2021 Toyota Venza Hybrid Review

·2 min read

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The Venza name returns to Toyota's lineup for 2021 after a six-year hiatus, and it is applied to a whole new vehicle that fills a gap between the RAV4 and Highlander SUVs.

Much like other manufacturers’ recent offerings, this is a two-row midsized SUV that offers style over utility, similar to what Chevrolet has done with the Blazer and Volkswagen with the Atlas Cross Sport. Unlike its rivals, Toyota has a twist: The Venza will be available only as a hybrid.

The Venza is a bit more premium than its like-size competition, striking a halfway point between Toyota and Lexus in terms of feel, refinement, and features. It also splits the difference in size between the small and midsized classes because it's narrower than direct competitors such as the Ford Edge and Nissan Murano. The Venza hits a sweet spot that should appeal to shoppers who want a thrifty, smartly packaged SUV but don’t want to pay a premium for a model from a luxury brand. It is large enough to seat four comfortably and compact enough to negotiate city streets.

If you’re a Consumer Reports member, our initial expert assessment of the new Venza we rented from Toyota is available to you below. We plan to purchase a Venza of our own and put it through more than 50 tests at the CR Auto Test Center, including those that evaluate acceleration, braking, fuel economy, handling, car-seat fit, and controls. CR members will get access to the full road-test results as soon as they’re available.

If you haven’t signed up to become a member yet, click below to access this full article and all of our exclusive ratings and reviews for each vehicle we buy and test. Joining also gives you full access to exclusive ratings for the other products our experts evaluate in several categories, including electronics and home appliances.

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