Hyundai Motor is currently in the works to develop a pickup truck model for the U.S. market. Michael O'Brien, vice president in charge of product planning for Hyundai Motor America, said on August 22 in a press conference, "The top management approved a project to develop a pickup truck model." Pickup trucks are highly popular in the United States. There is only one pickup truck model available in Korea, which is Ssangyong Motor's Korando Sports.
Hyundai Motor unveiled a pickup truck concept model "Santa Cruz" back in January 2015 in the Detroit Motor Show. The model sports a 2.0-liter turbo engine and 190 horsepower. The model currently under development is also based on the Santa Cruz frame.
The pickup truck segment to which the Santa Cruz belongs is mid-size. Last year, the number of mid-size pickup trucks sold in the United States was 440,000. Even though the number is not so impressive, its growth rate of 25.5 percent last year was highest among all pickup truck classes.