There is a massive debate as to whether 4x4 motors really are the best cars out there to be driving. Currently, 4x4 motors are extremely popular; with the newer fresher and tempting designs, it is certainly not difficult to understand why they're all the rage. Only a few years ago 4x4's were solely an agricultural buy; today however, they have become the ultimate masterpiece to drive on our UK roads.
Valuing 4x4 motors
Even if you have never bought a 4x4, I'm sure you've certainly thought about it.
So, what actually puts people off from buying them? Well, like everything, you either love them or you hate them, so let's go ahead and define this 4x4 debate.
For instance, we image all 4x4 vehicles to be huge, this alone is enough to put most people off from even contemplating one. As a result of some 4x4's grandeur, they are the number-one cause of road rage and parking disruptions. Some of these motors cost the earth to run and you'll more than likely be refuelling a couple of times a week. Parts can be very expensive and they are renowned for reliability issues. Furthermore, if you have ever bought an older model, you will know that they are well known for rusting. They are also quite commonly given the nickname 'Chelsea Tractor'.
So, it stands to reason why 4x4 motors evade our minds rather quickly. However, not all 4x4's are the same, particularly today. Choose your 4x4 wisely and you will find none of the above will apply.
Currently 4x4 motors are practical family vehicles and are becoming more popular than any MPV. Most are not huge, but still offer enormous amounts of space for the larger family. These cars are designed to take on any winter storm and are equally efficient in the summer. When comparing most 4x4's up to the year 2000, they are now more economic and greener, particularly the diesel models.
Of course, 4x4 motors offer more than dual purpose driving; you have the choice to drive off-road and not forgetting city and motorway driving is pretty good too. However, the more inferior 4x4's built for extreme weather and hilly terrain can in fact be more costly to buy and drive.
At the end of the day, when choosing a 4x4 it's all about taste and what would best suit your purpose. Some of these workhorse models offer amazing new technology to detect the terrain type. This automation is more than capable of adjusting the suspension, engine and transmission settings. At the touch of a button, these cars can cope with any type of terrain they drive on.
Furthermore, you can find other likeability factors for today's 4x4 motors. These are the high seating positions, which improve visibility and because of their robustness, they are often safer to drive.
Newer 4x4 motors are now not as thirsty as older models. You can expect to get 30 to 60 mpg. Another reason why people buy these cars is because of their pulling power. Since most 4x4's weigh over two tonnes, they are easily capable of pulling large objects such as caravans. Also, say you park your caravan on the grass and encounter some of Britain's nice wet holiday weather, the last thing you want to do is tow it away with a 2WD vehicle. You may find yourself slipping everywhere and eventually getting stuck.
Due to the fall in the economy, it has been cheaper to take holidays in the UK. As a result of this, over the last few years there has been a rise in caravan sales. This could also be another reason for the increase in 4x4 sales, although there is no direct statistic to prove it.
Most economical 4x4 motors
There are softer 4x4's which look like a 4x4 but in fact are a 4x2. These models are the Nissan Qashqai, Skoda Yeti and Hyundai ix35.
Skoda Yeti Greenline II is the best buy to date and claims to produce 61.4 mpg with 199g/km emissions and, wait for it, only £30 road tax per annum!
Here's a list of more 4x4 vehicles found commonly on our UK roads.
Chevrolet Captiva (offers 7 seats)
BMW X5 (offers 7 seats)
Citroen C-Crosser (offers 7 seats)
Hyundai Santa Fe (offers 7 seats)
Kia Sorento (offers 7 seats)
Audi Q7 (offers 7 seats)
Mercedes-Benz GL (offers 7 seats)
Range Rover Evoque
Land Rover Discovery 4
Toyota Land Cruiser