A Sedan or a SUV?

I am in the market for a car. My budget is $20k-$25k. I just can't decide if I should get a sedan or an SUV. If a SUV, should I pay extra to get a 4WD?

I am looking at Camry, Rav4, Qashqai at the moment. Qashqai seems cheapest and have all the latest gadgets on the TI models.

What should I buy?

Edit: I am still single, planning to have family and kid in 2-3 years. Drive mostly on good road surface. I drive about 300-400km per week. Only going away about once a month. My budget would allow for a second hand car, not brand new. cheers

Poll Options

  • 227
    1.Sedan
  • 64
    2.SUV

Comments

  • +1 vote

    Forget about having kids, worst investment ever.

    •  

      never get any monetary return huh.

  •  

    I'm no expert, but it was my understanding that my SUV with all wheel drive, was safer than having 2WD of same vehicle.
    With the traction control etc, I think if any wheels lose traction, slipping, car sliding out etc, then the traction control computer would be able to keep traction better than if driving a 2WD vehicle.
    Suv is much more comfortable IMO. Whenever I get into sedan it feels like Im sitting on the ground almost (harder to get out of).

    • +2 votes

      Thing is though, that losing traction doesn’t happen often enough to warrant it if you can actually drive. It’s called driving to the conditions. Been driving mostly 2wd for years and pretty much the only times I’ve lost traction is when I wanted to.

      • +1 vote

        losing traction doesn’t happen often enough

        It only needs to happen once and the outcome could be devastating for everyone involved.

        The future is to develop and manufacture safer vehicles. If having AWD increases safety from 1% to 5% to the overall safety of the the occupants when that is an investment worth paying for.

        • +1 vote

          Cars should also come with deployable parachutes in case you plunge off a cliff as well.

          If it only happens once it's worth it.

          •  

            @CMH:

            with deployable parachutes

            Now that would be something different. Our next should have this.
            https://youtu.be/RnyhkBU1yaw

            • +2 votes

              @whooah1979: Also, I'm surprised nobody brought this up but 4wd don't magically make more traction.

              It's more accurate to say they can spread power more evenly to use available traction.

              The difference is that in an emergency procedure (serving\braking as opposed to being stuck in the mud) a 4wd is no safer than a 2wd.

              Going round a bend and losing traction? 4wd isn't going to save you.
              Kangaroo popped outta nowhere?
              4wd isn't going to save you.
              Raining and losing traction going round a roundabout?
              4wd isn't going to save you.

              By and large the only times you want a 4wd has to do with being on the accelerator. If the scenario is calling for brakes or steering (without acceleration) 4wd is no advantage at all.

              • +1 vote

                @CMH: Quite possibly AWD is going to make it worse when you do get into trouble. When I has an awd it was possible to go a lot faster in the wet, particularly around roundabouts etc. losing traction then puts you into more trouble as physics takes over when you lose control at a higher speed.

                • +1 vote

                  @Euphemistic: isn't the point of stability control and other computer aided assists there to stop this from happening?

                  i can't imagine why car companies spend millions on R&D when they could just say to customers - nope, we've done nothing to further the safety of this car because physics will take over anyway.

                  •  

                    @DisabledUser254352: @ b0rat: You're missing the point (like some of your other replies in this topic).

                    Besides, you cannot override the fundamental laws of physics. You can only override human error and stupidity.

                    Stability control helps cut power to wheels that have no traction. Doesn't help you brake, doesn't increase traction. Helps when the idiot behind the wheel thinks "Moar p0wah" will get them out of hitting the tree.

                    Most other computer assists help again with driver error: AEB, lane departure, blind spot monitoring, ABS, etc etc.

                    Those that help minimise physics like crumple zones, only help to an extent. Hitting a tree fast enough and nothing will help.

                    •  

                      @CMH:

                      Stability control helps cut power to wheels that have no traction. Doesn't help you brake, doesn't increase traction.

                      Traction control is what cuts power to the wheels, stability control is what can apply brakes to individual wheels to correct a slide.

