Toyota Venza is a front or all-wheel drive “medium sized SUV” developed by the North American engineering group of Toyota Motor Corporation specifically for its market. This model is oriented for “family people”. It is very important that the car is unlike any of its “classmates” and combines good cross-country ability, ease of operation, as in a car and functionality of the universal.
The conceptual version of “FT-SX”, on the basis of which Venza was later created, was first demonstrated in early 2005 at the Detroit Motor Show. After 3 years in the same city debuted a serial version of the car. In 2012, the car survived a small restyling. Since 2015, the crossover has left the United States market, and next year the Russian market (due to weak demand), although it “remained” in certain countries. The whole model range is Toyota.
- Car history
- Exterior (2008-2012)
- Exterior restyling (2012-2017)
- Interior restyling
- Specifications restyling
- Restyling mower unit
- Restyling transmission
- Restyling chassis
- Crash test
- Price and equipment
- Tuning Toyota Venza
- Owner Reviews
- Comparison with competitors
- Pluses and minuses
- We sum up
- Toyota Venza photos
- Test drive
- Video overview
The world-famous “crossover” direction, the founder of which in the mid-2000s was a company from Japan (Nissan), couldn’t help but touch upon its rivals in its own market, including Toyota. Assuming that the vehicle of such a niche will be very popular in a very important for the Japanese North American market, the management decided to start development and introduce a fundamentally new car, which combines all the advantages of a crossover and convenience of a niche sedan.
As mentioned above, in 2005 at the Detroit Motor Show was presented a conceptual version of the FT-SX, which gave the image of the upcoming production car, what will be its appearance and parameters. Developed the appearance of the new vehicle in Calty Design, which is a special design department of the company, located in the California region.
The technical stuffing of the five-door door was developed by engineers at the Toyota Technical Centre in Michigan. All refinement and field tests of the machine continued for 3 years. In 2008, the model was finally demonstrated to the general public.
It was already a serial version of the car, which was named Venza. They produced such cars at the plant in Kentucky. Four years later (in 2012), the Japanese decided to hold the debut facelift of the car.
The first version of the model, based on its size, can be easily referred to as “medium sized SUV”. The length of the car is 4,801 millimeters, the width is 1905 millimeters, and the height does not exceed 1,610 millimeters. The distance between the axles is as follows: 2776 millimeters. The “combat” version of the machine starts from 1 755 to 1 835 kg, depending on the modification.
The ground clearance is good enough – 206 millimeters. The appearance of Toyota Venza fits well into the Japanese style, but does not repeat the existing vehicles of the company, so it is worth paying tribute to it. The front part has a rather large chrome-plated radiator grille, on top of which the company’s nameplate is located.
On the sides of the installed lighting equipment with lined optics. At the very bottom of the front bumper there is a compartment covered with a small net for cooling. There are also fog lights framed in chrome finish. The hood is medium sized and has a characteristic pleasant stamping.
The side of the prerestyling Toyota Venza looks pretty standard. The wheel arches allow you to install really big wheels. External mirrors of the rear view designers decided to install directly on the door itself. The rear part received an interesting design of lanterns and stern in general. Part of the lamps was placed on the car itself, and part on the luggage compartment door.
The latter received a windscreen wiper, massive glass and a small fin, placed at the top with a built-in stop-light. The rear bumper does not stand out and has only two reflective elements on the sides. At the bottom right, a small exhaust pipe can be seen.
The interior of Japanese Toyota Venza looks a bit unusual, but very interesting. At first, the eyes are a little scattered. After getting inside, the driver is presented with a convenient multifunctional three-spoke steering wheel. The steering column is adjustable both in height and departure. Behind it there is a clear and informative dashboard.
The left side of the dashboard shows the number of revolutions of the power unit, and the right fuel level and temperature of the “engine”. The central part is devoted to the larger dial of the speedometer. The central console has a lot of interesting things, so you can start from the very top. It is decorated with a small display that displays all the necessary parameters of the car (consumption, mileage, etc.).
Below is a music system, on the sides of which it is “guarded” by two longitudinal deflectors of climatic installation. Its regulators are placed a little bit lower. Not far from them there is an automatic gearbox lever. Between the front seats there is a massive transmission tunnel, which is not hard to see the two large cup holders.
The armrest can be moved forward and backward, depending on the specific needs. Underneath this armrest there is a small capacity for all sorts of things. The element with cup holders also moves towards the back row, thus opening another spacious niche for a variety of things. Inside there is an AUX connector and several 12V sockets.
The Japanese-made car has a large number of speakers, which are almost everywhere, even in the luggage compartment. The second row of seats can easily accommodate three adult passengers who will not feel uncomfortable in front of their feet or above their heads. There is a comfortable and functional armrest that slides out of the backrest, which also received comfortable cup holders.
