Over the past decade an increasing number of motorists are choosing 4×4 cars. These vehicles offer improved handling in all conditions and are capable of providing a great drive quality on even the poorest of conditions. With so many different makes and models available it can be difficult to know which 4x4s are the most economical to run – so this is our guide to the best vehicles in a range of different categories; from the most economical automatic 4×4 car to the most economical 4×4 crossover.
Most Economical 4×4 Automatic: Skoda Yeti
Gone are the days when the Skoda name was synonymous with cost effective Eastern Block motoring. In the last decade they have made a name for themselves that is renowned for reliability and cost-effectiveness, two factors that have lead us to choose the Skoda Yeti as the most economical 4×4 automatic. With a six speed automatic gearbox that senses the terrain, choosing the best gear for the conditions, this is a car that combines handling with power wrapped up in a smart looking exterior that’s quietly imposing on the road. The automatic models start at around £18,000 offering 55mpg making this a good choice for motorists who want 4×4 performance on a budget.
Most Economical 4×4 All Round: Vauxhall Mokka
In our opinion the most economical 4×4 all round has to be the Vauxhall Mokka. It’s got a sporty, stylish look that’s based on its American cousin, the Chevrolet Aveo from General Motors. This is a compact car that’s both small and powerful, yet still manages to find the muscle on the road to stick to the surface on all kinds of terrains no matter what the conditions. It comes with a relatively low price tag, replacement parts won’t cost you a fortune and the car is supplied with a lifetime warranty that will cover you for an unlimited amount of time until the car has been driven over 100,000 miles. It runs at around 63 mpg producing around 120 g/km of CO2 putting it in band C.
Most Economical 4×4 – Petrol: Nissan Qashqai
One of the most popular 4x4s on the road is the Nissan Qashqai – and with good reason too, this is a reliable, cost effective car that looks solid yet sporty and drives incredibly well on the road. Its supple suspension and chunky tires give you a very good ride, allowing you to smoothly negotiate even the most bumpy, uneven driving surfaces with very little noise or vibration. It comes with a very good reliability record and deadlocks together with specially marked parts make it a vehicle that thieves will avoid. Thanks to its special stop start technology it returns a fantastic 62 mpg – so even if it does cost a little more to purchase in the first place, the extra spend is returned to you over its lifetime with savings on fuel costs.
Most Economical 4×4 – Diesel: Subaru XV
Since the Subaru Outback was first released to the public back in 2008, this manufacturer has been a real winner with those looking for good value for money from their 4×4 motoring. Despite this being a brand that is often overlooked by the market and motoring press the Subaru XV is one of the best 4x4s of the day, combining an excellent off road ability with a strong driving experience in a car that really looks the part. The Subaru XV uses the same Boxer diesel engine that made the Outback far and away one of the most economical 4x4s of its time, giving drivers a very healthy 50 mpg. The car is renowned for its good reliability, so although the price for the vehicle is relatively high, starting off at just under £27,000 you are unlikely to run into expensive repair bills.
Most Economical 4×4 Cross-Over: Kia Sportage
First appearing in 1995, the Kia Sportage has a longer history than many of the cars on our list. We’re now looking at second generation of this vehicle, which means that the Korean manufacturer has had more than enough time to iron out any mistakes made in early iterations of the range. The Sportage is very cost effective, giving buyers a compact SUV cross-over that comes in at the same price as many small cars making it a very attractive investment. New models come with a seven year warranty that covers the vehicle for 100,000 miles ensuring that repair costs are kept to a bare minimum. With the entry level model coming in at around £16,500, giving you a car that does a respectable 44.1 mpg, this is our pick for the most economical 4×4 crossover.
Most Economical Small 4×4: Fiat Panda 4×4
The Fiat Panda 4×4 – that’s its model name – is one of the best small 4x4s you’ll find on the road, before you even start looking at the fuel and running costs. It has a revised suspension system, giving it a better overall ride on the road than most other models in the Panda range, with good handling. Although the engine is never going to be one for the street racers out there, this is still a vehicle that can hold its own on the motorway – however, it’s on the rough track where the 4×4 drive system really starts to pay dividends with excellent traction on even the most slippery terrain. With an entry level price of around £14,000 and a diesel engine version that’s capable of just over 60 mpg, this is a very attractive little car that has all the right credentials.
Choosing an Economical 4×4
If you’re looking for an economical 4×4 remember it’s not just about finding the most cost-effective model for your money. Instead you need to look at the vehicle’s performance in a number of categories – how reliable is it? Will it cost you a fortune in repairs and servicing? What’s the fuel economy like? You should even look at factors such as how appealing the vehicle is to thieves – one of the most popular 4x4s, the Audi Q7 was actually left off our list as it is currently the most stolen car in the UK. It is only by looking at the total lifetime cost of any car that you get a true picture of the real cost of ownership.
This article was written by Justin from BreakerLink. For more motoring musings, check out their blog: breakerlink.com/blog/
Author: Joseph Lazare