Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Less Expensive SUVs
Looking for Affordable SUVs or an inexpensive SUV? Of course you can find them! Finding affordable SUVs shouldn't mean that you have to give up quality and comfort. What is does mean is that you need to be reasonable in your SUV wants and needs.The reality is that the market for affordable SUVs is extremely competitive. In fact you can easily find compact SUV models from most major car dealers in the $20,000.00 range. But is that affordable? Depends on your lifestyle and how much car you can actually afford.Toyota Rav4To that end it behooves the buyer to look at what's on the market this year and compare these SUVs to last year's models.If you purchase last year's SUV than right there you've placed yourself into the "affordable SUV" category due to end-of-year price mark-downs. A good starting point is to go online and check out the many SUV manufacturer websites.Do yourself a favor and focus on two or three (or four) different models and then look at the manufacturer's bottom and midline SUV models. The most affordable SUVs will be the ones with the least amount of accessories.Okay, so now you're online and checking out different models. A good rule-of-thumb to remember when searching for affordable SUVs is that they are generally classified into three groups: mini/compact, midsize and full-size.As you move up in size you also move up in engine power, towing ability, passenger room and most importantly: price. And as we've established early on, the price is what determines whether or not you have found an affordable SUV.Compact SUVs are the most affordable SUVs, with prices for base models starting at or less than $20,000 dollars. Mid- and full-size sport-utility vehicles vary greatly, with base models starting in the mid-$20Ks and going all the way up to the mid-$40Ks. Again, the question you need to honestly answer is "what is affordable?"You'll get more SUV for your money if you purchase directly from the manufacturer. At this point it's also important to identify the features that you will want in your SUV and of course you should try and do without the extras which will only end up costing you more money. This brings us to our next point:Some Things You Can't do WithoutYou can scrimp on a lot of SUV accessories to make the SUV more affordable but you can't scrimp on safety. Important safety features like front and side airbags and rollover protection systems aren't a luxury, they are a necessity. Even if you're shopping for a cheap SUV you should be able to get full airbag coverage and stability control, at least as options.All but a few SUVs are designed to carry at least five passengers. The rear seats in most compact SUVs are tight for three adults but many inexpensive SUVs now offer the option of adding a third-row seat for additional passenger capacity - however these rows are usually intended for use by small children only.Extras?Do you need two-wheel or four-wheel drive? Two-wheel drive means that only the front or rear wheels provide power to the vehicle, while four-wheel-drive vehicles allow the driver to select between two- and four-wheel drive, and provide low-range gearing for inclines, declines and off-road surfaces. Which system you want depends on how and where you drive.Affordable SUVs are out there. It just takes some looking and common sense to find one.