While the Venza looks like a tall hatchback or an oddly proportioned station wagon, it's related to the previous-generation Toyota Highlander SUV. Targeted at former SUV drivers who want something less utilitarian for their daily drive, the Venza winds up being less pleasant to drive than the bigger and more-refined Highlander.

Road Test Results

Performance
Acceleration Acceleration Acceleration tests are conducted on a smooth, flat pavement straightaway at the track. Time, speed, and distance measurements are taken with a precise GPS-based device that’s hooked to a data-logging computer.
0 to 60 mph 0 to 60 mph (sec.) The time in seconds that a vehicle takes to reach 60 mph from a standstill with the engine idling.
Transmission Transmission Transmission performance is determined by shifting smoothness, response, shifter action, and clutch actuation for manual transmissions.
Fuel Economy Fuel Economy We perform our own fuel-economy tests, independent of the government's often-quoted EPA figures and the manufacturers' claims. Using a precise fuel-flow measuring device spliced into the fuel line, we run two separate circuits to represent city and highway consumption.
CR's Overall Mileage CR's Overall Mileage CR's overall mileage is a composite of measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course and highway cruising; and CR's 150-mile test trip of mixed driving, if tested. In recent road tests, we've discontinued the 150-mile trip test.
CR's City Mileage CR's City Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed city course.
CR's Highway Mileage CR's Highway Mileage Measured fuel usage on a prescribed highway cruising.
Annual Fuel Cost Annual Fuel Cost The cost and amount of fuel used in 12,000 miles and is calculated from CR's overall mileage.
Braking Braking The braking rating is a composite of wet and dry stopping distances and pedal feel. Braking distance is from 60 mph, with no wheels locked.
Emergency Handling Emergency Handling Several factors go into the rating, including the avoidance maneuver speed and confidence, as well as how the vehicle behaves when pushed to its limit,
Comfort / Convenience
Ride Ride Our expert judgment of how well the suspension isolates and absorbs road imperfections and how steady it keeps the body on various road surfaces.
Noise Noise Our expert judgment of the vehicle's interior noise level in everyday driving.
Front Seat Comfort Front Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the front seat is for drivers of various heights.
Rear Seat Comfort Rear Seat Comfort Our judgment of how comfortable the rear seat is for two passengers to sit across.
Interior Fit and Finish Interior Fit and Finish An expert evaluation of the interior quality and craftsmanship.
Trunk/Cargo Area Trunk/Cargo Area Our rating is based on the amount of luggage or cargo space that a vehicle has in the trunk or cargo area.

Owner Reports

Worse Better
Reliability History Reliability History The reliability charts are based on responses on hundreds of thousands of vehicles from our latest Annual Auto Survey. Consumer Reports subscribers reported on any serious problems they had with their vehicles during the past 12 months that they considered serious because of cost, failure, safety, or downtime, in any of the trouble spots included in the table below. The results are presented relative to the average model that year. Extra weight is given to the more serious areas such as major engine or transmission problems. Based on this data and further analysis, we predict reliability for the latest year. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
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Reliability Trouble Spots
Engine Major Engine Major Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.
NA
Engine Minor Engine Minor Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.
NA
Engine Cooling Engine Cooling Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.
NA
Transmission Major Transmission Major Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.
NA
Owner Satisfaction Owner Satisfaction To learn about satisfaction, CR has collected survey data from our annual survey on more than half a million vehicles. Our subscribers provide great insights into their satisfaction by answering one simple question: If they had it to do all over again, would they definitely buy or lease the same model? In addition, respondents also rate their cars in six categories: driving experience, comfort, value, styling, audio, and climate systems. N/A indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.
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Driving Experience Driving Experience Includes acceleration and handling
Comfort Comfort Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride
Value Value Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?
Styling Styling How it looks inside and out
Safety Equipment
ABS and ESC standard. Side and head protection air bags standard.
Road Test

While the Venza looks like a tall hatchback or an oddly proportioned station wagon, it's related to the previous-generation Toyota Highlander SUV. Targeted at former SUV drivers who want something less utilitarian for their daily drive, the Venza winds up being less pleasant to drive than the bigger and more-refined Highlander. Giant 20-inch wheels hurt the ride, and handling is nothing special, despite the Venza's lower ride height. The sloping roof inhibits cargo volume and the view out of the rear window. Thankfully, a rear camera became standard for 2015.

