Hyundai organizes regional test drive for the all-new Santa Fe

By Alvin Uy Philippine Daily Inquirer September 12,2018

The all-new Santa Fe is the brand’s first monocoque-body SUV.

Hyundai Asia Resources Inc. (Hari), the Philippines’ official distributor of Hyundai passenger and commercial vehicles, in cooperation with the Hyundai Motor Company Regional Headquarters (HMC RHQ), organized a three-day regional test drive dubbed as the “Sea to Summit Conquest” for the all-new Hyundai Sante Fe last week from Sept. 3 to 5, 2018.

Aside from the local motoring media, Hyundai flew in journalists from neighboring countries like Malaysia, Cambodia and Singapore to join in the test drive.

Some 20 units of the all-new Hyundai Santa Fe were brought to Subic Bay for the 146-kilometer trek from Subic Bay to Bataan, and back.

The delegates stayed in Subic Bay’s Segara Villas. Yong Suk Lee, director of HMC RHQ, formally welcomed all, and gave a short talk on the four-generation history of the model.

“As you know, the first generation of Santa Fe was launched in 2000. It is the cornerstone of Hyundai’s longstanding SUV heritage, and the fourth-generation Santa Fe will continue to impress customers with its premium design, spacious interior, and advanced technology,” he said.

Representing Hari was Renato G. Pizarro, SVP for Strategy and Innovation, who took the opportunity to express his gratitude for being chosen as the host country for the regional test drive event.

“We are humbled by the trust given to us by the Hyundai Motor Company Regional Headquarters, and honored by the commitment given to us by our media friends from all over the region,” he said.

The regional test drive route started off in Segara Villas, and took the delegates through a scenic route to Bataan, via the North Luzon Expressway and Bataan Provincial Highway.

The international media group at Mt. Samat in Bataan

First stop was the historic Mount Samat National Shrine, dedicated to the fallen heroes of World War II.

The steep, twisty, and rough road patches became a proving ground for the all-new Santa Fe’s road manners and performance.

After Mount Samat, the next stop was another famous Bataan landmark, the Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar.

The 14-hectare resort is known for its collection of fully-restored century-old vintage and historic houses dating back to the Spanish times.

The backdrop of Old Manila allowed the delegates the opportunity to enter their photos in a contest using the Santa Fe as the main subject.

The last stop was the mothballed Bataan Nuclear Power Plant, built in 1976, which is now a large reservation park.

The lush greenery and well-kept roads was ideal for driving before everyone headed back to Subic Bay.

Present during the fellowship night with the local and foreign delegates was Hari’s CEO and president Ma. Fe Perez-Agudo, who said: “Today will serve as the testament of the dedication, camaraderie, and refined strength exhibited not just by the people of Hyundai coming from the Philippines, Cambodia, Malaysia, Singapore and South Korea, but by each and every one who took the time to be here.”

The suggested price tag of the all-new Santa Fe is P2.338 million. It is the brand’s first monocoque-body SUV, and was first introduced at the 2018 Manila International Auto Show in World Trade Center last April.

The all-new Santa Fe is easily recognized with its 3-dimensional honeycomb patterned and much-widened cascading grille that is based on Hyundai’s new family identity, separated headlight design with LED projector lamps and dynamic bending and daytime running lights, and new diamond-cut 19-inch alloy wheels.

The convoy goes through the twists and turns of the test drive route.

The local spec model features a diesel-fed 2.2L CRDi engine with a maximum power of 200 ps/3800 rpm and maximum torque of 45 kg-m/1740-2750 rpm that perfectly matches with the improved 8-speed automatic transmission.

The monocoque structure gives a better controlled body roll and comfortable daily driving experience.

Now available in all Hyundai dealerships nationwide, the all-new Santa Fe caters to SUV buyers who appreciate the refinements of a premium SUV plus the available active safety features and improved 8-speed automatic powertrain and advanced HTRAC electronic all-wheel drive system for maximum comfort and performance.

The Hyundai HTRAC system tracks the vehicle speed and prevailing road conditions, controls the braking on the left and right wheels, and balances the distribution of power on the front and rear to ensure optimal cornering specially on slippery roads.

Its active safety features include forward, rear cross-traffic, and blind sport collision avoidance assist that warns the driver when backing out and if the vehicle detects another vehicle in blind spots.

Aside from this, its Smart Sense Active Safety system features lane keeping assist, lane departure warning, high beam assist, and driver attention warning to provide the highest level of safety for its passengers.

Inside, cargo and leg rooms have also improved from the previous generation Santa Fe.

Hyundai Santa Fe units at Las Casas de Acuzar

Its Smart One Touch Walk-in feature allows passengers going inside to the third row to have easier access with the flick of a switch.

Hyundai also claims that side visibility has increased by 41 percent, thanks to its clever quarter glass design.

Its heads-up display (HUD) gives the driver better control, and frees him from always looking at the instrument panel.

Other tech features include Bluetooth connectivity with voice recognition for Android Auto and Apple Carplay, and steering wheel cruise control.

For more information about the all-new Santa Fe, visit or any of its 42 dealers nationwide, or Hyundai Philippines’ official Facebook page @HyundaiPH.

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