February 6, 2023

SHSU Houstonian Online

Read all latest news headlines from USA, UK and around the world, get today's breaking news and live updates on politics, elections, business, sports, economy,​ …

Which car suits you?  Assistance in choosing a crossover, MPV, SUV or station wagon |  Sentences

Which car suits you? Assistance in choosing a crossover, MPV, SUV or station wagon | Sentences

Anyone who wants to buy a car is faced with all kinds of abbreviations and fashionable jargon. Do you want an SUV, MPV, station wagon or crossover? What exactly does that mean and how do you choose the perfect car for you?

The Opel Astra has kept it nice and clear in the 90s of the last century. The German compact family car wasn’t quite as exciting, but the successor to the old Kadett had a very clear delivery range.

As an Astra adept, you can choose between a hatchback (“standard” short version with a straight back and a choice of three or five doors) or a four-door and “butt” sedan. Those who wanted more space chose A more spacious station wagon with an extended luggage compartment; Just a matter of extending the roofline a bit.

How different the choices are for consumers who now enter a car showroom. On the one hand, there are significantly fewer options: the just presented sixth-generation Opel Astra is no longer available as a three-door hatchback, and the sedan no longer exists. Those traditional variants are gone because car buyers no longer want them, which is the car manufacturers’ explanation.

But where the “old” three- and four-door models had disappeared, a true proliferation of other body shapes arose at the same time. Nowadays, MPVs, SUVs, crossovers, and all sorts of other inventions from automakers are flying around.

What do all these indicators mean and what is their benefit to you as a car buyer? What are the differences between the different options, what are their pros and cons and which – according to our automotive editors – are the best candidates for each category? With this decision help, you’ll be better prepared and can choose exactly the vehicle that best suits your needs.

See also  It's the course, you idiot, that's the catchphrase today with Bessie, Akzo and the rest

The text continues below the image.

You can find extra luggage space in a station wagon, like the MG 5, which is also fully electric. © RV

MPV: Manual Vanishing Vans

Back to the Opel Astra. The second generation of that car hit the market in 1998, again as a three-door, five-door sedan and wagon. But a year later, Opel introduced another model on the same basis: the Zafira. It was actually an Astra, but as a manual “passenger van”.

The higher and wider body shape is par excellence What we mean by MPV. Multipurpose Vehicle – In other words, a vehicle that excels because of its ample space and ease of use. Zafira did that too, including innovative seat designs: in an instant it changed the car from a moving van into a seven-seater family camper.

MPVs appeared in the 1980s and in the decades since have been very popular, precisely because they have a clear added value in terms of interior space and flexibility compared to smaller and less versatile station wagons.

You’ve had MPVs in all shapes and sizes: from the discreet Mitsubishi SpaceWagon and controversial Fiat Multipla (with three seats up front) to the massive Chrysler Voyager you can walk backwards between the seats. Later, Ford also introduced many MPVs, such as the S-Max, B-Max, and Galaxy.

The text continues below the image.

One of the most popular MPVs is the Renault Scenic.

One of the most popular MPVs is the Renault Scenic. © RV

For those looking for a used car with plenty of space, MPVs are still good candidates, because many models can still be found as used cars. You often get a car on hand for relatively little money, which you can optimally use for a larger family or for more varied activities.

You have to factor in the relatively high maintenance and operating costs, because especially large MPVs are heavy and clunky. But once you know how easy this truck is to use, you’ll never want for anything else.

At least, you think so. The opposite is true when you look at current sales statistics. New MPVs are no longer very popular, so the body style is fading: nearly every automaker has removed space cars from showrooms. The Opel Zafira still exists, but it is no longer based on a family car, but on the Vivaro van.

The Renault (Grand) Scenic midsize and above-average multifunctional is the last of its kind, but it also sells much worse than its predecessors. Thus, the next scenic car will be a completely different car.

