Over the past 20 years, SUVs have become a supremely popular vehicle category, and it’s not hard to tell why. Compared to cars and trucks, they’re known to be more versatile, roomy, and generally more fuel-efficient, making them a great pick for families and individuals alike. Plus, sprinkle in a sense of adventure and exploration that has come to characterize certain brands like Subaru, and you’ve got a recipe for a perfect class of vehicles. Another great thing about this category is that there are plenty of top affordable SUVs to pick from. 

If you’re on the market for an affordable SUV, check out our list of top ones to consider. Of course, when it comes to affordability over quality, there will always be some compromises to make, but this list includes picks that have been well reviewed for quality, safety, and reliability. 

Current models

Hyundai Kona ($20,400 – $29,450)

While the Kona isn’t perfect, it’s certainly one of the most affordable SUVs out there. And, plenty of people love their Konas, with their practical mix of tech and comfort. Plus, with an electric option, those looking to go the EV route on a budget have just the pick they need. 

Kia Soul ($17,490 – 27,550)

Kia has always been known as an affordable car brand, and that extends to their SUV range as well. Providing more space than others in its category, the Kia Soul performs well as an SUV – and has plenty of personality to boot. 

GMC Terrain ($25,000)

While this pick has a bit of a higher price tag for its class, it’s also important to note that the GMC Terrain has a lot to offer. With more standard features than its peers, drivers will enjoy the spacious interior, fuel-efficient engine, and above-average reliability rating. One of the only setbacks? A small cargo hold. 

Subaru Forester ($24,495)

Image Source: ExtremeTech

If having all-wheel drive is important to you, the Subaru Forester should be top on your list, as it’s the only compact SUV that comes standard with the feature. Along with this, you’ll get a spacious interior, plenty of cargo space, and good fuel-economy. A solid choice all around. 

Older models

2015 Nissan Murano ($29,560)

This popular mid-size crossover is a great pick for those looking for something a little more sporty. You’ll also get a stellar sound system, updated tech, and a pretty spacious design. Plus, Nissan is known for its longevity, so you’ll be able to drive your Murano in style for quite a while. 

2016 Hyundai Tucson ($22,700)

The base model of the Hyundai Tucson is quite affordable for its category, without compromising on quality and safety. In fact, the SUV received a perfect 10 safety rating by the U.S. News and World Report. There’s also plenty of upgrade options if you have a little more wiggle-room in your budget. 

2015 Dodge Durango ($30,495)

If you’re hauling around a lot of equipment – or a lot of kids – a larger SUV like the Dodge Durango may be a good choice. With extra tech as compared to others in its category, it’s a modern powerhouse built for whatever you need. 

2016 Kia Sorento ($24,900)

Image Source: Consumer Reports

After being acquired by Hyundai, Kia really stepped up their design game. There’s no denying the beauty of the Kia Sorento, and at an affordable price point, it makes it one of the top affordable SUVs that doesn’t compromise on quality or safety. 

Need something a little bigger to fit your growing family? Check out our ranking of worst to best minivans on the market.

Claire Biggerstaff
Claire Biggerstaff is a freelance writer and photographer from Charlotte, NC. Her curiosity leads her to write about a wide variety of topics. On her off days, she enjoys reading Polygon articles, and curling up to a good YouTube playlist.

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    1. I am not a huge Nissan fan but have always liked the Murano.

    2. the dodge is nice ..

    3. Pricing for many of them were really good. I didn’t think the Kia Soul is an SUV. Just looked it up and found out that it is a Subcompact crossover SUV.

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