How to choose the perfect road trip vehicle

Eager to go on a road trip? Selecting the right vehicle could be important for making sure that your road trip is as comfortable, fun and affordable as possible. There are a few different things to consider when choosing a road-trip-worthy car. Below are some of the main things to consider.

Buy or hire?

First, you should consider whether it’s better to buy or hire a car.

Buying a car for road trips is more suitable if you’re likely to go on many future road trips and if you’re planning to set off from home each time. 

If you’re planning a road trip on the other side of the world, you probably don’t want to pay to transport your car over, so hiring a car when you’re there makes sense. 

Used or new?

If you do choose to buy a car, you should then weigh up whether to buy a used car or a brand new car.

A brand new car will be in better condition, and therefore may be more capable of tackling a long road trip without fear of anything going wrong. You also have the option to access newer models with all the best mod cons. Of course, brand new cars are more expensive, but there are dealers such as these Ineos station wagon dealers that can offer great finance deals. 

A used car could be less reliable on a long journey and you may have to deal without the same impressive features that you’ll find on a new car. However, it’s a much cheaper option and better for most people’s budgets. 

Determine the type of road trip

It’s important to consider where you will be going on a road trip and what routes you will be taking. Some vehicles like Land Rover Defenders and Jeep Wranglers are better suited for rugged mountain roads and off-roading. Others are better suited for standard roads. 

The climate could be an important factor to consider too. The likes of the Skoda Kodiaq were built for snow and ice, featuring impressive traction control systems and ground clearance. Others are better for the heat including the convertible Hyundai Santa Fe, which also has an impressive air con system. 

Think about space

In most cases, a more spacious car is better for a road trip. Having plenty of boot space will ultimately allow you to pack more. It’s also important that there’s enough elbow room and legroom for everyone on board so that you and your passengers have a more comfortable journey (important for family road trips).

Mid-size cars like the Skoda Superb typically come up tops when it comes to space efficiency, while the Kia Sorento is often lauded as one of the most spacious SUVs

Consider fuel economy

When travelling a lot of miles, you ideally want a car with a good mpg rating. This will ultimately save you money in fuel. 

Bigger cars may be more spacious and better for rugged terrain, but can sometimes fall short when it comes to fuel economy. That said, there are some SUVs that do score surprisingly well when it comes to miles per gallon such as the Ford Puma and Peugeot 3008. 

Do you need somewhere to sleep?

A final thing to consider is whether or not you will want to sleep in your vehicle. Having such a vehicle could save you money on accommodation if you’re planning a lengthy road trip.

Motorhomes are the most luxurious option for sleeping in, but of course are expensive. Campervans are more rugged, but generally cheaper – the most iconic model being the VW campervan. Many cars provide the option of laying down the back seats, which can be turned into sleeping space if needs be. If you can’t afford a campervan or motorhome, this could be something to look into (just remember that you won’t be able to sleep in the back if you’re taking lots of luggage).

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