2022 Hyundai Venue Limited
Class: Subcompact Crossover
Miles driven: 375
Fuel used: 13.4 gallons
|CG Report Card|
|Room and Comfort||B|
|Power and Performance||C|
|Fit and Finish||B+|
|Report-card grades are derived from a consensus of test-driver evaluations. All grades are versus other vehicles in the same class. Value grade is for specific trim level evaluated, and may not reflect Consumer Guide’s impressions of the entire model lineup.|
|Big & Tall Comfort|
|Big & Tall comfort ratings are for front seats only. “Big” rating based on male tester weighing approximately 350 pounds, “Tall” rating based on 6’6″-tall male tester.|
|Engine Specs||121-hp 1.6-liter|
Real-world fuel economy: 27.9 mpg
Driving mix: 35% city, 65% highway
EPA-estimated fuel economy: 29/33/31 (mpg city/highway/combined)
Fuel type: Regular gas
Base price: $22,150 (not including $1225 destination charge)
Options on test vehicle: Carpeted floor mats ($155)
Price as tested: $23,530
The great: Value for the money; straightforward control layout
The good: Extra-tidy exterior dimensions and slightly elevated driving position make parking and close-quarters maneuvering easy; good level of standard features, including driver-assist systems
The not so good: So-so acceleration; all-wheel drive is not available
If you’re budget-conscious shopper looking for an entry-level subcompact vehicle these days, your choices have mostly shifted to the crossover SUV category. The traditional subcompact car class has dwindled in recent years, to the point that it now consists of just four vehicles by our count: the Chevrolet Spark, Hyundai Accent, Kia Rio, and Mitsubishi Mirage. Taking up the slack is a proliferating class of subcompact crossover SUVs, and some of those—particularly the Hyundai Venue, Nissan Kicks, and Toyota C-HR—straddle the line between a crossover and a hatchback car. Unlike most subcompact SUVs, the Venue, Kicks, and C-HR don’t offer all-wheel drive, and the Venue and Kicks are two of the most affordable vehicles in the class.
The Venue is spunky, likable “extra-compact” subcompact crossover that debuted for the 2020 model year, and it’s received only detail changes since then. For 2022, there are minor alterations in standard equipment, and the top-line trim level is now named Limited instead of Denim. For more information about the Venue, you can check out our original test-drive report here and our “6 Cool Things” feature here.
The Venue measures just 159.1 inches long overall and has a wheelbase of just 99.3 inches, making it one of the smallest vehicles in its class. Despite its extra-tidy exterior dimensions, however, the Venue a bit more passenger and cargo room inside than you might expect, thanks in part to a body structure that’s a bit taller than the typical subcompact car. Our tallest editor is 6’6”, and he fits reasonably well in the driver’s seat. Headroom is sufficient for adults in the rear seats, but leg room quickly gets stingy when the front seats are adjusted back to accommodate a tall front-seat occupant. Furthermore, the Venue’s short wheelbase means that the door apertures themselves are on the stingy side. Getting in and out can be a challenge for big and tall folks—even in the front seats, since the seatbacks are situated well behind the door openings when the seats are adjusted all the way back.
The Venue’s cabin is clearly built to a price, but its clean, no-nonsense layout and expressive details give it personality. The seat upholstery is predominantly cloth, but there are leatherette panels as well, along with contrast stitching and some fun embossed-stripe patterns on the cloth sections that add visual appeal. Unexpected and welcome features at this price point include heated front seats, lane-keep steering assist… even Hyundai’s “Sounds of Nature” feature, which plays driver-selectable ambient-audio soundtracks such as Calm Sea Waves, Rainy Day, Lively Forest, and Warm Fireplace. Gimmicky? Maybe, but we found ourselves using the feature fairly frequently—listening to soft waves crashing, or birds singing and the wind rustling through leaves is more pleasant and calming than the sounds of city traffic.
And speaking of city traffic… like other subcompact-sized vehicles, the Venue works best as an urban commuter, not a long-distance highway cruiser. The road/engine noise becomes prominent at highway speeds, and that short wheelbase means the ride can get especially choppy over pavement expansion cracks on the freeway. The 1.6-liter 4-cylinder makes 121 hp—enough for capable around town cruising, but subpar passing power on the highway.
Still, our 2022 Venue Limited test vehicle had a bottom-line price of $23,530, and in today’s new-vehicle market that qualifies as a bargain price—especially when the vehicle in question offers the level of features and all-around personality that the Venue does.
2022 Hyundai Venue Limited Gallery
(Click below for enlarged images)