Motoring: Crossovers with attitude

By admin
19 June 2012

There’s a segment in motoring known as “crossover vehicles”. This refers to cars that pretend to be something they’re not – such as a hatchback dressed up as a sports utility vehicle (SUV). 

However, despite the fact they look like off-road vehicles, these SUVs don’t have four-wheel drive which would enable them to take on rough terrain.

Yet this segment of the market shouldn’t be ignored because the vehicles look good and offer slightly more ground clearance than standard cars.

The increased ground clearance enables them to take on pavements (unfortunately) and potholes better than ordinary hatchbacks.

1. Juke 1.6 Acenta+ 

Price: R226 925

Rating: 5/5

Nissan’s stylish Juke is a class leader in many respects. Its appearance might not be everyone’s cup of tea but the Juke is said to be very popular in SA and selling like hotcakes. It’s one of the best entry-level crossover vehicles, great to drive and good value for money.

It’s equipped with a long list of standard comfort and safety features and thanks to a high driving position you feel more in control when driving in traffic. The interior is as pleasing as the exterior, with an eye-catching, rounded  metal centre console which looks a lot like a motorcycle’s fuel tank.

2. VW CrossPolo 1.6

Price: 210 200

Rating: 3/5

The Volkswagen CrossPolo may have been dubbed a Polo on steroids but it succeeds when it comes to its sporty appearance. With 17-inch alloy wheels, aluminium roof rails and black strips on the bumpers and doors the CrossPolo certainly has attitude.

Inside the finish differs here and there from the standard Polo but the space and equipment are identical. The interior could belong to an Audi rather than a much more inexpensive car – but you have to ask yourself if it’s worth buying the CrossPolo for R15 000 more than the price of an ordinary Polo 1,6 Comfortline.

3. Suzuki SX4 2.0

Price: R225 900

Rating: 3/5

Suzuki’s SX4 has proved itself over and over again as a real stalwart, and was designed as a crossover vehicle from the start. Like its competitors in this market segment it has a robust appearance.

The SX4 isn’t new on the market but like other Suzukis it’s built to last. It’s reasonably well equipped with luxuries and safety features, is fairly spacious and definitely has the potential to be a comfortable family car. It has a more powerful engine than the other cars in its class and therefore uses more fuel.

Read more in YOU 21 June 2012.

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