While you’re unlikely to find a decent condition used SUV for sale under, say, R5,000 pm on finance, many motorists don’t realise that they could still step up into a SUV for a lot less than they might think. With a little proactive ingenuity, many who now drive a sedan yet yearn for a SUV could capitalise on the great, fair value offers out there in the second hand car market. We’ve looked at the current used SUV market and, in doing the maths, have found five great options for R7,000 pm, with an extended warranty and full insurance. Thus insured and with a motoring warranty included, these cars should be top of your list if you’re searching for a modern, reputable and affordable used SUV.
Why are SUVs so popular?
- They’re a great experience to drive, as they combine height, comfort, power and versatility.
- In a word - performance. From the previous options of driving a clumpy tank with bush cred or a smart sedan, those two cars are now often one. It’s taken automakers a decade or two to seamlessly marry a sedan’s comfort and performance with a bush whacker’s versatility, but the overall presentation of a modern used SUV is beyond the imaginings of even only 15 years ago.
- Most modern SUVs are also utility vehicles. No one feels sorry for a SUV with a loaded boot area or goods lashed to the roof rack. A little more and a little less than a stylish bakkie, SUVs nonetheless are far more “usable” than a sedan. They also carry a more family feel, for those who baulk at owning a bakkie, as it might prove unsuitable for whatever reason.
As new car prices are stretching upwards while the citizenry often gasps to reach those heights, some modern, stylish and very pleasing SUVs can be found on the secondhand market. Although many modern consumers opt for a balloon finance arrangement to secure their ideal used SUV, there are cons to a balloon payment structure you should preferably avoid. Shopping for the best SUV to buy among these great options allows you to pick up a SUV without succumbing to the balloon payment structure that is often so dangerously tempting when you’re buying new.
As most drivers are not hardcore bush scramblers, SUVs typically come with well maintained exteriors and interiors, as most owners have treated them like sedans anyway. Across automakers, here are five really great used SUVs that will often give you surprising value for money.
How we arrived at a used SUV on the Wesbank cost calculator for R7,000 pm:
- We took a valid maximum price of R270,000, for an instalment of R5,442 pm at a fair average of 12.5 percent interest over 72 Months
- We factored in a (researched) insurance price of R950 pm for an “average” driver
- And we included an extended warranty @ R450 pm, based on supplied quotes
- To arrive at a total of R6,842 pm, as per the snapshot below
- No Deposit
- No Balloon Payments
This guide is based on private sales of used cars, and paying around trade-in value for what you find. This is not a bargain price - trade-in values aren’t necessarily rock bottom ones - but rather the average price one encounters when shopping this market. In other words, while everyone might want top dollar for their used SUV for sale, the reality is that these listed here are fetching fair prices, but neither terribly expensive nor throwaway prices. Retail prices are what dealerships charge, so “shop clever” and never pay retail prices on the private market.
Related: Guide To Buying A Car Privately In SA
Thus, trade-in price is the common experience, the average comparison across all of these cars when encountered. Start with a car valuation and employ our vehicle value tool to research the trade-in and retail value of the model you’re eyeing, and when you’ve made a shortlist, get a vehicle history check too. This report does a stolen car check and showcases if the car is still under a vehicle finance agreement with a bank, also includes past accident repair information for the vehicle. This last report will give you the peace of mind of knowing there are no criminal implications around the vehicle. SUV or not, a used vehicle should be vetted to the max regardless. All of the examples below feature intel derived of current adverts displayed during October/November 2018, on various popular South African platforms.
