SUV’s have become extremely popular in the UK as each and every car manufacturer have purposefully launched new models to supply the huge demand in recent years.

Freshly launched models such as the Fiat 500x, Jeep Night Eagle, BMW X6 M demonstrate how the manufacturers are aiming to cash in on the trend.

Louis Butcher, Digital Marketing Manager from said;

“SUV’s are now seen as the typical family car and are marketed by the major manufacturers as exactly that. They are big, safe and powerful meaning they are taking over from the traditional people carrier, estate and saloon as the UK’s first choice of family car.”

With this trend in mind, we have created an exclusive analytical report on how SUV’s compare to Estates in regards to maintenance costs.

Digging for data generates a monumental amount of data every day as thousands of jobs are posted by drivers and quoted on by garages.

Over 16,000 lines of data have been analysed to produce the following insights for this specific piece of research.

SUV’s and Estate cars actually share many of the same components meaning their running costs SHOULD be relatively close.

We’ll be comparing the top selling SUV and Estate cars made by BMW, Audi, Volkswagen and Mercedes.

Below is the graph for the average cost of all services for the most popular SUV’s on the roads and their Estate equivalents. As would be expected, the SUV’s mostly do cost more to run vs the equivalent Estates, but our data did throw up some unexpected figures.

Surprisingly Audi SUV’s appear to be cheaper to service than the estates on which they are based! Furthermore they are cheaper than the Volkswagen models, despite them being owned by the same company!

suv compared to estate


Costs are what we would expect with SUV’s generally costing more to service than the Estates on which they are based. The difference is relatively small with the biggest price gap being £40 for Volkswagen.

Parts such as an air filter cam be swapped like for like from an Estate and SUV which is why servicing costs overall are extremely close.

the cost of servicing suv estate


However, the picture changes significantly when looking at brake systems – In general SUV drivers are getting charged more to fix and replace parts of a brake system than the equivalent Estate drivers across all the manufacturers.

brake pads and discs comapred suv and estate


So despite an SUV and Estate being manufactured by the same brand and being extremely close in cost, they differ hugely in price, so why is this?

The Experts View

Gavin, a highly trained technician who owns Ross Motors in Streatham provided his insight;

“Essentially the SUV is a significantly heavier vehicle and this effects the price of repair in several ways.

Firstly, the brakes and brake pads have to deal with a higher amount of kinetic energy meaning they are subject to stronger forces and may be more likely to break more regularly and severely.

Secondly, many SUV’s are fitted with EPB’s, which stands for Electronic Parking Brake’s. These parts can be included in repair work when it comes to the braking system of an SUV which means more work may be required and hence the rise in price.

Lastly, because the SUV is typically heavier, a bigger and more powerful ramp is required to lift the vehicle whereas a simple jack may be enough for an Estate.

As there is more work involved and specialist equipment is required, labour costs will rise as a result.”

So there you have it, SUV’s are more expensive to service mainly due to their size and weight, so if you are considering buying one, it may be worth thinking about getting yourself an Estate instead!