Before things can come down, they must go up. Lately, this includes a lot of prices, with MSRPs for the Hyundai Santa Cruz pickup the latest to go into a higher orbit. CarsDirect spied an order guide for the Hyundai, showing the MSRP boosted by $150 across the board from our last reported pricing on January 31, the destination fee goosed by $20, to $1,245. The new figures for all four Santa Cruz trims after destination are:
- SE: $25,385
- SEL: $28,585
- SEL Premium: $37,075
- Limited: $41,115
If there’s a problem, that problem is not that the Santa Cruz is even more pricey than the Ford Maverick. Although Maverick prices have also ascended higher, the Santa Cruz still starts at about $4,000 more than the least expensive Maverick, and the most expensive Maverick still starts at about $1,200 less than the Santa Cruz SEL trim. But prices for the Ford don’t matter for now anyway. The Blue Oval’s compact pickup has been so popular that Ford closed the order book for the hybrid trims two months ago, and for the non-hybrid EcoBoost range one month ago.
The Santa Cruz is now the backstop among the new compact pickup field, its price map more aligned with the Chevrolet Colorado, its philosophy more aligned with the Honda Ridgeline. We don’t see buyers cross shopping the Colorado and Santa Cruz, and the Hyundai is still a whopping $13,500 less than the larger Honda. As for that Honda, based on the sales charts, the Japanese entry still has its fans; U.S. Ridgeline sales barely dipped in 2020 compared to 2019, and last year’s 41,355 sales were the Ridgeline’s best since its second year on the market, in 2006. That’s how much difference a grille makes.
The South Korean entry is still in its ramp-up phase, having just entered its first full year of sales last month. It’s already outselling the old Ioniq range, the Veloster, Accent and Venue, and January 2022 sales were right behind the Sonata sedan. We look forward to seeing how the Santa Cruz is doing at the end of this year and whether it manages to cause any bother to its real nemesis, the Ridgeline.