SUVs: From the Aquarium to the Vinex Truck

Renault is also following a trend that has been cutting MPV chair legs for years: the rise of the SUV. Sun Sports utility vehicle It also had a higher body (including a higher seating position that makes many motorists happy), but a tougher look than many “truck” cars.

The first generations certainly looked like off-road vehicles that had put on civilian clothes, so to speak. Just think of the first Kia Sportage, which rolled off the showroom in the mid-’90s with a bull bar on its nose and an extra spare wheel on the tailgate. Not necessary, but cool.

The latest Sportage no longer feels like an off-road vehicle at all; The fifth generation is rather a high (premium) family car that has put its mountain boots to the occasion. Often all-wheel drive is no longer available. This is no longer what many SUVs are about; They strike a chord with the audience especially with their looks.

No longer would car buyers prefer sitting in a moving fishbowl with huge side windows and plenty of storage space (read: MPV), they opt for a rough-dressed Vinex truck that makes you feel like you can drive to work through mudslides and rough gravel trails. Larger wheels, steadier proportions, and “indestructible” bumpers became more important than removable seats, overhead storage spaces, folding tables, and two thousand liters of luggage space.

The text continues below the image.

Kia Sportage is one of the most popular SUVs at the moment.

Kia Sportage is one of the most popular SUVs at the moment. © Bart Hogeveld

The fact that many SUVs are less comfortable and roomy than a similarly sized MPV is no reason for many car buyers to abandon such a semi-rugged vehicle. However, this is something to keep in mind when choosing an SUV: even compared to a similar station wagon, you often lose out on practicality.

Example: in the latest Mercedes-Benz E-class Estate (this is the name of the brand’s largest station wagon), you can take with you no less than 640 liters of luggage. The replacement SUV, the GLE, can store 490 cartons of milk behind the back seat. The coupe version of the GLE makes it all colorful: thanks to the modern sloping roofline, you can forget about loading more than four suitcases.

Crocs: a modern mix

Coupe versions of the SUV are a great bridge to the latter category: Transitions. Under that umbrella are all models that combine elements from different car styles. Think of the Citroën C5 X: it’s a royal car, a bit of an SUV, but it also wants to present the comfortable interior of a traditional French mid-size car. Hyundai Ioniq 5, Jaguar I-Pace and Ford Mustang Mach-E in their future incarnations are also difficult to classify.

Note: With many crossovers, design prevails and so you lose more in practicality. For example, the sleek design swallows up head and luggage space (just look at the all-new Peugeot 408). Wider window styles look harsh, but often result in lower-quality all-round visibility (hello, Toyota Aygo X).

And skewed door structures like the Mazda CX-30 are just as uncomfortable. Modern styling makes crossovers hip and many models certainly score with stunning looks, but when it comes to flexibility and ease of use you often choose the worst compromise with such a “compact body”.

The text continues below the image.

A typical crossover is the Citroën C5 X: a small station wagon, a small SUV, but also with the comfortable interior of a traditional French mid-size car.

A typical crossover is the Citroën C5 X: a small station wagon, a small SUV, but also with the comfortable interior of a traditional French mid-size car. © Bart Hogeveld

Bottom line: SUVs aren’t that bad after all

You buy many MPVs with your mind, space, deployability, and flexibility. In addition, you often have to accept a less fluid and rigid design. This also partly applies to the “classic” station wagon. Although the new Opel Astra Sportstourer looks more modern than its predecessor from 1995, you choose mainly estate, station wagon or combi for ease of use.

This is in contrast to the smoothly lined but relatively clumsy crossovers, which show that extra determination. Bottom line, many SUVs offer the most balanced combination of all the components many car buyers are looking for: they keep you satisfied with reasonable deployability, ample space, and respond to your emotions with above-average looks. It is therefore not surprising that sport utility vehicles can no longer be ignored in today’s street scene.

You can find more information about different body styles and their advantages and disadvantages on the Gaspedal.nl website.



Check out our videos about cars and navigation below: