Lexus RX 400h SE
After lots of lively debate, the Lexus won through as the winner in this category, because it delivers what most SUV buyers are really after, and does so fantastically well.
Since most owners are more likely to mount a kerb than take their car off-road, the RX's smooth, comfortable ride, silky engine and slick gearbox are just what's required.
Do you also want a classy, extremely well-built cabin and plenty of space? You've got them. What about top-notch refinement, a long list of safety features and dealer service that will make you feel like a king? They're yours with the Lexus.
Name: Steve Fowler
Job Group editor, What Car?
Verdict: 'Lexus is the epitome of painless motoring the cars don't go wrong and dealers will care for you like your mother will. As for the RX hybrid, it's green for an SUV, easy on fuel and available at temptingly low prices.'Although the Hybrid Synergy Drive petrol-electric powertrain is a particular attraction for those driving in London, because it allows you to dodge paying the congestion charge, it's a benefit in any built-up environment.
In electric-only mode, it produces fewer of the local pollutants that are harmful to our health, so you can drive around town with a (relatively) clear conscience.
Let's talk about toys, too. Our mid-range SE model comes with leather trim, electric everything, a superb stereo, cruise control and power seats with memory settings.
The only major omission is sat-nav, although there are SE cars with it fitted if you look around.
Franchised dealers have the pick of the limited stock on the market, so you're most likely to start and finish your search with them.
Power 269bhp Fuel Economy 34.9mpg (average) 0-60mph/Max 7.6sec/124mph Insurance Group 16 CO2 emissions 192g/km Road tax 200 a year euro NCAP Rating na Reliability Rating 4 stars Service Intervals 10,000 miles
Toyota RAV4 2.0 D-4D XT2
A super-reliable option that looks good and offers plenty of interior flexibility. It's good to drive, too.Honda CRV 2.2 i-CTDi SE
Honda's compact SUV comes with a cracking diesel engine, and it's roomy, versatile and well built.Volkswagen Touareg 2.5 TDI
A big car with a plush cabin, surprisingly sharp dynamics and genuine off-road ability.Mercedes-Benz ML320 CDI SE
The SUV for sophisticates, the ML is happy to get muddy at the horse trials and is very comfortable.