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I’M A BIG fan of the Hyundai Santa Fe. It’s one of the best value 4x4s on sale. The next generation has just been unveiled at the New York motor show.


The new Santa Fe is longer, lower and wider than the old car. It’s recognisably the big brother of the smaller ix35, with crisp, modern styling. I’ll be interested to see if it looks as neat and well proportioned in the metal.


Hyundai promises more space in the first and second rows, although the press bumph doesn’t mention the optional third row, so don’t be surprised if it’s a tight fit. Boot space has been improved, with 534 litres to fill with five seats upright.


The new Santa Fe will be sold with a choice of one petrol and two diesel engines across Europe, and in two- and four-wheel-drive versions. Expect the UK line-up to be limited to the more powerful diesel 4×4.


The 2.2-litre engine has 197bhp and 318lb.ft of torque. That should comfortably haul any suitable match.


Talking of which, our colleagues at Autocar reckon the new car will weigh around 120kg less than the old. That means a likely kerbweight of around 1800-1870kg, depending on the exact spec, giving an 85% match figure of 1530-1590kg. The legal towing limit for the manual is unchanged at 2500kg.


When the new, lighter Kia Sorento went arrived in 2010, it met a mixed reception from caravanners. Will the same be true of the slimmed down Santa Fe?


I hope not. Self-levelling rear suspension is going to be standard, which is a good sign.


However, there’s no doubt the new car will set you back more than the old. Prices won’t be confirmed until closer to the UK on sale date in the fourth quarter of the year, but don’t expect any change from £25,000. That’s still good value compared with most rivals.