15 stylish compact crossovers for under P1.5 million

The compact crossover is today’s starter family car. As compact SUVs get larger, more luxurious, and better equipped, they now occupy the sort of market that small cars used to cater to. Mixing in versatility and comfort in equal measure, these five-seaters aren’t just adept for the daily drive, but they’re great even for the occasional out-of-town excursion as well. While every centavo counts these days, these crossovers also pass the all-important “driveway test”—meaning that they have head-turning styling too.

Changan CS75 Plus
(P1.379 million)

The star of Changan’s Philippine line-up, the CS75 Plus is the brand’s “Intelligent SUV.” The exterior design itself is supposed to evoke the look and feel of liquid metal, while inside, it’s downright high-tech with its 7-inch digital instrument cluster and 12-inch touchscreen multimedia system combo. Beyond the tech, it’s built to satisfy those with a need for speed with its turbocharged 1.5-liter 4-cylinder making 178hp and 265Nm of torque. This is mated to a 6-speed automatic with selectable driving modes.

Honda HR-V
(Starts at P1.295 million)

Honda HR-V

One of the pioneers of this segment, the HR-V is now one of its more respected veterans. A refresh in 2018 added sought-after features including LED lighting, but more importantly, it introduced a sportier-looking RS variant. The coupe-like styling (hidden rear door handles, high interior center tunnel) of the HR-V makes it different from this sea of crossovers, while its magic ULT seats (borrowed from the Jazz) means it has one of the biggest cargo capacities in its class. The HR-V is powered by a 1.8-liter normally aspirated engine mated to an Earth Dreams CVT with an ECON mode and eco coaching light.

Hyundai Kona
(P1.188 million)

Hyundai Kona

Realizing that looks play an important role in convincing Filipino buyers, Hyundai has done something different with the Kona. The unpainted exterior plastics are meant to convey a sort-of-armor making it look bulkier than it really is. Of course, this is more than just skin deep and with that it has a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine making 149hp and 179Nm of torque. It also rates highly when it comes to safety with 6 airbags, ABS with EBD, stability control, and more. It also has a 5-year, unlimited mileage warranty too.

Mazda CX-3
(P1.490 million)

Mazda CX-3

Mazda’s desire to occupy a more premium space is clearly communicated with its refreshed CX-3. It continues to combine a timelessly beautiful design with a well-crafted interior. Its 2.0-liter engine with 150hp and 195Nm of torque also keep things exciting for the driver. For 2022, the baby of the CX-family boasts of more standard features such as LED headlights, a Bose sound system, and wireless Apple CarPlay. It also comes in two distinct styling packages—Elegance and Sport—a first in the sub-compact SUV space.

Chery Tiggo 7 Pro
(P1.198 million)

Chery’s big Philippine success story is anchored on the Tiggo 7 Pro. The sharp-looking compact SUV shows off the Chinese brand’s design-led transformation. The Euro-inspired looks are backed up by a highly ergonomic cabin with features that truly impress. For example, it’s the only Chinese-branded SUV to offer both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. More than that, it boasts of a panoramic sunroof, an electronic shifter, and more. Tractive power is provided by a turbocharged 1.5-liter mated to what’s voted as one of the Top 10 transmissions in the world as awarded by the China-based Automobile Evaluation Academy.

(P1.168 million)

A fairly young brand with strong global aspirations, the GAC GS4 features what the brand calls, “Flying Dynamics” styling. The clean and boxy lines feature distinctive design cues such as the “floating roof.” Being a compact SUV in size, the cozy cabin features genuine seating for five, all treated to a plethora of standard features including leather seats, a panoramic sunroof, and more. Powering the GS4 is a turbocharged 1.5-liter mill making 151hp and 235Nm of torque.

Maxus D60
(Starts at P1.148 million)

Maxus Philippines’ first-ever SUV offering, the 7-seater compact D60 is all about endless possibilities. The exterior is already attention-grabbing with its black widow-inspired fascia, complemented by split LED head- and taillights. It also manages to shake up the segment with its size-up proportions, five-star safety rating, and a 169hp/250 Nm engine mated to a 7-speed dual-clutch automatic with cruise control.

