Ideal Vehicles for a Road Trip
Going on a road trip? Or just thinking about one? Either way, the type of vehicle makes a massive impact as you’ll be spending a lot of time in it. So what should you look for in ideal vehicles for a road trip?
We go over some top choices…
But first, what makes a vehicle ‘ideal’ for a road trip? In Australia, the checklist is pretty long:
Safety: High speed and unfamiliar roads, we want something with top safety features.
Fuel economy: A big expense on the road and outback petrol can get pretty expensive.
Comfort: Long hours and constant road noise, we want to enjoy it.
Towing ability: Many people tow caravans.
Off-road ability: Exploring Australia off the beaten track is part of the fun.
Price: We have to be able to buy it.
Prices From: $44,850 (2WD version) / $48,850 (AWD version)
The Kluger has been a family favourite for years. Practicality, durability, reliability – three words that owners often use when describing their Klugers. 7-seat, AWD options are preferred for long road trips as you’ll be able to take the whole family and explore off-road. With all the second and third row seats folded down, you’ll have a massive 1872 litres of boot space so the ‘Klue’ makes for a good couples’ tourer too. This is all backed up by the mechanic-friendly 3.5L V6, solid safety and high quality infotainment.
Prices From: $47,990
Honda has pushed the Accord into the semi-luxury, Camry-contending space in recent years. Prices aren’t inline with the Camry as the Accord is $9-20k more depending on the model. The Accord is a comfortable passenger sedan with excellent fuel economy. The hybrid version is rated at 4.3L / 100 KM (less than half that of the Kluger). Further brags from the Accord are tech and ride quality – which most would say go hand-in-hand. A 10-speaker sound system, Apple CarPlay / Android Auto and fully-loaded driver assist technology with a quiet and comfortable suspension setup. Great for road trips – on sealed highways.
Jeep Grand Cherokee
Prices From: $47,500
A common site on Australian highways and in Australian caravan parks, the Grand Cherokee is a quality choice for long road trips. Looks-wise, it always turns heads with its aggressive styling, especially the front lights and grille. Pegged as an off-road specialist, drivers are able to haul the family on highways and explore (most) off-road terrain. The interior has less hard plastic surfaces than other vehicles so mud, wet sand and spilled food and drinks are not friends. The interior is still a nice place to be, especially for adult passengers.
Prices From: $50,830
Mazda’s super-popular CX-5 is a reigning champ in Australia’s mid-size SUV market. Recent models are equipped with off-road modes in the AWD versions so drivers can explore some unsealed roads. We say ‘some’ because the CX-5 isn’t a fully-fledged off-roader – a plus for most as its versatility increases its appeal. Comfortable seating for 5, the interior is close-to-par with luxury SUVs way out of the CX-5 price range. Previous models did suffer from road noise issues – obviously not ideal for road trips, but these have been addressed and new CX-5s are an even nicer place to be.
Tesla Model X
Prices From: $157,400
“But what about fuel stops?” Yep, we know these questions will arise. The Model X is better suited for road trips that go via populated centres, The Great Ocean Road or Melbourne to Sydney for example. Having said that, Tesla pitches the Model X’s range at over 560km and a braked towing capacity of 2250kg. The big reasons as to why the Model X makes the list is safety and running costs. It’s ANCAP rating is 5 stars with a huge 98% adult occupant protection score. Looking purely at fuel, $0.00 is a nice cost, however, you’ll of course need to make sure you’re able to charge it at night.
Dream Car: Lamborghini Urus
Prices From: $390,000
The mega-dollar Uras may be a surprise on this list. As a ‘dream car’, the Urus is in SUV-supercar territory. A decade ago, it may have been unthinkable for Lambo’ to make an SUV but did you know that more than 75% of Porsche’s business comes from their SUVs? Bear in mind, Lamborghini and Porsche are both part of the VW group. The twin-turbo V8 makes a beastly 478kw and 0-100kph in 3.6 seconds – amazing for an SUV. On road trips, the Urus positions passengers quite low compared to the traditionally high seating SUVs which gives it a more sporty feel. As per the price range, the interior obviously hasn’t been skimped on. You’ll find high quality leather and touch screens throughout.
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