Best large SUVs and 4x4s for 2019
By Martin Pratt
Article 8 of 16
Our best 4x4 SUVs are refined and efficient, offering practicality and four-wheel drive security – and a used best 4x4 needn’t cost you a fortune.
Large SUVs and 4x4s are now one of the most popular types of car in the UK. Favoured for their rugged good looks and the confidence they inspire, thanks to their raised driving position and perceived safety.
4x4s are also pretty practical, with large, comfortable interiors. And – on most models at least – four-wheel-drive and the ability to venture off road. Few do, but those large tyres also do a good job of smoothing out rough roads and squashing speed bumps.
The 4x4 class includes everything from luxury models, such as the Audi Q7, BMW X5 and Range Rover. To more affordable mainstream offerings, including the Honda CR-V, Mitsubishi Outlander and Nissan X-Trail.
But popularity is no guarantee that a large SUV will be good to drive or own. Our testing has found SUVs that are a nightmare to drive anywhere other than a muddy field. Long braking distances, wide turning circles and harsh suspension may be fine on a dirt track, but they become significant problems on a motorway or in town.
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Below, you’ll find Best Buy 4x4s and large SUVs that have aced our rigorous tests, and some models that aren’t worth your money.
Best new large SUVs
Imposingly large, yet with an agility that belies its enormity, this full-sized SUV pulls off a seemingly impossible feat. It's not just super-fast in a straight line, it also corners with precision and confidence. And it can also seat up to seven passengers in one of most comfortable, high-quality cabins we've come across.
This is one of the best premium compact off-roaders we've had the pleasure of driving. It's supremely comfortable, the interior exudes quality, and it's practical and spacious. However, for a lot of buyers - particularly those with families - the deciding factor is likely to be its excellent safety credentials.
Best used large SUVs
Not found the car for you? Browse all our large SUV and 4x4 reviews.
Three large SUVs to avoid
4x4s and beefy SUVs have a certain image to uphold. They look strong and durable - surely a car that can barrel across frozen tundra and rutted fields won’t break down, right?
Sadly not, our survey has found high-profile 4x4s that regularly suffer from brake and electrical faults leading to multiple breakdowns and garage visits – hardly expected of a rugged off-roader.
There’s also the matter of fuel consumption. No one is expecting a hulking SUV to be as efficient as a Toyota Prius, but people’s expectations aren’t an excuse to produce cars that do less than 20 miles to the gallon. We’ve tested non-hybrid SUVs that achieve over 40mpg, so it’s not as if it can’t be done.
We’ve rounded up three unreliable, gas guzzling 4x4s that you should avoid.
Large SUVs to avoid
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