We’re currently standing at the receiving end of an oncoming wave of these small but highly capable vehicles. The influx of choices grows by a new member every few months or so it seems.
As it stands, there are 10 ½ players in the segment, by my count. Some may argue and desire to add to or even subtract some cars to my list, but if you look at the dimensions you’ll note that all are very close.
The major differentiating element is price, however, they all cross paths in the mid-$20k range and this is what keeps a few potentials off the list. As this segment continues to expand, more introductions are likely to come from other brands and some current products may evolve in order to join this group. We’ve got a hot one here!
The major attractions are the slightly higher driving position, increased useable interior space, and (in most cases) the availability of AWD. Design is also very important and because utility is key, the cost of form over function could damage the possibility of one vehicle outselling another.
The most recent products are high in features and content, and drive exceptionally well. Save for the CX-3 and 500x, I’ve driven them all and the more recent the updates or introduction, the better the product. In fact, other than the Trax and RVR, each is a standout for specific reasons.
Within this select gathering, some have already developed specialties. It’ll be of no surprise to you to learn that the Jeep Renegade is the off-roader while the Nissan JUKE (in NISMO trim) the racecar. The ½ belongs to the Volkswagen Golf Sportwagon that is the most “car,” but I’ll not argue over the fact that it doesn’t really belong on the list. I’ll just leave it here in case you were curious…
As I’ve said, there’s a ton of choice in this category of vehicle. As such, there truly is something for everyone.