What is the Venza?
The Toyota Venza is a two-row midsize SUV that was reintroduced in 2021 after a six-year absence. This new Venza competes well against the likes of the Honda Passport, Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport and Jeep Grand Cherokee. It distinguishes itself from these top SUVs with extraordinarily strong fuel economy and a luxurious interior. Compared to the aforementioned rivals, which average around 22 mpg, the hybrid Venza boasts an impressive 39 mpg combined estimate, and it topped 44 mpg in our real-world testing.
The Venza isn't in contention for class-leading status, though. It's held back by its rather small cargo capacity and inability to tow even the smallest of trailers. Compounding matters is its relatively high price due to the standard hybrid powertrain, though that should be offset by its low fuel consumption. If interior space and cargo capacity are priorities, you may be better served by other SUVs in this class. If squeezing every last mile out of a gallon of gasoline is your goal, the Venza is as good as it gets.
For 2023, Toyota is adding a new Nightshade Edition to the Venza lineup. It's based on the midgrade XLE trim and adds darkened touches to the mirror caps, the front grille and window surrounds and uses 19-inch gloss black wheels. The Nightshade will come in three metallic colors: Celestial Black, Wind Chill Pearl and Ruby Flare Red. Nightshade Editions can also be paired with a panoramic glass roof, something that isn't available on the standard XLE Venza.
Other changes to the range include a number of tech upgrades for the Venza. All Venzas get Toyota's new infotainment software that's snappier and easier to use. LED foglights are now standard on XLE and Nightshade models, and both models gain a larger, 12.3-inch infotainment display. Top-of-the-line Limited models now get a standard head-up display (it was previously optional) and rain-sensing wipers. The addition of USB-C ports and an updated wireless charger across the lineup round out the tech changes.