Potholes, mud, flooding and rough roads are just some of the conditions drivers who live in the countryside will face daily. That is why it is essential that you choose the most suitable car to handle the rural environment and longer travels.
To help you narrow down your search, we have prepared for you a list of cars we recommend. These are all listed below and are our top choices in no particular order.
Just like the name suggests, the MINI Countryman is an excellent choice for people living in rural areas. The largest MINI in its range – the compact SUV – provides the iconic MINI design to drivers as well as the practicality and spaciousness that will appeal to families.
There is the 4x4 version called the ‘All4’ which is optionally offered in its entire range. This model works by distributing power on all four wheels when needed to guarantee amazing performance on countryside terrain. You can find this four-wheel-drive system as a standard on the John Cooper Works models.
Besides that, the Countryman has a 350-litre boot capacity which can go up to 1,170-litre once the rear seats have been folded. However, deciding to buy a used 2017 model instead would provide you with an extra 100-litre total capacity as the standard.
What makes this car ideal for rural roads is its maximum traction, sharp handling and good ground clearance. Its Dynamic Stability Control feature can apply brakes on various wheels as needed to help in keeping the vehicle in control even when driving conditions aren’t that great.
Land Rover Range Rover
This vehicle is a luxury SUV that offers excellent driver visibility and comfort. You won’t find a country road that will be too much of a challenge for this model as it can get over sharp bends and rocky lanes easily.
You’ll find that all models in its class have JLR’s Terrain Response System except for the Vogue entry-level. This system improves off-road capabilities by configuring the vehicle’s system itself electronically based on the surface the driver chooses. Selections include rock crawl, sand, grass-gravel-snow, mud-ruts and general modes.
You’d best go with the 3.0-litre V6 engine as it can deliver 600Nm torque and 254bhp while being the most fuel-efficient of them all. It has impressive pulling power as well as it is capable of towing trailers that way as much as 3,500kg. Its boot size is spacious and can hold 909-litres of luggage or a total of 2,360-litres if you have the seats folded.
The Audi Q7 comes equipped with 7 seats and a 770-litre boot as standard. It has two diesel engines that give amazing fuel economy for a model this big. The 3.0-litre TDI diesel is the stronger of the two which can achieve 268bjp and 600NM of torque. You’ll find it accelerating from 0 to 62mpg in just 6.5 seconds!
Audi’s standard Quattro four-wheel-drive system lets it take on off-roading with ease and a towing limitation of 2,899kg will allow drivers to enjoy the countryside with ease. It also achieved the maximum five stars NCAP rating which makes it one of the best cars for families that frequent the countryside back roads or on motorways.
Another SUV that is highly desirable is BMW’s X3 which offers nice equipment as standard, an optimal driving position with decent visibility and range of diesel-fuelled engines. You can expect the xDrive 30d and xDrive 35d to both sprint to 62mph in under 6 seconds with a fuel economy that can go past 40mpg.
Just like all BMWs, the X3 shows the double-kidney grill and strong headlights at the front. Providing strong safety and practicality, the X3 is truly a suitable car for families living in rural areas. It has outstanding traction both on the road and off-road while allowing you to take on corners with confidence.
All of its models come with the iDrive infotainment system – which is one of the best in the market in terms of utility and features.
Land Rover Discovery
Another all-terrain conqueror is the Land Rover Discovery, as it benefits from its off-roading ability while giving drivers and passengers a comfortable journey even on long-distance rides. Just like the Range Rover, the Discovery possesses JLR’s Terrain Response System.
You’ll find spacious interiors and a total of seven seats in this vehicle, comfortably seating families with extra space for pets and other items. Another benefit with the Discovery is its split tail gate, allowing for a dog to jump directly in the boot without help.
Aside from that, the Discovery is capable of towing trailers and is great at it. Its 2.7-litre and 3.0-litre diesel engines can get to 30mpg which is ideal for a vehicle of its size.
Thanks to the raised body of the Honda Crosstour, you can switch from city-highway driving to the rough terrain of the countryside easily. The Accord sedan doesn’t only provide a comfortable ride and handling mechanics, you can also find big enough cargo space to bring your things when you want to enjoy the outdoors.
Under the Crosstour’s hood is a solid four-cylinder engine which is capable of producing 192hp and is combined with a six-speed automatic transmission. The interior design is comfortable enough with cloth upholstery, ample legroom and power adjusted passenger seats.
The Outback is meant to go through any possible outdoor terrain and is loved by many for its spacious interior, fuel economy and built-in car technology. Aside from that, its off-road capability is also something you will want to have.
People who live in rural areas will love this vehicle ass it features a standard 2.2-litre 4-cylinder engine which is EPA rated for 28mpg. It offers a complex four-wheel-drive system that has hill hold and hill descent controls that help it go through rough terrains. Its 73.3 cubic feet of internal space and 60/40-split fold-down rear seats make it an ideal ride to bring for countryside outings.
Finally, we have the Dacia Duster – a no-nonsense SUV that is affordable and rugged enough for the outdoor trips you like to make. This vehicle is quite affordable to begin with and its high ground clearance makes it capable of taking on various rural terrain. You also have the option to get its 4x4 model so you have more power if you need it.