What’s the best small SUV in Australia?

SUVs are a popular option for Aussie motorists, with almost 50% of new car sales over the past year falling within the SUV category, according to the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI). While a popular choice of wheels, for anyone who has stepped foot onto a car yard to look at SUVs will know that there’s no shortage of brands, models and categories to consider, making the process of buying a new car somewhat more daunting than expected.

For those who have narrowed down their preferred choice to the small SUV range, there’s still plenty of consider, with plenty of manufacturers getting behind the compact versions. If you’re got your heart set on a small SUV, or you simply want to know what small SUVs are available in Australia, read on to find out more in this Canstar Blue article.

Small SUVs available in Australia

If you’re after a small or compact SUV, here are the models available in Australia:

Mazda CX-30 Small SUV

  • Audi SQ2
  • Audi Q3 & Q3 Sportback
  • Audi RS Q3 & RS Q3 Sportback
  • BMW X1
  • BMW X2
  • Citroen C3
  • Ford Puma
  • Ford Escape
  • Honda HR-V
  • Hyundai Kona
  • Hyundai Venue
  • Jaguar E-Pace
  • Jeep Compass
  • Kia Seltos
  • Kia Stonic
  • Lexus UX
  • Mazda CX-3
  • Mazda CX-30
  • Mazda MX-30
  • Mercedes GLA 35
  • Mercedes GLA 45
  • MG ZS
  • Mini Countryman
  • Mitsubishi ASX
  • Nissan Juke
  • Nissan Qashqai
  • Peugeot 2008
  • Renault Captur
  • Skoda Kamiq
  • Subaru XV
  • Suzuki Ignis
  • Suzuki S-Cross
  • Toyota C-HR
  • Toyota Yaris Cross
  • Volkswagen T-Cross
  • Volkswagen T-Roc
  • Volvo XC40

Audi small SUVs

Audi SQ2

Luxury German brand Audi offers a number of models under the small SUV banner, including the SQ2, Q3 and RS Q3, giving motorists a few options to choose from. The SQ2 features a 221kW output alongside a 4-cylinder turbo-charged petrol engine, with 19inch alloy wheels and Audi’s S Suspension to keep the horses under the hood under control. The Q3 is available as a 35 or 40 TFSI S tronic, with an S-line variant available to the 40 TFSI model, giving those after a luxury compact SUV a number of options. The Q3 also features 18 or 19nch alloys, adaptive LED headlights, a Virtual Cockpit navigation system with touchscreen infotainment unit, alongside multiple styling kits for your preferred aesthetic.

The final compact SUV in the Audi lineup is the RS Q3, the sports variety of the luxury Q3. Offering 294kW of engine power, the RS Q3 comes with 21inch alloy wheels, LED matrix headlights, rear spoiler and a panoramic glass sunroof as an additional extra for those looking for style and comfort.

  • Audi’s range of compact SUVs costs between $45,000 and over $100,000 depending on the dealership, car model, and any extras you add.

BMW small SUVs

BMW X2

BMW’s range of small or compact SUVs include the X1 and X2 models, with the X1 available as a petrol or diesel engine model, while the X2 is only available as a petrol model. The BMW X1 is available in three sDrive models – the 18i, 18d and 20d – with an engine output ranging from 103 to 140kW, with all models coming with 17inch wheels to keep you steady on the road. The X1 also features a 10.25inch Control Display, adaptive LED headlights and a Head-Up Display that projects information such as speed into your field of view to help with your time behind the wheel.

The BMW X2 is available as the Model M or Model M SportX, with a M Mesh Edition also offered if you’re looking to stand out from the crowd. The X2 is powered by a TwinPower Turbo 4-cylinder 2L engine, with BMW’s xDrive all-wheel drive system installed for smooth power distribution and improved traction. The X2 also includes active cruise control with Approach Control Warning and Driving Assistant Plus for improved safety and driver comfort.

  • BMW’s range of compact SUVs costs between $45,000 and $85,000 depending on the dealership, car model, and any extras you add to your purchase.

