2021 Toyota Venza vs. 2020 Hyundai Santa Fe

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/10/27

The Venza has a standard Secondary Collision Brake, which automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.

To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the Venza. But it costs extra on the Santa Fe.

Both the Venza and the Santa Fe have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras, driver alert monitors and available around view monitors.

Warranty

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There are over 49 percent more Toyota dealers than there are Hyundai dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Venza’s warranty.

Reliability

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The battery on the Venza is in the trunk, which protects it from hot underhood temperatures that can degrade battery life. By keeping the Venza’s battery 20 to 30 degrees cooler, its life is increased by years. The Santa Fe’s battery is in the hot engine compartment.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Hyundai vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota second in reliability, above the industry average. With 16 more problems per 100 vehicles, Hyundai is ranked 8th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Hyundai vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Toyota third in reliability. Hyundai is ranked 6th.

Engine

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The Venza’s 2.5 DOHC 4-cylinder hybrid produces 34 more horsepower (219 vs. 185) than the Santa Fe’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4-cylinder.

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the Venza CVT gets better fuel mileage than the Santa Fe with its standard engine AWD (40 city/37 hwy vs. 21 city/27 hwy).

Regenerative brakes improve the Venza’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

Transmission

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The Venza has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer a CVT.

Tires and Wheels

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The Venza LE’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 60 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Santa Fe SE/SEL’s standard 65 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Venza LE has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the Santa Fe SE/SEL.

Suspension and Handling

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For better maneuverability, the Venza LE’s turning circle is 1.4 feet tighter than the Santa Fe’s (36.1 feet vs. 37.5 feet). The Venza XLE/Limited’s turning circle is .1 feet tighter than the Santa Fe’s (37.4 feet vs. 37.5 feet).

Chassis

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The front grille of the Venza uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Cargo Capacity

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An available locking center console keeps your small valuables safer in the Venza. The Santa Fe doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

Ergonomics

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The Venza’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Santa Fe’s standard passenger windows don’t open or close automatically. With the Santa Fe SEL/Limited’s power windows, only the front windows open or close automatically.

If the windows are left open on the Venza the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows at the outside door handle or from a distance using the keyless remote. (This window function must be activated by your Toyota service department.) The driver of the Santa Fe can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The Venza’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Hyundai only offers heated mirrors on the Santa Fe SEL/Limited.

The Venza has a standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. Dual zone air conditioning costs extra on the Santa Fe and isn’t available on the Santa Fe SE.

The Venza’s standard automatic temperature control maintains the temperature you set, automatically controlling fan speed, vents and temperature to maintain a consistent, comfortable environment. The Santa Fe SE doesn’t offer automatic air conditioning.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Toyota Venza has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. Wireless charging costs extra on the Santa Fe and isn’t available on the Santa Fe SE.

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