Hyundai Venue vs Kona: A Seriously Difficult Choice

SUVs have become the norm and it’s obvious why automakers are rushing to boost the number of SUVs in their lineup.

Hyundai is no exception, and it makes complete sense that a company known for value for money would want multiple subcompact crossover offerings.

Despite this type of small SUV making up just under 6% of the overall US car market sales, demand is steadily increasing with no signs of slowing down.

But what exactly separates the Hyundai Venue from the Hyundai Kona? Let’s take a closer look.

Quick Summary

Both belong to the subcompact segment, but the Kona is slightly larger and can carry more cargo. It’s also more capable, with a bigger engine and optional AWD. However, the Venue is otherwise very similar, while being slightly cheaper to both purchase and run.

Hyundai Venue front view
Hyundai Kona driving up a road


Making its debut in 2020, the Venue looks slightly more modern. Like the Kona, it features the thin, slit-like headlamps that you find on new Hyundais, but sports a larger front-grille. Especially attractive are found on its rear-end – dainty taillights which take inspiration from the Mini Cooper and VW Polo.

The Hyundai Kona has a marginally bigger exterior and a funkier, sportier appearance. The car itself is portrayed as being more adventure-ready, and its quirky looks and vibrant color choices will certainly appeal to a younger crowd.

Overall both SUVs feature modern designs which complement the small and agile nature of these SUVs, instead of pretending to be something they’re not.

Hyundai Venue interior
Hyundai Kona interior


Despite being one of the most budget-friendly SUVs on the market, the Hyundai Venue’s cabin feels upscale with decent materials and sturdy knobs and dials throughout. If we’re nitpicking, the 8.0-inch infotainment looks slightly tacked-on, but otherwise it’s difficult to fault the Venue’s interior.

The Hyundai Kona’s interior is similar in function to that of the Hyundai Venue, but like its exterior, has a slightly more funky theme. If you’re willing to pay extra, the Kona has more luxurious upholstery options available than the Venue.


Hyundai designed the smaller Venue for city driving, while the Kona is more for those who want the capability of a traditional SUV.

Based on the Hyundai Accent subcompact car, the Hyundai Venue sports a 1.6-liter inline-4 engine with 121 horsepower. This is matched with a CVT transmission, which is fine on tarmac but not well-suited for driving off-road. The manual transmission option was removed for 2021.

Hyundai Kona going off-road
The Hyundai Kona’s biggest advantage over the Venue is its ability to traverse rougher terrain

The Hyundai Kona, on the other hand, gets a more powerful 2.0-liter inline-4 engine which can produce 147 horsepower and a higher maximum torque. The 6-speed automatic transmission it’s matched with means the Kona is better prepared for rougher driving conditions.

Tying into the Kona being the more capable vehicle, the Kona is offered with an all-wheel drive option, while the Venue is front-wheel drive only.

Both SUVs are agile on the road and great for navigating narrow roads. The turning diameter of the Venue is 33.4 ft while the Kona’s is 34.8 ft, giving the Kona a slightly wider turn. However, the highly reactive steering on both crossovers can become a tad annoying on the highway when trying to stay in the same lane.

Passenger Space and Practicality

Both are 5-seater SUVs and perfectly fine for carrying the whole family, though things might feel a little cramped on longer trips.

Hyundai Venue rear seats

Passenger space is more or less equivalent, with the Venue and Kona offering similar amounts of measured leg, shoulder and hip room for front and back seats. The Hyundai Kona does technically offer slightly more space, but it shouldn’t sway your decision.

However, the Hyundai Kona has a significantly larger amount of cargo space. The Kona boasts a roomy 45.8 cubic feet when the back seats are folded down, compared to the Venue’s 31.9 cubic feet. If the back seats are up cargo volume is tied at roughly 19 cubic feet in both vehicles.

Hyundai Kona trunk space

Technology and Features

Both models feature Driver Attention Warning (DAW) systems that detect inattentive driving patterns by issuing voice warnings from the front panel. Apple Carplay, Android Auto, and BlueLink connectivity features are also mutual features.