Citroen small SUVs

Citroen C3

Available as the base C3 model or as the C3 Aircross, Citroen’s entrant into the small SUV market measures in at under four metres in length, living up to the ‘small SUV’ tag. With side Airbumps that provide additional protection, the C3 also comes equipped with Advanced Comfort technology, such as wider seat bases for driver and passenger comfort, as well as multiple Driving Aids – including Park Assist and Driver Attention Warnings – to help keep you both safe and comfortable behind the wheel.

The C3 Aircross is slightly larger than the base C3 model, and comes with almost 1,300L of boot capacity due to its height. Similar to the C3, the Aircross features multiple Driving Aids, in addition to a dedicated storage space in the centre console to wirelessly charge your phone. The C3 Aircross also includes a Heads Up Display for driving comfort and safety, and features a 6speed transmission alongside the 110kW petrol engine.

  • The Citroen C3 starts from over $30,000, with the C3 Aircross available from around $38,000, although this will depend on the dealership and any extras you add.

Ford small SUVs

Ford Puma

Ford offers two models in the small SUV category – the Puma and the Escape. The Ford Puma is available as a base Puma model, as well as a ST-Line or ST-Line V, each coming with front wheel drive and a 1L petrol engine. The base Puma model includes an 8inch touchscreen infotainment unit, LED ambient lighting, LED daytime running lights, rear spoiler and 16inch wheels, with a 92kW engine output. The ST-Line features a 12inch digital cluster behind the steering wheel, metallic foot pedals, 17inch wheels and sports suspension, while the ST-Line V model includes wireless charging, a 10-speaker sound system, privacy glass, 18inch alloy wheels as well as smart keyless entry and push button start.

The Ford Escape is available in a ST-Line or Vignale model, with both AWD or FWD models available for both. Both feature a 12.3inch digital cluster, 8inch touchscreen infotainment unit, two USB ports, wireless charging and Heads Up Display, while the Vignale model comes with a panoramic roof, rear spoiler, side skirts and 19inch alloy wheels.

  • The Ford small SUV range starts from around $30,000, with some models costing around $50,000 depending on the dealership, car model and any extras you add.

Honda small SUVs

Honda HR-V

Featuring a 1.8L i-VTEC engine, the Honda HR-V is available as a VTi, VTi-S, VTi-LX and RS model, giving motorists plenty to choose from Honda’s only small SUV. The HR-V features Magic Seats to help you find the configuration you need, whether it’s for people or moving plenty of boxes, with most models also featuring daytime LED headlights, a 7inch infotainment unit, Brake Hold button for easy use as well as an engine output of 105kW.

The VTi includes City Brake Active System for additional safety, while the VTi-S includes push button start and 17inch alloys as additional features. The VTi-LX comes with an electronic panoramic sunroof, Advanced Driver Assist and dual zone climate control, while the RS comes with a sleek bodykit and 18inch alloy wheels for a sportier look and feel.

  • The Honda HR-V costs around $27,000 to $38,000, although the final price tag will depend on each individual dealership, which model you purchase and any extras you add.

Hyundai small SUVs

Hyundai Venue

Hyundai’s range of small SUVs includes the Kona and Venue, both of which are available in a number of models. The Kona is available as a base model, in addition to the Active, Elite, N Line or Highlander model, each coming with more features, and a larger price tag. The Kona Active features 17inch alloy wheels, electric heated mirrors as well as a rear privacy glass for additional comfort and convenience. The Elite model comes with smart key push button start, rain sensing wipers as well as Harman Kardon audio system, while the N Line offers a sportier drive, with 18inch alloys, rear diffuser, sports alloy pedals and multi-link rear suspension for improved handling and feel. The Kona Highlander is the most expensive option, and comes with LED headlights, a Heads Up Display as well as heated steering wheel and sunroof.

