• Image Credit: Autoblog

Best Used SUVs and Crossovers Under $10,000

Just because you're on a budget doesn't mean you can't afford an SUV or crossover to suit your needs. We've gathered together a variety of 4x4s and CUVs that represent some of the best options buyers have for under $10,000. Whether you want a vehicle to tow your boat, pile in the whole family, or hit the trail, there are options for every taste and need.

If something grabs your attention, our Car Buying hub is filled with listings and information to help you find your perfect SUV or crossover for less than $10k.

Jeep Wrangler Information

Jeep Wrangler
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1998-2008 Subaru Forester

The first-generation Subaru Forester went through several facelifts, but all shared the same basic features. Notably, all Foresters are equipped with a 2.5-liter flat-four and permanent AWD, as well as an SUV-esque shape with a low stepover height. Later models offered a turbocharged flat-four, also displacing 2.5 liters, but with more power – perfect for pulling the Forester up steep grades at altitude.

Subaru Forester Information

Subaru Forester
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2000-2005 Chevrolet Tahoe

The Chevy Tahoe is a bit lighter and a lot shorter than its Suburban sibling, but that makes it all the more livable. A proper truck-based SUV, the Tahoe is a great choice for those who need to haul toys to the playgrounds of the great outdoors. A tough 4WD system and a variety of powerful V8 engines are on offer, with 2WD models also available. All come with an automatic transmission. Those needing more space can always look at the larger Suburban; those looking for more brand cachet can look to the GMC Yukon version.

Chevrolet Tahoe Information

Chevrolet Tahoe
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2001-2005 Toyota RAV4

The first-generation Toyota RAV4 helped define the extremely popular CUV segment. In its second generation, the RAV4 grew a little bigger and a little more powerful, with significantly modernized styling that's still relatively handsome today. The basic concept didn't change much, however. A car-like ride and decent storage capacity made it a strong seller when new, and a good buy today.

Toyota RAV4 Information

Toyota RAV4
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2001-2006 Ford Escape

Ford's original Escape was a massive sales success for the company, offering tidy styling and attractive pricing. Available in FWD and AWD forms, the Escape looks like a tough little SUV but is really more of a crossover in the vein of its arch-competitors, the Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4. Unlike most of its competitors, it was available from the get-go with a powerful V6: Ford's 200-hp, 24-valve Duratec engine. Acceleration was brisk and its cargo area roomy. It was a great combination then, and for those on a budget it's a package worth considering.

Ford Escape Information

Ford Escape
  • Image Credit: Autoblog

2002-2006 Honda CRV

Like the RAV4, the Honda CR-V received more-grown-up styling in its second generation, adopting a handsome sharp-edged look to replace a rounder, more 1990s first-generation model. In a preview of things to come, Honda seriously upgraded the CR-V's powertrain, pushing it from 2.0 liters to 2.4. It blew most of its four-cylinder competition away when it launched, and even had a version of the original CR-V's trademark fold-out picnic table. A clean CR-V is a solid buy. 

Honda CR-V Information

Honda CR-V
  • Image Credit: Jeep

1997-2006 Jeep Wrangler

If raw off-road capability and a massive supply of aftermarket parts are your main concerns, the Jeep Wrangler has been (and still is) the strongest choice out there. No other SUV offers solid axles front and rear, a short wheelbase, and the kind of parts supply the Wrangler has. Available with either a four- or six-cylinder engine, the TJ, as this generation is called, was much more civilized and equally as capable as its forebearers. Like the Toyota 4Runner, TJs are highly valued, with clean examples commanding a premium – but deals are out there, and TJs are plentiful.

Jeep Wrangler Information

Jeep Wrangler
  • Image Credit: Autoblog

1996-2002 Toyota 4Runner

The Toyota name carries a premium, and the 4Runner carries a well-earned reputation as a reliable and capable off-roader. It may be hard to find a 4Runner that hits all the marks at $10k, as clean Toyota 4x4s are highly valued, but high mileage isn't necessarily a deal-breaker. This is a traditional body-on-frame SUV with ample ground clearance and a true low-range 4WD system. The tradeoff is more weight and less interior packaging efficiency when compared to a unibody CUV. If you need real 4x4 capabilities, it's one of the strongest candidates out there.

Toyota 4Runner Information

Toyota 4Runner
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2007-2009 Mazda CX-9

The pre-facelift first-generation Mazda CX-9 serves an unusual but appreciated niche: families who need a seven-passenger crossover but appreciate the famous Mazda emphasis on driving enjoyment. At least, driving enjoyment that greatly exceeds what you'll find in most crossovers this size. A 3.5-liter V6, sourced from Ford, provides 263 hp, which is plenty to move the CX-9 around with authority. If you must have a crossover but aren't ready to give up all vestiges of sportiness, give the CX-9 a look. 

Mazda CX-9 Information

Mazda CX-9
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