Best Cars with High Driving Positions

7 minutes Published: 12/03/2020

The humble hatchback is becoming less and less popular as SUVs and Crossovers continue their quest for automotive domination. 

What is it about being up high that us Brits can’t get enough of?

Is it the feeling of lording over the peasants in their little city cars? Do we feel indestructible in a big SUV?

In all seriousness, there are a few practical reasons that you might want a car with a high driving position. We’re going to run through these and then fill you in on our top 10 picks.

If you’re looking for something a little smaller, have a read of our small cars with high driving positions list. For a round-up of our favourite big cars, take a look at our best SUV cars list. Need some off-road capability? Check out our best 4x4 cars.

1. Volkswagen Tiguan

RRP: £22,325 - £41,910 | From £255.40 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 2.0
  • Fuel: P, D
  • Body: Crossover SUV
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: 119 - 234g/km

Pros

  • A wide variety of engine options. 

  • Plenty of boot space.

Cons

  • Higher trims are too expensive when compared to rivals.

  • Still not a whole lot of fun to drive.

Basically a beefed-up Volkswagen Golf, the Tiguan is an excellent choice for the mid-budget driver looking for a (relatively) small SUV with a high-driving position. The Tiguan offers all of the refinement and smooth driving we’ve come to expect from a Volkswagen. 

Compared to the previous generation, the current Tiguan is a much more grown-up affair, making it a perfect family car. Boot space and rear-seat room are excellent, so there’ll be no complaints. 

While entry-level models only come with front-wheel drive, you can upgrade to AWD on most engines if you fancy a bit of adventuring, or maybe just need to get out of your house in the winter!  

Our Rating:

2. Kia Sportage

RRP: £19,735 - £34,765 | From £234.32 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 2.7
  • Fuel: P, D
  • Body: SUV
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: 275g/km

Pros

  • Moves well for a big car. 

  • Lots of room.

Cons

  • The ride is a bit rough, despite the high seating position.

  • Nothing special off-road.

The Sportage is Kia’s best-seller in the UK. This large SUV crossover offers excellent value for money, with decent tech offerings, good looks, and Kia’s reliable build quality. 

The engine options are fantastic. While they’re not particularly powerful, they offer great fuel economy and have low CO2 emissions. 

You can pick up the SUV in front-wheel-drive if you just fancy being high up in traffic, or you can opt for the four-wheel-drive option with an automatic transmission if you have a need for it!

Our Rating:

3. Hyundai Tucson Estate

RRP: £18,495 - £35,265 | From £265.48 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 2.7
  • Fuel: P, D
  • Body: SUV
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: 110 - 237g/km

Pros

  • Comfortable and super spacious, with lots of legroom and headroom. 

  • Smart and well-designed interior.

Cons

  • Can be boring to drive.

  • Competitors have larger boots.

The Tucson, Hyundai’s main player in the closely-fought SUV/Crossover game, is a brilliant all-rounder available at an affordable price. Hyundai is a reliable brand, backed up by their 5-year unlimited mileage warranty. 

With decent performance, a great looking interior, and nice body styling, the Tucson will please any driver looking for a great car with a high driving position. Practicality is excellent, and your kids in the back will have plenty of room to relax.

It’s important for Hyundai to create great value for money cars, and this SUV follows that trend. Even on the entry-level trim you get a lot of tech - a seven-inch touchscreen that’s Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatible, a reversing camera, and much more. 

Our Rating:

4. Mazda Cx-5

RRP: £23,440 - £37,725 | From £280.72 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 2.2
  • Fuel: P, D
  • Body: SUV
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: 119 - 152g/km

Pros

  • Car handles really well for being so large.

  • Looks as good as an Audi for £20k less.

Cons

  • The tech on the entry-level trim is poor.

  • The engines, particularly the petrol options, lack power.

The criminally underrated (certainly in the UK) Japanese manufacturer Mazda has produced something special with the CX-5. 

Mazda’s interior design team needs a raise. The CX-5 looks like a proper premium car, and betrays the fact that it’s actually a fairly budget option!

It’s a big SUV that oozes class and refinement at a very reasonable price. The CX-5 offers a high driving position while not being too big to comfortably drive around cities or small towns. Available in a fantastic four-wheel-drive option, the CX-5 is ideal for getting through the icy winter in style. 

Our Rating:

5. Skoda Kodiaq

RRP: £21,310 - £43,835 | From £285.22 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 2.0
  • Fuel: P, D
  • Body: SUV
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: 126 - 170g/km

Pros

  • Roomy interior with a high driving position.

  • Great value for money when compared to rivals.

Cons

  • High spec models are too expensive (£20k more than the entry-level!)

  • Petrol version is disappointing - low MPGs and not that powerful.

The Kodiaq is another fine example of the Czech automakers recent run of form. A midsize SUV, the Kodiaq is the perfect way for Skoda lovers to get a high driving position without having to buy something that’s far too bulky for everyday life. 

If you’re so inclined, the Kodiaq has a towing capacity of 2.5-tonnes and an optional 4WD mode, making it perfect for adventure-hungry weekend warriors, or those that live in a more rural location.

The Kodiaq drives really well when loaded with weight, and the ride is pretty smooth no matter where you're driving. While it might not be the most fun thing to drive, it does admirably well considering the car’s size (and price). 