The Venue – Hyundai’s latest addition to its SUV range – comes as a base model, as well as a Venue Active and Venue Elite, each of which are powered by a 1.6L petrol MPi 2WD engine. The base Venue and Active models are available with either an automatic or manual transmission, while the Elite is only available as an automatic. The base Venue comes equipped with an 8inch infotainment unit, daytime running lights, roof rails and 15inch alloys, while the Venue Active features Bluetooth connectivity, rear parking sensors and 17inch alloy wheels. The Elite comes with LED rear combination lights, rear privacy glass, front USB outlets, push button start and a sunroof for equal parts comfort and convenience.

  • Hyundai small SUVs are priced from around $20,000 to upwards of $40,000 depending on the model, dealership and any additional extras added to the order.

Jaguar small SUVS

Jaguar E-Pace SUV

While more known for its luxury sedans, British manufacturer Jaguar has stepped into the compact SUV market with the E-Pace, which is available as a R-Dynamic or 300 Sport model. The R-Dynamic S base model includes LED headlights, keyless entry, 18inch alloy wheels, leather steering wheel, 3D Surround Camera and an engine output of 184kW, while the SE model features 19inch alloys, powered tailgate, interactive Driver Display, Traffic Sign Recognition and Adaptive Speed Limiter. The R-Dynamic HSE includes a 9speed auto transmission, 20inch alloy wheels, 16-way electric driver memory front seats for additional comfort and Meridian Sound System.

The Jaguar E-Pace also comes as a 300 Sport model, which features 20inch alloy wheels, illuminated metal treadplates, keyless entry, Interactive Driver Display, Heads-Up Display, 3D surround Camera, 9speed auto transmission, engine output of 221kW as well as an unbraked towing capacity of 750kg.

  • The Jaguar E-Pace costs between $65,000 and $90,000 depending on which model you select and any extras you select, as well as which dealership you purchase through.

Jeep small SUVs

Jeep Compass

The Jeep Compass – Jeep’s sole small SUV offering – is available in a variety of models, including the Night Eagle, Limited, S Limited and Trailhawk editions. The Night Eagle is a 4×2 model, coming equipped with 18inch alloy wheels, an 8.4inch touchscreen display, sat nav, six-speaker audio system, dual zone climate control, electric parking brake, roof rails and LED ambient interior lighting for equal parts comfort, safety and convenience.

The Limited, S Limited and Trailhawk all come equipped 4×4 capabilities, with the Compass Limited featuring heated front seats, adaptive cruise control, push button start, LED tail lights, ParkSense and a 7inch instrument cluster display behind the steering wheel. S Limited may suit those after a sports model, featuring 19inch alloys, dual-pane panoramic sunroof and exterior accents for a sleeker look, while the Trailhawk features a Rock Mode, off-road suspension and raised ride height to take you off the beaten path.

  • The Jeep Compass is available from around $35,000, with the top of the line models closer to $50,000, although the final price will depend on the dealership and any extras you add.

Kia small SUVs

Kia Seltos

Korean brand Kia offers two models within the small SUV market, the Kia Stonic and the Kia Seltos. The Stonic is available as an S model, Sport or GT-Line model, all of which are petrol-powered engines, capable of a 74kW output. The S model comes equipped with 15inch wheels, while the Sport and GT-Line come with 17inch alloy wheels, with all Stonic models featuring Anti-Lock Braking, Electronic Stability Control, Hill-Start Assist, reverse parking sensors and Forward Collision Warning, while the GT-Line additionally features Daytime Running Lights and LED fog lights.

The Kia Seltos, the latest addition to Kia’s SUV line-up, is available as an S, Sport, Sport+ or GT-Line, each with a variety of features available. With a four-cylinder engine, capable of putting out between 110kW to 130kW of power depending on the model, base models feature a 2WD transmission, while the Sport+ and GT-Line models come equipped with AWD and 7speed dual clutch transmission. Other base model features include a 3.5inch LCD instrument cluster, front USB charger, 16inch steel wheels and 8inch infotainment unit, with more features packed into the more expensive models.

  • Kia’s range of small SUVs are priced between $21,000 to around $35,000, depending on the dealership, which model you purchase, and any extras you add.

