The Philippine roads have more potholes than plot holes in a badly written movie. Traversing these thoroughfares with a low car may evoke a feeling of anxiety. Why drive a sedan when you can drive a car that can just roll over road imperfections without trouble?
This is where SUVs shine. On top of being a head taller than most cars in the Philippines, it also helps that you won’t be thinning out your wallet for fuel money because these cars run on diesel.
With the formula clear and out in the open, manufacturers find it easy to push out their own models for the buying public. Looking at all the options available may make your head spin because almost every car in the list has these basic features: a diesel engine, seven seats, high ground clearance, and a ladder frame chassis that defines it as an SUV.
The Nissan Terra made a name for itself even if it was late to the midsize SUV party. Lauded for its handsome looks, stellar ride, and advanced tech features, the Terra stands as one of the better offerings in this segment, save for the interior, everything else ticks all the right boxes: diesel engine, seven seats, and comfort that other SUVs would be wary of.
Another American entry, the Ford Everest delivers a premium interior with light steering for a midsize SUV. Featuring muscular lines and bold styling, consumers are spoiled in terms of features in the top-of-the-line trim while maintaining its Ford ruggedness.
Mitsubishi Montero Sport
A strong contender, not only in its segment but in the Philippine market; the nameplate was one of the original few that started the midsize SUV trend. While prior models have a rounded look, this SUV prominently features Mitsubishi’s updated dynamic shield design. The Montero Sport is a valued companion to many drivers for its clean-cut interior and driving dynamics.
Affordability and reliability are the top priorities for the mu-X. Utilitarian in nature, and designed to be frugal, and almost every aspect is geared towards its function as a sport utility vehicle. The model comes in either a fuel-efficient 1.9-liter or a larger 3.0-liter diesel engine. The smaller engines still deliver the power needed for the streets of Metro Manila, but with better fuel economy, all while still retaining the space and seating that the segment is known for.
The king of sales in the midsize SUV segment, the Toyota Fortuner proves that a brand and an iconic nameplate can make a huge impact with regard to consumer trust. Notably, the renowned model has undergone an extensive refresh, with the Fortuner now having additional variants including the Q and LTD. It is one of the first nameplates to become a household name. It is a force to be reckoned with, and a definite leader in its segment for the foreseeable future.
This is Chevrolet’s entry into the midsize SUV segment, the Trailblazer. Featuring a hefty 200 hp and 500 Nm coming from a 2.8-liter diesel engine. It stands as an underrated choice in the market with enough space to haul an entire family and tend to the rigors of hauling heavy items with ease.
Nissan Patrol Royale
The Nissan Patrol Royale is the culmination of the Japanese brand's expertise in building off-road yet luxuriously capable vehicles. The Patrol Royale is still one comfortable cruiser that boasts in terms of cabin space and convenience features. For the Philippine market, it is currently the biggest SUV being offered by Nissan which stands above the midsized Terra. It is also worth noting that the Patrol Royale is one of the few SUVs in the market powered by a V8 gasoline engine.
Another gasoline-powered entry is the Ford Expedition, which sits as the Blue Oval's largest SUV offering in its lineup. Aside from its mighty 3.5-liter 60-degree V6 EcoBoost engine, the Expedition packs a lot of premium amenities that'll give you a 5-star riding experience. Most importantly, its extensive dimensions translate to a colossal cabin that should both please your passengers and attend to your cargo loading needs.