Best Midsize SUV’s for Australians

Looking for the best midsize SUV that Australia can buy? You are likely one of two types of new car buyers out there today:

  1. Those who can not get enough of the various options that are available, and who love going full Sherlock Holmes using process of elimination to narrow their choices down to a single car.
  2. The second type of car buyer is the one who sees all of the choices, and gets overwhelmed at the thought of having to choose only one.

Well, we wanted to help everyone, so we have made a list of the best midsize SUVs for Australians that will assist both types of buyers in making the right choice. For more on smaller models, click here. For more on larger SUV models, take a look at our SUV guide.

Here is is our guide to the best medium SUVs in 2015!

Best Midsize SUVs

1. 2015 Mazda CX-5

The Good: Mazda updated the CX-5 with a beautiful interior, as well as a very solid computer console that makes integrating entertainment and vehicle specs seamless. Perfect family size with plenty of boot space, and a low L/km rate (7.4L/100km) that makes a long drive that much more affordable.

The Bad: 19-inch tires make the ride more uncomfortable than it should be (a 22 inch wheel size would probably have been best), and certainly discourages from any off-road or even off-pavement driving.

2. 2015 Subaru Outback 2.5i

The Good: Subaru has a reputation for manufacturing practical, durable, and efficient vehicles. The 2015 Outback 2.5i is no exception, and in fact, Subaru takes its improvements to another level with the inclusion of the EyeSight assist system, helping the 2.5i receive a 5-star safety rating, making it a great family vehicle.

The Bad: If we are being honest, finding a flaw in this year’s Outback 2.5i took some time and serious thought. The one thing that we found potentially off-putting was the lack of choice when it comes to picking an upgrade package on the 2.5i. You can either purchase the base model or the incredibly well-equipped Premium model; there is no middling ground or real customization available.

BrandModelBest Features
Mazda2015 CX-5Plenty of boot space, very solid computer console
Subaru 2015 Outback 2.5iEyeSight assist system, great family vehicle
Subaru2015 Forester (2.0D-L diesel CVT)More affordable, good for the entire family
Ford 2015 KugaSpacious front and rear row, best option for a minivan
Porsche2014 Macan S DieselSerious interior comfort, decent fuel efficiency
Hyundai2016 TucsonFitted with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, tech savvy
Honda2015 CR-V Series IIFamily-friendly midsize SUV, preferable for longer drives
Land Rover 2015 DiscoveryPractical luxury midsize SUV, stunning in style

3. 2015 Subaru Forester (2.0D-L diesel CVT)

The Good: We just HAD to bring you another Subaru for this list. Simply put, they know what they are doing when it comes to midsize SUVs. This year’s Forester is even more affordable than the Outback 2.5i: The Outback starts at around $41,000, while the Forester starts at around $35,000.

The Bad: One of the key safety features that made the Outback 2.5i great was the EyeSight driver assist system. Sadly, this is one of the biggest missing features on the Forester, and possibly a large reason why the Forester is more affordable. For some, this could be a deal breaker.

4. 2015 Ford Kuga

The Good: If affordability and space are your only two concerns when looking for a new midsize SUV, Ford’s Kuga might be the answer to your prayers. Starting at $27,490, and with a wonderfully spacious front and rear row, the Kuga is wonderful for families looking for an alternative to the minivan.

The Bad: Ford has often said it strives to make in-vehicle entertainment easy and functional, and unfortunately, the Kuga finds itself missing out on this Ford philosophy. One major flaw of the Kuga is that its reverse camera does not come standard; an absolute must for families with young children or in family-centred neighbourhoods.

5. 2014 Porsche Macan S Diesel

The Good: Porsche’s SUV offerings are consistently wonderful, and also consistently underappreciated. Some think, “Why pay a Porsche price for an SUV?” The Macan S Diesel might be one of the greatest answers to that question. With serious interior comfort, a beautiful drive, and decent fuel efficiency (6.1L/100km), the Macan sits high above the rest.

The Bad: Well, it is a Porsche. The starting price of the Macan S Diesel is upwards of $73,000, which puts it out of reach for many.

6. 2016 Hyundai Tucson

The Good: One of the newest models on our list, the Hyundai Tucson has been popular since it first entered the marketplace in 2005, but what makes it stand out in 2016 is its tech savvy. With both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, no matter what phone you have, you can easily connect your Tucson to the rest of your life.

The Bad: The Tucson is certainly one of the most affordable models on our list, and very often, we’ll complain about lack of upgrade options from base to premium cars. However, Hyundai went overboard with the 2016 Tucson. There are 9 different upgrade options with the Tucson, and it all seems a bit much when trying to make a decision.

7. 2015 Honda CR-V Series II

The Good: When it comes to family-friendly midsize SUVs, Honda’s CR-V has always been a popular standby when it comes to affordability and efficiency. This is why it had to be on our list, and the 2015 is no example. A step up for the 2015 from previous years is its entertainment system, making it preferable for longer drives.

The Bad: Under the bonnet, the 2.4L 4-cylinder petrol engine leaves much to be desired. The CR-V is not a heavy SUV, but it feels much heavier when your foot is to the gas pedal.