Lexus small SUVs

Lexus UX

Lexus’ entrant to the small SUV market, the UX, is available as both a petrol and hybrid model, with models including the UX 200 and UX 250h, with the 250h available as either a 2WD or AWD variant. The UX model comes as a Luxury, Sports Luxury, F Sport or Crafted Edition, each powered by a 2L petrol engine with direct fuel injection, capable of 126kW of output. The UX 200 Luxury model features a 7inch LCD multi-information display panel, heated front seats, 17inch alloy wheels and rear spoiler, while the Crafted Edition features a rear privacy glass, moon roof, 18inch alloy wheels, smart key card, wireless charger and alloy scuff plates for a more refined ride.

The Lexus UH 250h comes in a Luxury, Sports Luxury and F Sport model, each also powered by a 2L petrol engine with direct fuel injection, in addition to the Lexus Hybrid Drive. The Luxury model features 17inch alloy wheels, three driving modes – Normal, Eco and Sport – as well as Blind Spot Monitor, Parking Support Brake and privacy glass, while the F Sport includes an 8inch Multi Information Display Panel, Adaptive Variable Suspension and additional driving modes.

  • The Lexus UX is priced from around $45,000 to close to $70,000, depending on the model, dealership and any additional extras you choose.

Mazda small SUVs

Mazda CX-3

Offering arguably the largest range of small SUVs in Australia, Japanese brand Mazda offers motorists the CX-3, CX-30 and MX-30 to choose from, each with multiple models available in each line-up. The Mazda CX-3 has a line-up of the Neo Sport, Maxx Sport, Maxx Sport LE, S Touring, Akari and Akari LE, with the Neo Sport featuring a 2L, four-cylinder petrol engine, with both manual and auto transmission available. The top of the line Akari LE CX-3 model features 18inch alloy wheels, LED daytime running lights, sunroof, rain-sensing wipers, heated front seats and keyless entry.

The CX-30, one of the newest models to Mazda’s lineup, includes models such as the G20 Pure, G20 Evolve, G20 Touring, G20 Astina, G25 Touring, G25 Astina and X20 Astina, with the G20 range equipped with FWD, while the G25 and X20 range equipped with AWD. The CX-30 models are equipped with a SkyActiv -X M Hybrid engine, with 2L or 2.5L varieties available, with a maximum output of 139kW.

An electric model, the Mazda MX-30 SUV is expected to be available in Australia from August, 2021, with available models to include the G20E Evolve, G20E Touring and G20E Astina. All MX-30 models are expected to feature a 2L petrol FWD engine with automatic transmission, with additional features on the Astina model including a sunroof, heated front seats, 360-degree View Monitor, 12-speaker audio system and front cross traffic alert.

  • Mazda’s range of small SUVs starts from around $25,000 for a CX-3, with the CX-30 and MX-30 starting from closer to $33,000, although this depends on the dealership, model and any extras you add.

Mercedes small SUVs

Mercedes GLA 35

Luxury German brand Mercedes offers two entrants into the small SUV range, the GLA 35 and GLA 45. The GLA 35 comes equipped with a 2L turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine, capable of an output of 225kW, controlled by AWD and an 8speed dual-clutch auto transmission. It also comes equipped with two 10.25inch screens, one as a central infotainment unit, and the other behind the steering wheel as a digital cluster display. Other features include USB ports, electric tailgate and 435L of boot space.

The GLA 45 also features a 2L turbocharged engine, but produces 310kW of output, with Mercedes 4Matic+ AWD system in place to control the beast under the hood, and is available as a hatch or slightly bigger 45 S model for those after a bit more boot space. Other features include a twin-tailpipe exhaust system, spoiler, sports-inspired steering wheel and an optional AMG Real Performance Sound feature, which allows you to alter how much sound enters the cabin, ideal for those keen to hear the roar of the engine.

  • The Mercedes small SUV range will cost between $80,000 and $125,000 depending on the dealership, model and any extras you add to your vehicle of choice.