                    • +1 vote

                      @CMH: i'm not missing the point i think you are just hell bent on shitting on SUVs you don't seem to realise that they have their purpose for a certain demographic and full blown 4wd's have theirs.

                      unfortunately there's a lot of arrogance in the 4wd'ing world and it's very much offputting.

                      your comments equally apply to high power 4wd's as well as suburban AWD's as well as 2wd's.

                      feel free to point out where i'm missing the point in my other replies because i'm not, i'm just tired of reading know-it-all comments about obvious 4wd enthusiasts that want to keep their precious little car club exclusive to those that go places others seemingly can't when there are many well groomed and maintained tracks that are just as suitable on an AWD, as is beach driving.

                      •  

                        @DisabledUser254352: Every type of vehicle has its use case.

                        And for OP, who resides in an extra-urban area, not planning to go offroads or needing the space or anything SUVs/4wd use-cases are.

                        And while I did contribute against 4wd somewhere here, again it's in regards to OP's case. Why spend up for something you don't plan to do but "think you might"?

                        If that's the case ANY vehicle will fit the bill. Buy a Mack; you might need to move to Perth and all your belongings can only fit into a 40ft container.

                        • +1 vote

                          @CMH: i would argue that we don't even really need cars. they're just luxury items.

                          we have legs. hell we don't even really need shoes! it's all luxury.

                          •  

                            @DisabledUser254352: Speaking about that I just bought an electric scooter and that has now taken over all trips below 10km if I'm alone.

                            Saves on wear and tear on the car. Not to mention petrol too.

                            •  

                              @CMH: should've just bought a bicycle. increase your fitness and reduce the waistline at the same time. lower maintenance too. it's quicker door to door for me to get into the city than it is with the car.

                              that said, the problem with having a new car is you actually need to drive it to keep it running smoothly. and you're paying rego costs, insurance and servicing so you might as well use it. i just wish we could pay per km instead of a lump sum based on no. of cylinders.

                              •  

                                @DisabledUser254352: Storage is an issue. Bikes require a lot more space and in an apartment with no bike storage means bikes are a no-go.

                                Car still required for work so it'll get it's fair share of use. Just less low-distance use which is the worst sort of use for a car.

                                As for paying per-km, it will need to factor a vehicle's weight as road wear and tear is worse for heavier vehicles. Either way would be good for people who don't use their cars much, but I'd hate to be the guy who can't afford to live close to the city or public transport.

                                • +1 vote

                                  @CMH: dunno, seen them hang up on the wall just fine. steadyrack is good for having many bikes. but yes apartments that don't allow bikes is ridiculous. they don't drip oil and are in reality no worse than walking inside with shoes on.

                                  long distances for cars are fine, and those that are physically unable to ride for whatever reason. amazing how many single occupant vehicles in traffic jams everyday and how many of them could ride the 10-15km just fine. then again, the lack of truly safe infrastructure is a problem.

                                  the guy that lives far from work or civilisation often has significantly worse mental health than those that do. the car is often their highest priority in life.

                                  as a population we tend to spread out and not up, not sure it's always the best thing to do…

      • +1 vote

        We lost traction once many years ago in wet conditions and nearly ended up on the other side of a pedestrian island. The back wheels spun out of control for a fraction of a second causing the rear to drift sideways. The traction control kicked in and we were able to regain control and straighten the vehicle.

        We don't mind the extra tco if it only saves us once when it really counts.

        •  

          Driving a rear wheel drive vehicle, especially utes, knowing how to drive firstly prevents the slide and secondly allows you to correct it. True though traction control can help, but it’s no substitute for vehicle control - race car drivers don’t use traction control.

          • +1 vote

            @Euphemistic: I drive a 350z and it's RWD. Haven't been driving it in the recent rain though as it tends to slide out heaps in the wet. My tyres look okay so maybe user error but the roundabout near me (one of the places I slid out) has put up a bunch of signs warning about it being slippery.

            I think when it rains and there is oil coming to the surface of the road you should avoid driving a RWD vehicle due to where the power delivery goes.

            AWD would definitely be a great feature to have in a sportscar, hope to one day own a GTR.

            • +2 votes

              @Agret: You need to drive to conditions and that includes the vehicle you are driving. Sliding out in a RWD means you are putting the power down too much.

