With fuel economy an ever increasing worry, Hyundai’s new powertrains are more fuel efficient than their predecessors. New for 2010 is Hyundai’s second-generation Theta four-cylinder engine. This replaces the old 2.7-liter V-6 that was the base engine in 2009 models. This new four-cylinder provides similar grunt to the 2.7-liter V-6, but reduces fuel consumption by 17 percent, bringing the EPA ratings to 20 and 28 mpg (city and highway). The new four-cylinder comes standard with a six-speed manual, but offers a new six-speed automatic as an option.
The top engine receives a bump in displacement as well as power, but also reduces fuel consumption compared to the outgoing engine. For 2010, the 3.3-liter Lambda V-6 is replaced with a 3.5-liter Lambda II unit producing 276 hp and 248 lb-ft of torque. This engine is mated exclusively to a new six-speed automatic. Front-wheel-drive is standard with all-wheel-drive available as an option with either engine.
While not a huge departure from the 2009 Santa Fe’s styling, Hyundai did revise a few details to give the crossover a more refined look. The 2010 Santa Fe receives new front and rear bumper fascias, bodyside moldings, wheels, and a new body color grille. Five new color choices round out the exterior changes for the 2010 Santa Fe.
Drivers and passengers will find the interior of the 2010 Santa Fe very familiar as Hyundai made very minimal changes. Touch-screen navigation is now available on all Santa Fe models, and can be ordered with a rearview camera and XM NavTraffic for real-time traffic updates. Hyundai is also including Bluetooth, iPod and USB audio inputs, and steering wheel mounted radio controls. New triple-sealed doors provide a quieter driving experience for all while new B-pillar mounted vents give rear passengers a new level of comfort.