On the plus side, the Venza has plenty of room for passengers inside its very quiet interior and access is super easy. As in other Toyota products, the optional 3.5-liter V6 is refined and pulls strongly, although the Venza's 20 mpg overall in our tests is no better than the non-hybrid Highlander. We can't help thinking the Venza is an anachronism, fighting to win over an anti-SUV buyer who threw in the towel years ago.

Seating
2 front, 3 rear
Drive Wheels
AWD , Front
Warranty

In most cases, automotive warranties are based on the vehicle identification number (VIN), and the warranty will be valid regardless of ownership. The dealership can tell you exactly how much warranty is left.

Read more about extended warranties
Body Styles
4-door SUV
Transmissions Available
  • 6-speed Automatic
Engines Available
  • 2.7-liter 4 (181 hp)
  • 3.5-liter V6 (268 hp)

Owner Reported Trouble Spots

The Reliability score is based on our latest subscriber survey of 2014 Toyota Venza owners. The owner comments describe problems respondents experienced with this vehicle.

Body Integrity

Squeaks, rattles, wind noises, loose or cracked seals and/or weather-stripping, air and water leaks.

What Owners Say

Squeaks or rattles

"Squeaks around steering column when turning steering wheel"

Donald W., ON (2014 Toyota Venza Limited 3.5-L V6)

"dash cover over instrument gauges squeeks"

Steve C., NC (2014 Toyota Venza LE 3.5-L V6)

"when going 30mph or greater with window open, you can hear a squeak on the driver side"

David M., MA (2014 Toyota Venza XLE 2.7-L 4 Cyl)

"dash rattle"

Steve C., NC (2014 Toyota Venza XLE 3.5-L V6)
Seals and/or weather-stripping

"Vehicle seems to have excessive wind noise from doors and window seals"

Gilbert M., NJ (2014 Toyota Venza LE 2.7-L 4 Cyl)

"Sun roof leaked in the car wash. Panel between windshield and sunroof replaced. Not fixed. Replaced windshield. Problem appears to be fixed"

Stephen O., ON (2014 Toyota Venza Limited 2.7-L 4 Cyl)
Wind noise

"Front passenger wind noise around the window near the mirror. No air coming through so hard to identify"

Kevin D., KS (2014 Toyota Venza XLE 2.7-L 4 Cyl)

"required two visits to dealer, disassembly of passenger front door, installation of additional noise proofing, and several hours to solve problem with excessive wind noise"

Gilbert M., NJ (2014 Toyota Venza LE 2.7-L 4 Cyl)

Electric System

Alternator, starter, hybrid battery and related systems, regular battery, battery cables, engine harness, coil, ignition switch, electronic ignition, distributor or rotor failure, spark plugs and wires failure.

What Owners Say

Gauges

"Engine light keeps coming on"

Anonymous, ON (2014 Toyota Venza Limited 3.5-L V6)
Exterior lights (other than headlights)

"fog light is easily broken and expensive to replace. My wife had the same problem with her corolla. As these are of questionable usefulness I would suggest that Toyota provide a blank cover for the hole in the fender instead of a $$$replacement"

Anonymous, AB (2014 Toyota Venza Limited 3.5-L V6)
Heated or cooled seats

"No fuse direct from factory"

Anonymous, AB (2014 Toyota Venza 3.5-L V6)
Warning lights

"Engine light comes on"

Anonymous, ON (2014 Toyota Venza Limited 3.5-L V6)

In-car Electronics

CD or DVD players, radio, speakers, GPS, communication system (e.g., OnStar), display screen freezes or goes blank, phone pairing (e.g. Bluetooth), voice control commands, steering wheel controls, portable music device interface (e.g., iPod/MP3 player), backup or other camera/sensors.

What Owners Say

"The navigation is not reliable. on 3 occasions it has taken me tot the middle of no where. My 9 year old Garwin blows it away"

Joan B., ON (2014 Toyota Venza Limited 3.5-L V6)
Phone pairing (e.g., Bluetooth)

"Doesn't always work. Has to be manually set. Often cuts out. It tries to call my cell and then locks up"

Paul M., MA (2014 Toyota Venza XLE 2.7-L 4 Cyl)

"The Bluetooth system connects but keeps disconnecting all the time. I leased the car in Aug 14 and this problem was very bad; now it doing much better but I still have the problem. It is bad because it may happen in the middle of phone conversatio"

Jorge F., CT (2014 Toyota Venza Limited 3.5-L V6)
Radio

"The sound is cheap and tinny and it barely picks up AM or FM signals. Reception of Sirius is fine, but we don't wish to pay for radio"

Anonymous, PA (2014 Toyota Venza LE 3.5-L V6)

Brakes

Antilock system (ABS), parking brake, master cylinder, calipers, rotors, pulsation or vibration, squeaking, brake failure or wear.