Chevrolet Trailblazer
(Starts at P1.488 million)

Don’t adjust your screens. The second-generation Trailblazer transforms from being a 7-seater mid-sized SUV to a 5-seater compact SUV. Designed for more sophisticated buyers this time around, it’s built at the company’s Incheon plant in South Korea. The Camaro-inspired looks comes backed up by class-leading safety features (6 SRS airbags, ABS with EBD, forward collision alert, blind spot warning, lane change alert) as standard. Not only does the engine offer ample power (155hp, 236Nm), but the turbocharged 1.3-liter has features such as a variable displacement oil pump, electric water pump, and idle start/stop all improving its real-world fuel efficiency.

Geely Coolray Sport Limited
(P1.218 million)

If there’s one SUV that’s managed to turn the pecking order upside down, it’s the Geely Coolray. Not only does the Coolray look decidedly sporty, it’s fast (0 to 100 km/h in just 7.9 seconds) thanks to its 1.5-liter 3-cylinder making 177hp and 255Nm. It also rates highly in terms of value-for-money, drivability, and build quality. To keep things fresh, a new Coolray Sport Limited variant has been launched. Limited to just 1,000 examples, it comes with high-gloss black alloy wheels, a power tailgate, and ventilated front seats.

(P1.158 million)

An offshoot of MG Philippines’ bestselling model, the MG ZS T dons a new, yet familiar face. The visually fresh styling is also matched by a new dashboard design headlined by a new virtual instrument cluster, a 10-inch floating infotainment screen, piano-style buttons, and a wealth of standard creature comfort features. Of course, the headline for the MG ZS T is found in the name. The “T” here standards for “Turbo”, and with that, the MG ZS T packs a turbocharged 1.3-liter 3-cylinder putting out 163hp and 230Nm of torque.

Ford Territory
(Starts at P1.179 million)

If you can’t beat them, join them. The Ford Territory is the product of a joint-venture with their Chinese joint-venture partner, JMC. It may be built in China, but its Ford engineered through and through. The American carmaker had inputs on everything from its design to its engineering, and even its testing. Leveraging economies of scale and lowering production costs enabled Ford to fit the Territory with everything but the kitchen sink. Aside from the usual niceties, it even comes with advanced driver aids including automated parking.

Kia Seltos
(Starts at P1.098 million)

Named after “Celtos,” the son of Hercules in Greek mythology, the Seltos is a shot in the arm that Kia Philippines’s newly appointed distributor needed. In terms of design, it’s eye-catching taking on a decidedly larger-than-life approach with its “tiger face” front-end and boxy profile. Yet, despite its compact crossover classification, it’s roomy for five adults with generous cargo space to boot. A 2.0-liter engine with 149hp and 179Nm offers pep, while an Intelligent Variable Transmission adds a more dynamic twist to the usual dullard CVT gearbox.

Suzuki Vitara AllGrip
(Starts at P1.458 million)

Suzuki Philippines takes a different path with their Vitara small SUV by applying standard all-wheel drive technology. The tech dubbed AllGrip makes the Vitara the most affordable AWD-equipped SUV you can buy. There are some minor exterior changes such as added chrome, front and rear skid plates, and rear spoiler, but it’s still very familiar to Vitara customers. Despite its affordable price tag, this Made-in-Hungary SUV packs a punch when it comes to features with rain-sensing wipers, automatic headlights, a 10-inch infotainment system, suede/leather seats, and a full set of safety equipment.

Toyota Corolla Cross
(Starts at P1.295 million)

The Corolla Cross is living proof of the shift of preference towards crossovers. Toyota actually calls it the “Corolla of this generation.” The Corolla Cross expresses a strong sense of sportiness, agility, and robustness—characteristics that can also define Toyota’s best-selling compact sedan, but in a sought-after SUV body style. The Corolla Cross emphasizes interior spaciousness along with easy ingress/egress. The TNGA GA-C platform and 1.8-liter engine are already ingredients for a spirited yet smooth ride, but for those who want to go the extra mile, it’s the only one in this list to offer a full-hybrid version as well.

Volkswagen T-Cross
(Starts at P1.098 million)

Cocooned in a trendy design and youthful interior layout, the T-Cross is the Volkswagen for the fun and trendy. Yet, it’s complemented with German precision with its world-class MQB platform, 1.5-liter EFI 4-cylinder engine, and a 6-speed automatic with cruise control. It also scores high on value too with features that include leather/fabric seats, rear AC vents, a 9.2-inch infotainment system, and a panoramic sunroof. It’s also one safe small SUV too, nabbing top scores at almost every global NCAP crash test.

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