Best 4-Cylinders SUVs of 2020

SUVs are typically large, practical machines, and some have outstanding off-road ability and large-displacement engines, but some 4-cylinder SUV choices are just as great. However, not everyone uses these cars to their full potential, and sometimes a buyer just needs a spacious daily driver that is also light on fuel. These crossovers are generally diminutive compared to their more capable brethren, which means it’s easier to park them and they’re more affordable to live with. Most 4 cyl SUV variants come with a turbo for better economy and performance, but this does not mean that they are less reliable than those with naturally aspirated options. Thus, it may be worth your while to look at used car lots for a smart deal. Thanks to our comprehensive reviews, 2019 versions are covered just as thoroughly as those from 2020. We also look at imminent releases for the 2021 model year, ensuring you have the best advice for all recent car listings.

Top 4 Cyl SUVs

No matter what type of vehicle you are after, there are a number of diverse manufacturers with a large variety of trims, but when it comes to low-capacity engines, the Japanese and German marques make the best. Don’t discount Korean brands either, as these have improved so much over the years that many are now class-leading. When choosing your new mode of transportation, the listings that we consider among the best 4 cylinder SUV options have high mpg figures, a low asking price, and high reliability ratings in the US. You also want something that is compact so that the motor doesn’t make for a lethargic drive. Ideally, you’d want an all-rounder that has a wide spread of abilities, and fortunately, this segment has variants with 4x4 too. Be sure to check out our complete 4-cylinder SUV list.

Specifications and Models

Numerous variations with unique capabilities are on offer, but you don’t have to spend too much to get a great car. The three top four-cylinder SUV models we rank the best cost less than $35,000 and return notable economy, a comfortable ride, and striking design. When it comes to these characteristics, popular crossovers such as the Kia Seltos, Kia Soul, and Mazda CX-30 are brilliant. The Honda CR-V hybrid is also a solid performer.

In terms of luxury and a more upmarket look and feel, the Mercedes-Benz GLA and Volvo XC40 are great options, but the biggest body styles are also available with a petite power plant, some even with hybrid tech, and the Volvo XC90 T8 is one of these. However, you’ll start approaching the $100k mark if you add too many options. Fortunately, there are some relative bargains to be had too, and you could get a sporty 4 cyl SUV for around $45,000 in the Mercedes-AMG GLA35 or similar.

Advice When Choosing

When on the hunt for the perfect car for you, there are a few thing to remember when perusing the list of 4-cylinder SUVs:

  • Comparison: It’s highly recommended that you consider multiple choices objectively, as some vehicles that you would otherwise have disregarded may have everything you need.
  • Check for special deals: Usually, this segment’s buyers prefer big engines, and the USA is famous for that. The benefit to you is that you may be able to find more of the type of small-capacity machine you want at a reduced rate.
  • Ride comfort: Modest automobiles like this aren’t usually meant for the trail, where poor ride quality can be dismissed. Ensure that the vehicle you opt for is comfy enough for daily use.

Pros

  • Impressive fuel economy
  • Raised ride height
  • Cheap to buy

Cons

  • Underpowered compared to larger alternatives
  • Pricey features
  • Slight frame means less space inside

FAQs

What’s an acceptable amount to pay?

Typically, the price range varies considerably depending on the type of vehicle that you’re after, but many in our rankings start below $20,000 while some are on the dark side of $80k. A reasonable mean value to spend, and an amount that would bring decent tech, comfort, and a capable powertrain, is around $20-25k.

Which brands rank highest?

Kia produces some excellent crossovers and should not be shunned by those who have not yet experienced the brand’s offerings. We also rate Mazda, Toyota, and Honda very highly. These companies all have excellent reliability ratings, economical yet strong engines, and comfy interiors.

What’s the best American four-pot SUV?