MG small SUVs

MG ZS

One of the most affordable small SUVs available in Australia, the MG ZS is available as a ZS Excite or the ZS Essence, with both models powered by FWD. The Excite model features a 1.5L petrol engine, producing 84kW of power, with a four-speed automatic transmission. Other features include Emergency Brake Assist, Hill Launch Assist, 8inch infotainment unit, 17inch alloy wheels as LED daytime running lights. The MG ZS Excite comes equipped with a 1L turbo petrol engine and 6speed automatic transmission, and includes similar features to the Essence, but includes features such as push button start and sat nav.

  • The MG ZS is available from over $21,000, with the most expensive models available from around $27,000, depending on the dealership, model and any extras added.

Mini small SUVs

Mini Countryman

Known primarily for its Mini Cooper, Mini have ventured into compact SUV territory with the Countryman, which is available in a number of models, including the Cooper Countryman, Cooper S Countryman and Hybrid Countryman. The base Countryman features 100kw of output from its TwinPower Turbo three-cylinder petrol engine, along with keyless engine start, Forward Collision Warning, reversing camera, Lane Departure Warning, sports seats and an 8.8inch sat nav system.

The Countryman S bumps up the power to 131kW of engine output, with the four-cylinder turbo engine matched with sports transmission and dual exhaust pipes, along with 18inch alloy wheels and leather upholstery. The Hybrid model has a 100kW of engine output, with the three-cylinder petrol engine working with an electric traction machine and 6speed auto transmission, along with plenty of features as seen on the Countryman base model.

  • The Mini Cooper Countryman costs between $44,000 and $60,000 depending on the model and any extras you add, as well as which dealership you visit.

Mitsubishi small SUVs

Mitsubishi ASX

One of Mitsubishi’s more popular models, the ASX is the Japanese brand’s only small SUV, but is available in multiple models, including the ASX ES, MR, LS, GSR and Exceed. The base ES model features a 2L petrol engine, 8inch touchscreen infotainment unit, Forward Collision Management, 18inch alloy wheels and Bluetooth connectivity for phone calls and audio streaming. The MR bumps up the features with one touch start system, rear parking sensors, LED fog lights and a black finish on the wheels and grille for those after a little more style.

The ASX LS includes privacy glass, roof rails and smart key entry in addition to the MR’s features, while the GSR bumps up the engine to a 2.4L model, with rear spoiler and microsuede seat trim for additional style and comfort. Those looking at the top of the line ASX model, the Exceed includes heated front seats, a nine-speaker sound system, LED mood lighting and a panoramic roof with retractable sunshade for driver and passenger comfort.

  • The Mitsubishi ASX is priced from around $23,000 to over $40,000 depending on the dealership, model and any extras you add.

Nissan small SUVs

Nissan Juke

Offering both the Juke and the Qashqai in the small and compact SUV market, Japanese brand Nissan offers a number of models within each line-up. The Juke – the smaller of the two – is available as an ST, ST+, ST-L, ST-L+ or Ti models, with the base Juke ST model including an 8inch touchscreen infotainment unit, 17inch alloy wheels, automatic LED headlights, Intelligent Emergency Braking and is powered by a 7speed auto transmission and three-cylinder petrol engine. Additional features on more expensive models include sat nav, heated front seats and Advanced Drive-Assist Display, while the top-of-the-line Ti model includes privacy glass, shark fin antenna, leather seat trim and larger wheels.

The Qashqai – formerly known as the Dualis – is available as a ST, ST+, ST-L, Ti and the Midnight Edition, with the base level ST including a rearview camera, Intelligent Emergency Braking, 17inch alloy wheels, 6speed transmission and engine output of 106kW. The ST+ features sat nav, privacy glass, heated door mirrors and Moving Object Detection, while the ST-L includes heated front seats, roof rails and 18inch alloy wheels. The Midnight Edition includes premium suede seats, illuminated kick plates and exclusive 19inch black alloy wheels, while the Ti features a panoramic glass roof, Intelligent Lane Intervention and leather accented seat trim for driver comfort and safety.

  • Nissan small SUVs are generally priced between $27,000 to $45,000, depending on the model, dealership and any extras you add to the vehicle.

