Photos: Karthik A Nair
Six years ago, when Ford launched the Ecosport here in India, literally I never thought it would change the entire vehicle ecosystem of our country. Then we were gifted with one of the most brilliant all-in-one-packages – the Vitara Brezza. People love the Vitara Brezza for the brilliant features and pocket friendly maintenance while the Ecosport was and is still doing well because of the sporty character of the so called compact SUV. Later, Tata launched the Nexon followed by XUV300 and the newly connected SUV, the Venue.
The tech world is influencing the automobile market a lot. Don’t you agree with me? At every new car launch, I am bored of hearing manufacturers boasting about accessing most of the features and even few of the controls through your mobile. As simple as that! Well, the Hyundai Venue is a similar connected car. We bring you this comparison test because, the Hyundai Venue is the newest entrant into the Indian compact SUV segment and it should go head to head with the current best all-rounder, which is the Tata Nexon as per our perspective!
You get inside the Venue and just try asking the Voice Assist if it can help you navigate to Coimbatore/any other location. Or even ask about the weather around, and the result will pop-up on your 8-inch screen within seconds! The Venue comes with ‘Hyundai Blue Link’ which has an in-built and tamper-proof device powered by Vodafone-Idea eSIM and a Cloud-based Voice Recognition platform from Global AI (Artificial Intelligence) Company – Sound Hound. The Hyundai Blue Link is Hyundai’s global technology which is introduced in the Indian market with 33 features out of which 10 are India specific features. Let’s not talk about those features, because, for me it sounds a bit weird and overdone.
In that case, the Nexon is pretty old school(the way I like it). It just gets a plain infotainment system which plays music and comes with android and apple car play as well.
First, as always, the looks!
There is no doubt that the Venue is a handsome looking car. With the cascading grille, the front end is quite imposing. The LED DRLs surrounding the projector headlamps look attractive. The side profile reflects a solid and full volume wheel arch and strong character line. The sophisticated rear design with LED tail lamps suits the overall design of the Venue. In one stance it gives you an impression of a premium modern car!
On the other side, the Nexon is a charmer! The Tata Nexon has a very bold and appealing stance. The front end is commanding and simple to look at unlike the Venue’s which to me looks a bit overdone. The proportions don’t match so well at the rear for the Nexon, while the neatly designed rear end of the Venue gets more likes.
The Nexon is wider compared to the Venue and offers more ground clearance of 209mm while the Venue offers 190mm which isn’t bad either. Both cars offer 350 litres of boot space at the rear, but we feel loading and unloading in the Nexon is much more easier. Once you enter the Venue, you might notice that the Venue is the narrowest and shortest car in the segment in terms of height!
On the inside, Hyundai has managed to match the premium looks of the exterior. The cabin is welcoming and you really can’t beat Hyundai in terms of fit and finish. The quality of materials used is excellent and the cabin on the whole, will grab a higher number of votes for the most premium cabin in the compact SUV segment. The seats offer good comfort and the view from the inside is pretty good. You get height adjustable driver’s seat, multi-function steering wheel and a tiny sunroof.
Though, since Nexon is a wider car, the cabin feels more spacious and comfortable. Going to the second row, the Nexon can carry three abreast while in the Venue, it’s a bit of a squeeze. The Venue gets a wireless charging feature and three USB ports for charging while the Nexon gets only one in the front. The Nexon comes with an 8-speaker Harman Kardon audio system while the Venue’s 8-speaker setup doesn’t sound exciting on the long run.
The Venue comes with three engine options. – the 1 litre turbo petrol which will offer an enthusiastic drive, the 1.2 litre petol and the 1.4 litre diesel which is what you see in the pictures. The 1.4 litre diesel motor produces 90PS of maximum power and 220Nm of torque which is mated to a 6-speed manual gearbox. There is an option of a 7-speed DCT (dual clutch transmission) in the petrol variant which will be easier to drive in city traffic. The diesel motor is refined and the NVH levels are fantastic I must say!
Compared to the Venue, the Nexon comes with a more powerful 1.5 litre engine under the hood which generates 110PS of maximum power and 260Nm of torque. There is no wonder why the Nexon is a great highway cruiser. One look at the engine spec will make things clear. Out of both the SUVs, the Nexon offers a linear power delivery and it is an enthusiastic machine to drive. All the hail goes to the powerful engine with higher torque figures. In real world conditions, the Venue will offer around 18kmpl and the Nexon would hit a higher figure of around 19kmpl.
