Best SUVs in Australia Under $40000

By Alexi Falson on 15 Feb 2023
image for Best SUVs in Australia Under $40000 SUVs have fast become Australia’s most popular type of car, which begs the question of what your best options are for an SUV if you’ve got a budget of $40,000 up your sleeve.

The great news for buyers is that the competitiveness within the SUV segment, be it a compact, midsize or large SUV, has resulted in some very attractive value propositions with a heap of safety and entertainment features for buyers.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at 12 of the best SUVs in Australia priced under $40,000.

Hyundai Tucson

Our list kicks off with the Hyundai Tucson, a proven midsize SUV platform that offers buyers a heap of value for money.

There’s three Tucson variants that sneak in under our price threshold, all of which come powered by a 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol producing 115kW of power and 192Nm which is paired with a six-speed automatic.

The Tucson’s cabin is both practical and spacious, with a large 539L boot that can handle the majority of a large family’s needs and features like 17-inch alloys, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, and an 8.0-inch infotainment system included as standard.

Ford Escape

The Ford Escape is a wonderful midsize SUV platform that is surprisingly sporty, even in the base model.

Under the bonnet you’ll find a powerful 2.0-litre turbocharged engine producing 183kW of power and 387Nm of torque paired with an eight-speed automatic, making the Ford Escape by far the most powerful entrant on our list of SUVs priced under $40,000.

Both the entry-level FWD and the ST-Line are priced under our price cut-off, making the Escape a great value pick for those looking for a sporty and charismatic SUV that retains all the important practicality hallmarks of a family-friendly package.

Toyota RAV4

It’s impossible to have a list of Australia’s best SUVs without a mention of the Toyota RAV4, which for some time now, has been somewhat of a benchmark for the segment.

In its latest form, Toyota has seemingly perfected the recipe for a comfortable, practical, safe, and well-equipped SUV package for a reasonable price, with the added bonus of hybrid engines available across all grade levels - including the base model.

Renault Koleos

While it might be overshadowed by more popular members of the SUV segment, the Renault Koleos is a strong performer when put under the test, making for a stylish and practical SUV for the family.

The Koleos is powered by a 2.5-litre four-cylinder petrol producing 126kW of power and 226Nm of torque, which is paired with a CVT automatic transmission that is particularly well-suited to the stop-start traffic you’ll find in and around town.

Inside, the cabin is spacious and stylish thanks to Renault’s unique packaging and designs, with the boot measuring in at a very family-friendly 493L.

Mitsubishi ASX

The Mitsubishi ASX is one of the most popular members of the compact SUV segment thanks to its clever packaging, affordable asking prices and Mitsubishi’s generous approach to standard features.

While it might be smaller than most of its rivals on our list, it remains a great option for young families or those simply looking for some added ride height, and fans of a great deal - especially when it comes to Mitsubishi’s class-leading ten-year warranty that offers buyers an unmatched ownership program.

GWM Haval H6

The Haval H6 has been quick to make an impression with Australian buyers, and has fast become one of the biggest sellers within the midsize SUV segment.

GWM’s generous pricing means that buyers can step into the entry-level Premium, mid-range Lux and even the range-topping Ultra variant for under our price threshold, representing outstanding value for money.

The range-topping Ultra adds some seriously premium features like 19-inch alloys, a 12.3-inch infotainment system, a panoramic sunroof, heated and ventilated seats and a powered tailgate that are difficult to obtain at this price point, making it one of the best value SUVs on the market. 

Nissan X-Trail

The Nissan X-Trail has long been one of the go-to options for family buyers with an adventurous spirit, and in its latest generation, the recipe has gotten even better.

The updated X-Trail platform is more premium, spacious and practical than ever before, with the option of a seven-seat variant for under $40,000 giving buyers a great deal of versatility and confidence that their family-friendly package is also adventure-ready.

Mitsubishi Outlander

Mitsubishi’s update for the Outlander platform was a major improvement over its predecessor, with the updated model representing one of the most attractive options on the market for large Australian families.

Aside from the styling update, the interior itself gained a significantly more stylish and modern cabin that not only looks great, it’s more than capable of swallowing up a family of seven.

