The 2020 Hyundai Venue arrives as the seventh and smallest in the brand’s growing SUV line.
Although exact pricing has not been announced as this time, expect it to start under $20,000.
The four-cylinder engine is enhanced for performance and fuel economy, according to Hyundai.
Say hello to the 2020 Hyundai Venue. There’s a lot of talk about modern styling and bold design and stuff like that when it comes to the seventh SUV in Hyundai’s lineup. They talk about the Venue’s safety, utility, and advanced-technologies; but what it really comes down to is affordability. How affordable? The South Korean automaker does not give specifics, but they use the words “entry level” and “affordable” about a thousand times in their tome of a press release. That, combined with the fact this is a Hyundai, what we’re talking about here means this thing will be cheap like a budgie.
Budget-Friendly But Balanced
The Hyundai 2020 Venue will be the most affordable in their lineup, joining its larger siblings like the Kona and Kona Electric, Tucson, Santa Fe, and the big, honkin’ eight-passenger Palisade. Just cause it’s small and inexpensive does not mean the Venue is a stripper, however. It is, as we have come to expect from Hyundai, simply awash in high-tech features, along with lots of well-thought out design touches.
The design side settles in with “small but confident body forms,” which represent a new interpretation of Hyundai’s design language. The Venue seems solid and substantial, despite its smaller size and footprint. There are large wheel arches and strong character lines, with composite LED lights and cube shape headlamps. The Venue has the signature cascading grille, which serves as the face of all modern Hyundais.
You even get two wheel choices: the 15-inch standard wheels and big, striking 17-inch alloys. On the inside, the 2020 Hyundai Venue offers a choice of gray or black cloth interiors and a sunroof.
It might be small, but the 2020 Hyundai Venue offers a complement of advanced safety technologies that turn it into a small tank, protection-wise. There’s Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist that uses the front-facing camera to sense an impending collision and brake autonomously. The Lane Keeping Assist system prevents accidental lane departure by sensing road markings, and automatically steering the Venue back to where it should be.
Blind-Spot Collision Warning keeps an eye out for approaching vehicles that may be obscured. Driver Attention Warning helps detect driver fatigue or careless driving – in other words, big brother is watching you. The Rear Collision Cross-Traffic Warning system detects a vehicle entering your rearward path and provides an alert to keep you from hitting it. The 2020 Hyundai Venue even has different drive modes, including a snow mode for improved performance in slippery conditions.
Connectivity & Comfort
Coming from the most connected country on the planet (seriously, the coverage of super high speed net access in South Korea is stunning) the Venue is all decked out in connectivity features. The infotainment system features an eight-inch touchscreen system and rearview monitor. That eight-inch display comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, including app-based navigation, streaming audio, and voice-controlled search capabilities. Navigation help is there with free Real-Time Traffic provided by HERE. Free map updates are included via Hyundai MapCare for three years.
Other tricks and goodies include Hyundai Blue Link’s integration with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. It works by you simply asking the Venue to “start the car” for example. Hey, it’ll even turn on the climate control, rear defroster, and heated side mirrors if you want.
Furthermore, Hyundai says the cooling system’s cross-flow configuration and “narrow water jacket core” will help the cabin get warmer quicker. The Venue’s thermal management system features a two-way rotary control valve that distributes engine coolant to the radiator, transmission warmer, and heater core module. Hyundai says a “six-phase control strategy” will prioritize coolant and heat flow for occupants in cold weather.
And all this fashionable, high-tech stuff is motivated by Hyundai’s Smartstream Gamma, 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine. The mill is paired with either a six-speed manual (shock!) or an Intelligent Variable Transmission (Hyundai’s version of a CVT). Hyundai says the engine, with it’s dual port injection and EGR system, gets up to 33 mpg combined, which is impressive, although official EPA ratings are forthcoming.
Pricing & Availability
So the only thing lacking here is price and availability, as Hyundai has not specified either at the time of this writing. But c’mon, it’s an entry-level Hyundai, it can’t be that expensive. The Kona starts at $19,990, so expect the Venue to at least have an initial MSRP less than that.
Color choices include Ceramic White, Black Noir, Steller Silver, Galactic Gray, Scarlet Red, Intense Blue, Green Apple, and Denim. The latter can come with a denim cloth and leatherette interior combo and a white contrast roof.
Tony Borroz has spent his entire life racing antique and sports cars. He is the author of Bricks & Bones: The Endearing Legacy and Nitty-Gritty Phenomenon of The Indy 500, available in paperback or Kindle format. Follow his work on Twitter: @TonyBorroz.