Launching a small SUV is a great idea, because they’re very fashionable at the moment. However, launching a small SUV when there’s already a small SUV in your range seems like needless duplication.
That’s why the introduction of the Hyundai Venue is a puzzling move. This all-new model – which has just been unveiled at the 2019 New York International Auto Show – measures 4,036 mm (158.9”) long, 1,770 mm (69.7”) wide and 1,565 mm (61.6”) tall.
By comparison, the equivalent dimensions for the existing B-segment Kona are 4,165 mm (164.0”), 1,800 mm (70.9”) and 1,550 mm (61.0”) respectively. Not much difference, in other words.
Hyundai is describing the Venue as the brand’s “most affordable SUV”, so perhaps being a cheaper alternative to the Kona is going to be its main purpose? The answer will only be known when prices are revealed, of course.
While European specifications have yet to be announced, equipment levels for North America are fairly generous. For instance, the standard infotainment system incorporates an 8” colour touchscreen, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay compatibility, Bluetooth connectivity and a rear-view monitor.
Remote starting is possible via Hyundai Blue Link, a technology that integrates with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. Available driver aids include lane keeping assistance, blind-spot collision warning, forward collision avoidance and rear cross-traffic warning.
For the time being, the sole confirmed engine is a Smartstream Gamma 1.6 litre four-cylinder petrol unit. It can be mated to either a six-speed manual gearbox or a continuously-variable automatic transmission.
Deliveries of the Hyundai Venue are due to begin during the fourth quarter of 2019.
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