For the price of a similarly equipped four-cylinder compact SUV, the Grand Vitara offers a V-6.
But the Jeep Liberty is a the better choice for demanding off-roading or towing, while the RAV4, with its especially useful third-row seat, is a top pick for those who plan to stay mostly on-road.
The Liberty's interior is quite cramped, though.
The Sportage, RAV4, and Escape all benefit from carlike handling to bring more security to curvy roads, but none of these models are very proficient in towing.
Then there's the Grand Vitara's cumbersome spare tire on the back hatch, which handicaps cargo loading (and visibility, slightly); the RAV4 also follows this silly arrangement.
Value for money is a real selling point for the 2009 Suzuki Grand Vitara.
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|2009 Suzuki Grand VitaraBrowse Used Listings||2009 Ford EscapeBrowse Used Listings||2008 Jeep LibertyBrowse Used Listings||2008 Kia SportageBrowse Used Listings||2008 Toyota RAV4Browse Used Listings|
|17 MPG City / 26 MPG Hwy||17 MPG City / 31 MPG Hwy||15 MPG City / 22 MPG Hwy||17 MPG City / 25 MPG Hwy||19 MPG City / 27 MPG Hwy|
|Gas I4||Gas I4||Gas V6||Gas I4||Gas I4|
|2WD Sport Utility Vehicle||2WD Sport Utility Vehicles||2WD Sport Utility Vehicle||2WD Sport Utility Vehicle||2WD Sport Utility Vehicle|
|2WD 4-Door I4 Manual||FWD 4-Door I4 Manual XLS||RWD 4-Door Sport||2WD 4-Door I4 Manual LX||FWD 4-Door 4-cyl 4-Speed AT (GS)|
|Two Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||2-Wheel Drive||2 Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive|
|4-Door||4 Door||4 Door||4 Door||4 Door|
|Manual||Manual w/OD||Manual w/OD||Manual||Automatic w/OD|