Do You Need a Crossover or a Standard SUV?

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When you need a larger vehicle with a little more cargo space and extra room for passengers, you can choose to get a crossover or a traditional sports utility vehicle (SUV). Which one is the better option for you depends on your specific needs and preferences. Here are a couple of questions to ask to help you decide which one to purchase.

City Only or Off-Roading?

One of the first questions you should ask yourself is where you'll primarily be driving the vehicle. Although crossovers and SUVs do look similar in many ways, the way they are built differs vastly and affects how they perform on different terrains.

Crossovers are built off car-based designs, essentially making them cars with SUV traits. They tend to be smaller and have four-cylinder or six-cylinder engines. This, plus the fact they have a low center of gravity, makes them more appropriate for driving on paved roads. On the other hand, SUVs are larger, have higher centers of gravity, and typically have more powerful engines (e.g. V-6s), all of which make them great for off-roading.

If you're a city dweller who doesn't travel off the beaten path much, then a crossover may be more appropriate for you, especially if fuel economy is a concern. However, those who frequently travel rural, unpaved, or rocky roads may be better served with a conventional SUV that is capable of traversing rough terrain.

What are You Transporting?

Another thing to consider is what will you be transporting using the vehicle. There are both crossover and SUV models that offer third-row seating. However, conventional SUVs generally offer more leg and head room than crossovers since they also tend to be much larger. At the same time, you do pay a premium for the additional space SUVs offer since they typically cost more and use more gas than a crossover.

Crossovers almost always have rear seats that can be folded down to dramatically increase the truck space. Additionally, many crossovers also have a pretty decent towing capacity. For instance, the Ford EcoSport can tow up to 2,000 pounds. These types of vehicles will serve the needs of most people, even some outdoor enthusiasts.

However, if you haul around a lot of stuff on a regular basis or tow things that are well over 2,000 pounds (e.g. horse trailers, tiny homes), then you're better off getting a standard SUV.

For help choosing the right vehicle for you, contact a local dealership.