If you’re looking for a vehicle that suits your New Jersey family’s needs, you may be struggling to decide whether a minivan or SUV would be the best choice. Both styles of vehicles have a lot to offer, but there are some important differences you should be aware of before you make your choice. Our team of auto experts here at New Jersey State Auto Used Cars has compiled an overview of the key things to consider.
What Are the Differences Between Minivans and SUVs?
Both minivans and SUVs offer seating for up to eight people and have a bulkier body design than a wagon or sedan. Minivans usually have three rows of seating, with room for seven or eight passengers. By contrast, SUVs can either have two or three rows, with their passenger capacity ranging from five to eight.
Minivans possess a larger cargo storage area behind the third row than the space you’ll have in an SUV. Their rear rows of seating can often be folded into the floor or removed entirely to open up more space. In an SUV, the rear two rows can generally be folded flat if you need to accommodate more cargo.
SUVs usually have a wider selection of engines on offer than minivans. For example, an SUV may be powered by a V-4, V-6, or V-8 engine. There are even some electric SUVs making there way onto the market. Minivans, on the other hand, almost always have a V-6 engine under the hood.
Which Option Is Better for Carrying Cargo?
If you regularly need to carry large amounts of cargo in addition to passengers, a minivan may be the best choice. Minivans have sliding rear doors as opposed to the swing doors on SUVs, which makes it easier to load up a minivan. They also have more space than an SUV if you’re carrying a full load of passengers. For example, a Honda Odyssey minivan has about 40 cubic feet of storage behind the third row, while a Ford Explorer, a mid-sized SUV, has about 20 cubic feet.
Should I Choose a Minivan or SUV for Off-Roading?
SUVs are much better for off-roading and dealing with bad weather than minivans. That’s because you have the option of choosing a much more potent power train. It’s also due to the fact that SUVs have more ground clearance compared to minivans, which ride closer to the ground.
The more potent power trains in SUVs are better suited for towing trailers or campers for longer off-roading trips. Minivans do not cope as well as SUVs when it comes to hauling heavy loads.
The SUV market is larger than the minivan segment, so you can also pick vehicles specifically designed for off-roading. Jeep, Ford, and other top brands all have SUVs in their lineups designed for rough terrain. Many of them feature optional trims and add-ons to improve your off-roading experience.
In addition, SUVs offer you four-wheel drive or all-wheel drive options, while minivans usually don’t. This fact gives the edge to SUVs if you often drive in snowy, muddy, or wet conditions. If you mainly stick to city driving, a minivan should do just fine.
Do SUVs or Minivans Offer More Interior Comfort?
Both vehicle types perform strongly when it comes to the quality of their cabin and entertainment systems. Minivans tend to be more functional or utilitarian, providing a good solution if you often take your kids on outdoor trips. On the other hand, SUVs can look more stylish due to the extensive optional add-ons you can purchase. These include things like leather upholstery, and heated and ventilated seats.
If comfort for your family means having plenty of passenger space for longer road trips, both SUVs and minivans will do this for you. The first and second rows of seating in most mid-sized SUVs and minivans are well-equipped for adult passengers, while third-row seating is usually ideal for kids or teens.
Both SUVs and minivans also have access to the latest infotainment systems, allowing the whole family to have fun on the road. The only difference may be that if you’re willing to pay considerably more for your vehicle, some luxury SUVs have features that aren’t available in most minivans. For instance, luxury SUVs sometimes feature rear-row infotainment screens and premium stereos.
What if Price Is my Main Concern?
This is a tough one to answer, since it depends on whether your main focus is the up-front price of the vehicle or its running costs. Minivans are typically cheaper than SUVs to buy. A new minivan usually ranges in price from about $27,000 to $40,000. SUVs can range from $30,000 to around $50,000, and some luxury trims are much more expensive. The most extravagant SUV models can top $100,000.
However, choosing an SUV over a minivan gives you more choice on the type of powertrain you have. As a result, you can choose a vehicle that’s more fuel efficient, saving you and your family money at the gas pump. For example, a compact SUV powered by a V-4 engine is likely to be more fuel efficient than a minivan equipped with a V-6.
Find a Great Selection of Minivans and SUVs at New Jersey State Auto Used Cars
After reading through our minivan vs. SUV comparison, we hope you have a clearer idea of which vehicle style is best suited for you and your family. As we’ve tried to explain, there’s really no right or wrong answer to the question of which is better, an SUV or minivan. Your choice will depend above all on your personal needs and those of your family.
If our professional auto sales team can assist you in any way, don’t hesitate to contact us. We’d be delighted to talk you through some of the vehicles available among our great selection of SUVs and minivans. We can also arrange a test drive in your chosen vehicle so that you can see how it performs in the real world before you decide to buy. So whether you’ve decided in favor of a minivan or SUV, you can rely on new jersey State Auto Used Cars to offer you a hassle-free and friendly purchasing experience.