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Thread: Cheap SUV recommendations

  1. #1
    Master
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    Cheap SUV recommendations

    I bought an MX-5 ND a few months ago, and then shortly after we got a new dog so looking for something to cart him round in.

    I have an illogical desire to get a Lan Rover Defender but realistically can't afford a half decent one right now. So I thought I'd maybe go for an inexpensive SUV.

    Requirements are:

    - Cheap, less than £5k.
    - At a minimum can carry two people and two large dogs, ideally three people.
    - Reliable
    - Not a rust bucket
    - Some ability to go off road
    - Within reason, day-to-day running costs not an issue as it won't be going far on a regular basis, but I don't want to be forking out constantly for repairs
    - Ideally, not humungous!

    I have a few ideas, but any recommendations to meet the above needs gratefully received

  2. #2
    What about a MINI Countryman? I have had a Cooper S All4 for several years and itís been a great car - not too big, plenty of room inside. Quite nippy.

    Might be at the top of budget and not sure about actual off-roading but mine has been perfectly fine on the occasional field/muddy car park.

  3. #3
    Master
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    That kind of budget gets a 12-14 yo Suzuki Jimny or a 4wd Dacia Duster from 2013-14 obviously the Dacia is significantly newer and larger than the Suzuki

  4. #4
    Grand Master AlphaOmega's Avatar
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    CRV.

    Reliable and within budget.

    Make sure you pick one that has RT4WD not just FWD.

    Edit - I think you had an S2000 so you know the quality.

  5. #5
    Master sweets's Avatar
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    I am currently bimbling around in a Peugeot 4007 (2009) which I picked up pretty cheaply. It is effectively a Misubishi Outlander with anotehr badge (and better spec).
    Cost me very little and I am a few months and about 3000 miles into ownership, and I am very pleased indeed.
    The offroad capabiliy is fine, the towing good, the 2.2 HDi engine relatively willing (and suprisingly economic) and with a Pure FM re-transmitter unit (really cheap) I have DAB and BT music, so it is a happy place to be.
    7 seats too, which has been useful a few times.

    Edit, when I bought it, I was also considering a CRV, but the Mitsubishi/Peugeot (which is also the Citroen C-Crosser) felt a lit nicer to be in, and less like a thin tin box

  6. #6
    Grand Master number2's Avatar
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    Daihatsu Terios.
    Basically it's a Toyota.
    "Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. The third time it's enemy action."

  7. #7
    Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlphaOmega View Post
    CRV.

    Reliable and within budget.

    Make sure you pick one that has RT4WD not just FWD.

    Edit - I think you had an S2000 so you know the quality.
    This ^. There is a reason you see so many 04 and 05 plate era crv's still running around, no rust, simple, reliable, and comfortable. They happily average 30mpg aswell, which I don't think is too bad.

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  8. #8
    Craftsman
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    Yes CRV bombproof

    Have one, owned it since 2011 never missed a beat

    Also Rav4 we had one for 17 years, was sad to see it go very little went wrong

  9. #9
    Master
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    Currently having a similar dilemma although only one medium sized dog.
    I keep looking at the Discovery 3 but itís too big, and then the Freelander 2 comes in to consideration, but the wife says itís too much like her car, so a Volvo XC70 cross country comes up, a friend had one and we have towed a trailer across ploughed fields with no trouble.

  10. #10
    Iíve heard recommendations for cheap CRVís over the years but whenever I looked they were much more than £5k. I must look in the wrong places?? - at this price Iíd stick to Japanese whatever, just curious where the good cheap cars are!?!


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  11. #11
    Master Yorkshiremadmick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sweets View Post
    I am currently bimbling around in a Peugeot 4007 (2009) which I picked up pretty cheaply. It is effectively a Misubishi Outlander with anotehr badge (and better spec).
    Cost me very little and I am a few months and about 3000 miles into ownership, and I am very pleased indeed.
    The offroad capabiliy is fine, the towing good, the 2.2 HDi engine relatively willing (and suprisingly economic) and with a Pure FM re-transmitter unit (really cheap) I have DAB and BT music, so it is a happy place to be.
    7 seats too, which has been useful a few times.

