Hyundai to build Santa Cruz pickup in Alabama
Production will kick off in 2021.
Hyundai has officially announced plans to build the Santa Cruz pickup at its Montgomery, Alabama, factory starting in 2021.
The truck will be assembled alongside the Santa Fe, Sonata and Elantra at the factory, requiring a $410 million expansion and eventually adding an estimated 1,200 direct and indirect jobs in the area.
Previous reports suggested the company was considering a serious ladder-on-frame chassis for the Santa Cruz. The latest press release suggests the rumors may not come to fruition, as the "crossover" description indicates unibody construction like the Honda Ridgeline.
Hyundai says the Santa Cruz will create an entirely new segment, designed to emulate the experience of a compact crossover but with an open bed. The truck will be geared for millennial buyers, rather than aiming to become a direct rival to the Ford Ranger, Chevrolet Colorado or Toyota Tacoma.
Styling will be different from the concept (pictured) that debuted in 2015, meshing with Hyundai's shift away from excessive design harmonization across its lineup. The pickup should consequently retain a unique flair.