RAC Cars News


The Best Crossovers For Driving In Rain

By raccars Published

Heavy rain is lashing across the UK and, according to the weather forecast, we’re set for a winter of extended rainfall.

Perfect time to consider switching your regular car for a crossover, then. Such models offer SUV-style height off the ground for extra clearance through deep puddles, and some even have four-wheel drive for additional traction.

They’re also easier to see out of and often have extra body protection in case you do scrape something hidden on the ground in deep water.

We’ve picked out six top-sellers here, which will cost around £20,000-£25,000 to buy new, but will be readily available for around £10,000-£15,000 on the secondhand market.

Nissan Qashqai

What makes it good in the rain?

Nissan’s best-selling Qashqai is a top 10 favourite in the UK. Large, roomy and high off the ground, all models up from base Visia trim have standard auto lights and wipers for wet weather visibility. Top-spec Tekna models have a standard Safety Shield Technologies pack that lets you know what’s in your blind spot or racing up fast behind you – and the camera has a blow-dry function so it stays clear in the rain!

Vauxhall Mokka

What makes it good in the rain?

The Vauxhall Mokka is the smallest crossover here, and one of the cheapest to buy new, but that doesn’t mean it’s any less worthy. The high seating position gives good visibility and many versions offer affordable four-wheel drive for those who need to guarantee good grip in the rain. All models get rain-sensitive windscreen wipers and there’s a standard front skip plate and side protection mouldings if you do get caught out.

Honda CR-V

What makes it good in the rain?

The Honda CR-V is one of the most reliable cars you can buy – no matter what the weather, it’s almost guaranteed to keep on working faultlessly and reassuringly. More recent models also have a high-efficiency 1.6-litre turbodiesel engine, meaning that even if rainfall gets very heavy and key roads become closed, you won’t have to worry too much about running low on fuel.

Volkswagen Tiguan

What makes it good in the rain?

The popular Volkswagen Tiguan is the SUV crossover big brother to the familiar Volkswagen Golf. It’s a rugged machine with lots of ground clearance and plenty of engines offering four-wheel drive – but inside, it still retains all the well-equipped luxury and refinement you’d expect of a Volkswagen. For guaranteed bad-weather progress, choose the special Escape model – this has an off-road optimised engine and suspension, including extra underbody protection and an enhanced approach angle so you can drive up steeper hills without scraping the bumper.

Ford Kuga

What makes it good in the rain?

The Ford Kuga is a very popular SUV-crossover from Britain’s biggest car brand. Being such a popular make means backup and support from an enormous dealer network is never far from hand: Ford has well over 500 outlets in the UK, meaning that any weather-related questions about your car – or, indeed, any rain-related damage – will be easily solvable. Not that the front-running Kuga, with excellent ground clearance and a superb chassis, should have much trouble coping with Britain’s changeable weather…

Kia Sportage

What makes it good in the rain?

The Kia Sportage is a value-priced crossover that has very appealing styling – even a few years after launch it remains a bit of a headturner. Because it’s so affordable, it’s opened up the flexibility and practicality of SUV-style motoring to many regular hatchback drivers, and lots of them won’t be going back: when the weather is bad, the Sportage is proving a real boon to them. An unbeatable seven-year warranty adds to the reassurance – chances are, it will just keep on going faultlessly, no matter how bad the conditions you encounter.

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