Both the Outlander ES and LS grades squeeze in under our price cut-off, with Mitsubishi retaining its outstanding ten-year warranty coverage for the Outlander for long-term confidence.

Subaru Forester

The Subaru Forester has been a long-time achiever in the Australian SUV landscape, and has carved itself out a nice little niche with buyers looking for a comfortable and capable SUV that isn’t afraid to get its toes dirty.

The Forester range comes powered by a 2.5-litre four-cylinder producing 136kW of power and 239Nm of torque which is paired with a CVT automatic and Subaru’s confidence-inspiring symmetrical all-wheel drive system.

Mazda CX-5

Mazda’s CX-5 has been hot on the toes of the Toyota RAV4 as the outright best-selling midsize SUV thanks to its stylish looks, great driving nature and practical, family-friendly interior.

The CX-5’s platform is a refreshing reminder that a well-credentialed family SUV doesn’t need to be boring to drive, offering a sporty nature that remains exceptionally comfortable on a daily drive.

Kia Sportage

Twin-under-the-skin to the Hyundai Tucson, the Kia Sportage is one of the best midsize SUVs on the market, especially when you consider its attractive asking prices and long equipment lists.

Outside, the Sportage is sleek and modern, while the interior has been completely revised to be more attractive and more practical than ever before, with acres of space for a growing family.

Kia also offers the Sportage with a very attractive seven-year warranty, making for a very confidence-inspiring package.


We’ll round out our list of the best SUVs in Australia priced under $40,000 with one of the best-value SUVs on the market, the MG HS.

While it might not be as established as its rivals, the HS has been quick to impress thanks to its spacious cabin, comfortable driving nature and a very long list of standard equipment that is difficult to match.

Better still, the MG ZS comes packaged with a seven-year warranty.

What is the Number One SUV in Australia?

When it comes to outright sales, the MG ZS was the number one best-selling SUV in Australia for the month of November, 2022, followed by the Toyota RAV4, Mazda CX-5, Mitsubishi Outlander, Kia Sportage, Hyundai Tucson and the Tesla Model Y.

For the year-to-date, the Toyota is the top seller within the SUV segment, followed by the Mazda CX-5, Mitsubishi Outlander and the Kia Sportage.

What SUV is the Best Value for Money?

When it comes to value for money, manufacturers like MG and Haval, Kia, Hyundai, Mitsubishi, Toyota, Nissan, Suzuki, and Mazda are well-known for their reasonable asking prices and a generous approach to entertainment and safety features as standard - even in the entry-level variants of their SUVs.

Which SUV has the Best Resale Value in Australia?

Some of the family SUVs with the lowest depreciation rates, and therefore the best resale value in Australia include the Mazda CX-5, Mazda CX-3, Land Rover Defender, Mercedes-Benz GLC, Toyota LandCruiser 300 Series & Prado, Jeep Wrangler, and the Jaguar E-Pace.

Request a Quote

If our list of the best SUVs in Australia priced under $40,000 has sparked your imagination, click here to get a hassle-free quote or to speak with one of our car-buying experts.


Alexi Falson

Alexi is an automotive journalist and road tester hailing from Byron Bay. He has an affection for both cars and motorbikes, a great admiration for the simplicity of old-school engineering, and a fascination of new technology making its way to modern cars. When he's not road testing, you'll find him surfing, hiking or helping people find their dream cars.

Best Cars By Base Price

Embark on your SUV journey without breaking the bank. Explore our curated selection of the best SUVs in Australia under $50,000 at Online Auto. From compact crossovers to spacious family-friendly models, find the perfect blend of versatility and affordability.

Discover spacious luxury and powerful performance on a budget with our selection of the top 10 best large SUVs under $70,000. From family-friendly options to off-road adventurers, find the perfect balance of size and affordability.

Unlock a world of automotive excellence without breaking the bank. Explore our curated selection of the best cars under $50,000 at Online Auto. From stylish sedans to versatile SUVs, find the perfect combination of performance and affordability.

Explore the optimal blend of style, performance, and affordability with our curated selection of the best small cars under $40,000 in Australia. From fuel-efficient compacts to versatile hatchbacks, find your perfect match that suits your budget and lifestyle.

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