A fresh report out of the United States suggests the new Hyundai Santa Cruz double-cab bakkie will be offered with a choice of four-cylinder petrol engines.

In November 2019, the Korean firm announced its as-yet-unrevealed Santa Cruz lifestyle pickup would go into production at its assembly plant in Alabama in the United States in 2021.

Now Car and Driver claims the unibody bakkie will be available with either a naturally aspirated 2,4-litre petrol engine or a turbocharged 2,0-litre unit. Expect grunt to be transferred to all four wheels via an eight-speed automatic transmission as standard.

It’s worth noting that in North America’s Santa Fe range, these powerplants produce 138 kW and 175 kW, respectively.

Of course, whether the production version of the Santa Cruz (previewed by the concept pictured above, which was revealed as long ago as 2015) will be offered outside of the US remains to be seen. If it does indeed make it to other markets, we’d expect a diesel option (such as the 2,2-litre turbodiesel used in the SA-spec Santa Fe) to be at least considered.

Car and Driver furthermore says the unibody bakkie will be offered with a single load-bed length and a four-door body style.

Hyundai earlier said the new Santa Cruz would target buyers who want “all the traditional attributes of a compact utility vehicle, but need the day-to-day versatility of an open bed”.

In February 2019, a high-ranking design executive at Hyundai said the production version of the Santa Cruz bakkie has "a lot more character” than the concept.