The luggage compartment is very spacious and comfortable. The loading height is quite comfortable, and the opening is very wide. In addition, there is a flat floor under which there is a “finishing line”. On the left under the floor you can see a jack, and on the right you can see an additional niche for various trifles.
There is a lot of useful space. But that’s not all. Japanese engineers have provided special handles in the trunk, with the help of which you can fold the second row of seats. As a result, you will get almost flat floor and impressive size of useful space.
The power list of the pre-registration version of Toyota Venza has two atmospheric gasoline engines. At first, it is possible to single out an ordinary four-cylinder 2.7-liter power plant, which received sixteen valves and a distributed injection system.
This allows the first variant to develop 182 horsepower at 4800 rpm and 240 Nm with 4000 rpm. The 3.5-litre V-shaped six-cylinder version completes the short list of engines, which received a 32-valve gas distribution mechanism and multipoint “power supply”. This engine produces 268 horsepower at 6200 rpm and 334 Nm of torque at 4700 rpm.
Both engines are synchronized only with the six-speed automatic transmission. Front or fully automatic four-wheel drive is provided. The gearbox has a multi-disc clutch on the rear axle.
The Japanese five-door door is based on the “K” base of the Camry and Highlander cars. The front and rear are equipped with independent suspension of McPherson type, where there are screw springs, transverse stabilizers and shock absorbers.
Disc brakes are used as a brake system (in front they are ventilated). These mechanisms are complemented by electrical systems ABS, EBD, and others. The steering system has a rack and pinion architecture and electric power steering.
Exterior restyling (2012-2017)
Initially, unique facelights with LED daytime running lamp lanes begin to catch your eye. Narrowed xenon lamps have an autocorrector and washers. In addition, there is an “aggressive” radiator grille, chrome frames and door handles, two-section mirrors, which perfectly control the “blind areas”.
The air intake has increased in size. The appearance of this vehicle is quite unusual, but attractive. The impressive size adds to its solidity. Despite most of the opinions that the model received a sporty design, unfortunately, there is no pronounced sporty note.
Part of the fun is given by the 19-inch rollers and roof spoiler. The color range has several interesting colors: Attitude Black Metallic, Barcelona Red Metallic, Blizzard Pearl, Classic Silver Metallic, Cosmic Gray Mica, Cypress Pearl, Golden Umber Mica, Magnetic Gray Metallic and Sunset Bronze Mica. Very pleased that the car is already in the basic configuration of the car comes with a panoramic roof.
The car has an original spoiler with built-in stop-light and respectable aluminum overlays with the inscription Venza on the rapids. Toyota’s appearance looks rather original – the exterior is borrowed from various segments.
Inside, based on Toyota Venza’s photo, it’s a pleasure to be here. The salon is simple and concise. There are comfortable leather seats with clearly identified side support, a fairly wide armrest between the driver’s and passenger seats, as well as additional soft armrests on the doors. The driver’s seat is able to “drive up” to the “steering wheel” of the five-door control in an independent order.
In addition, the driver’s seat is equipped with a function to remember the latest adjustments. The internal rear-view mirror has an option of darkening, and in the center there is a 6.1-inch multimedia system screen. Slightly higher and closer to the windshield is the familiar screen of the board computer, a small size.
It is able to display the current temperature mode, speed data, gasoline consumption, time, distance and other parameters. It is controlled from the steering wheel. The large display shows the new generation of navigation system. The steering wheel itself is equipped with a couple of usual levers – the control of direction indicators and lighting. The left area of the “hand wheel” has buttons for electric adjustment of mirrors, optics washers, disconnection of parktronic (front and rear) and opening of luggage compartment lid.
Illumination of devices is full-color – Optitron. The central console is implemented in the ratio of 60/40. It seems to the owner that 60 percent of the console is turned to him, and the remaining 40 percent to the passenger sitting next to him. But with a special structure, the front passenger feels the same effect as the driver. Toyota Venza has a separate climate control, while the driver and the passenger received separate “own” wheels of the temperature regulator.
A pair of similar seat heating regulators are located near the temperature control wheels. The gearshift lever is located in an unusual position near the multimedia screen. The Japanese have not forgotten to install a long box for a variety of small things, which also has USB-ports.
A little above you can see the holder for mobile gadgets. The interior is available in three different interior finishes. The interior is dark, gray and ivory. More expensive equipment was given leather trim. Inside the Japanese vehicle there is plenty of free space on the front row as well as on the second row.
The rear row easily receives three adult passengers who will not feel any discomfort over their heads and legs. The back of the sofa can be adjusted to the angle of inclination. The abundance of plastic inserts made under aluminium pleases with pleasure. It is necessary to note the excellent ergonomics of the interior decoration, as here it is easy to reach everything, and the readings of the devices can be easily read.
