It's like a Venza, but cooler.
The Toyota Venza was launched in the USA last year, and quickly gained a favorable reputation for being stylish, comfortable, and frugal. For the 2023 model year, Toyota is bolstering the range with the new Nightshade Edition. It's like a normal Venza but cooler.
During its first year on sale, Toyota sold 61,988 units, which is a fraction of the 400k plus RAV4 models sold during the same period. To remedy the situation, Toyota is using style. According to the press release, the Nightshade "gets an extra infusion of coolness." Toyota also uses the Nightshade trim as a final tribute.
In this case, adding coolness means adding several black design elements that contrast beautifully with the three premium exterior colors.
The Venza Nightshade Edition is available in Celestial Black, Wind Chill Pearl, or Ruby Red Flare.
Add to that acrylic front grille trim, black-painted outer mirror caps, blacked-out rear badges, door handles, rocker panels, and available roof rails. The lower bumpers at the front and rear now feature smoked chrome moldings. The stubby shark fin antenna is also finished in black to add that final touch of darkness.
The Nightshade rides on 19-inch gloss black multi-spoke aluminum alloy wheels. It also comes standard with LED fog lights, which are now standard on the XLE trim the Nightshade is based on.
The rest of the Nightshade edition is straightforward Venza. It rides on Toyota's TNGA-K platform that underpins most of the Japanese manufacturer's sedans and crossovers.
As it's based on the mid-spec XLE, it comes as standard with black cloth upholstery and black SofTex leatherette on the seat bolsters. Other features include Toyota's Safety Sense 2.5 safety suite, a 12.3-inch Toyota Audio Multimedia display with a nine-speaker JBL Premium Audio system, a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, and a digital rear-view mirror, and a 10-inch color head-up display.
Unlike the XLE, you can order the Nightshade Edition with the Star Gaze fixed panoramic glass roof, previously only available on the top-sped Limited trim.
It's powered by the same 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine with three electric motors and a lithium-ion battery as the rest of the range. A CVT transmission sends a total of 219 horsepower to an eAWD system. As a result, the Venza comes with an EPA-estimated 39 mpg consumption on the combined cycle.
Toyota did not say when it would go on sale or how much it would cost, but we'll update as soon as the information is available.