Peugeot small SUVs

Peugeot 2008

The Peugeot 2008, the only small SUV from the French brand, is available in three models, including the 2008 Allure, 2008 GT and 2008 GT Sport, each of which are powered by a 1.2L PureTech petrol engine. The base Allure model features a 6speed automatic transmission, LED headlights, 7inch touchscreen infotainment unit, keyless start, 17inch alloy wheels as well as rear park sensors and active lane departure warnings for comfort and safety.

The 2008 GT adds to the Allure’s specs with a 10inch infotainment unit, wireless phone charging, 3D sat nav, bolstered profile seats, ambient lighting, aluminum pedals, active blind spot monitoring and rear privacy glass, while the 2008 GT Sport comes with additional driving modes, gearshift paddles, leather seats, 18inch alloy wheels and an 8speed auto transmission to handle the 114kW engine output.

  • The Peugeot 2008 is available from between $34,000 and $55,000, depending on the model, dealership and any extras you add to the vehicle.

Renault small SUVs

Renault Captur

With three models on offer – including the Life, Zen and Intens – the Renault Captur is the sole small SUV from the French brand, with each model powered by a 1.3L turbo EDC petrol engine. The Captur Life features front and rear parking sensors, rear view camera, LED headlights, 17inch alloy wheels, Lane Keep Assist, Traffic Sign Recognition and Electric Parking Brake, while the Captur Zen includes wireless phone charging, rain-sensing windscreen wipers, Blind Spot Warning and smart keycard entry. The Captur Intens features heated front seats, leather upholstery, 360-degree camera and a 9.3inch touchscreen infotainment unit for additional comfort and safety.

  • The Renault Captur is available from $28,000 to $45,000, depending on the model, dealership you purchase from and any additional extras you add to your vehicle order.

Skoda small SUVs

Skoda Kamiq

Skoda’s sole small SUV, the Kamiq, is currently available in either the Monte Carlo or Limited Edition model, with the Monte Carlo SUV coming equipped with a 110kW 1.5L petrol engine. Additional features also include LED headlights, 18inch alloy wheels, Sport Chassis and sports seats, in addition to a sunroof for equal parts comfort and exhilaration. The Limited Edition Kamiq features similar inclusions to the Monte Carlo, as well as Apple CarPlay, rear cross-traffic alert, blind-spot monitoring, paddle shift and a 9.2inch infotainment unit coming as standard.

  • The Skoda Kamiq is priced between $35,000 and $45,000, depending on the dealership, model and any extras added to the order.

Subaru small SUVs

Subaru XV

With multiple SUVs available, Japanese brand Subaru have one model in the small SUV market, the Subaru XV, although it has multiple models within its line-up, including petrol and hybrid models. The base level XV 2.0i AWD features a four-cylinder direct injection petrol engine, capable of producing 115kW of output, with Active Torque Split AWD. Additionally equipped with 17inch wheels, the XV 2.0i also features Automatic Stop-Start, Sports mode, Halogen daytime running lights, a 4.2inch Multi-Information Display unit and two USB charging ports in the centre console. The top of the line petrol XV model – the 2.0i-S AWD – includes 18inch wheels, Blind Spot Monitoring, Lane Departure Warning, auto-dipping side mirrors, electric sunroof and rain-sensing windscreen wipes.

The Subaru XV Hybrid range include the Hybrid L and Hybrid S models, both of which feature a four-cylinder e-Boxer engine, capable of a 110kW output. The Hybrid L model includes Brake Assist, Pedestrian Alert System, rear view reverse camera as well as auto stop-start, Lane Keep Assist and Pre-Collision Throttle Management, in addition to rear privacy glass, 17inch wheels and paddle gear shifts for driver safety and comfort. The Hybrid S adds in features such as 18inch wheels, Blind Spot Monitor, Side View Monitor, heated door mirrors, electric sunroof and sports pedals.

  • The Subaru XV costs between $30,000 and $55,000, depending on the dealership, model and any additional extras you purchase.