              And for the love of all that is holy if you are going to aim for a gtr learn to drive first, including what to do when things go wrong.

              •  

                @Euphemistic: But GTRs drive themselves, just like evos. All hail Atezza system

              •  

                @Euphemistic:

                learn to drive first, including what to do when things go wrong.

                Good idea, in principle…. Realistically though, how do you (legally) do this ?
                I know that many people practice losing control/traction on public roads (illegally of course) . Some claim they did it is a 'safe' way, ie. On quiet road they practiced sliding out a bit on roundabouts etc. But even on a quiet road or quiet time of day, that doesn't totally remove the danger to other motorists and certainly doesn't remove the danger to yourself and your passengers.
                I know there are defensive driving courses (very expensive I think) and maybe there is somewhere you can pay to drive on a slippery private road/track (I've heard that in Finland, drivers must do hours on s slippery road as part of licence requirements).
                Realistically and practically though, how is everyone supposed to learn (and practice) how to drive "when things go wrong" , without breaking the law.
                Not saying you're a hoon, but in my experience many former and current hoons/dangerous-drivers will tell you bragging how good a driver they are, and maybe they are good at controlling a vehicle when it slides out, but they have become good at this through dangerous driving endangering their lives and others. I know an ex-bathurst race car driver (amateur round) who crashed his car many times on public roads, and this is how he learnt. He had a job in mines that paid very well and friends that would fix at discount rates, so he would go round turn too fast, crash, get it fixed, then go round same corner again fast (but do something different). IMO he can be an excellent driver now, especially when the car slides out, but he learnt by hooning around in his younger days.
                I would really like to learn and practice defensive driving and be more competent when things go wrong and car slides out etc, but I cannot afford expensive driving courses and I choose not to do it illegally on public roads. If there is another option, please let me know ?

                •  

                  @DisabledUser271064: You’ve got a good point. We train people to drive by getting them to stay between the lines, stop at the lights and do a reverse park. This is why our drivers are so poor. Here is no true car handling taught and so we have to rely on driver aids provided by the manufacturer.

                  Yes, I’m a hoon. Somewhat reformed, but that’s how I learnt where the limits are in cars, by crossing the line and sliding and bumping into stuff. Fortunately I didn’t have any serious crashes.

                  Get a 4wd and take it off road, you’ll learn some good car control there, and mostly legally. Other than that we need much better driver training - somehow.

            •  

              @Agret: When you say 'look ok' do you mean they look like the cheapest tyres available in that size?

              If so, I suggest that's your main problem, and either way you need to be much more gentle until you upgrade

    •  

      So buy a Subaru then.

  • +2 votes

    Skoda Octavia. We're done here.

    •  

      But but… VW

    •  

      The wagon version though :)

  • +2 votes

    You can get a Suzuki Vitara turbo for like 28k, honestly why would you get a sedan

    •  

      Can also get low mileage Subaru Forester XT for under 20k

    •  

      +1…Suzukis are great value!

  •  

    Look out on the street. How many sedans do you see.
    Maybe 1 in 10.
    The reason hatchbacks are more convenient.
    Suv are more convenient.
    Wagons are more convenient. I guess everyone decided wagons were ugly. Lower resale value.
    Hatchbacks and suv are the most popular car now. Why?

  • -2 votes

    look at meeeeeee i drive a bmw x5 im richer than youuuu

  •  

    Do you need to pick up a 65” tv from jb hifi ?

    •  

      definitely SUV then!

  •  

    I will get this.
    https://www.carsales.com.au/dealer/details/Volkswagen-Passat...

    I am based in Brisbane and I am not the seller.

    • +2 votes

      It looks clean, but anyone thinking of buying it should think twice. VW aren't known for their reliability after the manufacture warranty expires.

    •  

      Because VW has been so honest in regard to gas mileage and performance. LOL.

  •  

    buy a mazda and cross the simpson desert
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hgKQ-3fBXNE

  •  

    It's fascinating to see so many misconceptions about automotive technology. It explains a lot about the way car sales have gone in the last 2 decades, and about consumer gullibility.

  •  

    Only you would be able to answer this… if you are spirited driver then SUV is out the door….we have both cars in the garage and i never take SUV anywhere except long holiday trips. (My wife drives it) I prefer driving to sailing…and pick my golf all the time.

