SUV vs. Sedan: Which is Right for You?

Key Takeaways

  • Differences in Design: SUVs offer a higher seating position; sedans are closer to the ground.
  • Fuel Efficiency: Typically, sedans are more fuel-efficient than SUVs.
  • Storage and Space: SUVs generally provide more cargo space and seating.
  • Drive and Performance: The driving experience differs due to vehicle size and weight.
  • Safety Considerations: Both have unique safety features to consider.
  • Cost Implications: Ownership costs can vary between SUVs and sedans.

Choosing between an SUV and a sedan is more than just a matter of personal preference. It’s about understanding the key differences, benefits, and potential drawbacks of each. 

In the great SUV vs. Sedan debate, we’ll delve into the nitty-gritty to help you make an informed choice.

And, if you’re looking for the perfect deal, check out our range at Auffenberg Chrysler of Herrin. Discover the best deals on SUVs and sedans with us! 

Differences in Design

  • SUV: SUVs (Sport Utility Vehicles) typically boast a robust and rugged design. With a higher ground clearance, they offer a commanding view of the road. Their design often allows for off-road capabilities and towing, making them versatile choices for adventurous spirits.
  • Sedan: Sedans, on the other hand, have a lower profile, offering a closer-to-the-ground driving experience. This design is often associated with elegance, aerodynamics, and a smoother city driving experience.

Fuel Efficiency

Fuel consumption is a crucial factor for many when choosing a vehicle, and these two vehicles differ in this respect based on their functionalities. 

  • SUV: Due to their larger size and weight, SUVs generally consume more fuel than sedans. However, advancements in technology are slowly bridging this gap, with many modern SUVs now offering decent fuel efficiency.
  • Sedan: Sedans typically excel in this area. Their smaller size, lighter weight, and aerodynamic design contribute to better mileage, making them a preferable choice for those prioritizing fuel economy.

Storage and Space

Your vehicle’s storage needs can greatly influence your choice.

  • SUV: One of the main attractions of SUVs is their spacious interiors. They can comfortably accommodate more passengers and offer ample cargo space, making them ideal for larger families or those who frequently travel with a lot of luggage.
  • Sedan: While sedans might not match the sheer space of an SUV, many modern sedans offer surprisingly spacious trunks and cabin space. They’re suitable for smaller families and city dwellers who don’t require extensive cargo space.

Drive and Performance

Driving dynamics can vary significantly between these two vehicle types.

  • SUV: Their larger size means SUVs can sometimes feel bulkier to drive. However, they’re well-suited for rough terrains and offer excellent stability, especially in inclement weather conditions.
  • Sedan: Sedans provide a more connected driving experience. They’re agile, responsive, and generally offer a smoother ride in urban settings.

Safety Considerations

When it comes to safety, both vehicle types have their strengths.

  • SUV: With their bulkier build, many people perceive SUVs as safer. Their elevated driving position can provide better visibility, which might aid in spotting potential road hazards. Furthermore, many modern SUVs come equipped with advanced safety features like lane-keeping assist, blind-spot monitoring, and automatic emergency braking.
  • Sedan: Sedans generally have a lower center of gravity, reducing the risk of rollovers – a concern sometimes associated with taller vehicles like SUVs. Additionally, many sedans also come equipped with a plethora of safety features, ensuring protection for their occupants.

Cost Implications

The initial purchase price, as well as long-term ownership costs, can be a deciding factor.

  • SUV: SUVs tend to be priced higher than sedans, especially when looking at base models. Their maintenance and fuel costs might also be steeper due to their larger size and engine requirements.
  • Sedan: Sedans are often more affordable initially. Their fuel efficiency can lead to long-term savings, and maintenance costs are generally lower than their SUV counterparts.

Environmental Concerns

The environment is a growing concern for many buyers.

  • SUV: Given their larger engines and lower fuel efficiency, SUVs often have a higher carbon footprint than sedans. However, with the rise of hybrid and electric SUVs, this is changing.
  • Sedan: Sedans, particularly those with smaller engines or hybrid/electric models, tend to be more environmentally friendly due to better fuel efficiency and lower emissions.

Urban vs. Rural Needs

  • City Driving: For those living in bustling urban areas, tight parking spaces and frequent stop-and-go traffic are everyday challenges. Sedans, with their compact design, can be easier to maneuver and park in cities. Their smooth driving dynamics often make them the preferred choice for city dwellers.
  • Country Driving: If you find yourself frequently driving in rural or unpaved areas, SUVs may be the more practical option. Their higher ground clearance is suited for rough terrains, and their robust build can handle the demands of country roads.

Resale Value

  • SUV: Some SUVs, particularly popular models known for their reliability and off-road capabilities, tend to retain higher resale values.SUVs tailored for specific markets or regions with a high demand for off-road or all-terrain vehicles can maintain better resale values due to their versatility.
  • Sedans: Sedans, especially well-regarded models from reputable brands, often maintain competitive resale values, particularly in urban settings with a high demand for compact, fuel-efficient vehicles. The resale value of sedans can vary significantly based on the specific model, brand reputation, and market demand.

Tech and Comfort Features

  • SUV: Many high-end SUVs offer advanced tech features such as adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assistance, and premium infotainment systems. Some may offer specialized features uncommon in sedans, such as panoramic sunroofs, third-row entertainment systems, and off-road driving modes.
  • Sedans: Sedans have caught up in terms of tech integration, offering similar features to SUVs, including touchscreen infotainment, driver-assist technologies, and advanced safety features. Some luxury features, especially those more associated with larger vehicles like panoramic sunroofs or off-road driving modes, might be less common in sedans due to space limitations.

Long-term Reliability

  • SUV: SUVs designed for off-road capabilities often boast robust construction, but frequent exposure to challenging terrains might lead to more wear and tear, potentially impacting long-term reliability. Reliability can vary among SUV models, with some being known for their durability while others might have higher maintenance needs.
  • Sedans: Sedans, with their simpler designs and typically less complex drivetrains, have historically been perceived as more durable and potentially offering better long-term reliability. This can also vary based on the specific sedan model and brand.


The SUV vs. Sedan debate doesn’t have a one-size-fits-all answer. Your choice will depend on your priorities, be it fuel efficiency, space, driving experience, or cost implications. Evaluate your needs, consider the long-term implications, and make an informed decision. 
And when you’re ready to make that choice, don’t forget to explore the stellar options at Auffenberg Chrysler of Herrin. Discover the perfect vehicle with us!