Thursday, July 09, 2015

What To Look For In Your Next SUV



SUVs and 4x4s have grown to dominate our roads. They were once rugged workhorses used for off-roading and manual labour. Now, every manufacturer makes an exclusive SUV model. Even Porsche have a 4x4 in their range! The traditional SUV has well and truly crossed over into the mainstream. It means that buying a new model is a little trickier than before.

In the past, you were looking for pulling power and off-road response. Now, SUVs are all about keeping the family safe and packing in extra boot space. If you’re thinking about buying a 4x4 for your family, here are the crucial things you need to look for.

Size and Practicality

Most buyers look to the SUVs for their size. They’re ideal for transporting larger families. However, some ‘compact’ models are quite tight for space. Look for the five-door options, and let the children sit in the back while you’re testing it out. You can also seek out cars with ‘stadium seating’. It means the back seats are raised higher than the front, allowing easier access and better driving experience for passengers.

Safety

Many began turning to the SUVs for their perceived safety credentials. Most people generally assume that bigger is safer! It’s a reasonable assumption, and in many cases it’s true. However, you can never be sure. Every model is awarded a star rating (out of five) from independent testing company Euro NCAP. Before you buy your next 4x4, look for their safety rating.

Off-roading

Of course, 4x4s should never forget their roots! Buying an SUV means you still get the chance to hit the rough terrain at the weekends. You can explore the countryside and take the family on an adventure. Some are better than others here. The Land Rover models are the original, and still among the best off-road. The Toyota Land Cruiser is another powerful off-roader (they tested it by driving to the summit of Mount Fuji!)

Fuel Economy

4x4s are notorious gas guzzlers. They are often blamed for the acceleration of global warming and climate change. So, is it worth even considering fuel economy? Well, yes. Many manufacturers have addressed this issue, and have begun to produce very economical cars. The hybrid Mitsubishi Outlander is one of the most economical cars on the road. Period!. The myth no longer represents the truth here.

Price

Many buyers still associate 4x4s with premium prices. You’ll be pleased to know that it’s not entirely true. Yes, the most expensive Land Rovers will set you back nearly £100,000. However, a quick look at harratts.co.uk, and you’ll see plenty of reasonably priced SUVs. The Kia Sorento and the Nissan Qashqai are both very affordable models, and have excellent credentials. There are budget and compact cars available here if budget is a priority.

The 4x4 market has expanded immensely in the last decade. The choice can be overwhelming, so narrow it down to these factors and start hunting!

The Greatest Family 4x4s

It’s no surprise 4x4s are so popular with modern families. They’re safe, reliable and spacious. So, here the best ones on the market at the moment.

Suzuki Jimmy

The Suzuki Jimmy has been treated pretty harshly by a lot of reviews, but I don’t see why. Yes, it’s a versatile road that is even better off-road than it is on the road. But it can still act as a great family 4x4. It’s incredibly cheap now too, especially if you find a second-hand model, making them perfect for parents.

The car is not so big that it becomes difficult to drive on city streets though. It manages to strike a good balance between being manageable enough to drive in all situations and being big enough to carry the whole family. Some people don’t like the way it looks - but you can’t have everything!

Land Rover Range Rover

The thing about the Range Rover is that it can do it all. When you’re sitting in the cabin, you feel the luxury and refinement all around you. It’s a car that can challenge the quality and luxury of the very best top end saloons made by the likes of BMW and Mercedes. Yet, it’s not a saloon; it’s a massive 4x4.

It takes on any terrain that you can throw at it. It’s size and powerful engine means that no challenge is too much for it. If you opt for the v6 engine model, it will actually be pretty efficient too though, and I bet you didn’t expect me to say that. They’re not cheap to buy new though, so find a used Range Rover from Saxton 4x4.

Subaru Forester

Subaru is a manufacturer that knows how to make cars that can take a lot of battering. The Forester is no difference. It has an incredible build quality, and you feel 100% safe when you’re behind the wheel. It doesn’t matter whether you’re on the motorway or off-road, the Forester will keep you safe.

It’s a car that’s more concerned with reliability and practicality than it is with the way it looks. It’s not necessarily going to turn heads as you drive down the street. But it won’t break down very often either. It’s a great car and one of the best 4x4s on the market right now, so consider them!



Toyota RAV4
This is the fourth iteration of the Toyota RAV4, and, if you ask me, it’s the best they’ve ever made. It’s a very large SUV. It’s not a car that’s made for going off-road but if you have a family, that shouldn’t be much of a problem for you. It’s great on the road though, and the drive is smooth and easy.

There’s more room inside than you get with most SUVs too, making them perfect for large families. That can make them a little difficult to drive if you’re driving around busy cities. Its size does make it rather costly to run, but that’s the only real downside with the car.

These are the best family 4x4s on the market right now, so make sure you check them out in more detail if you want a new 4x4 for your family.