    Edit, when I bought it, I was also considering a CRV, but the Mitsubishi/Peugeot (which is also the Citroen C-Crosser) felt a lit nicer to be in, and less like a thin tin box
    Mitsubishi made the Outlander 4007 & CCrosser so the three are basically Mitsubishi rebranded and rebadged. Theyíre fantastic vehicles vastly underrated


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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobDad View Post
    Iíve heard recommendations for cheap CRVís over the years but whenever I looked they were much more than £5k. I must look in the wrong places?? - at this price Iíd stick to Japanese whatever, just curious where the good cheap cars are!?!


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    Maybe they've shot up in value like many second hand cars. But the one I had on an 04 plate was 4k, from a dealer over 4 years ago.

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  13. #13
    Master unclealec's Avatar
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    I will be selling my CR-V next month for under £2K; it's a 2006 model but presents well. I bought it to avoid a holiday disaster as a tug for two caravanning trips, the last of which will be the August Bank Holiday, after which it will be surplus to requirements. I am not sure what it is exactly; petrol, 2 litre, 128k miles, MoT Feb, runs fine, everything seems to work but I don't know what half of it does. I think it's 2WD but not sure. Its milestothegallonometer says that it does 32+ most of the time, but when I strap the caravan on the meter starts crying.

  14. #14
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    Lexus RX400h with some decent tyres on will be surprisingly good on most normal person off roading, looked after they'll hit 250k miles easily, quite a few about for under 5k and it's even fairly performant both in acceleration and economy.
    They can be a bit pricey if they go wrong but that doesn't happen very often. just make sure the inverter isn't leaking (look for pink gunk in the right hand side of the engine bay where all the big orange wires go) and there's no dampness or sloshing sounds under hard acceleration and braking (they can leak a bit round the tailgate if they've had a whack) and there's not much else to go wrong as long as it's been maintained.

  15. #15
    Master
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    As above - CRV.

    2002-2006 model.

    Petrol.

    Canít really go wrong.

  16. #16
    Grand Master AlphaOmega's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobDad View Post
    Iíve heard recommendations for cheap CRVís over the years but whenever I looked they were much more than £5k. I must look in the wrong places?? - at this price Iíd stick to Japanese whatever, just curious where the good cheap cars are!?!


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    Autotrader has loads.

    Specify under £5k, under 50k miles and a few pop up. If you're happy with under 100k miles then there are pages.

  17. #17

    Cheap SUV recommendations

    Pajero SWB or commercial (great for the dogs as in essence a van in the back)


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    Last edited by Sweepinghand; 28th July 2021 at 19:23.

  18. #18
    Master
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    The only thing with the CRV is not sure it's great off road, her indoors had one and TBH it wasn't 100% reliable, but it was the diesel, I'd get a petrol for sure.

    Slightly tempted by a Jimny though the size might be an issue...

  19. #19

    Cheap SUV recommendations

    Iíve had a diesel CR-V, most reliable car I ever owned. Wouldnít hesitate to buy another if wanted that style of car again.

  20. #20
    Grand Master AlphaOmega's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SimonH View Post
    The only thing with the CRV is not sure it's great off road, her indoors had one and TBH it wasn't 100% reliable, but it was the diesel, I'd get a petrol for sure.

    Slightly tempted by a Jimny though the size might be an issue...
    Definitely not first class off road but adequate if you buy the RT4WD version.

    I think it would be fine for basics but I'd avoid green-laning.

  21. #21
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    Other option could be a Subaru Outback?
    Awesome things.

  22. #22
    Journeyman
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    Rav 4 or Subaru outback / Forester would be my choice.

  23. #23
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    Maybe a Ford Kuga, should be some early ones in that price bracket now.

  24. #24
    Panda 4x4 ?

  25. #25
    Grand Master number2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JGJG View Post
    Panda 4x4 ?
    Good call
    "Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. The third time it's enemy action."

  26. #26
    Master Sinnlover's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JGJG View Post
    Panda 4x4 ?
    No good if the OP has a Great Dane.
    They are very capable car but very small.

  27. #27
    Journeyman
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob s View Post
    Maybe a Ford Kuga, should be some early ones in that price bracket now.
    Another vote for a Ford Kuga 4x4 (not all are). i have a 12 plate Kuga after my partner bought herself a Discovery Sport.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by number2 View Post
    Good call
    Really? For 3 adults and two large dogs.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by jaytip View Post
    Really? For 3 adults and two large dogs.
    Yeah yeah I know - rub it in.
    Last edited by number2; 30th July 2021 at 19:56.
    "Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. The third time it's enemy action."

