and start-up were fourth, while interior design, powertrain and infotainment system were next. Driving comfort, getting in and out, and fuel economy were at the bottom of the list.
It should come as no surprise that very few owners are crazy about fuel economy. Trucks were never great on gas, to begin with, and with so many hybrids and electric cars hitting the roads, the standards for good fuel economy have grown. If this review had been done 10 years ago, fuel economy estimates of 21 mpg city, 27 mpg highway, and 23 mpg combined would have been excellent, but sadly, that is no longer the case.
However, there are plenty of good things to commend about the Santa Cruz, such as its unique body style.
Hyundai has got absolutely all the features that its owners crave
Hyundai has come a long way over the years, and a lot of that has to do with listening to customers. In this case, Hyundai didn’t follow through on the tried and tested pickup body.
The Korean automaker’s exterior styling makes it clear the Santa Cruz is a truck, yet everyone still turns around for a second look. It’s also a great conversation starter for those with an interest in cars.
Feeling behind the wheel is just as important, as some people spend almost as much time in their car as they do at home. Even those who don’t constantly hop in and out of the car appreciate a car that rides well.
Feeling safe is also crucial. No one wants to ride in a car like they did, and Hyundai went to great lengths to make sure everyone was comfortable in Santa Cruz. There are plenty of safety options, such as forward collision warning, lane departure warning, driver attention warning, reversing camera with dynamic guidance, and lane centering assist, to name a few.
While Hyundai is by no means perfect, they do a great job of making reliable cars at an affordable price, and the 2023 Santa Cruz is just another example of that.