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Brendan ASKED THE GUIDE

Why aren't any full-sized SUV's offered in Australia?

Why aren't any full-sized SUV's offered in Australia like in US? Here, to get five seats with maximum boot space buyers either have to get a LandCruiser or similar or go for a dual cab ute. Failings of the dual cab are working over the tailgate and, long items can't be poked through but rather have to hang out the back, unsecured.

The LandCruiser is expensive and heavy and a proper 4x4 with heavy duty components which is overkill for driving on black top unless towing something large. Can you suggest an AWD wagon or SUV with 5 seats, top hinged rear door and tonnes of boot space, especially length?

Have you thought about something like a Toyota Kluger, Brendan? These are available in two-wheel-drive (so you’re not lugging around an extra set of axles) or all-wheel-drive and, if you look closely, they’re really just an old-fashioned station-wagon with a (fair) bit more ride height. They’re quite large inside and compete with similar vehicles such as the Nissan Pathfinder and Mazda CX-9.

The most likely reason we don’t get the big American AWD SUVs comes down to availability of right-hand-drive and the fact that the North Americans favour petrol engines over diesel which, in a vehicle like the ones you’re talking about, would have a huge effect on the weekly fuel bill.

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