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by jaytip View Post
    Really? For 3 adults and two large dogs.
    To be fair I did say a minimum two, ideally three!

    The reason being my wife has an XC40 that the two dogs can go in the boot of (bit of a squeeze bit it's doable). The reason I want this car is that although the plan was we'd treat our two cars as shared, it hasn't worked out like that and I want to be able to take "my" dog in something other than my MX5 but also be able to go with my son and both dogs. I know that if I get something that realistically can't manage all of us and the dogs I will end up with some moaning but I can manage that if need be! Hence contemplating a Jimny. I think the Panda is a good shout for a small 4X4 actually.

    In terms of off road capability, some of the places we take the dogs are off the beaten track and can be a bit challenging when things are wet. Also, I have a good friend who has a Defender and we have been talking about some gentle green-lanes, hence thinking something like a CRV is not quite what I want. I really want a Defender but can't justify the expense until I am sure that I would use it's capabilities to some degree, getting something that can manage but is cheap would be a good way of testing the water.

    I started to look things like 3 door Mitsubishi Shoguns but they seem like rust buckets, anyone with any experience? Or Suzuki Vitara for something bigger than a Jimny?

    Thanks all for the help so far

  31. #31
    Grand Master AlphaOmega's Avatar
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    If a Defender is an option, get a Defender.

    I don't think there's anything with more character in the segment.

    You might need to be handy with WD40, a hammer and duct tape though.

  32. #32
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    Really want a Defender AO, just not ready for the financial and time commitment at the moment. Under no illusions about what they are like to drive etc. as I'm familiar with them from the past.

    Good at WD40ing, hammering, and duct-taping though, welding not so hot!

  33. #33
    Grand Master oldoakknives's Avatar
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    Nissan X-Trail. Had an '07 and it was a great car. Much underrated, comfortable, reliable and hustle along on the road. Capable enough on semi-rough. Available in budget.
    ďThe more I learn about people, the more I like my dog.Ē

  34. #34
    My suggestion would be a Skoda Yeti 4x4 110 diesel.

    The boot isn't massive but the flex seating helps. Compact, 4x4, great vehicles. I really miss mine.

    This one in the exceptionally rare base "S" trim is slightly over budget but it might be the sort of thing you're looking for


    https://www.autotrader.co.uk/car-det...02107255439675

  35. #35
    Master vRSG60's Avatar
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    Yeti - Iíll be getting another after my Octavia vRS but prices are quite high Iíve found.

  36. #36
    Craftsman
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    Rav 4 .

  37. #37
    Grand Master oldoakknives's Avatar
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    ďThe more I learn about people, the more I like my dog.Ē

  38. #38
    Grand Master Seamaster73's Avatar
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    Sell the great dane to a vivisectionist and get a Panda 4x4.

  39. #39
    Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlphaOmega View Post
    If a Defender is an option, get a Defender.

    I don't think there's anything with more character in the segment.

    You might need to be handy with WD40, a hammer and duct tape though.
    Guess what I bought this weekend!

    Interesting weekend, sold my Triumph Speed Twin and MX-5 Mk 1 and bought a Defender!

    Found one at a great price had a look and it's really solid chassis-wise with good body work albeit the odd thing that needs sorting, and of course it's a bit tatty inside in places but nothing too bad.

    I drove it and thought what a terrible old dinosaur this thing is ... I love it! Chap was clever enough to take me on a bit of easy off road which helped. It's a great project for my son and me to do together and also meets my requirements well having folding seats in the back so can get my wife and son plus the two dogs in it plus it has the added bonus of a tow bar I can put the bike rack on.

    No doubt the coming few months will involve lots of swearing at the thing but I'm sure I'll get used to it!

    Can't wait to get it!

  40. #40
    Craftsman
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    Quote Originally Posted by SimonH View Post
    Guess what I bought this weekend!

    Interesting weekend, sold my Triumph Speed Twin and MX-5 Mk 1 and bought a Defender!

    Found one at a great price had a look and it's really solid chassis-wise with good body work albeit the odd thing that needs sorting, and of course it's a bit tatty inside in places but nothing too bad.