The whole salon is assembled qualitatively without obvious gaps. As slightly mentioned above, the modernized Venza has 2 hatches. Installed in front can be opened, and the rear will only serve as a transparent roof, but makes the interior lighter and more spacious. The luggage compartment is huge – the volume is 975 liters.
But that’s not all. If necessary, the backrests of the rear seats can be lowered to provide 2,000 litres of storage space. A good level of noise insulation is also good.
Restyling mower unit
For the Russian market, a Japanese crossover with a single gasoline type power unit was officially imported. It was an aluminum four-cylinder 2.7-liter atmospheric engine 1AR-FE. It had a variable-length intake manifold, variable valve phase change system, distributed injection and intelligent electronic throttle.
With this in mind, this engine develops 185 horsepower at 5800 rpm and 247 Nm of torque at 4200 rpm. Other markets have “Venza” with a gasoline V-shaped 3.5-liter 3.5-liter engine, which develops 268 “horses” at 6,200 rpm and 334 Nm of torque at 4700 rpm.
Together with such an engine, the Japanese decided to synchronize a six-speed automatic transmission with a front-wheel drive transmission or all-wheel drive technology with an electromechanical clutch in the rear-wheel drive. It is able to reverse the traction to the rear wheels not only during the slippage of the front wheels, but also when turning.
Regardless of the chosen version, the first hundred of the car reaches the 9.4 seconds, and the maximum speed is declared at the level of 180 kilometers per hour. Combined mode of car movement requires from 9.4 to 10 liters for every 100 kilometers.
The base of the vehicle is the Toyota K base, which is a transverse installation of the powertrain, and the bodywork is distinguished by the extensive use of high-strength steels. As for the suspension, it is completely independent.
McPherson racks, cross stabilizers, steel springs and gas-filled shock absorbers are used. The steering device has a rack and pinion mechanism and electric power steering. The brake system is represented by front ventilated disc brakes, and the aft part received standard disc “brakes”.
Unlike the U.S. version, the Russian version of the five-door crossover has a softer suspension, with other adjustments, as well as docking, stored in the underground luggage compartment.
The list of protection systems for people sitting in the Toyota Venza can be started with a “package” of airbags: there are front, side, curtain and knee airbags. If to speak for technology of active safety it is possible to allocate antilocking brake system, the technology able to distribute brake efforts, “the assistant” during emergency braking, system of course stability, antiskidding system and the assistant at reorganisation.
Japanese specialists did not stop there and implemented the Hill-start help system, tire pressure control, active head restraints, seat belts with pretensioners and force limiters, as well as fasteners for child seats. Based on IIHS data, the machine received excellent results in crash tests.
Price and equipment
Russian car dealerships have been selling restyled Toyota Venza since June 2013. But since the beginning of 2016, the model cannot be purchased officially due to low demand. Secondary market allows you to buy this Japanese five-door model within $24938,24, depending on the condition of the vehicle.
Basic equipment has:
- 7 airbags;
- The leather interior;
- 19-inch ice rinks
- Electronic systems ESP;
- Double-zone climate control;
- Forward and rear parking sensors;
- Multimedia system;
- Electric drive of the luggage door;
- Starting the power pack with the button;
- Bi-Xenon headlights, light and rain sensors;
- Preheating function of front seats and audio system.
In addition, the standard car has a cruise control, monitoring system for “blind” areas, the function of help at the start of the mountain and a list of actual “lotions”.
Tuning Toyota Venza
Restyled version of the five-door crossover from Japan looks very modern, stylish and even a little sporty. However, this does not mean that car owners are not allowed to improve their cars. Some drivers decide to make a small transformation of the exterior.
This can include a steel grille, steel (or carbon) overlay on the rear bumper, steel protection of the front bumper with decorative elements, oval-type thresholds with overlays (pads or simple pipe). In addition, put a steel set of crankcase protection, plastic window deflectors, wind turbines, plastic hood deflectors, wings, mudguards, rugs in the cabin and luggage compartment.
It is clear that such improvements have no fundamental improvement, but will allow to stand out a little from the crowd, and also will help to keep some elements of the car longer. After all, you can order an airbrush with a pattern that the owner will like.
If you look at the whole Toyota Venza owner reviews, the drivers noted the wonderful suspension of the car, moderately soft and moderately rigid. The roughness on the road surface is almost not felt, but on the dirt road is a bit harsh, so I do not want to accelerate. The suspension itself keeps the road well at any speed mode. The vehicle is driven easily, so fatigue during long journeys will not be tired.
