You don’t need to spend more than £30k to get a great SUV
Across Europe, car buyers are flocking to SUVs. We can’t get enough of them and, with a winning combination of hatchback-like drive, 4×4 styling and seating position plus practicality approaching MPV levels, it’s not hard to see why. Proving even a budget no more than £30,000 is more than enough, here we’ve picked 10 of the best affordable SUVs of all shapes and sizes.
10. Suzuki Vitara 1.6 SZ-T
How much? £17,000
A superb budget SUV, the Vitara drives nicely, is confident on the road and comfortable on the move. There’s both loads of space and plenty of equipment inside, meaning it’s only high CO2 emissions from this 1.6-litre petrol engine that let it down.
9. Renault Kadjar 1.5 dCi 110 Dynamique Nav
How much? £23,225
Basing the Kadjar on the Nissan Qashqai has proven a winning move for Renault. It’s spacious, drives well and prices that undercut the award-winning Nissan are a real bonus. Pity the pay-off for this is a cheaper feel and meaner level of standard equipment.
8. Audi Q2 1.4 TFSI Sport
How much? £24,560
Audi makes lots of SUVs and the Q2 is its smallest yet. Not that it feels cheap and cheerful as a result; the interior is superb, with the refinement and comfort to match. It’s not the biggest or cheapest of small SUVs, but it’s still hugely desirable.
7. Mazda CX-5 2.2 Skyactiv-D SE-L Nav
How much? £25,295
The new CX-5 polishes an already impressive mid-size Mazda SUV. It looks good, has a classier interior and remains one of the best cars in its class to drive – and this roomy five-seater is also now more comfortable than before.
6. BMW X1 sDrive 18d SE
How much? £27,990
The latest X1 is leaps and bounds ahead of its ugly predecessor. It feels posh and is enjoyable to drive, even in basic two-wheel drive form with the cheapest sDrive18d diesel engine. SE trim is more than well-equipped enough as well.
5. Volkswagen Tiguan 2.0 TDI 150 SE Nav
How much? £28,825
Volkswagen’s new Tiguan is a brilliant family all-rounder. It’s even smarter and classier than the first one, and more like a premium car to drive. Go for the mid-range SE Nav with a 2.0 TDI diesel engine, and you’ve got a cracking sub-£30k SUV all-rounder.
4. Nissan Qashqai 1.5 dCi N-Connecta
How much? £24,655
The perennially popular Nissan Qashqai shows no signs of tiring just yet. There’s a facelifted version on the way soon, but even this pre-revisions model remains one of the best you can buy. It’s a family-friendly SUV almost without fault.
3. Peugeot 3008 1.2 PureTech Allure
How much? £23,755
Peugeot’s fantastic new 3008 is more SUV than the crossover-MPV original, and all the better for it. Styling is bold, the classy interior is a triumph and although it’s not the most dynamic of machines, ride quality makes up for it.
2. Skoda Kodiaq 2.0 TDI SE 7 Seat
How much? £28,300
Looking for the best seven-seat SUV for under £30,000? Look no further. The Skoda Kodiaq is brilliant, with space, comfort and smart-looking status by the bucketload. Just watch the options, as it’s easy to nudge the price well over £30k…
1. Seat Ateca 1.4 EcoTSI 150 SE
How much? £21,710
The current real-world SUV champ is the magnificent Seat Ateca. It’s a grade-A bargain, a fantastic machine that’s virtually without fault. It’s a car so good, it’s hard to believe it costs so little: it’s easily the best SUV you can buy for less than £30k.