How to Assess an SUV Car? Here's all You Must Know Before You Buy


December 21, 2021
Automotive
Editorial


When it comes to the auto industry, size does matter. The sports-utility vehicle (SUV) enthusiast knows this, and is, therefore, very precise about their purchase. We, however, don’t expect everyone to be the car connoisseur.

If you are keen on buying an SUV, what are the basics to keep in mind? What are the checklists that you should see thoroughly before making that call? Find out below.

The Obvious—Price

As exorbitantly as you want to spend over the shiniest wheels around, keep in mind that things are more expensive than ever before. Sure, you can spend as you please, but we urge you to keep ‘cost effectiveness’ in mind. Cars aren’t getting cheaper, so you’ll have to eye its value like never before.

What we mean is, before you plan on closing the deal, keep in mind the externals and the peripherals that come with the car. Things like after-sales service, cost of parts, servicing charges—you cannot keep any of this out of the way; the costs will keep adding up otherwise.

One of the other ‘prince-attachments’ so to speak, is insurance. You need to ensure that you have subscribed to full coverage, because the associated costs can pile up later on. Moreover, in case of a mishap, this will save you a lot of inconvenience.

The good bit is that the free market enables you with a lot of choices. As stated before, you should seek a value-for-money proposition here instead of trying to spend whatever the dealer deems fit. When it comes to price, remember that you don’t just buy the car, you buy into the car’s ‘ecosystem’.

Brand Value

The other quintessential thing to keep in mind is brand value. Remember that your car isn’t just a means of transport—if need be, it can serve as an asset too (albeit a depreciating one). Brand value is very important from a financial perspective. They hold their value for ages, and this itself is a very good purchasing point.

On the obvious front, an established brand is so because they have, over the course of years, provided quality products. Keep in mind that SUVs ideally should be able to bear extremes of conditions. Abrasions, bad roads, bumps—it has to bear it all. Brand value becomes such an important attribute here.

For instance, if you wish to use your SUV in both urban roads and rough terrains, consider a Range Rover, a Jeep, or likewise. If you exclusively expect plush arenas, try the German offerings. You get the drift (pun intended)—don’t try to be too experimental with brands. Play the safe cards here.

The Intimacy of Comfort

Now that you have sound knowledge about things that surround the SUV itself, let’s dive into the finer attributes, shall we? Right off the bat, before making the final call on the SUV itself, ensure that you have tried and tested it.

For the most part, people who are looking forward to buying SUVs are mostly seeking the extremes of conditions—either they would take it off-roading, or would prefer keeping it in the smoothest of roads. Either way, there is one thing common to both—comfort.

Your SUV should be plush not only to the touch, but also to the feel. A comfortable SUV is like the sixth sense—it helps you enjoy the other five a little more. Soft textures, comfortable materials, smooth surfaces—all these things add up to a pretty wholesome experience.

Ensure that there are no lapses in the build either—unstitched materials, gaps in interior build, poorly made plastics—these are bound to make your experience pretty ridiculous. Granted, we have asked you to look for ‘cost effectiveness’, but make no lapses when it comes to comfort.

Cargo Space

The average SUV is pretty spacious, and water is wet. But what makes an SUV even better? More cargo space. The idea of good cargo space transcends beyond what you find at the back. In fact, better cargo space is also attributed to how flexibly it can make more room for you.

Oftentimes, the average SUV is pretty rigid in the space arenas. In other words, oftentimes these SUVs can’t make enough space for cargo. People who travel great distances on their SUVs require a lot more cargo space, and for them, the flexibility of it matters a great deal.

If you happen to mostly go to rougher terrains, then consider truck-based models. These not only have massive cargo spaces, but their payload capacity is greater than the average car. If it comes with power-operated mechanics, this should make the entire process of loading-unloading a lot easier too.

Advanced Technologies

Keep in mind that SUVs are heavier than the other auto counterparts, and for such massive weights, there is a great need for technological grasp on your vehicle. Forward collision warning, emergency braking options, blind spot warnings to name a few—these are very important pieces of tech that make or break your SUV experience.

The other super, super important technological piece is ABS. Antilock Braking Systems basically prevent your tyres from locking (remember that brakes lock a great bit if brakes are applied from greater speeds). Thankfully, ABS comes with most SUV offerings, but only with some upgrades. If there is a slight premium from non-ABS to ABS models, we urge you to get the latter. Your life is worth much more than a few nickels.

Hot Wheels

The last bit—the way your SUV drives will determine your experience in the long run. These come in various flavours—two-wheel drive or four-wheel drive. While the former is lighter and amps up fuel economy by a good deal, the latter provides a much ‘grippier’ experience.

If you happen to be adventurous and happen to visit tough terrains frequently, the 4WD is a fair choice. If not, then the 2WD is a more appropriate choice. It all boils down to you, the driver.

Final Words

The remaining titbits are actually very common overall SUV offerings. Once you have the aforementioned necessities covered, you can choose what you think is more appropriate for your liking. Things like throw off the headlights, specific power figures—and the other titbits—buy what you think suits your needs the most. Either way, with an SUV, you can’t get too wrong. Happy off-roading (or comfort-riding? Pick your poison)!