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Truck versus SUV: which is right for you?

Feb. 11, 2022
4 mins
An SUV drives through the snow with trees in the distance

Choosing between a truck and an SUV is a big decision when you’re getting ready to purchase a new vehicle. You might want to factor in each vehicle’s features, how they drive, and their cost to insure.

From road handling to engines and storage, here are a few factors that can help you find the right vehicle, whether it's for work, family outings, or the occasional off-road adventure.

Benefits of owning a truck

You might be considering a truck for work-related reasons. Maybe you need to haul a lot of equipment or need ample storage space.

Trucks can be ideal because they are comparatively good on fuel when towing. While a truck might not have the horsepower of a sports car or the luxury of a sedan, they can pull their weight.

For anyone who works outdoors or hauls heavy equipment, a truck has several advantages. Pickup trucks are rock-solid machines with extra storage space and advanced towing features. Truck benefits include:

  • Engine power: A truck will have a reliable engine and come in gas or diesel models.
  • Towing capacity: Trucks can pull trailers, boats, another vehicle, or a camper. The storage bed can haul heavy materials like lumber or furniture, making it a versatile vehicle.
  • Fuel economy: Gas mileage on big trucks can be better than some SUVs — especially when the tank is full.

Drawbacks of owning a truck

Pickup trucks have a few qualities, however, that might sway some drivers towards SUVs instead. Truck drawbacks include:

  • Manoeuvrability: Trucks can be a bit difficult to maneuver when parking or on the road.
  • Backing up: Due to its size, it’s recommended to purchase a truck with a backup camera and around-view monitor.
  • Seating options: Seating might be limited if you have a large family. Hence, it might be a good idea to buy the upgraded extended cab version. A full cab might seat up to five adults, but the bed will likely be shorter.

Cheapest trucks to insure in Canada

For Canadian drivers who want affordable auto insurance, towing capacities, or an extended storage bed, the GMC Canyon was one of the cheapest trucks to insure in 2021. Popular models that are cheapest to insure ranked from least to most expensive include:

  • GMC Canyon
  • Chevrolet Colorado
  • Toyota Tundra
  • Chevrolet Silverado
  • Jeep Gladiator
  • GMC Sierra
  • Toyota Tacoma
  • Ford F-Series
  • Ford Ranger
  • Ram 1500

Benefits of owning a sports utility vehicle (SUV)

SUVs are convenient vehicles for families of all sizes. With folding seats and ample storage space in the back, they’re good go-to vehicles for road trips. SUVs are also popular for off-roading adventures since you can mount bikes and athletic equipment on the hood. SUV benefits include:

  • Seating: SUVs have more space for passengers. Some SUVs can seat up to seven people.
  • Gas consumption: SUVs are generally better on gas than trucks.
  • Better manoeuvrability: SUVs also allow drivers to sit higher up so they have better road visibility but they’re generally easier to drive, reverse, and park, however, than a truck.

Drawbacks of owning an SUV

SUVs can come with a few cons drivers need to be aware of. These include:

  • Flipping/rolling: Because they’re tall and narrow, SUVs are prone to flipping over. Newer models have features to help reduce flipping, however.
  • Higher costs: SUVs cost more than sedans and some trucks, depending on the model and its features.
  • Increased insurance rates: SUVs are sometimes more expensive to insure because they are at greater risk of collisions. Hence, comparison shopping for insurance is recommended.

Cheapest SUVs to insure in Canada

For Canadians interested in affordable auto insurance and extra storage space, the Kia Seltos was one of the cheapest SUVs to insure in 2021. Popular brands that are cheaper to insure ranked from least to most expensive include:

  • Kia Seltos
  • Hyundai Kona
  • Jeep Wrangler
  • Subaru Crosstrek
  • Ford Escape
  • Mazda CX-5
  • Hyundai Tucson
  • Honda CR-V
  • Nissan Rogue
  • Toyota RAV4

Shopping for the best auto insurance

Whether your preference is an SUV or truck, each vehicle’s popularity speaks for itself. Trucks are useful for hauling and towing but they can be hard to manoeuvre, while SUVs are family-friendly vehicles with plenty of storage, but they might cost you more to insure. Once you’ve decided on a body style, start comparing insurance rates from Canada’s leading insurance providers with RATESDOTCA (and then get ready for your off-road adventure).

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The RATESDOTCA editorial team are experienced writers focused on sharing stories and bringing you the latest news in insurance and personal finance. Our goal is to provide Canadians with the information and resources they need to make better insurance and financial decisions.

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