Even before we start, you know what’s coming. The immensely successful Fortuner is more rugged, while the new Santa Fe is more car-like. The Toyota has the appearance of a mini-Landcruiser, while the Hyundai is a combination of a Touareg, Q7, Cayenne and Subaru. The Fortuner comes with all-time four-wheel drive with a proper low ratio, while the Santa Fe has a button that engages the differential lock. The Toyota features unitary construction married to body-on-chassis, while the Hyundai uses monocoque construction. One is a Japanese car, the other is Korean. One is a Toyota and the other is a Hyundai. By now, you would have decided which of these two cars you will go for, right? No? Shucks, that means I have to write about 1,000 words more for your lack of decision-making powers!
So where’s the confusion? The budget? Thought as much. Yes, when Hyundai was mulling the price of the Santa Fe before its launch, a huge image of the Fortuner was hovering in front of their eyes. They figured that if they could comprehensively load up their new SUV and price it a mite above the Toyota, they could crack it. So that’s exactly what has happened. The Santa Fe retails for
Rs 23.1 lakh in Mumbai – about Rs 3.4 lakh over the Fortuner. Still, the Korean manufacturer has played it safe by limiting the number of cars they want to sell in the country – pity, because the Santa Fe can do more, especially when the more economical 2WD version arrives. Yup. Nuts, now you’re even more confused. Never mind, let’s stick to what’s in front of us, shall we?