Is Hyundai Venue 1.2 S kappa underpowered car? - eNidhi India Travel Blog

Is Hyundai Venue 1.2 S kappa underpowered car?

Are Hyundai's Venue S, S+ models that come with 1.2 liter naturally aspirated engine underpowered? I had this question before I bought one and I see many potential buyers riddled with this question. I am trying to answer those questions here and help new customers make their decision.

Upfront below are my personal experience with Venue S+ w.r.t power:

  • Top speed of 140+ is achievable but takes much more time and straight road compared to turbo engine. 
  • It takes some downshifting during uphill climb to get some torque and power. What more powerful cars might have managed in 3rd gear, I have to shift to 2nd.
  • Most of the time a speed of 80-100 kmph is adequate for most of us, both in city and highway. Venue 1.2 kappa engine used in S, S+ achieves this speed in reasonable time so you won't feel left behind.
  • 86 PS is much less power compared to 120 PS in turbo or 95-100 PS in various other cars. If you are entering a race then Venue S+ won't win the drag race.
  • On a 100 km road trip, your friend with a powerful turbo engine compact SUV would probably reach 20-30 mins earlier than you, as he can accelerate faster, reach top speed faster and sustain top speed with more ease. (provided road and traffic conditions permit) But for this 20 mins he/she would have spent a few lakhs extra while buying, spend more on fuel and maintenance. So you've to decide if the trade off is worth. Most of us are not Ambani or Adanis that if we are late by a few minutes we lose crores of rupees.
  • There is no upper limit. Even if you spend 15 lakhs and buy a more powerful compact SUV, at some point you will feel your car is still underpowered compared to say some other 20-25 lakh SUV. So it is better to be content with what meets our requirement than going for fancy things that largely serve ego and peer pressure purposes.

How much power do we need in our cars?
Power is a relative term. There is always some other car with more power. At some time even most powerful cars feel under powered. The way out is to understand your requirements, budget, options, pros and cons and make an informed decision based on your need and trade off in terms of purchase cost, fuel economy and other aspects.
1. Power to weight ratio: Lighter cars can manage with less power while bigger, heavier SUVs consume most of their power just to pull themselves up. The 1.2 Kappa engine used in Venue is also used in Grand i10 Neos. Grand i10 feels more peppy with same engine because it is smaller and lighter car.

2. The need for power: What is that you want to achieve with more power? Reach office a few mins earlier? Race with your friends? Drive super fast on a highway for thrill? Think carefully as these may have their own repercussions. 

Why you need lots of power or what can you achieve with lots of power?
1. Accelerate faster
2. Overtake quicker
3. Higher top speed- ability to reach your destination a bit earlier
4. Can carry more people, load and drive uphill faster

The potential drawbacks of having more power:
1. Turbo engines cost more to buy & maintain
2. Top speed in India is about 80 kmph in cities, 100-110 in highways- any faster you invite traffic challan if caught and risk accidents 
3. More power means more fuel, so be ready to spend more on petrol even when you may not be needing so much power most of the time. Venue 1.2 S gives 16-17 kmpl practical fuel economy while turbo variants give only 12-13. This tiny savings in fuel money adds up to few thousands every year. (Venue turbo is only 999 cc engine and supposed to be more fuel efficient as it reuses hot air, but ground realities suggest turbo units giving less fuel economy compared to 1.2 Kappa)
4. Turbo engines need more care- like you can't turn ignition off instantly- need to idle for few mins to let turbo cool down.

Buy Venue S or S+ if
  • You want to save a few lakhs upfront on purchase
  • Ok to spend a few more minutes on the road driving a bit slower
  • Save a bit more on fuel
Opt for more powerful Turbo variants if
  • Achieving high speed and sustaining it is important part of your driving experience
  • You don't mind spending a few lakhs more or more on fuel/maintenance for the turbo advantage of higher speeds and acceleration
  • You are keen to impress your peers that you have a more powerful car and can't afford to have a slower car than your peers
Quick comparison of models and power and price




On road price approx



82 PS

 10.3 L



120 PS    

 13.5 L



120 PS

 10 L


RTZ Energy

 71 PS

 9 L


RTZ Turbo

100 PS

 11 L

Vitara Brezza


 100 PS

 10.5 L





Indicative only, at the time of writing this post in 2021. Please cross check official sites for latest on road price in your city.

Venue S, S+ or E are one of the lowest powered compact SUVs in India (after 
Kiger n magnet.)

I've not come across venue owners who have regretted their purchase because it has less power. 3 years since I am owning one, I have no regrets. Yes, there is always a wish that it should have been a bit faster/more powerful, but given the savings most are fine with what is there. Make an informed decision using your own judgement.

Let me know what you think.


  1. Hi Shrinidhi, Thanks for the post, I was literally worried about power of S+ after booking because I haven't get S+ for test drive, now I am waiting for delivery of S+ without fear after reading ur post..

  2. A very reasonable and rational explanations.which every keyboard warriors must read.

  3. indeed a very helpful explanations.

  4. Very nice 👌 explanation from a practical POV.

  5. Clarity in presentation of your analysis

  6. Hi Shrinidhi,
    I’m planning to buy a car.we have shortlisted venue S(o) petrol , Venue S+ diesel and creta EX petrol .my usuage will be monthly average of 300km.can you please suggest me which car shall I buy and please give mileage details and service expense

    1. I would suggest stick with petrol. If Creta cheaper variant is in your budget, you want a bigger car and fine with less features go for it, else chose Venue (smaller car but you will get little more features) . All the best. Mileage varies by variant-10-12 in turbo variants, 15-16 in NA.


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