Hyundai announced today that they have built 1 million Hyundai Santa Fe‘s since it’s fateful introduction to the US market back in September 2000.
“When the 2001 Santa Fe launched in the United States 13 years ago, not only was it Hyundai’s first SUV, but it was one of the first compact crossovers on the market – just behind the Toyota RAV4 and Honda CRV,” said John Krafcik, president and CEO of Hyundai Motor America. Krafcik did fail to mention though that the term “crossover” is a relatively new term and back then it would have been called a small SUV and not a crossover. (FYI we need to be careful using the word “SUV” now since that is a dirty automotive word.)
Before the Hyundai Santa Fe was introduced to the US vehicle market, Hyundai was known primarily for building inexpensive compact cars. The Santa Fe opened doors to a new group of buyers and was actually a fairly decent player in the category. The Hyundai Sante Fe steadily improved over the years and became one of the best selling small SUVs in the segment. “[The] Santa Fe has played a significant role in Hyundai’s success and growth in the United States,” commented Krafcik. “For many loyal Hyundai owners today, it was their entry point to the brand.”
Fast forward to today, and the third-generation Hyundai Santa Fe offers two-wheelbase options – the two-row, five-passenger Santa Fe Sport and the long wheelbase three-row, six/seven passenger Santa Fe – offering Hyundai buyers vehicle choices they can grow with through various life stages which are;
- Cool – Pre-family with no kids and you live in the city.
- Uncool – Married with kids and you live in the suburbs. Most likely you have a dog, since dogs are awesome.
- Damn I am old! – Probably post family and the kids are out of the house at college or are trying to get a job in a terrible economy. You have several dogs and animals since you need something to take care of.
The Hyundai Sante Fe might come from a Korean automaker but assembly now tales place in West Point, Georgia, where the majority of Santa Fe’s are now produced. Before the Santa Fe was built at in Georgia assembly happened at the Hyundai Motor Manufacturing in Montgomery, Alabama, where today the Hyundai Sonata and Hyundai Elantra are built. This year, Hyundai will make nearly 500,000 vehicles in the US, and sell over 700,000 vehicles in the American car market. Needles to say that is a high ratio of US production to US sales and the Hyundai Santa Fe is part of all that.
Recently the Hyundai Santa Fe has had a great slew of marketing and advertising which included smart TV spots for the Super Bowl. This included Epic Playdate, Team, and Don’t Tell. In addition all of the Hyundai Super Bowl TV spots were well done and executed.
Congrats to Hyundai for building 1 millionth Hyundai Santa Fe.