What Owners Say

Parking brake

"Noise indicating that the left rear parking cable had seized"

Anonymous, NS (2014 Toyota Venza XLE 3.5-L V6)
Premature brake wear

"brake pads replaced and rotors ground at 41000 miles"

Anonymous, ME (2014 Toyota Venza XLE 3.5-L V6)

Engine Minor

Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.

What Owners Say

Engine knock or ping

"Cold engine noises that become a distinct knock when hot"

Anonymous, MB (2014 Toyota Venza XLE 3.5-L V6)

"This was symptom for cylinder damage"

Anonymous, TX (2014 Toyota Venza XLE 3.5-L V6)

Climate System

Blower (fan) motor, A/C compressor, condenser, evaporator, heater system, automatic climate control, refrigerant leakage, electrical failure.

What Owners Say

Condenser

"i had a rock hit the condenser twice in this last year, which causd me to have to buy a new condenser both times, believe this is due to poor design protecting the condenser"

Anonymous, TX (2014 Toyota Venza Limited 3.5-L V6)
Evaporator

"Terrible odor coming from AC, system had to be flushed. Toyota would not cover under warranty ($300). Successfully submitted to arbitration"

Rob G., CO (2014 Toyota Venza Limited 3.5-L V6)

Suspension

Shocks or struts, ball joints, tie rods, wheel bearings, alignment, steering linkage (includes rack and pinion), power steering (pumps and hoses, leaks), wheel balance, springs or torsion bars, bushings, electronic or air suspension.

What Owners Say

Shocks or struts

"Failed inspection because three out of four struts were leaking. The dealer we bought it from agreed to replace two of them under warranty but said the third was not bad enough. A second dealer gladly replaced the third strut"

Anonymous, VT (2014 Toyota Venza XLE 3.5-L V6)

"Right rear strut needed to be replaced"

Ruth T., ON (2014 Toyota Venza Limited 3.5-L V6)

Paint/Trim

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling), loose interior and exterior trim or moldings, rust.

What Owners Say

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling)

"Lots of missing paint on hood, spots ? from salt/gravel secondary to road salting/sanding"

Anonymous, ON (2014 Toyota Venza Limited 3.5-L V6)

"Body moulding chipped and peeled"

Anonymous, BC (2014 Toyota Venza Limited 3.5-L V6)

Power Equipment

Cruise control, clock, warning lights, body control module, keyless entry, wiper motor or washer, tire pressure monitor, interior or exterior lights, horn, gauges, 12V power plug, remote engine start, alarm or security system

What Owners Say

Coil

"Car would not start and it was towed to the dealer"

Charles S., MA (2014 Toyota Venza XLE 3.5-L V6)

Body Hardware

Power or manual windows, locks and latches, tailgate, hatch or trunk, doors or sliding doors, mirrors, seat controls, safety belts, sunroof, convertible top.

What Owners Say

Tailgate, hatch or trunk

"The left rear hinge on back hatch was making a lot of noise as it went up and down. Hinge was replaced but it is beginning to do the same"

John W., CA (2014 Toyota Venza XLE 3.5-L V6)

Engine Major

Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.

What Owners Say

Cylinder head

"Noticed engine knock when accelerating. Progressively got worse. Took to Toyota and first diagnosed as bad gas. Did not improve so took back again. Since 2nd time in for engine knock, they notified corporate and diagnose was cylinder head damage"

Anonymous, TX (2014 Toyota Venza XLE 3.5-L V6)

Exhaust

Muffler, pipes, catalytic converter, exhaust manifold, leaks.

What Owners Say

Other/unsure

"I think it is related to the disconnection with the bluetooth"

Jorge F., CT (2014 Toyota Venza Limited 3.5-L V6)

Fuel System

Check engine light, sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor), emission control devices (includes EGR), engine computer, engine computer, fuel cap, fuel gauge/sender, fuel injection system, fuel pump, fuel leaks, stalling or hesitation.

What Owners Say

Fuel pump

"Pump would continue to run after car was turned off"

Anonymous, ID (2014 Toyota Venza Limited 3.5-L V6)

Drive System

Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.

Engine Cooling

Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.

Transmission Minor

Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.

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