The SUV market is growing, faster than we can imagine. In the UK alone, this market is projected to grow by just short of 10% each year – you do the math… Car manufacturers, in their infinite wisdom, recognised this trend a while ago, and have since been looking to provide us with a design that satisfies our needs for a spacious, practical, and powerful car. It’s all well and done hearing about the newest 4x4 until you see its price tag with an additional zero on the end. We know. Let’s reel back a bit and instead look at the most affordable 4x4s in 2023 so that you can hop on the rising trend line!
Based on the Mazda 3 hatchback, the CX-30 brings the same well-rounded features that we love, such as nimbly responsive handling, into a finished SUV package. An all-wheel drive is a standard option across the line-up, with the line-up itself being broad, meaning there is a CX-30 out there which will match your budget needs.
Beyond this, its lightweight construction and adaptive suspension make it a joy to drive over the most rugged of terrains. Mazda is known for its focus on driver-centric engineering and minimalist but effective interiors - the CX-30 takes this baton on with ease. A raised ride height gives the 4x4 driving a more commanding feel, all the while boasting a generous helping of equipment as standard. The stylish take on 4x4 driving doesn’t equate to an expensive cheque either. Strong resale values and competitive PCP rates are common (without the need to place a large deposit down!) – giving a bit more shine to an already outstanding car.
The Hyundai Santa Fe is a prime example of just how far an SUV can stretch to accommodate large families while staying under budget. An attractive design meets a spacious interior with the potential to hold up to 7 passengers, putting many European competitors on their toes. The 5-seater models boast a 585L boot space too. Perfect for those long road trips across any terrain.
This practical family car utilises either an efficient diesel engine or a smart hybrid system, with newer models boasting up to 45mpg. An intelligent 4WD mode on either model gives the ride a greater poise on those rougher surfaces by providing continuous power to all the wheels. Additionally, the hill descent control, 4WD lock system and a higher curb weight maintain your off-road control without fault.
If you aren’t too fussed about size but want a good deal of 4x4 kick under your bonnet, the Suzuki Ignis is waiting for you to give it a drive. Its unique styling makes it stand out from typical SUVs, but in no way has its performance, efficiency and interior finish been diminished. From nimble city driving to longer trips out into the countryside, the Ignis can cover all your bases. It’s no wonder why the long list of safety equipment and driver assistance features have given this SUV a great safety rating.
The 1.2-litre, four-cylinder ‘Dualjet’ petrol engine gives a great kick for those off-road challenges, while a softly sprung suspension takes the edge off those pronounced bumps. By choosing the top-spec Ignis with the AllGrip 4WD system, you’ll be able to tackle rougher terrains with ease, assisted by its low kerb weight too. This spec also gains built-in navigation, rear parking cameras and more. These features are plentiful no doubt, but Suzuki has cleverly kept the price down on the Ignis, giving it a sharp competitive edge that’s hard to beat. Fancy a Suzuki but are looking for something a little bigger? Check out the Vitara here, you won’t be disappointed.
The Vauxhall Mokka X might be as close as you can get to what you imagined an affordable 4x4 to be before you opened this page. Size-wise, you will find it to be bigger than the Ignis but smaller than the Santa Fe – perhaps this is the Goldilocks size you’re looking for. The 1.6 diesel or 1.4 turbocharged petrol engine stands out across the engine range, but either choice will bring you a light and progressive body control as well as a punchy feel when you call for it.
The Mokka’s quality interior is raised to give you a greater view of the path ahead, where the additional traction offered by the four-wheel drive system gives you confidence no matter where you go. The Mokka X’s 4WD system distributes power between the front and rear wheels using sensors depending on the terrain, giving you a greater degree of adaptability in terms of stability, control, and suspension. Whilst showing off as high-end, the Mokka X finds itself in an incredibly low bracket for PCP monthly payments and upfront costs, giving those on even the tightest of budgets a viable and attractive 4x4 for-sale option.
While the Peugeot 3008's engine range is wide enough to suit almost anybody’s needs, to get the 4x4 you will need to look at the hybrid models. The Hybrid4 300 e-EAT8 uses two electric motors, one for each axel, to provide four-wheel drive power. With this powertrain you are given a smooth and responsive automatic transmission which, paired with an electric-only range of up to 39 miles, gives comfort to even the longest of journeys.
The interior isn’t lacking either through Peugeot's intelligent design of the i-Cockpit, giving a luxuriously impressive feel to an already impressive SUV. A smaller steering wheel carries on the newer Peugeot design to give you a greater view of the digital dashboard, displaying everything from driver assistance features to a rear-view camera.
4x4s offer great towing capacity, responsive power on hills and delightful reliability when the road ahead starts to disagree with you. If we have sparked some curiosity and you would like to delve a little further into what our 4x4s have to offer, feel free to contact one of our experts - they'll soon get you a 4x4 that will cover all your off-roading needs!