Toyota Motor is resurrecting the Venza crossover as a new hybrid model as it pivots to electrify its vehicle lineup.
The Japanese automaker unveiled the midsize crossover as well as a redesigned Sienna minivan virtually on Monday. Both vehicles will exclusively be available with gasoline-electric hybrid powertrains.
“Both of these products, I think, really represent our next step to what we committed that we will have 100% electrification across our entire lineup by 2025,” Bob Carter, executive vice president of sales for Toyota Motor North America, told reporters during a call. They’re “two exciting products.”
Hybrids, unlike all-electric or plugin hybrid vehicles, do not require drivers to plug the vehicles in to charge their batteries.
The Venza will be available beginning this summer, followed by the Sienna toward the end of the year, Carter said.
Photos of the 2021 Toyota Venza
Toyota discontinued the Venza crossover after roughly seven years of production for the U.S. in 2015, leaving a gap between its top-selling Rav4 compact crossover and large Highlander SUV. Carter said the Venza is “perfectly positioned” in “the white space” between those models.
Toyota expects to sell about 50,000 Venza models annually, according to Carter. That compares to more than 400,000 Rav4 models or 240,000 Highlander vehicles per year.
The five-passenger 2021 Venza is estimated to achieve 40 miles per gallon combined in some models, according to Toyota. Powering the vehicle is a combination of a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine and three electric motors.
The Venza is a sleek-looking crossover that features several characteristics of Toyota’s current lineup including duo grilles, hybrid badging and lighting. It will be produced and imported from Japan.