Alternatives to that gas-guzzling, gigantic SUV

Will gas prices hovering around $4.00 per gallon nationwide millions of people are looking for ways to cut their gasoline bills. Some of those people actually drive gigantic SUVs which, forgive us, leave us feeling a little bit cold about their complaints that gas prices are so high. Seriously, how can anyone complain about gas prices when they’re driving around an automobile with enough room to fit a family of 10?

But, stepping down off of our high horse for just a moment, there are some people that bought these ginormous vehicles thinking that they had very few choices as far as rear seat passenger legroom and carrying lots of cargo were concerned. There are definitely some alternatives on the road however and today we’ve brought you a blog that will tell you about 5 of them. These 5 vehicles are not only much easier on your wallet at the gas pump but they have plenty of legroom front and back and will handle most decent sized cargo loads with ease.  So if you need a relatively large size vehicle but you don’t want to drive something that gets 2 miles to the gallon you should definitely enjoy this blog.

Starting at just under $28,000 the Toyota Venzais one part station wagon and one part sedan. It has a very low silhouette and roofline and looks more like an overfed passenger car than an SUV. That being said it still provides almost 31 cubic feet of space with the rear seats up and a huge 70.2 cubic feet of cargo space with the rear seats folded down. Of course like most vehicles similar to the Venza on the road today it comes loaded with everything that mom and dad could possibly want as far as luxury but, at 21 mpg city and 27 on the highway, it’s not going to make you feel like a tool every time you’re sitting at the gas pumps.

The Acura TSX Sport Wagon is basically Acura’s wagon version of their midsize sedan and is also the smallest of the 5 vehicles on this list. Still, it has nearly 26 cubic feet of cargo space with all the seats still in use, a number that’s only slightly smaller than the gigantic 5 seat Ford Escape SUV. Fold down those rear seats and the cargo capacity shoots up to almost 61 cubic feet, which is still pretty darn good for a car that gets 30 miles per gallon on the highway and 22 miles per gallon in the city. Considering that it’s the smallest car on our list the Acura TSX actually costs the most at just over $31,000, something that you should definitely keep in mind if you’re looking for a new vehicle but want to save money too.

One of the top vehicles in the minivan department the Nissan Questoffers nearly 26 cubic feet of storage with all of the seats still in use as well as an extra 11.4 cubic feet of extra storage under the floor (as long as you have the model that does not come with the optional Bose audio system). The Quest also has a roomy 63.6 cubic feet of storage space when the third row of seats is folded flat and an absolutely enormous 108.4 cubic feet when all of the seats are folded flat in the second and third rows. At 19 miles per gallon in the city and 24 on the highway it’s certainly not the top contender as far as miles per gallon is concerned but it is number 1 in the cargo storage space department.

Probably our favorite on this list just because it gets such great mileage and has such an incredibly low starting price is the Kia Soul. At just under $14,000. but offering almost 54 cubic feet of cargo space with the rear seats folded the Soul is seriously impressive, especially when you consider that the Honda Civic is actually 1 foot longer. When you take into consideration the 35 miles that it gets to the gallon on the highway and 27 that it gets in the city, plus the fact that Kia seems to be getting better and better ratings by the likes of Consumer Reports magazine, you’ll see why we think the Soul is not only an excellent car but also an excellent choice for beating the oil companies at their own game.

Rounding out our list is the Mazda 5. It’s a minivan and wagon combination that seats6 but is a little bit smaller than your typical minivan. It only sports a meager 5.58 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third row so, if you’re actually going to be seating 6 people in it, you’re probably going to have to load quite a bit of stuff on the roof. With the third row folded down however there is a decent 27.5 cubic feetof cargo space and that jumps up to 44.4 cubic feet when the second row joins it. Starting at just under $20,000 and claiming 21 mpg city wise and 28 mpg on the highway the Mazda 5 is definitely a car that you should consider if you’re looking for plenty of space for the family as well as enough room for all their luggage, at least when the third row of seats is folded down.

And there you have it, 5 vehicles that will take you where you want to go without killing your budget and will have enough roomto get the family (and their stuff) there in style. Good luck with your new car search and keep in mind that most manufacturer’s claimed mpg information is between 10 to 20% inflated. (We think it’s criminal to but there’s not much we can do about it.) Make sure to come back and visit us again soon as  we’re always searching for new and better ways to help you save money at the pump. See you then.

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