    • +1 vote

      if you are spirited driver then SUV is out the door

      If you like cornering with a high performance vehicle, then you try doing it with a 2.5t SUV. Finding the sweet spot between a sharp turn and not rolling over should get the adrenaline flowing.

      • -1 vote

        honestly if you want to go looking for that 'sweet spot' i hope you die in a rollover.

        drive safely and reasonably. not like a wannabe formula 1 driver because you're that much of a loser you have nothing else in your life to give you a thrill.

        •  

          Try Sydney to Wollongong along the coast on a weekend. There're plenty of law-abiding riders and motorists driving at the speed limit looking for a rush.

          • -1 vote

            @whooah1979: yep and they deserve to die

            • +1 vote

              @DisabledUser254352: They pay their rego just like anyone else and aren't committing any offences. Saying that they should die because they enjoy a drive or ride is offensive.

              •  

                @whooah1979: oops i misread your post, i thought you said above the speed limit.

                the rego argument is irrelevant. not all vehicles need to pay rego to enjoy the roads.

                that said, most speed limits in some roads are too high for the conditions and many exceed those limits easily in high powered vehicles oblivious to those that might be in a slower vehicle around a blind corner. those are the ones i like to see dead on the road.

                if you get a rush from doing 110 on the highway then by all means go nuts.

  •  

    Here’s the thing. To make the right decision here, the objective approach would be to do some basic decision analysis.

    Firstly list all the factors that are important to YOU, as many as you need and score them based on importance 0-10. Things like fuel economy, purchase cost, 3yr cost (insurance, servicing) , warranty, style, room, comfort, safety features, stereo, 4wd, age, kms on the clock…(fuel economy may be 9/10). It’s ok to have the same importance score for two factors, it’s not strange to have fuel economy to be equally important as say style… one thing to avoid doing will be having factors that overlap. note how I excluded fuel costs from the three year costs, I have this detail captured by fuel economy- this is important to not give any factor an unfair advantage.

    Get 5+ (The more the more interesting the activity) models/ cars that you are considering and list them left to right creating a matrix with your factors. Rate each factor of each car out of 10. (Car A fuel economy may be 5/10)…

    Once you’ve filled out your whole matrix, Multiply each score by the weighting of each factor so you have a weighted score for each factor for all cars. (Car As fuel economy weighted score becomes 45)

    Finally add up all the weighted scores for each car… highest score, objectively should be the best decision for you.

    You can now do this with all the important decisions in your life.

    • -1 vote

      or just buy whatever the f**k you want and be happy

      • +1 vote

        I would agree and personally believe this, I work too hard to not enjoy life.

        Evidently though, OP doesn’t know what they want.

        •  

          which is why they came here to ask for advice and instead got a whole bunch of comments practically calling him in idiot (and anyone else that disagrees) for even considering a different type of vehicle that might not be totally suitable to the majority of intended usage.

          OP should probably just go out and test drive some cars. buying brand new is always going to be better than 2nd hand because of warranty, enjoyment of owning a NEW car that no-one else has had, and not buying into someone elses problems.

          i would recommend a hyundai elantra or something and have change left over.

          negotiate for 10% off and just walk out if they won't budge. don't get anything from the ming mole (tinting etc. is all cheaper done elsewhere)

          buying a new car is an atrocious experience. you really need to contain your excitement otherwise they will feed off of that to get you to pay more than someone else has before you.

          •  

            @DisabledUser254352:

            buying brand new is always going to be better than 2nd hand because of warranty, enjoyment of owning a NEW car that no-one else has had.

            So if us get more enjoyment from other things the leftover cash buys that a second hand vehicle will save, especially once the new car smell wears off.

            •  

              @Euphemistic: once the new car smell wears off vs buying 2nd hand car before next major service the other problems start to pop up - new shocks, clutch, battery, brake pads, timing belt (some cars) etc. at least with a new car you get at least 80k+ of trouble free driving*

              *lemons exempt

  •  

    The only thing good about commuter SUV is the ride height. Getting in the seat requires no effort, relaxed commanding seating position and being able to mount kerbs no problem (massive tyre walls saves your rims if the Mrs can't park).

