Compact SUVs are on the rise

March 28, 2014 12:00 AM

As consumers look for the most fuel-efficient cars that will accommodate their budgets and their lifestyles while requiring minimal vehicle maintenance, compact SUVs have become a very attractive option. In fact, a new report from J.D. Power revealed that consumers are increasingly choosing these vehicles. It goes without saying that the cars are ideal for handling a range of weather conditions, but there are also an ever-widening array of model options on the market. That means that no matter a motorist's needs, tastes or preferences, they can find the perfect compact SUV that fits.

According to J.D. Power, compact SUVs have made up a notable 17.6 percent of all new car sales thus far in 2014, making them the most popular segment this year. In the exact same quarter last year, compact SUVs were in third place, with midsize and compact cars surpassing them in popularity. However, the compact SUV segment increased 3 percent since the first quarter of 2013 while midsize and compact cars only accounted for 14.9 percent of sales each, demonstrating that consumers are starting to turn their attention to these options. Thomas King, senior director of the Power Information Network from J.D. Power, pointed out that nine of the 24 compact SUV models on the U.S. market were just launched or revamped for the 2014 model year, which may factor into this trend.

"Part of the success of the compact SUV segment is the large number of new or recently redesigned models it contains," said King. "In addition, the harsh winter weather has enticed some consumers to move into the crossover SUV market because of their all-wheel drive or four-wheel drive capabilities."

This development might have something to do with why Volkswagen decided to add a compact SUV to their lineup in 2016. Bloomberg Businessweek reported that this decision is likely an effort to bounce back from disappointing profits.

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