As for the dynamics, it is excellent, at any speed mode you only need to press the gas pedal with a force of 30 percent, as the car quickly begins to gain speed, despite the system of full drive. This is very helpful when overtaking. Owners of Toyota Venza note a good system AWD, which allows you to walk confidently in winter on snow and ice. But still it is very important not to regret to buy all-season rubber.
Consumers “machine” quite an acceptable amount of gasoline, as for such a mass and engine. The engine power is enough with the head. It is difficult not to allocate simply very spacious interior having a lot of free space both on the front row, and on the back. Luggage compartment will be able to place almost everything that will be necessary for long trips or rest outside the city.
While driving inside there are no otherworldly sounds, plastic does not squeak. The loudspeaker system is of good quality and has 13 JBL loudspeakers. In summer time the conditioner copes well with the tasks set on it, cooling the salon, and in winter time does not let down the stove, practically warming up the whole salon.
On the other hand, it is important not to forget that with a clearance height of 205 millimeters, the front overhang is not the smallest, so it is important to be careful when overcoming pits, approaching kerbs and so on. Inside there is a rough plastic, which is probably a problem at all Toyota. Given the large size of the five-door model, do not go at high speed in corners.
Comparison with competitors
If you bring up the topic of alternative models, then the direct rivals of Venza is not so many. This can include initially cars in the back of a wagon, which have increased cross-country ability: Passat Alltrack, Subaru Outback, Volvo XC70, as well as an unusual as Toyota, Honda Crosstour.
It is clear that a potential buyer will pay attention to crossovers and off-road vehicles of the classic type. In this category, Nissan Murano, Hyundai Santa Fe, Kia Sorento, Mitsubishi Pajero Wagon or Honda Pilot. Interestingly, despite all the efforts of the Japanese to bypass the internal competition of Venza with Highlander or even a frame Prado, they obviously do not manage to do so powerlessly.
Pluses and minuses
- Automobile is at least 200,000 rubles cheaper than its competitors;
- Automobile is at least 200,000 rubles cheaper than its competitors
- Solid electric “packaging”;
- Solid ground clearance height and all-wheel drive system;
- Rich even basic equipment;
- Spacious salon;
- Large luggage compartment;
- High build quality;
- Resistant noise insulation;
- Related ergonomics;
- Pleasant appearance with a hint of sportiness;
- Large and stylish wheels;
- Powerful power units;
- High security level;
- Many electronic systems designed to help the driver
- Pretty little fuel consumption, as for this mass and this engine.
Cons of a car
- Larger front and rear overhangs that restrict traffic;
- The engine is whimsical to the quality of gasoline;
- Conflicting appearance;
- Old multimedia system;
- No steering wheel heating function;
- Large machine size;
- The plastic used in the Toyota Venza cabin is still not as pleasant.
We sum up
After a more detailed review of the Japanese car Toyota Venza, until the very end it is hard to understand what kind of car in front of us: a crossover or still a wagon? There is no clear answer. But one thing is clear – the five-door can be used as a universal model, which fits well enough into the Russian conditions. The restyling version of the “Japanese” has become more stylish, modern and even a little sporty.
Stylish lanterns, radiator grilles, and so on are all worth it. It is worth saying that the design staff managed to rejuvenate the vehicle, retaining all its distinctive advantages. And the model has plenty of them. This can include high ground clearance, all-wheel drive system, which allows you to use the car in more remote places.
Of course, Toyota’s front and rear overhangs are a little bit long, so it’s impossible to walk around especially. Everything inside looks nice and of high quality. Only the quality of plastic used can be a little disappointing. However, otherwise, the interior decoration turned out to be excellent. There is a convenient multifunctional steering wheel, behind which there is a slightly outdated, but very informative dashboard.
The central console finally got a small, but still color display. The usual small “screen” of the on-board computer at the top has remained in its place. Seats are not the best, but have various adjustments. There is plenty of free space on the front row as well as on the second row of seats. Nobody will feel discomfort with the equal score.
There are many compartments for trifling and small things. Luggage compartment is really huge and stands out with its functionality. Under the floor there is a “finish line”, tools and a small compartment for things. If necessary, you can increase the useful volume if you fold the backrest (it is done directly from the luggage compartment with special levers). As a result, we will see a huge loading bay with an almost flat floor.
The power pack fully meets its mission, overtaking with confidence. On the other hand, as for its weight and volume, it consumes not so much gasoline, which is an advantage. Safety has always been a major concern for the Japanese, so the updated Toyota Venza was no exception. Judging by the independent crash-tests, the car got the highest score.
There are various electronic systems designed to help the driver to drive the car. One thing is for sure – Toyota Venza tries to keep up with the times. The review of the car showed that it can be a good family car for people who, in addition to driving in the city limits, often go beyond it. This model can still compete with its rivals for a long time.
We advise you to read the article: Toyota history: from weaving machines to cars