Our Rating:

6. Land Rover Discovery SW

RRP: £43,140 - £68,890 | From £510.49 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 4.0
  • Fuel: D, P
  • Body: SUV
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: 189 - 397g/km

Pros

  • The cabin is ultra-premium. Every material feels solid.

  • Lots of amazing tech.

Cons

  • Way too expensive.

  • Reliability record is poor.

Slightly less pretentious than a Range Rover, the Land Rover Discovery Sport is the ultimate “I want to be up high” car that car-lovers drool over. 

While this SUV is often driven by people who are nipping around town as opposed to going off-road, it’s good to know that you have a 4WD option if you need it, particularly in harsh winter conditions.

We’re big fans of the interior design on the Discovery Sport. It manages to look premium without being over-the-top. With an amazing, fuel-efficient 9-speed automatic gearbox available as an optional extra, the Discovery is fantastic to drive and even better to sit in.

Our Rating:

7. Honda CR-V

RRP: £21,995 - £38,465 | From £271.51 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 2.2
  • Fuel: P, D, H
  • Body: SUV
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: 115 - 235g/km

Pros

  • Really spacious. 

  • Has all the tech you’d want. 

Cons

  • Infotainment system could be better.

  • Drives well but it’s far from fun. 

The Honda CR-V is a true workhorse. Designed for practicality, and never one for showing off, the CR-V is an excellent choice for those that want a no-frills way to get a high driving position car. With a 5 star Euro NCAP safety rating, you can rest easy knowing your passengers are as safe as can be. 

While Honda’s tech used to be behind rivals, it’s pretty bang on these days. The CR-V cabin is conservative and well-designed. Every feature is practical and there’s no useless tech plastered over the (well-designed) dashboard. 

One of the main appeals of buying the CR-V is Honda’s excellent reliability record, meaning that you’re not going to have to spend a fortune on repair bills.

Our Rating:

8. Audi Q7

RRP: £47,555 - £93,190 | From £542.09 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 6.0
  • Fuel: P, D, H
  • Body: SUV
  • Drive: A
  • CO2: 48 - 309g/km

Pros

  • Super luxurious. 

  • Plenty of legroom and can fit 7 people in relative comfort, makes for a great family SUV.

Cons

  • Really expensive, especially compared to rivals.

  • The handling isn’t amazing.

The Audi Q7 is a seriously elegant looking car. To be fair, for the price, that’s the least you’d expect.

Thankfully, like most Audis, the Q7 lives up to the high price tag. The interior is fantastic, managing to look high-tech without going over the top like other rivals, who have dashboards that look like they’ve been provided by a budget-NASA. 

Cabin quality is excellent, and there’s a huge amount of space in the backseats for carrying up to 6 passengers. If you have the bank balance for it, the Audi Q7 is a brilliantly refined SUV with a high driving position. For a smaller, more affordable version of this car, have a look at an Audi Q2 lease deal. 

Our Rating:

9. BMW X3 Estate

RRP: £37,425 - £54,010 | From £366.11 per month to lease

Pros

  • Interior is well-designed and offers a sky-high driving position.

  • Performance is exceptional for such a big car.

Cons

  • Practicality isn’t the priority - may put off some.

  • Really expensive.

If you want a car with a high driving position, but don’t want to sacrifice sporty styling and high performance for it, then check out the BMW x3 compact SUV.

BMWs midsize SUV is a bit like a bigger and taller 3 Series. Devout fans of the German automaker won’t be disappointed with their SUVs, as they keep the same performance-oriented mindset that the saloons and hatchbacks have. 

The X3 0-62mph time is incredible, particularly for being so large. That being said, practicality suffers a bit here, but this is a good option for those drivers then need more space but don’t really want to give up their 3 Series!

Our Rating:

10. Mitsubishi Outlander

RRP: £24,799 - £46,005 | From £295.40 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 2.4
  • Fuel: P, D, H
  • Body: Crossover SUV
  • Drive: A, M
  • CO2: 40 - 240g/km

Pros

  • Cheap running costs - high mpg.

  • Easy to drive and comfortable. Lots of headroom for tall drivers. 

Cons

  • Interior is a bit outdated.

  • Not everyone will like the bulky body. 

The Mitsubishi Outlander has been a hit in the UK. It’s actually been the best selling plug-in hybrid for the last 3 years! For considerably less money than something like a Land Rover Discovery, the Outlander is a brilliant SUV. 

Mitsibushi definitely has a more ‘adventure’ oriented look when compared to something like the Audi Q7’s urban aesthetics, which will appeal to Bear Grylls wannabes. That being said, the Outlander is as at home heading to Asda for a big shop as it is on an off-road trail. 

For those drivers who want a high driving position, but also want the option to go off-road, the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV is a great choice. 

Our Rating:

Summary

Whether you want a car with a high driving position so you can get a better view of the road, or maybe you need one for an elderly family member to get in and out of the car more comfortably, there’s plenty of options in today's market. 

However, you might be put off by the price of a new car, particularly as SUVs are pretty expensive upfront. If you’re on a budget, why not check out a lease deal, which allows you to pay a much cheaper monthly payment.

For a look at even more great big cars, check out our best SUV cars list. Live in a rural location? You ought to read our best 4x4 cars round-up. If you want that great driving position but in a small machine, check out our best small cars with high driving positions. If you want to see what else is out there, we've gathered all our SUV lease deals, 4x4 lease deals, and MPV lease deals for you to compare and contrast easily.