Australia’s Best SUVs: How does the Honda CRV compare?

best sub guide; honda crvThe Australian SUV market is an extremely popular segment and so there is a huge range of vehicles to choose from as a result.

For the purpose of this article, I have covered an overview of the best-selling Australian SUV options in the $35,000-ish range.

If you are looking for a slightly higher priced option, take a look at this article I have previously written that covers some fantastic 7 seater SUV models.

Compare SUVs With Our Interactive SUV Reviews Table!

Find the best SUV for you in the table below. You can sort the columns by clicking on the arrows at the top of each column!


Price (approximate - varies per model)
Fuel Efficiency
Honda CR-V$32,79058.7L/100km
Mazda CX-5 MAXX Sport$36,62057.4L/100km
Mitsubishi Outlander 2.0 ES FWD$28,99055.8L/100km
Subaru Forester XT$43,49058.5L/100km
Toyota RAV4$34,49058.5L/100km
Toyota Kluger$44,490711.0L/100km
Hyundai Santa Fe$45,99077.3L/100km
Suzuki Grand Vitara$28,99058.7L/100km
Nissan X-Trail$34,54057.2L/100km
Sportage Si$26,74057.5L/100km (Diesel)
Nissan Dualis TS$30,29055.9L/100km* (Independent test)
Ford Kuga$27,990 511.5L/100km* (*reported on some websites)
Mazda CX-7$33,990511.5L/100km
Mazda CX-9$57,485711.2L/100km
Ford Territory$43,24058.2L/100km


SUV Reviews & Comparison – Best Selling Australian SUVs in the $35,000 range (standard models)

Honda CR-V (picture above), priced at $32,790, this model comes with a 2.4litre 4 cylinder engine fuelled by petrol. It’s a 5 speed automatic and claims to have an 8.7L/100km fuel consumption.

Mazda CX-5, priced at just $90 more than the Honda CRV, this model offers a 2.5litre engine, an additional 6th gear in the automatic transmission, and 7.4L/100KM fuel consumption. Read our Mazda CX-5 review here.

Mitsubishi Outlander, comparatively to the Honda CRV, you are looking at paying and extra $1200 for your identical 2.4 litre, 4 cylinder petrol engine. Like the Mazda CX-5, it has a six-speed automatic transmission and boasts 7.5L/100km fuel consumption. Click to read our comprehensive Mitsubishi Outlander review.

Subaru Forester, coming in at $32, 990, you are getting a 2.5 litre engine to match the CX-5, a unique transmission that is continuously variable, and 8.1L/100km fuel consumption.

The ever-popular Toyota RAV4 comes with a $34,490 price tag and you get a 2.5 litres, 4 cylinder engine that is powered by a 6-speed automatic. You can expect 8.5L/100km consumption. Click to read our comprehensive RAV4 review.

Heading to a European model, and looking at the Volkswagen Tiguan, you are going to pay $35,990 for a 2 litre 4 cylinder turbo petrol (note the turbo). It is a 6 speed auto and you can expect 8.9L/100km on the fuel consumption side of things.

Buying the Best SUV for your needs

Be certain of your needs: Do you really need a 4WD?

Overview of different 4WD systems

Group 1: Part Time
This category, as the name suggests, uses 4WD part-time, meaning that when youa re driving on city streets, you drive in 2WD. Be careful with this category, because if you purchase one without ever actually using the vehicle off-road, you are essentially wasting your dough.

This is the cheapest way to make a 4WD SUV, and they will work just fine off-road, but in reality, if you are only driving around the city streets, why bother getting a petrol-guzzling large vehicle? Why not get a 2WD station wagon?

Group 2: Automatic Part Time
These are good for snow driving. Essentially this is another cheap way for a manufacturer to make a 4WD vehicle and how these work is that they drive in 2WD, but when the wheel start to spin, they convert to 4WD. Sound fair enough, but in reality, the whole idea of a 4WD is to prevent wheel spin. Again, you have to ask yourself the question: why buy a 4WD or one of the so-called best SUVs, when the best car for you may actually be a 2WD sedan?

Group 3: Street Full Time
Not 100% sure why you’d go with this if you were buying based on the 4WD component, because with this type of system, they do operate in 4WD all the time, but the connection between front and rear wheels can still allow for slip. They’ll drive fine on the streets of the city, but they are sub-standard off-road.

Full Time, On and Off Road
Unfortunately, full-time 4WD vehicles cope with a price tag to suit; they are the most expensive. They do however have the locking system between front and rear and provide for true on road and off-road 4WD.

Popular Full-Time Models:

  • Range Rover
  • Mercedes ML-320 (electronic locking, but body design not for heavy off-roading)
  • Mitsubishi Montero
  • Land Rover Discovery
  • Toyota / Lexus Land Cruiser
  • Jeep Grand Cherokee (optional)
  • Land Rover Defender

4WD vs. 2WD: In case you haven’t realised, I am a big believer in buying a vehicle to suit your driving needs, so for this reason I really do recommend that people think carefully about paying for 4WD models. Most individuals do not drive off-road, so unless you are keen on forking for an extra 10%-20% for a feature you are not going to ever use, stick with a 2WD model. You can expect to save around $2000-$6000 on a standard model SUV in the $32-$36,000 range.

Be aware of standard base model inclusions: You should expect that most vehicles in the mid-price range (around $35,000, will have power windows, air-bags (curtain, front and side), key-less entry (cool feature nowadays), and the ever-handy cruise control that we have come to not be able to live without.

Expect these types of inclusions and eliminate them from your buying decision; nowadays they are an expectation as opposed to a handy inclusion in a new vehicle.

Look for valuable standard add-ons: Things like reversing cameras, which are fantastic for safety-minded parents of young children (not to mention ease of reversing in busy parking lots), are not standard on all models.

The Outlander and RAV 4 do not have reversing cameras, whereas the Honda CRV, Mazda CX5, Subaru Forester and Volkswagon Tiguan all do.

The Tiguan, although more highly priced, has a bunch of features that the others do not, including; auto headlights and wipers (if that is important to you – not sure it would be), fog lights, upgrade on the single-zone climate control that some of the above mentioned models have to a dual-zone, front and rear sensors so it is great for parking despite the lack of vision that a reversing camera would provide.

Just to top it off, it can actually automatically direct itself when reverse parking as it steers itself and only requires you to break!

Overall, there are some very highly quality SUVs on the market and it is difficult to pinpoint one as being Australia’s best SUV available. It all comes down to personal preference and spending a couple days out visiting car dealerships, test driving the vehicles overnight and making a purchase based on your budget and gut feeling toward any given vehicle.

Related Articles:

Best 8 Seater Cars Australia

Full List of Car Reviews

Article written by Damian Roberton