Top 5 diesel SUVs

  • Looking for an SUV but not sure which to pick?
  • Our top five will cost you no more than £70 in BIK a month
  • We include the engine and trim we’d pick for each

The SUV segment has exploded over recent years, largely thanks to the popularity of the Nissan Qashqai.

A higher ride position, chunky styling and loads of space to stretch out are just some of the reasons many are considering an SUV as their next company car.

The Qashqai is an excellent all-rounder, but you can’t seem to drive down the road these days without seeing one. We’ve been looking at which other SUVs you could pick which offer running costs, kit and performance to rival the infamous Qashqai but offer you a car which is more likely to stand-out from the crowd.

All in our list will cost a 20 percent payer no more than £70 per month for the current 2015/16 tax year, offer fuel economy over 65mpg, plus get a minimum four star rating in our full review.

Renault Kadjar

New for 2015, the Kadjar borrows 60 percent of its components from the Qashqai, however over 95 percent of what you as a driver will touch, see and feel, is different. We are big fans of Renault's new SUV - not only does it offer impressive practicality, refined engines and excellent comfort levels, it also looks great and when specified with the economical 1.5-litre diesel, is easy on the wallet too.  

Mid-range DynamiqueNav trim is the one we’d go for as you get plenty of kit for the cash. Highlights from the standard specification include 17-inch alloys, tinted windows, seven-inch touchscreen with sat-nav, DAB Radio, Bluetooth, dual-zone climate control and automatic lights and wipers.

At a glance:

Engine and trim: 1.5 dCi Dynamique Nav

P11D price: £21,540

CO2 emissions: 99g/km

2015/16 BIK tax band: 17

2015/16 monthly cost: £61*

Combined MPG: 74mpg

Power: 108bhp

0-62mph: 11.9 seconds

Star Rating: 5 star

Click here to read our full review of the Renault Kadjar


Citroen C4 Cactus

The design won’t be to everyone’s taste but there’s no denying that the Cactus certainly knows how to turn heads. It has more to offer than those distictive looks too, offering excellent running costs, practical features and impressive comfort levels.

Because of its low P11D price we’d opt for top-of-the-range Flair trim which gives you the best in terms of kit with automatic climate control, sat-nav, reversing camera, automatic lights and wipers, 17-inch alloys and cruise control all included as standard.

There’s little penalty on running costs for the larger alloys on this model and it will not affect which BIK tax band the car slots into for now either. 

At a glance:

Engine and trim: 1.6 BlueHDI Flair 

P11D price: £18,035 

CO2 emissions: 89g/km

2015/16 BIK tax band: 16

2015/16 monthly cost: £48*

Combined MPG: 83mpg

Power: 98bhp 

0-62mph: 10.7 seconds

Star Rating: 4.5 stars

Click here to read our full review of the Citroen C4 Cactus


Honda HR-V

Another new car for this year, the HR-V combines chunky SUV styling with a coupe-like roofline and interior flexibility similar to an MPV. The 1.6-litre diesel we've picked here has been tried and tested elsewhere in the Honda range and offers some impressive running cost figures.

You can currently buy the HR-V in four trims, although base S models offer the lowest in CO2 emissions at 104g/km. We’ve gone for a higher trim so you get more kit for your money - SE Nav bags you a seven-inch colour touchscreen with internet access, dual-zone climate control, sat-nav, DAB radio, Bluetooth and a raft of safety systems including collision prevention systems and lane departure warning.

At a glance:

Engine and trim: 1.6 i-DTEC SE Navi

P11D price: £22,050

CO2 emissions: 108g/km

2015/16 BIK tax band: 19

2015/16 monthly cost: £69*

Combined MPG: 68mpg

Power: 118bhp

0-62mph: 10.5 seconds

Star Rating: 4.5 stars

Click here to read our full review of the Honda HR-V


Suzuki Vitara

One of the cheapest SUVs you can buy, Suzuki’s new Vitara has a lot going for it. Fit and finish may not be able to rival that of the Qashqai, but it has an abundance of character, striking looks and crucially for company car drivers, low monthly tax costs too.  

Famed for its 4x4 know-how, the Vitara is also available in front-wheel drive where you’ll find the lowest running costs.

Mid-spec SZ-T comes with plenty of kit for the cash with a reversing camera, cruise control, air-con, sat-nav, DAB Radio and Bluetooth all included.

At a glance:

Engine and trim: 1.6 DDiS SZ-T

P11D price: £17,444

CO2 emissions: 106g/km

2015/16 BIK tax band: 19

2015/16 monthly cost: £55*

Combined MPG: 70mpg

Power: 118bhp

0-62mph: 11.5 seconds

Star Rating: 4 stars

Click here to read our full review of the Suzuki Vitara

Mini Countryman

The MINI Countryman has proved a popular choice for many retail buyers and now with the addition of a Business trim, the firm is hoping to replicate that success with company car drivers.

When it comes to character, there are few which can compete with the Countryman, it’s also fun to drive with a high-quality cabin.

There’s a wealth of kit fitted as standard including sat-nav, cruise control, parking sensors, air-con, 17-inch alloy wheels and automatic headlights and wipers.

At a glance:

Engine and trim: 1.6 Cooper D Business Edition

P11D price: £21,200

CO2 emissions: 111g/km

2015/16 BIK tax band: 20

2015/16 monthly cost: £70*

Combined MPG: 67mpg

Power: 110bhp

0-62mph: 10.9 seconds

Star Rating: 4 stars

Click here to read our full review of the MINI Countryman

Coming Soon: Volkswagen Tiguan

Unveiled just a couple of weeks ago, the 2016 Volkswagen Tiguan is lighter and larger than the car it replaces and will come loaded with the latest advanced kit and safety technology. A range of economical engines will be on offer too and as we’ve come to expect, build quality should be excellent.

Keep an eye out for more news and a comprehensive Volkswagen Tiguan review towards the end of 2015.

Still not decided on your next company car? These articles may help…

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*Monthly tax costs are based on a 20 percent tax payer for the current 2015/16 year