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Intermediate SUV vs. Standard SUV: What You Need to Know in 2022

Intermediate SUV vs. Standard SUV

In the automotive industry, the term “standard” is often used to explain the transmission system of the vehicle. With the wide variety of models and makes available today, the term now differentiates the vehicle types, such as standard SUVs vs. intermediate SUVs

When you are looking to rent the best from the sport utility vehicle (SUV) family, the curiosity to know and compare the features of different models, such as intermediate SUVs and standard SUVs, is always there. 

That’s why we have summed up several important features such as fuel economy, driveability, safety features, and more of different types of SUVs to help you make the right decision. 

Intermediate SUV

Standard SUV

A mid-size SUV that offers an array of features such as speed, durability, space, and power.  

A full-size SUV that offers a wide variety of extensive features and functions and excellent towing capabilities.

In this article, we will review the standard and intermediate SUVs, such as the Jeep Grand Cherokee, Ford Escape, Honda CRV, Mitsubishi Outlander, and Toyota Highlander, to differentiate their features, functions, and other aspects. 

What is an Intermediate SUV?

The short definition of an intermediate SUV is “a vehicle that is smaller than the standard or full-size SUV”. The SUV comes with many significant and luxurious features, which make it one of a kind at an underlying price. 

Similar to standard SUVs, the intermediate SUV gives a powerful performance at a relatively lower cost. With a wide number of attractive features, the mid-size SUVs deliver outstanding speed, durability, and power. 

People usually prefer mid-size SUVs more than their standard counterparts as they come in a proportionate weight and are fuel-efficient. In other words, the intermediate SUVs have better gas mileage than the huge correlative models. 


A mid-size SUV, such as Nissan, Kia, or Hyundai, offers better handling due to the proportionate size of the vehicle. It integrates impressive driving controls to ensure a sturdy and safer ride even when you are on tough terrain. 

With five-speed automatic transmission features, this category of dynamic vehicles offers cruise control capabilities that deliver immense comfort and a smooth ride. Though intermediate SUVs are easy to drive, they can’t truly compete with standard SUVs when it comes to driving performance.  

Fuel Economy

Because of the comparatively smaller size of mid-size SUVs compared to the standard ones, they give better mileage per gallon. They are fuel-efficient and make a good family-size vehicle, so you can enjoy smooth long drives with the whole group.  

For example, if you rent a Mazda or Ford Edge intermediate SUV for a family of five, you will not have to stop your vehicle at petrol stations to get it fuelled every few hours. If a clear comparison has to be made, mid-size SUVs are an ideal option for longer family outings as they are more fuel-efficient.

Safety Features

The safety features you get in the mid-size SUVs are based on the brand and model you choose. Many offer features such as adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring,  rain-sensing wipers, and emergency airbags. Chevrolet, Nissan Rogue, and Jeep Grand Cherokee offer top-class security. 

Since smaller SUVs are more compact, the overall size affects the comfort of the interior compartment, seating, and, most importantly, its safety. Though all the SUVs under this category perform well in crash safety tests, the safety features vary from model to model. 

Overall Size

As mentioned earlier, the comparatively smaller size of the intermediate SUVs makes them perfect for family outings. You may have to compromise on several top-notch safety features that you receive in a standard SUV, but it is an overall good investment. 

Though less spacious than the full-size SUV, the intermediate SUV brings a balanced passenger and cargo space. Most manufacturers keep the interior room in their intermediate models close in size and scope to the specs they offer in full-size models.


Intermediate SUVs are less expensive than their standard cousins. Though the comparatively lower cost is typically higher for many buyers or even renters, the mid-size SUV is quite affordable for first-time buyers. 

If you plan to rent a compact SUV for your next family trip, choosing a mid-size SUV rental will give you access to more features and unmatched comfort. It will give you ample cabin space where all passengers and cargo can fit effortlessly.  

What is a Standard SUV?

The standard SUVs, also known as full-size SUVs, are sport utility vehicles equipped with a huge towing capacity and off-roading capabilities. The robust structures give you excellent luxury functions and an unmatched driving experience. 

With a standard SUV rental, you will get optimal passenger room, cargo capacity, and huge interior space, making it an ideal option for people who love to go on adventurous road trips with friends or family. 

Since standard SUVs are more spacious, they offer more roominess to passengers. They are powerful and are an ideal option for individuals who prefer frequent road trips to mountainous areas or require towing of large equipment, boats, and more.  


With great size comes great responsibilities, so be cautious when you’re driving a full-size SUV. Although they come with excellent safety features, you need to be careful to avoid rollover situations. 

Driving is a skill that requires quick thinking and perseverance. Stay patient when you’re driving in uneven areas. The automatic transmission can make driving easier, but avoid enabling cruise control when you are on a trip in hilly drives. 

Fuel Economy

Standard-size SUVs, due to their larger size and power features, are less efficient than mid-size SUVs. Since they are designed to fulfill the hardcore off-road driving, they can only be a fuel-efficient option in some scenarios. However, the four-wheel-drive system comes with tough tires and efficient engines that are ideal on rough terrain. 

Safety Features

The larger the vehicle, the better the crash safety features. Large-size SUVs are bigger in size and, therefore, integrate abundant features such as automatic emergency brakes, auto high beams, front and rear parking sensors, lane departure warnings, and much more. 

Almost all the models include six or more airbags, blind-spot monitoring sensors, and cross-traffic alerts. Whatever model you pick, from Nissa to Toyota to Jeep Cherokee or Wrangler, you don't have to think twice when it comes to security. 

Overall Size

A large SUV with a three-row seating plan can accommodate up to seven people and has plenty of room for cargo or luggage. With stellar legroom, anyone driving a Jeep Compass, Kia Sorento, Chevy, and Toyota Rav 4 can expect comfort during weekend trips or special occasions that you need to attend with the whole family. 

Standard SUVs are equipped with premium class luxury features that make them an ideal option when you are looking to rent a car for business purposes. Rent one to drive in style and leave a lasting impression on your colleagues.  


The cost of renting a standard Volkswagen or Chevy SUV is slightly higher than renting its mid-size cousin, such as a Toyota minivan. If you compare functions, features, room space, size, and other aspects, it turns out to be a cost-efficient option, too. 

Most sports utility vehicles are designed for rugged driving, so you can enjoy a smooth ride even on the most uneven mountain regions. A higher rental cost is logical when you’re getting luxury features, a stylish interior, and unmatched comfort. 

Choose the Best of AVR’s SUV Options

Looking to rent a standard or intermediate SUV? Get the best options with flexible renting terms from AVR’s SUV rental options. 

Even though the SUV you select for your family trip is based on your specific preferences, go for a full-size SUV if you are traveling to tough terrain with up to seven passengers. Get ample room to stretch along with a spacious cargo area. 

Intermediate SUV

Standard SUV


Better driving control with balanced weight and size specs

Larger size of the standard SUV demands driving expertise

Fuel Economy

Better gas mileage makes it an affordable pick for family trips 

Less fuel-efficient, but an excellent rental option for business and family occasions

Safety Features

Excellent crash safety features ranging from airbag protection to automatic emergency braking

Full-size SUV gives access to best-in-class safety features that make it optimal for off-roading and towing purposes


Good cabin size, ample passenger space, and excellent luggage capacity

Spacious three-row cabin for  up to seven passengers with great room for cargo


Affordable rental costs for family outings

Higher SUV rental cost in exchange for comfort, safety, and functions

Contact AVR to rent an SUV at the best-in-industry price and add safety and comfort to your family trip.