Suzuki small SUVs

Suzuki Ignis

Japanese brand Suzuki offers two models within the small SUV range, the Suzuki Ignis and the Suzuki S-Cross. The Ignis, one of the latest additions to Suzuki’s line-up, is an Ultra Compact SUV, meaning it’s one of the smallest SUVs available in Australia, and is available as a GL or GLX model. The GL model is available with either an auto or manual transmission, and features a 1.2L petrol engine, sat nav, halogen headlights, reversing camera and 15inch wheels. The GLX features similar inclusions, along with 16inch alloy wheels, dusk sensing LED headlights and keyless entry, but is only available with automatic transmission.

The Suzuki S-Cross is available as a Turbo or Turbo Prestige model, both of which feature a 1.4L BoosterJet petrol engine, capable of a 103kW output, along with 6speed automatic transmission and 17inch alloy wheels. The S-Cross Turbo features dual zone climate control, 60:40 rear seat split folding, sat nav, voice command capabilities and electronically folding door mirrors, while the Turbo Prestige adds rain sensing windshield wipers, dusk sensing LED headlights, auto dimming rearview mirror and leather-accented seat trimming for additional convenience and comfort.

  • Suzuki’s range of small SUVs costs between $19,000 and around $35,000, depending on the model, dealership and any extras you add to your order.

Toyota small SUVs

Toyota C-HR

The C-HR and Yaris Cross are Toyota’s entrant into the small SUV market, with the C-HR available as a GXL, Koba or GR Sport model. The GXL comes equipped with a 1.2L petrol engine with a 7speed automatic transmission, as well as 17inch alloy wheels, sat nav and an 8inch touchscreen infotainment unit, while the Koba is available with either a 1.2L petrol engine or 1.8L hybrid engine, with both 2WD and AWD drivetrains available. It also comes equipped with 18inch alloys, leather-accented seats, Panoramic View Monitor as well as privacy glass on the back and rear windows. The GR Sport model is only available with 2WD and the 1.8L hybrid engine, but also features 19inch alloy wheels, reversing camera, sport tuned suspension, sport pedals and shift levers for additional comfort and driving convenience.

Toyota’s other small SUV – the Yaris Cross – is available as a GX, GXL or Urban model, with 2WD or AWD available on all models, along with either a 1.5L petrol engine or 1.5L hybrid engine. The GX has a minimum engine output of 85kW, and includes LED daytime running lights, 4.2inch cluster display, smart entry and a 7inch touchscreen infotainment unit. The GXL additionally includes LED headlamps, sat nav, Blind Spot Monitor and Rear Cross Traffic Alert, while the Urban includes a Heads Up Display, USB charging ports, heated front seats and 18inch alloy wheels.

  • The Toyota small SUV range is available from around $25,000 to $45,000, depending on the dealership, model and any extras you add to your vehicle purchase.

Volkswagen small SUVs

VW T-Roc

German brand Volkswagen has two vehicles available in the small SUV market, the T-Roc and the T-Cross. The T-Roc is available as a 110TSI Style or a 140TSI Sport model, with the 110 including Adaptive Cruise Control, an 8inch infotainment unit, LED ambient lighting, rain sensing windscreen wipers, dual zone climate control air conditioning, keyless entry and push-button start, as well as Lane Assist, Blind Spot Monitoring and Rear Traffic Alert. The 140TSI Sport features an increased engine output, dark tinted rear windows, a 10.25inch digital instrument display, 8inch sat nav display, sports suspension and R-Line exterior styling for improved comfort and aesthetics.

The T-Cross is available as a 85TSI Life, 85TSI Style or CityLife editions, each with FWD, automatic transmission and a 1.0L petrol engine, capable of producing an output of 85kW. The 85TSI Life model features 16inch alloy wheels, an 8inch media system display, rain sensing windscreen wipers, wireless phone charging and Front Assist with Pedestrian and Cycling Monitoring, while the 85TSI Style model features LED ambient lighting, Park Assist, electronically folding door mirrors, sport front seats and 17inch alloy wheels. The T-Cross CityLife model additionally includes tinted rear windows for additional privacy, keyless entry and starting system and aesthetic changes to the exterior, wheels and seating.