    It's common to think you'd need 4wd on an suv. I took my escape off roading before, (profanity) up my suspension and bushings… never again. Just rent a car and you can actually bash the hell out of it.

    A hatch like a golf or cerato would be good for a kid already. If you need more space then wagon. Mondeo or Octavia would be your best bet.

    •  

      you forgot comfort over potholes/cracks etc. on asphalt roads when compared to a sedan, oh and more boot space, higher view of lower obstacles on the road, and certain types of crashes where the height of your vehicle has an advantage.

      if you buggered up your suspension and bushings you were probably going way too damn fast for the conditions.

      •  

        Any car with relaxed damper and high profile tyres would give a comfortable ride. Most suvs I see on the road have massive rims on it anyway.

        Boot space isn't that much bigger since all the space is vertical, how often do you stack groceries so high in a boot of a car.

        These soccer mum's who drive suvs stay within a habitat of 60kph. Any 5 star rated car is fine for them. It just add unnecessary weight which adds braking distance and a higher centre of gravity for easy tip overs

        •  

          exactly why i don't have massive rims. i suppose you can change your shocks at anytime to aftermarket as i have done and noticed zero difference on a sedan. most sedans can't run softer dampeners because of the lower ride height.

          vertical boot space (and width) has been much different for me. fitting multiple bikes stacked on top of each other can't be done in a sedan. i've had several boxes that won't fit in any of my sedans that comfortably fit in the SUV, and then there's fishing gear, fridge, chairs etc.

          these soccer mums have kids and groceries to lug around. the cabin space is useful in many scenarios as is the boot space.

          here we go again with the tipovers. lol. still haven't seen a dashcam of a soccer mom cornering like an f1 driver tipping over her SUV in a scenario that even a sedan would probably tip over (usually something triggers it - like hitting a kerb for example).

  •  

    Might I suggest Hyundai Elantra or the KIA Cerato sedans. Especially with Kia you get more bang for the buck and you can probably buy new in your budget.
    KIA always has great driveaway pricing.
    For the SUV I would suggest going with a used Hyundai Tucson (3-4 years old).
    Generally, the Japanese or Korean cars are great with reliability and maintenance.
    Apart from this, Holden has some great deals too so I would also look at their range for some great deals.

  •  

    I would buy this if you are in Brisbane.
    Check out this Holden Equinox.
    https://www.carsales.com.au/cars/details/2018-Holden-Equinox...
    It comes with a 7-year warranty and 7-year roadside assistance.
    Has good fuel economy as it is a 1.5L turbo.

    You can safely subtract $1000 from the ad price.

    So for $23k you got a nearly new car with 7- year warranty and RA.

    Yes, this may be not the best car on the market but for 23k you can't go wrong.

    Resale might be a nightmare though.

  •  

    if you or any of your passengers are overweight, SUVs are easier to get in and out of

  •  

    I'm sure it's been said in the previous 3 pages somewhere, but having a kid means car seat/s, pram, nappy bags, etc.

    Coming from a sedan before the family landed, I'll just say unless you want to comprimise on all of the above, or you find a massive boot that can take all of that and all the missus shopping at the same time, then an SUV is the family option.

  •  

    I almost passed out when I saw the poll results. I though everyone was in love with SUVs. SUVs are a middle class status symbol; 95% of the people driving them could get by with a smaller car, but choose SUVs so they can look down upon the poor.

    •  

      yeah not always the case.

  •  

    There's lot of hate for 4WD here, Ive had all sorts of cars (personal favourite was my battered VY 2003, ridiculously reliable and quick car), but anyway, I do 5-6K kms a week in a rough kenworth and currently dismount into a rough as (profanity) rodeo, I "need" the bigger vehicle for that two or three times a year we load up and go away camping.

    Sure, most of the driving is on bitumen, and suburban, but I want a vehicle that's versatile enough to do what I want it to, as and when required. We could squeeze all the shit into a sedan and go away, but that's not ideal, nor comfortable, why should one have to struggle to pack shit in and out just because people think we should be driving around in a prius. In fact last camping trip we took the Hyundai i30 and it was a complete pain the arse.

