Eight Compact 2020 SUVs Under $40,000

If you like the idea of an SUV but not its massiveness, or the thought of paying the monthly gasoline bill we might have options for you. Compact SUVs perform the same function as regular full-size versions but without the heft and large gas bill at the end of the month. And besides the size and economy advantages, there is the price. There are some superb examples with lots of cargo space, great fuel economy, and for under $40.000. Many of these are luxury compact SUVs with a whole host of standard features. 

Acura RDX

2020 Acura RDX A-Spec

Having been completely redesigned in 2019 there are few changes hitting in 2020. No longer a disguised CR-V, the MDX rides on its own platform and has its own engine. As a luxury crossover, it offers many upgraded features not normally found in crossovers at this price point. Mileage is good with lots of cargo space. Prices start at u$37,600. Under $40,000 with tax and license its a bargain.

GMC Terrain Denali

2020 GMC Terrain Denali | GM

Playing off of the reputation of Denali the GMC Terrain Denali is a luxury compact SUV. It features a unique appearance package with its own grille and wheels, LED signature lighting and more chrome. In addition, the suspension has been tuned for a more luxurious ride, it has leather seats, Bose audio, a hands-free power liftgate, and more. Safety tech is abundant and the Terrain Denali comes standard with the 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder engine.

Infiniti QX50

The 2020 INFINITI QX50 luxury crossover. | Infiniti

This compact luxury crossover features a nicely appointed interior and the panache that comes with the Infiniti name. The VC Turbo engine uses variable compression that aids fuel economy without sacrificing performance. The interior is well laid out and features lots of cargo and passenger space. Prices start at $37,250 for the well-appointed base QX50. 

Kia Sportage SX Turbo

2018 Kia Sportage
2020 Kia Sportage | Sefa Karacan/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

The SX Turbo engine is an option for the Sportage. You might as well go all the way because loaded the Kia Sportage comes in under $40,000. That gets you leather seats that are heated and ventilated, a Harmon Kardon audio system, parking sensors, panoramic sunroof, and Smart Power liftgate. It also includes a host of safety tech with some being optional in more expensive vehicles.

Lincoln Corsair

2020 Lincoln Corsair
2020 Lincoln Corsair | Spencer Platt/Getty Images

New for 2020 the Corsair comes in nicely optioned even in the base model. For the Standard I package you get ambient lighting, navigation, and 18-inch wheels. You’ll still be under the $40,000 cap. A power liftgate, premium audio, and Co-Pilot safety technology are all standard equipment. 

Mazda CX-5 Signature

2020 Mazda CX-5 | Mazda

The Signature trim for the CX-5 still hits below the $40,000 limit and gets you the turbocharged engine and all-wheel-drive. There’s also Nappa leather, real interior wood trim, a head-up display, heated seats and steering wheel, and a list of safety equipment. You also get a 360-degree camera. It’s a highly optioned crossover for the price.

Subaru Forester Touring

2019 Subaru Forester on display
2020 Subaru Forester| Robert Hradil/Getty Images

All-wheel-drive is standard with the Touring upgrade, plus leather seats, an eight-inch infotainment system with nav, Harman Kardon audio, DriverFocus safety suite, and a lot more. Gas mileage is somewhat better than others in this group. The starting price is $34,595 with the Touring package.

Toyota RAV4 Limited Hybrid

A silver Toyota RAV4 on display at an auto show.
Toyota RAV4 | Michael Noble Jr./Bloomberg via Getty Images

The top-selling compact crossover, the RAV4 can be optioned with the hybrid system for under $40,000. An eight-inch infotainment screen with navigation, heated seats front and read, JBL audio, and Toyota’s Advanced Technology package are all included. The hybrid system comes with an all-wheel-drive setup standard.