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STYLING | 7 out of 10
Simple, handy, and logical control system for audio and climate
Crossover? Wagon? Whatever it is, it looks good in the metal
Car and Driver
Think of it as a shorter, sleeker Highlander
According to Toyota, the Venza is a design breakthrough and something completely new, but the reality is that the Venza is just another entry in the crowded crossover field. This one happens to be a little lower and more carlike than the rest.
That said, reviewers tend to emphasize that Toyota has created something that's a little different, design-wise. Cars.com reports that "the Toyota folks aren't calling the Venza a crossover, but they aren't sure it's a car, either," and "they're not even dubbing it a wagon or a hatchback—all they want to make clear is that the Venza is not an SUV." Most reviewers appreciate the new exterior styling of the Venza overall, with Car and Driver deciding that "whatever it is, it looks good in the metal." The Detroit News loves the "clean and unassuming looks," while MyRide.com praises the "attractive styling."
With even base four-cylinder models getting large 19-inch wheels, there's not a lot of variance in appearance through the lineup and just a couple of models. Cars.com explains, "Toyota went simple with the Venza in terms of trim levels. There are only four," which consist of the various combinations of the two available engines and two- or four-wheel-drive options.
The interior design of the 2010 Toyota Venza isn't daring, but with its swoopy center stack, it's certainly not boring. Most reviewers stick to practical observations here. ConsumerGuide points out that the "large gauges are easy to read," and "with or without navigation, Venza has a simple, handy, and logical control system." Car and Driver also notes that "aesthetically, the Venza interior features many nice touches," but at the same time they find that "the dual-zone HVAC controls seem as if they were crammed into the design at the last minute." Back on the positive side, Cars.com observes that the trip computer, which contains a variety of data and controls, "sits squarely atop the dash," which is "the perfect place for such a screen in terms of keeping the driver's eyes trained on the road, and it's unbelievably crisp and clear."
The 2010 Toyota Venza is no breakthrough, but it's a good-looking crossover wagon inside and out.