Top 6: Best Cars for the Countryside

14th Dec 2020

What makes a car good for country roads?

Mud, pot holes, flooding, snow drifts and icy roads are just a few of the conditions that drivers battle with in the countryside. Therefore, it is important that drivers select a suitable car for handling the rural environment and longer commutes.

In order to help narrow down the search for a car suitable for country dwellers we have created a list of 6 cars we recommend and they are listed below in no particular order.

The below cars are capable of tackling country lanes without compromising their ability to handle motorway driving too. We have selected these cars due to features such as their reliability, interior space, four-wheel-drive, ground clearance and diesel engines suited for towing trailers.

MINI Countryman

MINI Countryman: Country Road

As the name suggests, the MINI Countryman is a fantastic choice for countryside drivers. The biggest MINI in the range; the compact SUV offers iconic MINI-design, practicality and is spacious so appeals to families.

An optional 4x4 version known as the 'All4' is offered across the entire range. This system distributes power across the four wheels as required, guaranteeing great performance over all terrains. The four-wheel-drive-system comes as standard on John Cooper Works models.

The Countryman boasts a 350-litre boot capacity which increases to 1,170-litre when the rear seats are folded. However, purchasing a used 2017 model grants you an extra 100-litre capacity as standard.

Sharp handling, maximum traction and exceptional ground clearance make this car ideal for rural roads. Dynamic Stability Control can apply brakes on different wheels as required to assist in keeping the car under control in poor driving conditions.

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Land Rover Range Rover

Land Rover Range Rover: Country Road Driving

The Land Rover Range Rover is a luxury SUV with optimal comfort and exceptional driver visibility. No twisty, country road is too challenging for this motor as it confronts ever sharp bend and rocky lane with ease.

All trims, except the Vogue entry-level, include JLR's Terrain Response System. This system enhances off-road capabilities by electronically configuring the vehicle's systems depending on the surface the driver manually selects. Common modes include sand, rock crawl, grass-gravel-snow, mud-ruts and general.

Select the smallest 3.0-litre V6 engine, delivering 254bhp and 600Nm torque, for the most fuel-efficient option. The impressing pulling power of the Range Rover can tow trailers weighing up to 3,500kg. The boot size is remarkably large, holding 909-litres of luggage or 2,360-litres with the seats folded down.

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Land Rover Discovery

Land Rover Discovery: Country Road

The Land Rover Discovery is a powerful motor that commands all terrains, benefiting from supreme off-roading ability whilst providing comfortable, long-distance on-road journeys for commuters or families. Like the Range Rover, the Discovery has JLR's Terrain Response System.

With a spacious interior and seven seats, the Discovery can comfortably seat the whole family in addition to pets and luggage. Another advantage is the split tail gate, making it simple for a dog to jump in the boot unaided.

Achieving an almost perfect record in the WhatCar? Tow Car Awards, winning at least one award in 11 years out of 12, the Discovery is a terrific vehicle for towing trailers. The 2.7-litre and 3.0-litre diesel engines will achieve around 30mpg which is acceptable for a vehicle of this size.

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Audi Q7

Audi Q7

Winner of the Best Luxury SUV in the What Car? Used Car Awards 2018 and 2019, the Audi Q7 is equipped with 7 seats as standard and a 770-litre boot. Furthermore, the two diesel engines provide excellent fuel economy for a vehicle of this size.

The 3.0-litre TDI diesel is the most powerful of the two engines, achieving 268bhp, 600NM of torque and accelerating from 0-62mpg in 6.5 seconds.

With the ability to tackle light off-roading due to Audi's standard quattro four-wheel-drive system and a towing limit of a 2,800kg trailer the Audi Q7 can navigate the countryside with ease.

Achieving the maximum five stars NCAP rating this luxury sports utility vehicle makes an excellent family car providing an equally pleasing drive whether on countryside back roads or motorways.

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BMW X3: Country Road

The BMW X3 is a highly desirable SUV with generous equipment as standard, a comfortable driving position with excellent visibility and a decent range of diesel-fuelled engines; the powerful xDrive 30d and xDrive 35d both sprinting to 62mph in under an incredible 6 seconds and fuel economy exceeding a respectable 40mpg.

Like all BMWs, the X3 displays the trademark double-kidney grille and aggressive headlights. Providing practicality and a strong safety rating, the BMW X3 is a suitable car for the countryside and families.

A combination of exceptional traction on the road and decent off-roading capabilities, the xDrive four-wheel-drive delivers a thrilling ride on country roads and tackles corners confidently.

All models come with BMW's iDrive infotainment system; in terms of features and usability it is one of the best systems on the market.

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Porsche Cayenne

Porsche Cayenne: Off-Road

Finishing second place in the What Car? Large SUV class reliability survey with an overall score of 90%, a used Porsche Cayenne is a prestigious purchase and you can trust the car to live up to expectations in terms of reliability.

Porsche's bestseller is an outstanding car for exploring the B-roads in the countryside and venturing off-road.

We recommend the diesel engines unless you're desperate for a super fast motor in which case there is the Turbo S with a whopping 562bhp! The entry-level Cayenne Diesel is powered by a 258bhp 3.0-litre V6 or you can upgrade to the 379bhp 4.2-litre V8 Cayenne S Diesel.

The entire range are four-wheel-drive with an eight-speed automatic gearbox and paddle shifters.

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Find your perfect used car for the countryside

All of the above cars have different features, however, one thing they all have in common is their ability to meet the demands of the countryside. Whether you're driving along twisty B-roads, attacking off-road tracks or commuting on the motorway; at least one of the above vehicles will be more than suitable for your requirements.

At Stratstone, we stock an extensive range of used cars that are more than at home in the countryside, including all of the models featured here. Start your search today.