8. 2015 Land Rover Discovery

The Good: We always love a good Land Rover, and it is one of the most practical luxury midsize SUVs out there. The look of the 2015 Discovery is stunning on the outside and in, making this not only a means of transport, but a means of style as well.

The Bad: Price, price, price. The 2015 Discovery’s manual base model starts at over $53,000, which can be quite a sting with so many other dynamic midsize options available. However, if you are seriously considering purchasing a new Land Rover, do not let the price dissuade you.

2016s Best Midsize SUVs

Jeep Cherokee Blackhawk

Jeep offers a genuine off-road capability into this midsized SUV. The car maker has ditched the chrome approach, in exchange for blacked-out highlights, from the windows and badging to the whole interior. The Blackhawk currently has one of the firmest, and flattest rides in its class. It has an on-demand four-wheel drive system that is nearly impossible to feel when disengaging and activating. This midsized SUV is perfect for buyers who do not mind going down and dirty in style.

Renault Koleos

The Renault Koleos now offers a new design for its chromed side protective strips, and alloy wheels. You will notice new trim designs, and an option for a brown leather upholstery. If you are somebody looking for a non-black leather interior, then the Koleos could be fit your taste, as the brown color is also being offered on the body. The audio interface has also been redesigned, while the navigation system now features a new seven-inch touchscreen with multimedia functions. Other upgrades to check include the new two-tone 17-inch alloy wheels, keyless start, parking sensors on the front, and the automatic dimming interior mirror.

Kia Sportage

The previous version of the Sportage became a crowd favorite for its powertrains, styling, drive feel, size, and value for money. The new Kia Sportage, meanwhile, follows through on this. The car maker made improvements on the powertrains, provided more kit, offered better driver assistance features, and increased the interior room. When it comes to its styling, the profile offers a familiar feel, but the face is totally new. The three engines (the 2.0L and 2.4L petrol, and 2.0 turbo diesel) now have better fuel-efficiency and power. The six-speed automatic transmission is the sole option because of the buyers’ increased preference in the previous model.

Mitsubishi Outlander

Mitsubishi offers a “Dynamic Shield” look for this model. The car maker decided on this appearance to keep this popular midsized SUV fresh and competitive. The new look covers the body, all the way to the drive system and the flashy interior. Mitsubishi also included new front mudguards, new 18-inch alloy wheels, silver roof rails, LED tail lights, and the LED daytime running lights. The Outlander has the car brand’s latest CVT transmission version that reduces the revving flare feel and improves the acceleration.

Peugeot 3008 Active Diesel

Peugeot has decided to provide a better value on its range of models, including the 3008 Active Diesel. Its diesel engine is capable of handling its big load, thanks to its six-speed automatic gearbox and 340Nm of torque. The fitout looks great, as well, including the satellite navigation system, the seven-inch multimedia screen, reversing cameras, alloys, aircon, and more.

Best of all, the 3008 Active Diesel also received a five-star safety rating from the ANCAP, making it a good choice for buyers looking for a midsized family SUV. Peugeot capitalised on the flexible seating and room space. It is now possible to fit all sorts of items inside with this one.

Holden Captiva

The Holden Captiva offers five- and seven-seat options to comfortably accommodate a family. It also comes with two- and four-wheel drive system options, and a choice of diesel and petrol engines. The Captiva is a great city-friendly SUV option as it has started to move toward becoming a family SUV than the dirt-ready off-road setup.

Nissan X-Trail

The Nissan X-Trail is another great midsized SUV that is offered both in five- and seven-seat options. The X-Trail was first launched in 2001 to compete against the Subaru Forester and Toyota RAV4. Like these two SUVs, the X-Trail also offers a choice of two- and four-wheel drive system, diesel and petrol engine, and the automatic and manual transmission. This Nissan SUV has been successful since its launch. It has remained popular for its wide range of configurations, decent value for money, and its versatile capabilities.

Subaru Forester Diesel

The Subaru Forester offers a car-like driving experience, a decent off-road capability, and an adequate space. Its higher ride height and long suspension travel made the Forester a good choice for a midsized SUV. It can tackle both the city and rough roads. This model continues to have a convenient driving experience, and has become larger, safer, and more powerful through generations.

Toyota RAV-4

The Toyota RAV4 has been a leader in midsized SUVs, addressing the growing preference of car buyers to road-focused SUVs. This model offers a combination of a city-ready and off-road capable construction. It became popular for its interior space that is similar to that of a big hatchback, but it has since grown into a mid-sized SUV with its successive generations. The new RAV4 is now a five-door SUV, instead of the original two-door. Buyers also have the option to choose between diesel and petrol engines, a wide range of specification levels, and the two- and four-wheel drive systems.

Mazda CX-5

The Mazda CX-5 was a late-comer in the midsized SUV category, but it became a hit with its stylish looks. This SUV comes with a pair of powerful engines and road manners. Mazda’s plan to make it into the medium SUV market became successful, stealing the limelight from the previous favorites in this segment. This model is a perfect match with the Subaru Forester and the Toyota RAV4. It is available in two- and all-wheel drive system, and you can choose between its petrol and diesel engines. If you are looking for another powerful midsized SUV option, then the CX-5 should be on your list.


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