Should I Get a Car or an SUV? Top 3 Differences You Need to Know

So you’re getting a new vehicle and you wonder whether you want to get a car or an SUV. While SUVs do offer a few advantages over cars, including increased protection, higher driving position, and greater towing capacity, they tend to be more costly to maintain than cars and also carry a larger footprint. Below are the top three differences you should keep in mind when deciding on whether to purchase a car or an SUV.

Gas Mileage

Larger vehicles are notorious for guzzling gas. Since SUVs are heavier, even the most fuel-efficient vehicles in this category will get significantly fewer miles per gallon than sedans. On average, the most fuel-efficient SUVs average around 20-25 MPG, while sedans get anywhere from 30 to 40 MPG. The loss of fuel performance also comes with an increase in fuel cost, meaning more frequent stops at the gas station.


The increase in gasoline usage among standard SUVs also translates to a bigger carbon footprint. Since SUVs require more gasoline than smaller cars for travel and basic driving functions, more emissions are pumped into the atmosphere.

Tires and Brakes

The added weight of an SUV puts a strain on its tire longevity. When comparing cars to SUVs, tires will wear out at a much faster rate on SUVs and will be more expensive to replace. On average, you can expect a lifespan of roughly 30,000 miles for most SUV tires, while you can drive up to 50,000 on most sedans before tire replacements are needed.

Whether you’re looking to downgrade or upgrade in size or simply determining the next vehicle to get you from A to B, bring your vehicle into Atlantic Tire & Service. Our experts will give you a general overview of the cost differences to maintain cars and SUVs, as well as which type of vehicle best suits your commuting needs.