1. 2015 TOYOTA Fortuner 2.5 D-4D RB Dsl Manual
SUV for sale: Fortuner 2015
Private asking price: R319,000
Trade-In Value: R281,400
Retail Value: R312,100
Mileage: 58,000 km
Pros: A luxury SUV that comes with absolute peace of mind
Cons: Can still be pricey as a used SUV for sale, and you’ll need to haggle the asking price on this example to come in paying around R270,000
Fuel Consumption: 7.5l/100km
The top-rated 4 x 4 in its class for many years, the Fortuner remains an all-round comfy, can-do SUV for a host of motorists. Varying desires have been accommodated in this gem from Toyota, since it first appeared. Very much a gentleman’s four-by, it nonetheless rocks off road with ease too. Basically a Hilux with an enclosed bak and more seats, Toyota got it somehow very right, keeping all the tough while moulding their legendary bakkie into something positively stylish.
As recently as late 2016 still the top-selling SUV in South Africa, the Fortuner’s gutsy engine and interior space makes it a comfortable and smooth ride. Not as ostentatious as other more bush-minded vehicles with gung-ho trim, nor as sexy perhaps as sleek late Land Rovers, the Fortuner nonetheless has form and style aplenty. A manual gearbox won’t make you work hard at all, and the Fortuner’s interior is built for comfortable travel.
PS the Fortuner is one of the very top privately traded cars in its category, so it’s not a stretch to suggest its resale value would still be pretty decent a few years from now.
Related: The 3 Best Extended Motor Warranties For South African Car Owners
2. 2015 KIA Sportage 2.0 CRDi Dsl AT
Used SUV for sale: Sportage 2015
Private asking price: R309,990
Trade-In Value: R286,600
Retail Value: R325,400
Mileage: 76,840 km
Pros: A modern SUV that won’t ask a high purchase price, yet comes with almost all of the competition’s trimmings. Parts are also noticeably cheaper with Kia worldwide.
Cons: The Kia logo…. you’ll either love it or hate it
Fuel Consumption: 7.4l/100km
Although a wannabe status accompanied Kia when it first came to South Africa, touting its price as the principal benefit, the brand has matured as the automaker has too. The Kia Sportage established the car maker’s bona fides years ago, as thousands of people bought the car as a great value SUV at the time. That reputation has only grown since.
A number of innovative touches to the suspension, exterior and interior saw this SUV demonstrate probably the most rapid evolution of almost any car in South Africa. From a rather boxy SUV, the 2015 models epitomise the very quick and successful emergence of Kia as a smart SUV purchase. With enough power and comfort, this crossover car remains a favourite of many citizens, and has developed something of a loyal following. Most owners will tell you that if you’re looking for a great SUV that won’t eat your budget on fuel or repairs, this is the best SUV to buy.
Related: Understanding Vehicle Trade and Retail values
3. 2014 MAZDA CX-5 2.2 DE Active AT
SUV for sale: Mazda CX-5 2014
Private asking price: R259,900
Trade-In Value: R236,200
Retail Value: R271,900
Mileage: 87,709 km
Pros: A well-engineered SUV that quietly fleshed out the Mazda range in the country, and also helped make Mazda one of the first choices for many new buyers.
Cons: The Mazda SUV doesn't look as bullish as many others, and for some might lack the bold, chunky presentation of a Fortuner, for example.
Fuel Consumption: 6.4l/100km
If ever there was a quietly smug group of drivers in South Africa - apart from everyone in a Porsche - it must be Mazda drivers. Often remarkably loyal, those in a CX-5 rate the car for its savvy and reliability. A relatively compact SUV with just the right touches in the right places, it also retains a measure of ”sleek” while it elevates drivers into a SUV vantage point.
Mazda plonked the automaker’s SkyActiv technology into the SUV for the first time, and employed what they call “KODO Soul of Motion” in the exterior design. The 2.2-litre twin-turbo diesel is favoured in South Africa, although the petrol 2.5-litre isn’t sluggish either. The diesel will demand more regular servicing, and does add up higher over a three-year period on that front.
Related: How does Wesbank private car finance work?
4. 2015 NISSAN Qashqai 1.6 dCi Acenta Dsl 5-dr CVT AT
Used SUV for sale: Qashqai 2015
Private asking price: R309,900
Trade-In Value: R261, 700
Retail Value: R300, 500
Mileage: 60,000 km
Pros: A well-engineered SUV that reaffirmed Nissan as a great automaker, in South Africa at least. Typically hassle-free, the cars are known as reliable and stylish.
