SUVs vs. Hatchbacks: Best Family Car

SUVs vs. Hatchbacks: Best Family Car

When it comes to deciding on a new family car, there are lots of things that need to be considered. You need to think about space, safety, running costs, practicality and, of course, stylish good looks! By and large, your individual requirements and personal choice will be the driving point behind your purchase, but here’s a quick breakdown of SUVs vs. hatchbacks to make the process easier.


Most people automatically think that an SUV offers more space than a hatchback, but this differs greatly between models. For example a 2015 Honda Fit offers 16.6 cubic feet of cargo room and the 2014 Hyundai Accent provides a whopping 21.2 cubic feet which, surprisingly, is more than you’d get from a 2015 Toyota Land Cruiser with its 16.1 cubic feet of cargo space and many other crossovers.

In fact, the majority of modern compact SUVs and hatchbacks are very similar in cargo space, effectively making this a much harder decision if space is a big concern for you. Every model is different, so make sure you do thorough research before making a used car purchase.


Knowing that everyone will be safe if you’re in an accident is a very import factor when choosing a family car. The public perception is that SUVs are much safer than other types of vehicle. It’s easy to see why people think this, they’re big, bulky and durable. Therefore they have to be the safest type of car, right?

While, on the whole, SUVs do tend to be relatively safe – especially in head-on collisions – the safest car on the market is actually a hatchback! The Volvo V40 to be precise. It was awarded a staggering 90.25% overall rating from Euro NCAP. The safest SUV you can currently buy is the Ford Kuga which achieved an overall 87.5% safety rating followed by the Range Rover with 81% overall.

Again, there isn’t much difference between the two and how safe the vehicle is will be largely dependent on the model you’re looking at.


This one really puts the cat amongst the pigeons. Traditionally you would have found that hatchbacks were more fuel efficient with lower road tax and relatively cheap insurance. However, with the introduction of the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV hybrid this statistic has been put on its head.

In addition to this, many compact SUVs and crossovers are capable of achieving 40MPG plus, helping to bring down the overall running costs. That said, you’re still likely to have cheaper road tax and insurance from a hatchback than you would with an SUV, giving the hatchback the edge if you’re concerned about running costs.


Depending on where you live, having a big SUV may not be practical. This is especially true if you live in a city where you regularly have to squeeze into tight parking spaces. Hatchbacks come into their own here, being nippy enough to handle city driving easily while not being so small that they feel unsafe on long motorway journeys. Crossovers and compact SUVs also offer better practicality in these situations, where a large SUV may experience problems.

If you don’t regularly drive around cities then the impracticalities of driving a large SUV won’t affect you as much. Nevertheless hatchbacks are much more versatile, unless you want to try and get in a bit of off-road driving on the weekend – in which case many crossovers and compact SUVs won’t cut the mustard either.


Unlike the other categories, this is entirely down to individual taste and personal choice. In recent years the SUV has become much more fashionable and crossovers reflect this, as they maintain the looks of an SUV but without the same capabilities. Hatchbacks also boast good looks and excellent styling options, with many manufacturers offering an increased amount of personalisation.


If you’re torn between choosing an SUV and a hatchback then there’s very good reason for it. There is basically nothing between the two.

Largely it comes down to personal preference, what you feel comfortable with and something that’s practical for your family. If you’re umming and ahhing between the two then come down to Nathaniel Cars today, with a huge selection of hatchbacks and SUVs on site we’re bound to have the perfect car for you.