Pleasant little runabout
The Hyundai Venue is built for and thrives in an urban setting. Perfect for stop and go traffic, gets excellent gas mileage in that environment. But it's not a one tricky pony, as the Venue also performs exceptionally well on long, scenic country roads. I'm a traveling merchandiser, and my service routes take me all over the city, suburbs, and out into the country where I grew up as a kid. The Venue shines in all of those areas.
That being said, the highway and interstate can feel like a bit of a challenge in the little runabout at first. The 1.6L 121 horse power engine can feel like its working hard to maintain highway speeds when you first start taking it out on the freeway. However, after multiple trips goin 65 to 70+ mph, I feel that the IVT (Intelligent Variable Transmission) is doing exactly what its design to do. Learn. My rides at high speeds on the interstate have gotten better and better, and I'm well exceeding the 33mpg estimated gas mileage with my driving behavior. I'm getting overall 29 to 33 City and 36 to 40 Highway with an overall average of 38 to 40. The 1.6L engine with IVT does its job well. It would, however, be nice to have the option of a 2.0L naturally aspirated engine. Please keep it with NO turbos and dual/multi-port fuel injection. Hyundai is spot on for keeping it like that!
One more thing is that if you tend to drive with the radio off, you will notice a little bit more wind noise from the side windows and doors than in a sedan, or another subcompact SUV with a more curved shape. I purchased and installed some third party window visors, and that really helped mitigate most of that issue. But seriously, the boxy design of the Venue is part of its overall charm. And that's just how it is with wind noise in any economy box shaped vehicle. A bit more sound proofing around the windows and doors would be nice though.