We tried squeezing five people in both the cars and tried driving over rough patches and off the road. The Venue’s suspension seemed a bit stiff while the Nexon still offered a plush ride throughout the session smothering road undulations. The Venue’s steering gives you a better feel when compared with the Nexon. While the Nexon’s steering is a bit playful and when driving in an enthusiastic way, the rear end of the Nexon feels very light while the Venue’s is sharp and stiff.
Brake hard and the feel from the Nexon wouldn’t give you as much confidence from that of the Venue, though the Nexon stopped first during a small braking test. Also, the Nexon’s brake pad fades away a bit too fast. Been using it for a while now, I had to change the pads during my stint.
The Nexon is the only car in the segment to earn a 5-star rating in Global NCAP tests. Though it offers only two airbags as same as the Venue.
The Final Package
So am I trying to tell you that the Nexon is a better car? Not really!The prices of the Venue starts from 6.5 lakh which goes all the way up to 11.11 lakh. Almost on par with Nexon prices, starting from 6.49 lakh all the way up to 10.9 lakh. While the Nexon misses out features like cruise control, sun roof and much more, the Venue is a complete package!
If you ask me about my personal favorite among the two after driving both the cars;in all my senses, I know that the Venue is more of a complete package. It is a connected SUV. Looks premium and offers more features than anything else. The fit and finish is also better compared to the Nexon which doesn’t age well, but yeah, I will still choose this, the Nexon over the Venue! Be it in terms of performance or comfort, the old school Nexon wins my heart over the modern Venue! Or else let us sum it up this way. If you are a tech freak who would like to show-off your tech loaded car, mostly would drive around city, would hardly use the car as a 5 seater, then the Venue will be an excellent choice for you!
Eagerly waiting for a facelift of the Nexon with a couple of added features. . .
|Tata Nexon||Hyundai Venue|
|Type||1.5 L Diesel||Inline 4 Cylinder 1.4 L Diesel|
|Type||6-Speed Manual||6-Speed Manual|
|Ground Clearance (mm)||209||190|
|Kerb Weight (Kg)||1305|
|Turning Radius (m)||5.1||5.4|
|1.2 Revotron XE||6.49 Lakh||E (Petrol)||6.50 Lakh|
|1.2 Revotron XM||7.24 Lakh||S (Petrol)||7.20 Lakh|
|KRAZ||7.29 Lakh||E (Diesel)||7.75 Lakh|
|1.5 Revotorq XE||7.49 Lakh||S Turbo (Petrol)||8.21 Lakh|
|1.2 Revotron XMA AMT||7.84 Lakh||S (Diesel)||8.45 Lakh|
|1.2 Revotron XT||7.85 Lakh||S Turbo DCT Petrol||9.35 Lakh|
|KRAZ Plus Petrol||7.91 Lakh||SX Turbo||9.54 Lakh|
|1.5 Revotorq XM||8.14 Lakh||SX Dual Tone Turbo (Petrol)||9.69 Lakh|
|KRAZ Diesel||8.22 Lakh||SX (Diesel)||9.78 Lakh|
|1.2 Revotron XZ||8.32 Lakh||SX Dual Tone (Diesel)||9.93 Lakh|
|1.5 Revotorq XT||8.71 Lakh||SX O Turbo (Petrol)||10.60 Lakh|
|KRAZ Plus Diesel||8.78 Lakh||SX O (Diesel)||10.84 Lakh|
|1.5 Revotorq XMA AMT||8.84 Lakh||SX Plus Turbo DCT (Petrol)||11.11 Lakh|
|1.2 Revotron XZ Plus||9.14 Lakh|
|1.5 Revotorq XZ||9.3 Lakh|
|1.2 Revotron XZ Plus Dual Tone||9.35 Lakh|
|1.2 Revotron XZA Plus||9.74 Lakh|
|1.2 Revotron XZA Plus DualTone||9.95 Lakh|
|1.5 Revotorq XZ Plus||9.99 Lakh|
|1.5 Revotorq XZ Plus Dual Tone||10.2 Lakh|
|1.5 Revotorq XZA Plus||10.7 Lakh|
|1.5 Revotorq XZA Plus DualTone||10.9 Lakh|