    I drove it and thought what a terrible old dinosaur this thing is ... I love it! Chap was clever enough to take me on a bit of easy off road which helped. It's a great project for my son and me to do together and also meets my requirements well having folding seats in the back so can get my wife and son plus the two dogs in it plus it has the added bonus of a tow bar I can put the bike rack on.

    No doubt the coming few months will involve lots of swearing at the thing but I'm sure I'll get used to it!

    Can't wait to get it!
    Have you got it yet?? Any pictures? Going through the same conundrum myself.

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  41. #41
    Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Taylor View Post
    Have you got it yet?? Any pictures? Going through the same conundrum myself.

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    Yep, got it Friday, here's a pic my wife took yesterday while I was getting the dogs out...



    Loving it so far, every drive is an occasion! Also a great project to work on with my son, we're not sold on the yellow bits and he has suggested painting them black which is a good shout so we'll probably do that.

    Being covered in checker plate etc. is generally a red flag for me but I have seen detailed recent pictures of when it was all off and it's in great nick.

  42. #42
    Master Yorkshiremadmick's Avatar
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    Go heavy on security.
    Foot pedal lockers. Hidden security. Kill switches and isolators, Immobilisers, trackers etc.
    Defenders highly nickable


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  43. #43
    Grand Master AlphaOmega's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SimonH View Post
    Guess what I bought this weekend!

    Interesting weekend, sold my Triumph Speed Twin and MX-5 Mk 1 and bought a Defender!

    Found one at a great price had a look and it's really solid chassis-wise with good body work albeit the odd thing that needs sorting, and of course it's a bit tatty inside in places but nothing too bad.

    I drove it and thought what a terrible old dinosaur this thing is ... I love it! Chap was clever enough to take me on a bit of easy off road which helped. It's a great project for my son and me to do together and also meets my requirements well having folding seats in the back so can get my wife and son plus the two dogs in it plus it has the added bonus of a tow bar I can put the bike rack on.

    No doubt the coming few months will involve lots of swearing at the thing but I'm sure I'll get used to it!

    Can't wait to get it!
    You have excellent taste, Sir!

    Now that is character.

  44. #44
    Quote Originally Posted by Yorkshiremadmick View Post
    Go heavy on security.
    Foot pedal lockers. Hidden security. Kill switches and isolators, Immobilisers, trackers etc.
    Defenders highly nickable


    Sent from my iPhone using TZ-UK mobile app
    Absolutely. There was a spate of bonnets being stolen up here in Norfolk apparently.


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  45. #45
    Master Maysie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yorkshiremadmick View Post
    Go heavy on security.
    Foot pedal lockers. Hidden security. Kill switches and isolators, Immobilisers, trackers etc.
    Defenders highly nickable


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    ^^^
    I would agree with that!
    My old 2003 model (2 years old at the time) could be opened with a lolly stick or a teaspoon*!
    The locks and keys were akin to security from the 1950's.

    (* Not fact checked...!)

  46. #46
    Master Sinnlover's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yorkshiremadmick View Post
    Go heavy on security.
    Foot pedal lockers. Hidden security. Kill switches and isolators, Immobilisers, trackers etc.
    Defenders highly nickable


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    Totally agree
    Pedal lock and a removal steering wheel on mine + immobiliser and alarm.

    They can be hot wired and started through the headlight connections

  47. #47
    Master
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    So at the moment it has a pedal locker, steering wheel lock, alarm and immobiliser. Just ordered the hidden switch immobiliser as well.

    Debating some sort of tracker.

    So far so good, nothing has broken yet!

    There are a few niggles I knew about (e.g. indicators don't self-cancel due to after market wheel which is very annoying!).

    Still loving it

  48. #48
    Master Yorkshiremadmick's Avatar
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    Mines exMilitary and indicators donít self cancel. Very basic but nothing major in 7 years of daily driving.
    New Battery, new Starter motor. New rear silencer, 4 new tyres biggest expense.


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  49. #49
    Master Yorkshiremadmick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobDad View Post
    Absolutely. There was a spate of bonnets being stolen up here in Norfolk apparently.


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    We were in Mundesley from 2014 to Jan 2018
    Never had any bother!
    Shocked


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  50. #50
    Craftsman gerard's Avatar
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    Had mine nicked on the Suffolk Norfolk border on 10th May 2010.
    They pushed 2 cars out of the way and took the gates off their hinges because they were locked!

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