Hyundai has introduced a new small SUV, dubbed the Venue, that will take its place as the Korean car-maker’s entry-level offering. The Venue fills the gap left by the Accent light car that will be discontinued by the end of 2019.
Hyundai is offering the Venue with one powertrain across three model grades – the Go, Active and Elite. A Launch Edition is also being offered but only 100 of these are available. Pricing starts at $19,990 for the manual Go and tops out at $25,490 before on-road costs for the auto Elite. The auto is a $2000 premium for the Go and Active.
The Venue sits under the Kona in Hyundai’s SUV line-up. Except for height, it’s smaller in all dimensions than the Kona. The boxy Venue has a tall-boy design and is 27 millimetres taller than its sibling. It’s similar in size to the Mazda CX-3, although the Mazda is slightly longer. Other rivals for the Venue in the sub-compact SUV class include the Ford EcoSport, Renault Captur, Suzuki Ignis and Nissan Juke.
Given its entry-level status, the Venue’s standard features list in Go guise is somewhat limited. It includes a four-speaker audio system, 15-inch steel wheels, cloth trim and manual air-conditioning, but it also has Apple CarPlay/Android Auto via an 8.0-inch colour touchscreen, and a camera-based autonomous emergency braking system as standard.
The higher-priced Elite gains a lot more equipment, including digital radio and leather-appointed seats, as well as a two-tone roof and contrasting inserts in the bumpers and wheel arches. The Elite also gets the option of denim-themed interior trim.
Powering all variants is a 1.6-litre four-cylinder naturally aspirated petrol engine delivering 90kW/151Nm. It drives the front wheels via a six-speed manual (Go and Active only) or a six-speed automatic transmission (all variants). As with almost all Hyundai offerings, the Venue has undergone a local engineering tuning program to ensure it is better suited to Australian roads and conditions.