Several times during my week with the 2013 Toyota Venza, I admired its appearance. Its front grille, in particular, drew my attention with its aerodynamic shape that has been tastefully modified with a new upper and lower grille and fog lamps.
The 2013 Venza is available in LE, XLE and Limited grades. The LE and XLE models are available with all powertrain combinations: four-cylinder, V6, front-wheel drive (FWD) or all-wheel drive (AWD); the Venza Limited is powered by the V6 engine only, in front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive configurations. Value has been enhanced and ordering simplified with the addition of many standard features in all three grades.
Venza was developed specifically for the North American market, appealing to customers who prioritize bold, innovative design and refined interior, along with roominess and versatility.
The Venza design was the creation of Toyota’s Calty Design studios in Newport Beach, Calif., and Ann Arbor, Mich. Calty designers leaned toward a sleek crossover concept with a wide stance that featured a sporty exterior, but they also included important SUV attributes, such as cargo space.
Venza was primarily engineered at Toyota Technical Center in Ann Arbor and is assembled at Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky (TMMK), in Georgetown, Ky. According to Toyota, more than 70 percent of Venza’s components come from North American suppliers.
Performance and efficiency
The 2013 Venza offers four-cylinder and V6 models in FWD and AWD versions. Venza’s 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine delivers 181 horsepower at 5,800 rpm and 182 pound-feet of torque at 4,200 rpm. The four-cylinder Venza is EPA-rated at 21 mpg city/27 mpg highway for the FWD model and 20/25 for the AWD.
The 3.5-liter V6 produces 268 horsepower at 6,200 rpm and 246 pound-feet of torque at 4,700 rpm. The V6 FWD model has EPA-estimated fuel economy ratings of 19 mpg city/26 mpg highway and 18/25 for the AWD.
Comfort and convenience
With seating for five, the Venza’s generous utility includes several clever storage locations and lighting. The adjustable center console features a sliding cover and armrest, iPod/MP3 player holders and a large storage compartment.
Walk around to the cargo area and the convenience continues, with a generous 36.2 cubic feet of cargo space behind the second row. Fold the second row and the Venza boasts 70.2 cubic feet of cargo space.
Abundance of standard features
The Venza LE grade (MSRP $27,700) comes well equipped with standard features, including dual-zone automatic climate control with air filter and second-row-seat vents; eight-way power-adjustable driver’s seat with power lumbar; 3.5-inch LCD multi-information display; an overhead console with map lights; rear-seat adjustable personal reading lamps; and three 12-volt power outlets.
The LE also comes standard with the Display Audio system, which includes a 6.1-inch touch screen, AM/FM CD player with MP3/WMA playback capability, six speakers, auxiliary audio jack, USB port with iPod connectivity and more.
The Venza XLE (MSRP $31,360) provides a major luxury and convenience upgrade to the vehicle and adds standard features such as leather-trimmed seating surfaces, steering wheel and shift knob; four-way power passenger seat; driver seat memory; Display Audio with Navigation and Entune; Smart Key System with Push Button Start and illuminated entry and more.
The V6-only, top-of-line Venza Limited (MSRP: $37,420) comes standard with the Premium HDD Navigation with Entune and JBL multimedia system. The system features a 7-inch, high-resolution touch screen with split-screen capability, AM/FM CD player with MP3/WMA playback capability, 13 JBL Synthesis Speakers including subwoofer, SiriusXM satellite radio capability (includes three-month trial subscription to XM Select Package); HD radio, auxiliary audio jack, USB port with iPod connectivity, and more.
To learn more about this versatile crossover, visit your local Southeast Texas Toyota dealer or www.toyota.com .