2020 Hyundai Venue gets sketched out ahead of the New York Auto Show
Hyundai's lineup is about to add one of the industry's smallest and most-affordable new SUVs.
Chris PaukertFormer executive editor / Cars
Following stints in TV news production and as a record company publicist, Chris spent most of his career in automotive publishing. Mentored by Automobile Magazine founder David E. Davis Jr., Paukert succeeded Davis as editor-in-chief of Winding Road, a pioneering e-mag, before serving as Autoblog's executive editor from 2008 to 2015.
Chris is a Webby and Telly award-winning video producer and has served on the jury of the North American Car and Truck of the Year awards. He joined the CNET team in 2015, bringing a small cache of odd, underappreciated cars with him.
After years of nursing an undernourished SUV lineup, Hyundai is preparing to put a small exclamation point on the comprehensive stem-to-stern overhaul of its crossover range. The 2020 Hyundai Venue is headed for next week's New York Auto Show and it's expected to be the brand's tiniest and least-expensive utility.
Seen here in these first official sketches, it's clear that the Venue will fall right in line with Hyundai's new family look, an appearance adopted by the Korean automaker's larger Santa Fe and Palisade models. Design hallmarks for the new styling language include a large six-sided grille bookended by scowling twin-element headlamps with a separate main lower beam and daytime running lamp brow.
The cabin looks straight forward, with renderings showing a largish central touchscreen with what seems to be Apple CarPlay compatibility. A conventional-looking gearshift lever suggests the Venue won't adopt the brand's newer pushbutton-style shifter seen on other new Hyundai SUVs, a cost-saving move that nevertheless should please traditionalists and ergonomists alike.
2020 Hyundai Venue SUV lines up for the New York Auto Show
In both size and price, the Venue will slot below Hyundai's still-new Kona subcompact SUV, which starts at $19,990 (plus $1,045 delivery). It will be interesting to see how aggressively Hyundai can price the Venue -- it's possible it could become one of the least-expensive new vehicles on sale, of any type.
As it is, the Kona already squares off against some pretty affordable competition, including the slightly cheaper Nissan Kicks and Ford EcoSport, and Hyundai will need to put some daylight between the Venue and the Kona if it wants to avoid consumer confusion.
It's not known what powers the Venue -- the base Kona rolls with a naturally aspirated 2.0-liter four-cylinder with 147 horsepower and 132 pound feet of torque -- or how many driven wheels it will offer. Despite its SUV looks, it's quite possible the Venue may be a front-wheel-drive-only affair, like the Kia Soul.
We'll know more soon. The 2020 Hyundai Venue bows at 10:45 a.m. ET on Wednesday, April 17, complete with some sort of augmented-reality presentation. Roadshow will be reporting back live from the Big Apple with all the latest, so bookmark us and check back frequently.