2010 SUZUKI GRAND VITARA LIMITED V-6
Suzuki’s Grand Vitara has to be the most under-the-radar vehicle on the market. Despite that, this is a credible entry for small SUVs. The driving experience is by no means class-leading, but it meets expectations.
The 3.2-liter V-6 provides sufficient thrust and is quite smooth. Steering is on par with the segment, lacking in feel, but responding as you expect. The five-speed automatic provides drama-free gear changes on the way up, with slight pulses on down shifts. Body control is a bit loose, but not egregious.
Styling, both inside and out, doesn’t hold up quite as well. The exterior lines appear dated while the interior uses a strange faux finish on some of the interior trim pieces.
The Grand Vitara may be many decades removed from that small two-cylinder Jeep-like vehicle, but the lineage still remains. While other company have developed into more comfortable, car-like machines, the Grand Vitara retains its off-road credentials.
2010 LEXUS GX460 PREMIUM
The GX is a very good choice if you’re looking for an extremely well-equipped, luxuriously appointed, and genuinely capable off-roader.
GX shares its platform with the Toyota 4Runner, the Toyota FJ Cruiser, and the Toyota Land Rover Prado that is sold in other markets.
4.6L 32-Valve DOHC V-8 engine
6-Speed automatic transmission with manual controls
Full-time 4WD w/ torsen limited slip differential
Front independent double-wishbone suspension
Kinetic dynamic suspension system
Four-wheel disc brakes
Active front headrests
Front and 2nd row outboard seatbelt pre-tensioners
Electronic stability control (VSC)
Automatic collision notification
Stolen vehicle location
Emergency assist button and enhance roadside assistance
10-way power/heated & ventilated front seats
60/40 split middle row seat, 50/50 split third row seat
Lexus 9-speaker premium sound system
In-dash 6-CD changer
AM/FM/CD/Bluetooth technology/USB Port/XM Radio
Adaptive front lighting system w/ HIDS
Wood & leather trimmed heated steering wheel
Automatic dimming inside/outside rearview mirrors
Three-zone automatic climate control
Heated middle row seats
Rear air-suspension w/ automatic load leveling
Assuming you’re looking for an actual body-on-frame luxury SUV, the Lexus GX460 is a superb choice. From the moment you grasp the wood steering wheel rim it’s clear Lexus has tidied up the Toyota platform