The Kona also features High Beam Assist that toggles between low and high beam headlights based on driving conditions, and Smart Cruise Control (SCC) that maintains a safe distance behind other vehicles. A HUD display on the windshield showing speed, navigation, and SCC info is included. The Kona allows for wireless device charging. The Venue lacks these options.

Hyundai Venue dashboard
Hyundai Venue driver dash

Fuel Economy

Both compact SUVs get similar fuel economy. The Venue’s 1.6L DPI Engine gets 31 MPG (30 City/33 Highway), while the Kona gets 30 MPG (27 City/33 Highway) with the 2.0 MPI Engine. The Limited and Ultimate models also get 30 MPG (28 City/32 Highway) with the 1.6L Turbo GDI Engine.


Expect to pay anywhere around $3,000 to $5,000 more than the Venue for a similarly equipped Hyundai Kona.

The 2021 base Venue model SE starts at $18,750, while the SEL model starts at $19,800. Each of these comes with different collision detection systems. If you prefer a Denim interior and exterior, that model starts at $22,050, but it lacks the safety systems of the other models.

The 2021 Kona models come with the 147-hp 2.0L engine, giving slightly more horsepower than the Venue, except for the higher priced Limited and Ultimate models, both sporting a 175-hp 1.6L Turbo GDI Engine (Limited starts at $26,200, Ultimate at $28,050). The base model SE starts at $20,400 and the SEL trim at $22,200. Both have different safety features, while the SEL model has a Proximity Key with a push-button start. The SEL Plus trim starts at $24,050 and features an 8-way power driver’s seat, BlueLink system and wireless device charging.


Hyundai has been equipping their newer vehicles with the latest technology that prevents accidents and keeps everyone safe. Both models feature Forward-Collision Assist with Pedestrian Detection (FCA-Ped), Blindspot Collision Warning, Rear Cross-Traffic Collision Warning, and Lane Keeping Assist systems.

Lower-priced trims of the Venue and Kona come with safety features such as collision warning and Driver Attention Warning systems. Similar compact SUV models such as the Chevrolet Trax and the Honda HR-V lack this Driver Attention Warning feature.


Both models come with similar fuel economy, safety features, and can provide a comfortable ride for a small family. The decision to purchase one over the other comes down to the kind of trips you plan to take and how much cargo space you would prefer.

We’d recommend the Hyundai Venue to city drivers who don’t plan on taking cross-country trips outside of the odd one here and there. It is cheaper to run, even easier to park and matches almost all the features of the Kona, for less.

The Hyundai Kona optioned with all-wheel drive comes recommended for those who want to be better prepared for harsh weather conditions or driving on rougher roads. Its higher sticker price might also be worth it if you regularly transport large loads.

Comparable SUVs

The Hyundai Venue is considered relatively small within the subcompact SUV segment, and these kinds of crossover SUV are only just beginning to gain momentum in the US market. Key rivals to the Venue include the Kia Soul and Nissan Kicks.

Meanwhile, the Hyundai Kona shares the same platform with the Kia Seltos, which is another subcompact worth looking into. Those willing to pay slightly more for more off-road capability might be interested in the Subaru Crosstrek – read our full comparison.

If you’re looking for a bigger compact SUV than the Hyundai Kona, see how it compares with the Hyundai Tucson, which is the next size up in Hyundai’s SUV range.

