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Hyundai has already revised the Santa Fe

It seems like prominent grilles are all the rage these days

Is there a bigger grille among SUVs right now? PHOTO FROM HYUNDAI

It was only two years ago when Hyundai presented the fourth-generation Santa Fe to the world, and now the revised version has arrived. What you’re looking at here is the midlife update of the Korean midsize SUV. And yes, as is the case with the latest cars today—including (and especially) the freshly unveiled BMW 4-Series Coupe—this new model sports a massive steel curtain radiator grille up front.

Hyundai calls this “bold and majestic styling,” describing the improved model as a “family-focused SUV.”

The rear is now sleeker and cleaner. Easy on the eye. PHOTOS FROM HYUNDAI

“We modernized the new Santa Fe with premium features and appealing aesthetics that are sure to add value,” SangYup Lee, head of Hyundai’s Global Design Center, says in a press statement. “The bold lines that extend from one side to the other and from front to back give the Santa Fe a rugged yet refined look that SUV customers want. We’ve also added numerous features and functions to create a truly family-focused SUV that is a pleasure to drive.”

Among the things we really like are the daytime running lights, the 20-inch wheels and the cleaner rear (without a Santa Fe badge, take note). We’re still undecided as to whether we dig the slit-eyed headlights or not.

Inside, a noticeably new center console instantly grabs your attention upon ingress.

The new and modern-looking center console is a welcome addition inside the vehicle. PHOTO FROM HYUNDAI

This may just be a facelift, but the overall appearance feels like a full model change. It manages to make the current Santa Fe look old and tired, and that’s no easy feat.

Vernon B. Sarne

Vernon is the founder and editor-in-chief of VISOR. He has been an automotive journalist for 26 years. He became one by serendipity, walking into the office of a small publishing company and applying for a position he had no idea was for a local car magazine. God has watched over him throughout his humble journey. He writes the ‘Spoiler’ column.