- Back from the pile of retired nameplates, the Toyota Venza is reborn as a more attractive AWD hybrid CUV.
- The 2021 Honda Passport maintains its off-roading ability but requires AWD package.
2021 Toyota Venza
Base Price: $32,470 / Read our 2021 Toyota Venza Review.
What we like: Lexus looks with Toyota pricing; new entry in the two-row midsize CUV segment; proven hybrid powertrain with standard AWD; high level of active and passive safety
What we would change: No plug-in hybrid model; only one powertrain offered; limited off-road ability
Overview: The 2021 Venza offers great driving experience with good visibility and high seating position. Hybrid powertrain delivers decent power that feels stronger than it actually is, thanks to the instant torque of the electric motor-generators. Although mostly an FWD vehicle, the standard AWD offers more traction, especially in slippery conditions.
What’s new for 2021: The 2021 Toyota Venza is all new and utilizes the same platform as the RAV4 and Highlander. Utilizing Toyota’s Hybrid System II, it is estimated to achieve 39 mpg.
Features and Technology: The Venza offers standard all-wheel-drive along with a comprehensive suite of safety features and equipment including adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning with steering assist, automatic high beams, and road sign assist. Daytime bicycle and pedestrian detection are part of the pre-collision warning system and it works well even in low-light situations.
The standard infotainment system is based around an 8.0-inch touchscreen display and combines with a six-speaker audio system, as well as Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and Amazon Alexa connectivity. Go big and order the 12.3-inch touchscreen display with 9-speaker JBL premium audio, digital rearview mirror, heated and ventilated seating and the impressive Star Gaze panoramic electrochromic glass sunroof that allows the driver to toggle between clear and frosted modes.
What does the future hold: Returning in 2021 after a five-year spa visit, we don’t expect to see any major trim adjustments for the next few years. See the 2021 Toyota Venza models for sale near you
2021 Honda Passport
Base Price: $33,710 / Read our 2021 Honda Passport Review
What we like: It’s the bridge vehicle between the Honda CR-V and the flagship Honda Pilot; muscular and award-winning 3.5-liter V6 engine; available AWD; Honda reliability and resale value
What we would change: Average fuel economy; not designed for hardcore off-roading; higher prices than most of the competition.
Overview: When properly-equipped, the 2021 Honda Passport is a great crossover SUV that can be the weekday warrior between home and work, and at the same time haul the family on a weekend getaway. When properly equipped with AWD and the towing kit, it can tow a proper 5,000-pound load. Oh, and there’s that great Honda resale value.
What’s new for 2021: For 2021, there’s a new infotainment kit. The new entry-level Honda Display Audio system now includes an 8-inch touchscreen display with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay smartphone connectivity.
Features and Technology: Available all-wheel-drive is here ($2,000) but not at every trim level. The higher the trim level you go, the higher the feature content—and the price. But with this list of features, it could be worth it: A ten-way adjustable driver’s seat, 10-speaker 550-watt premium audio system, acoustic glass, Tri-zone climate control, 20-inch alloy wheels, rain-sensing wipers and more. Standard Honda Sensing safety suite is free-on-board and includes an emergency braking system, lane-keeping assist, adaptive cruise control, forward collision warning and more.
What does the future hold: Although just refreshed last year, Honda is feeling the pinch of softer sales. Expect the next update to feature a tougher look to the new Passport in a style similar to the recently redesigned Honda Ridgeline. See the 2021 Honda Passport models for sale near you
Venza vs. Passport: Strengths comparison
Toyota Venza benefits: Packed with safety and technology at the base level; proven Toyota hybrid technology
Honda Passport benefits: Bulletproof Honda reliability and resale; decent off-road ability; 5,000-pound towing limit
2021 Toyota Venza vs 2021 Honda Passport: Which is better?
The Toyota Venza has almost the same capabilities as the Passport. It also has proven Toyota Hybrid technology under hood. Considering both are (nearly) identical in price, and the Venza gives you Lexus styling at a Toyota price point, we think the Toyota Venza is better. Find Toyota Venza for sale or Find a Honda Passport for sale
|2021 Toyota Venza Hybrid||2021 Honda Passport|
|Engine||2.5-liter inline-4||3.5-liter V6|
|Horsepower||219 @ 5,700 rpm||280 hp @ 6,000 rpm|
|Torque||163 lb-ft @3,600 rpm||262 lb-ft @ 4,700 rpm|
|Transmission||CVT w / AWD||9-spd automatic|
|Fuel Economy||39 mpg (40 city/37 hwy)||22 mpg (20 city/25 hwy)|
|Warranty||3 years/36,000 miles||3 years/36,000 miles|
|Powertrain Warranty||5 years/60,000 miles||5 years/60,000 miles|
|NHTSA Safety Rating||5-star||5-star|
|Max Seating Capacity||5||5|
|Wheelbase||105.9 inches||111.0 inches|
|Overall Length||186.6 inches||190.5 inches|
|Width||73 inches||78.6 inches|
|Height||65.9 inches||71.6 inches|
|Turning Diameter||37.4 feet||39.5 feet|
|Headroom, Front||38.6 inches||40.1 inches|
|Headroom, Rear||39 inches||40.1 inches|
|Legroom, Front||40.9 inches||40.9 inches|
|Legroom, Rear||37.8 inches||39.6 inches|
|Shoulder Room, Front||57.4 inches||62.0 inches|
|Shoulder Room, Rear||56.9 inches||61.9 inches|
|EPA Passenger Volume||98.3 cubic feet||115.9 cubic feet|
|Cargo Volume||28.8/55.1 cubic feet||41.2/77.9 cubic feet|