  • VW small SUVS cost between $29,000 and $50,000, depending on the model, dealership and any extras you add to your purchase.

Volvo small SUVs

Volvo XC40

Swedish brand Volvo offers the XC40 in the small SUV market, with the XC40 available as both a petrol and hybrid model, with T4, T5 or Recharge models available. The base XC40 model – the T4 Momentum – is a FWD model, with a four-cylinder turbo petrol engine, capable of an engine output of 140kW, and comes equipped with an 8speed auto transmission. Other features include Lane Keeping Aid, Rear Parking Camera, rain sensing windshield wipers, keyless entry, a 9inch centre touchscreen infotainment display and LED headlights, with the T4 Inscription offering similar features alongside AWD, a power operated tailgate and leather-accented upholstery.

The XC40 T5 R-Design offers AWD capabilities, alongside a sport chassis and increased engine output of up to 185kW. Other features include the R-Design aesthetic package, which includes inlay, grille and 20inch matte-black alloy wheels. The hybrid XC40 Recharge model features FWD and a three-cylinder turbo petrol engine with electric motor, as well as a 7speed dual-clutch transmission, panoramic sunroof and Haman Kardon sound system included as standard.

  • The Volvo XC40 costs upwards of $47,000, with multiple style trims and accessories available, with the final cost dependent on which model, dealership and extras you add.

What’s the most popular SUV model?

Currently, the Toyota RAV4 has been proving to be the most popular SUV model in Australia, selling the most units in May, 2021, according to the FCAI. The most popular small SUV model is currently the Mitsubishi ASX, with the Mazda CX-3 not far behind.

How much do small SUVs cost?

The cost of a small SUV will vary between brands, with luxury models such as Audi and BMW more expensive than the more affordable ranges of MG or Hyundai. But as a guide, small SUVs will range anywhere between $18,000 to $120,000, and are traditionally more affordable than a mid-size SUV due to their smaller capacity. But if you’re wanting to add in extras you can expect to fork over a bit more, with prices also dependent on each individual dealership.

How are SUVs classified as small?

SUVs are classified into their respective categories through a multitude of criteria according to the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI), including their body style and what’s referred to as their ‘footprint’ – which is essentially the dimensions of the vehicle, and is calculated through length (mm) x width (mm), rounded, which is shown by the table below. If a new model is released into the market, it will be segmented into the most logical group based on size, price and which models are its most immediate competition.

Light Wagon, coupe or hatch with a footprint < = 7.6m²
Small Wagon, coupe or hatch with a footprint > 7.6m², < = 8.1m²
Medium Wagon, coupe or hatch with a footprint > 8.1m², < = 8.8m²
Large Wagon, coupe or hatch with a footprint > 8.8m², < = 9.8m²
Upper Large Wagon, coupe or hatch with a footprint > 9.8m²

Are compact SUVs the same as small SUVs?

Compact SUVs are generally considered to be the same as ‘small’ SUVs, filling the gap between mini-SUVs and mid-size SUVs, with many compact SUVs also categorised as ‘compact crossover’ models due to how close they are to traditional sedan styles. However, there’s no official consensus that compact and small SUVs are the same, but if you mention that you’re after a compact SUV at a dealership, you’ll often be led to the smaller models, with the terms ‘small’ and ‘compact’ interchangeable in the SUV market.

Are small SUVs better than larger SUVs?

What size SUV you decide to drive away in ultimately comes down to your personal circumstances, with factors such as seating capacity, physical dimensions, cargo space and the price tag all impacting on what type of SUV you purchase. Those with larger families, or those who take plenty with them on roadtrips, may find a mid-size or large SUV a better suit, while those travelling light, or do plenty of city driving, may find the small or compact SUVs an ideal fit.

But as a new car is a big purchase, it pays to get behind the wheel and test drive multiple models and brands to ensure you find the best option for your needs and budget, as you don’t want to be taken for a ride and find out that size actually does matter when it comes to SUVs. Check out our ratings on new SUVs, or the best-selling SUV models around Australia to find out just what other motorists think of their small SUVs.

Picture credit: alexfan32/shutterstock.com

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