In this section, a number of different types and body styles make up the numbers. Chevrolet’s Blazer is an attractive choice, while the underrated Lincoln Corsair is also worth considering.
BuzzScore
Design
Performance
MPG
Interior
Infotainment
Reliability
Safety
Value
#1
2021 Kia Seltos
9.4
BuzzScore
9
Design
9
Performance
8
MPG
10
Interior
10
Infotainment
9
Reliability
10
Safety
10
Value
#2
2021 Kia Soul
9.3
BuzzScore
8
Design
10
Performance
8
MPG
9
Interior
10
Infotainment
9
Reliability
10
Safety
10
Value
#3
2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime
9.3
BuzzScore
9
Design
10
Performance
9
MPG
8
Interior
9
Infotainment
10
Reliability
10
Safety
9
Value
#4
2020 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid
9.1
BuzzScore
9
Design
9
Performance
9
MPG
8
Interior
9
Infotainment
10
Reliability
10
Safety
9
Value
#5
2021 Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class SUV
9.1
BuzzScore
9
Design
9
Performance
9
MPG
9
Interior
10
Infotainment
8
Reliability
10
Safety
9
Value
#6
2021 Mercedes-AMG GLA 35
9.1
BuzzScore
10
Design
10
Performance
8
MPG
9
Interior
10
Infotainment
8
Reliability
10
Safety
8
Value
#7
2020 Mazda CX-30
9
BuzzScore
9
Design
9
Performance
9
MPG
9
Interior
8
Infotainment
9
Reliability
10
Safety
9
Value
#8
2020 Volvo XC40
9
BuzzScore
9
Design
9
Performance
9
MPG
9
Interior
10
Infotainment
7
Reliability
10
Safety
9
Value
#9
2021 Genesis GV80
9
BuzzScore
9
Design
8
Performance
8
MPG
10
Interior
10
Infotainment
9
Reliability
9
Safety
9
Value
#10
2020 Mercedes-Benz AMG GLB 35
9
BuzzScore
9
Design
10
Performance
8
MPG
10
Interior
10
Infotainment
7
Reliability
10
Safety
8
Value
#11
2020 Volvo XC90 Hybrid
9
BuzzScore
9
Design
9
Performance
9
MPG
10
Interior
10
Infotainment
7
Reliability
10
Safety
8
Value
#12
2020 Honda CR-V Hybrid
8.9
BuzzScore
8
Design
9
Performance
9
MPG
10
Interior
7
Infotainment
9
Reliability
10
Safety
9
Value
#13
2021 Toyota Venza
8.9
BuzzScore
9
Design
7
Performance
10
MPG
7
Interior
9
Infotainment
10
Reliability
10
Safety
9
Value
#14
2020 Volvo XC60
8.9
BuzzScore
9
Design
9
Performance
8
MPG
9
Interior
10
Infotainment
7
Reliability
10
Safety
9
Value
#15
2020 Volvo XC90
8.9
BuzzScore
9
Design
7
Performance
8
MPG
10
Interior
10
Infotainment
7
Reliability
10
Safety
10
Value
#16
2020 Volvo XC60 Hybrid
8.9
BuzzScore
10
Design
9
Performance
8
MPG
9
Interior
10
Infotainment
7
Reliability
10
Safety
8
Value
#17
2021 Ford Bronco Sport
8.8
BuzzScore
10
Design
7
Performance
8
MPG
9
Interior
9
Infotainment
9
Reliability
9
Safety
9
Value
#18
2020 Chevrolet Blazer
8.8
BuzzScore
10
Design
8
Performance
7
MPG
9
Interior
10
Infotainment
8
Reliability
9
Safety
9
Value
#19
2020 Mercedes-Benz GLB-Class
8.8
BuzzScore
8
Design
8
Performance
9
MPG
9
Interior
10
Infotainment
8
Reliability
10
Safety
8
Value
#20
2020 Toyota Highlander Hybrid
8.8
BuzzScore
8
Design
7
Performance
10
MPG
8
Interior
9
Infotainment
10
Reliability
10
Safety
8
Value