Comparison Table

2021 Hyundai Venue2021 Hyundai Kona
Engine1.6L Inline-4 Gas2.0L Inline-4 Gas
Horsepower121 hp @ 6300 rpm147 hp @ 6200 rpm
Torque113 lb-ft @ 4500 rpm132 lb-ft @ 4500 rpm
TransmissionContinuously Variable Automatic (CVT)6-Speed Automatic
DrivetrainFront-Wheel DriveFront-Wheel Drive
Steering TypeRack-PinionRack-Pinion
Rear SuspensionTorsion BeamTorsion Beam
Rear Wheel SizeP185/65HR15P205/60HR16
Front SuspensionStrutStrut
Front Wheel SizeP185/65HR15P205/60HR16
Turning Diameter (ft.)33.434.8
Fuel Economy
MPG/MPGe - Hwy3333
MPG/MPGe - City3027
MPG/MPGe - Combined3130
Gas Tank Size (gallons)11.913.2
Cruising Range - Hwy (miles)392.7435.6
Size and Weight
Height (in.)61.661.0
Length (in.)159.1164.0
Weight (lbs)26122890
Max Width (in.)69.770.9
Wheelbase (in.)99.2102.4
Interior Dimensions
Seating Capacity55
Front Seat Leg Room (in.)41.341.5
Front Seat Head Room (in.)39.439.6
Front Seat Hip Room (in.)52.153.3
Front Seat Shoulder Room (in.)53.955.5
Rear Seat Leg room (in.)34.334.6
Rear Seat Head Room (in.)38.637.8
Rear Seat Hip Room (in.)43.552.2
Rear Seat Shoulder Room (in.)53.754.5
Infotainment Features
HD RadioStandardNot Available
MP3 PlayerStandardStandard
WiFi HotspotNot AvailableNot Available
Satellite RadioNot AvailableNot Available
Bluetooth ConnectionStandardStandard
Entertainment SystemNot AvailableNot Available
Premium Sound SystemNot AvailableNot Available
Auxiliary Audio InputStandardStandard
Smart Device IntegrationStandardStandard
Hard Disk Drive Media StorageNot AvailableNot Available
Interior Trim
Cloth SeatsStandardStandard
Vinyl SeatsNot AvailableStandard
Leather SeatsNot AvailableStandard
Premium Synthetic SeatsNot AvailableStandard
Bucket SeatsStandardStandard
Sun/MoonroofNot AvailableNot Available
Leather Steering WheelNot AvailableNot Available
Woodgrain Interior TrimNot AvailableNot Available
Comfort Features
Rear A/CNot AvailableNot Available
TelematicsNot AvailableNot Available
Seat MemoryNot AvailableNot Available
Seat-MassageNot AvailableNot Available
Keyless EntryStandardStandard
Keyless StartNot AvailableNot Available
Cruise ControlStandardStandard
Multi-Zone A/CNot AvailableNot Available
Power LiftgateNot AvailableNot Available
Climate ControlNot AvailableNot Available
Head-Up DisplayNot AvailableNot Available
Power Mirror(s)StandardStandard
Automatic ParkingNot AvailableNot Available
Navigation SystemNot AvailableNot Available
Power Driver SeatNot AvailableNot Available
Cooled Rear Seat(s)Not AvailableNot Available
Hands-Free LiftgateNot AvailableNot Available
Heated Rear Seat(s)Not AvailableNot Available
Remote Engine StartNot AvailableNot Available
Cooled Front Seat(s)Not AvailableNot Available
Heated Front Seat(s)Not AvailableNot Available
Power Passenger SeatNot AvailableNot Available
Remote Trunk ReleaseStandardNot Available
Heated Steering WheelNot AvailableNot Available
Adaptive Cruise ControlNot AvailableNot Available
Navigation from TelematicsNot AvailableNot Available
Universal Garage Door OpenerNot AvailableNot Available
Steering Wheel Audio ControlsStandardStandard
Safety Features
Brake AssistStandardStandard
Night VisionNot AvailableNot Available
Rear Parking AidNot AvailableNot Available
Traction ControlStandardStandard
Stability ControlStandardStandard
Blind Spot MonitorNot AvailableNot Available
Cross-Traffic AlertNot AvailableNot Available
Lane Keeping AssistStandardStandard
Tire Pressure MonitorStandardStandard
Lane Departure WarningStandardStandard
Knee Air BagNot AvailableNot Available
Driver Air BagStandardStandard
Seatbelt Air BagNot AvailableNot Available
Passenger Air BagStandardStandard
Rear Head Air BagStandardStandard
Rear Side Air BagNot AvailableNot Available
Front Head Air BagStandardStandard
Front Side Air BagStandardStandard
Basic5 Years / 60,000 Miles5 Years / 60,000 Miles
Corrosion7 Years / Unlimited Miles7 Years / Unlimited Miles
Drivetrain10 Years / 100,000 Miles10 Years / 100,000 Miles
Maintenance3 Years / 36,000 Miles3 Years / 36,000 Miles
Roadside Assistance5 Years / Unlimited Miles5 Years / Unlimited Miles