• Hyundai's latest crossover joins the Wheels24 fleet.
• The Venue is Hyundai's entry-level SUV and slots in below the Creta.
• Prices for the Venue start at R285 500, while the model on test is R360 500 and features a two-tone paint scheme.
Hyundai has released a flurry of crossovers over the past few years. And their latest one has joined the Wheels24 fleet for testing. Now is a good time to introduce you to the little Indian-built Venue crossover.
Where does the Venue fit in Hyundai's range?
The Venue is the entry-level crossover for the brand and is placed below the Kona and Creta models. It measures in at 4040mm in length, 1770mm wide and has a height of 1565mm. It falls into the subcompact segment.
Who is the Venue competing against?
Capitalising on the brand's strong crossover and SUV repertoire, the Venue takes on the new Volkswagen T-Cross and Ford's EcoSport. The Ford is also built in India.
What engine does it have?
It's priced from R285 500 and all models are powered by a 1.0-litre turbocharged engine with the choice of manual or dual-clutch gearboxes. The three-cylinder mill produces 88kW and 172Nm. It performs admirably for its size. Hyundai claims the Venue uses 6.9-litre per 100km, but I found the average consumption to be just below the six-litre mark, very impressive.
What standard features are available?
This flagship model is fitted with most creature comforts in this segment including an audio system with the usual radio and USB connections, Apple Carplay and Android Auto, four-inch speaker sound system, Bluetooth enabled, digital clock, 10cm touchscreen and steering wheel controls.
On the safety front there are driver and passenger airbags, side and curtain airbags, ABS with EBD braking systems, central locking with remote, remote keyless entry, auto-locking and unlocking door, front and rear crumple zones, side impact protection beams.
Is it a pseudo SUV?
The Venue may have small footprint, but it is spacious enough for four adults and comfortably looks the part with a large front grille and bumper styling.
It offers 195mm of ground clearance and rides on 16-inch wheels, which for many buyers looking in this segment is enough. It offers good visibility and high seating position to feel like you're above other cars in traffic.
It boasts a 350-litre boot that has a deep floor which helps to make it more cavernous.
What’s it like to drive?
The Venue offers good urge from its three-cylinder engine, with the 88kW and 172Nm directed to the front wheels. Granted, it has a turbo lag but once you're in the power band it performs with gusto.
The dual-clutch gearbox has seven speeds and can feel a tad jerky in first and second gears. The steering feel is light which makes it easy to manoeuvre in the parking area of my complex.
On the highway it offers more than satisfactory cruising and overtaking ability and I've been impressed by the average fuel consumption figure of around 6.5-litres per 100km. Bear in mind the car has less than 1000km on its odometer.
The seats are comfortable and offer enough support for my big 1.9-metre frame.
Does it have Hyundai’s thorough warranty?
Yes, the Venue is sold standard with a five-year or 150 000km warranty including an additional two-year or 50 000km powertrain warranty and a five-year or 160 000km perforation warranty.
There's also a three-year or 45 000km service plan with 15 000km service intervals.