Cons: They are still cheekily priced when good condition models are found, so a bit of haggling is generally needed to please both parties
Fuel Consumption: 7.4l/100km
To find really smug drivers, look no further than Qashqai owners. As much a sweet spot as a tongue-twister, this 1.6-litre Qashqai from 2015 is emblematic of a number of versions of the car that really married reputation, style and performance. There are subtleties, like all-, front- or rear-wheel drive, depending on the model, but Qashqais overall impressed the heck out of South Africa, and justifiably so.
The ride is smooth with a snug interior, the exterior stylish in an understated manner, and the overall performance great across models. Noted for being reliable and both sufficiently patient in town yet gutsy on the road, the Qashqai really became the manifestation of the Toyota advert of years ago. At the time, Toyota billed their Camry as a luxury sedan that says, “I’m just me.” Sorry Toyota, but that’s exactly what the Qashqai does, saying “I’m just me, but I do drive this pretty cool SUV.”
This is definitely a very well styled and enjoyable car to pick up at the price. The company’s association with Renault shines through in the Qashqai, as it hints at a stylishness not normally associated with Nissan.The Qashqai’s instrumentation and steering wheel controls also smack of the automaker’s other association, as they’re a lot like those in the Infiniti Q50 sedan.
Related: Top 5 Reasons to Know The Value of Your Car in 2018
5. 2015 VOLKSWAGEN Tiguan 1.4 TSI Trend&Fun 118kW
SUV for sale: 2015 Tiguan
Private asking price: R299,900
Trade-In Value: R270,600
Retail Value: R302,100
Mileage: 73,000 km
Pros: It’s a Volkswagen. And a Volkswagen that came remarkably well-equipped, and also free of a hefty price tag considering what you get for the price.
Cons: It’s a Volkswagen, not a brand renowned for cheap repairs, hence the warranty is essential, although these models aren’t particularly prone to known faults.
Fuel Consumption: 6.2l/100km
Although depicted as “basic,” most notably by commentators comparing it to the Tuareg, this Volkswagen SUV is hardly a minimalist statement. It’s comfortable, with good interior styling, and comes standard with some trim and features Volkswagen makes you pay for on other cars. With six airbags, auto on/off and wipers, the steering wheel controls are snazzy. Many of the add-on options were pretty cosmetic anyway, like an enhanced CD shuttle.
A relatively simple, reliable turbo engine propels the Tiguan, and this SUV has a gliding smoothness to the gearbox many other cars lack. It might present a bit of turbo lag at times, especially fully laden, although the lag becomes familiar and allows for some intuitive driving. This is not the monster Tuareg with power to spare, so don’t be cutting a pull-away too fine. Think of the early 2000’s turbo motors - that’s the kind of drive the Tiguan will give you. It’s comfortable and stylish, with enough guts for safe driving. With a top end of around 185kph, this car will reach 100kph in 11.9 seconds. It’s not a sprinter, but rather a sleek and comfy SUV, and also a surprisingly affordable Volkswagen.
Quick Links to succeed on the Private Used Car Market:
Used SUVs at around R7,000 pm including warranties and insurance
From all of the examples above, you can see that with a bit of shopping and haggling, driving a good condition used SUV that comes with peace of mind, comfort and some style thrown in, can be done for R7,000 pm. If you’ve already done your budgeting and capped out at R7,000 yet desperately want to drive a SUV - take heart. If that’s your limit - Go shop! - because you can pick up any one of the above cars and be mighty pleased for a good while.
With SUVs known to more usually sit at a double-digit monthly premium, you will have to haggle in places, and hold your bluff if the seller sticks to what you know is an over-pricing. With that said, however, you’re just as likely to push very little yet still pick up a SUV within your budget, within a short space of time. As your individual insurance and warranty quotes come in, jug