    Next purchase on the cards is a 5 or 6 year old Prado, I feel like some luxury is in order after driving a rough old bdouble around for 6 days.

  •  

    Mitsubishi ASX U CAN BUY AT AROUND $25000, once year service with extended warranty 7 years something. And it's gives me 12 km per litre travel cost too. Also 5 star rating for safety just interiors looks cheap. Also 7 seater you can buy at$29000.

  •  

    Why does Frodo and the Hobbits only drive coupes? Because sedans have 2 mordors.

  •  

    I assume this has been raised already, but I would be looking at a wagon

  • +3 votes

    The current Australian buying public has overwhelmingly rejected the sedan in favour of hatches and SUVs, thus an SUV will have better resale than a sedan at the other end, and will have a larger pool of potential buyers.

    They also lend themselves to being extra practical, with higher ground clearance (if only slight in some cases), practicality of a hatch at the back with proper folding seats, and higher drive position making them easier to get in and out of for many.

    Something to consider.

    •  

      It is a global trend. In US Ford will stop making any sedans altogether..

  •  

    Wonder why so many votes for sedan? I'm pretty sure suv is the best selling segment in the market these days no?

  • +1 vote

    Pretty sure hatchback would be winning if it was in the poll.

  •  

    This probably won't get read but as someone who owned a Camry and then bought a RAV4. I think I can chime in. My Rav is significantly better on fuel economy. I had a V6 Camry that used on average 10-11L but the RAV only uses 7 (2L cont various) which is absolutely fine for normal roads. Both are/were comfortable but slightly more in the Camry due to the wider seats. The main reason why I would say get the RAV is utility, it has a lot of space when you fold the seats down. Excellent for bringing home big purchases, moving stuff around. That for me makes me not regret the purchase, because really driving around normally it is a car that gets me around.

  • +1 vote

    Might have been talked about already. But get the kids first then get a new car. You can save a bit more, car will probably have better safety/entertainment features by then.

  •  

    I used to be very much on the anti-SUV bandwagon, especially when I see people go from having a corolla or something practical to a prado or landcruiser as soon as they have a baby ect.

    Now i've had a kid (1 so far) I understand why they are popular, you have to fit in prams, shopping, luggage, toys, presents, portacots the lists go on and on. If you're leaning towards a SUV, disregard small altogether and they are hopelessly impractical and be wary that some medium SUVS don't utilise the space very well. Most popular medium sized SUVs can carry a lot, even with all the seats up which I think makes them more attractive than a sedan due to their height, but I still think hatchbacks are the best overall. At least with me I got a hatchback and it's large enough for 2 kids but would struggle with 3.

  •  

    Low ground clearance cars are definitely not fun to drive on quite a few of the dirt roads I come across.

    •  

      Yeah I have a 350Z at stock height I already find it to be too low for the majority of dirt. You end up collecting a lot of it with the rear bumper and for a lot of dirt driveways I have to just park in the street somewhere and walk down the very long driveway or call the person who lives there to come pick me up from their driveway haha

      •  

        If you need to drive on dirt a car with low clearance really shouldn't be on your shortlist…

        Should really buy a car suited to your needs.

        I know a guy who bought a sports coupe, lowered it, and found he couldn't reverse out his steep driveway.

        He liked his car more than his house so he moved.

        Should really buy a car suited to your needs… Or deal with the consequences :p

  • +1 vote

    I think the more important question is how you plan to have kids within 2-3 years while currently being single. Lol

    • +1 vote

      Tinder.

  •  

    Why choose between sedan and suv. the suv is the size of a wagon but with 4wd. If you want the size but don't need the 4wd capability, why not get a wagon?

  •  

    Thank you everyone for your response. I have decided to go with a SUV as i love the high driving heights experience after a few test drives.
    I decided to go with nissan X trail ST. What does everyone think, best price i get so far is 27500$ drive away 2018 brand new.

    • +1 vote

      We have one for 3.5 yeard now and it is very good car. We opted for 6 year manufacturers warranty for extra $1000. Just go for 2.5 L engine.
      Fuel consumption is amazing compared to our 2.4l honda that we had before that.

  •  

    audi Q3. ftw.