Jeep vs. SUV Buying Guide

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Jeep vs. SUV Buying Guide

Jeeps and sport utility vehicles (SUVs) provide drivers with on-the-road comfort combined with the ability to go off-road on rougher terrain. Both vehicle types feature sporty, durable designs with four-wheel or all-wheel drive systems. They also offer a wide range of engine sizes for better fuel economy or for more power, depending on an owner's needs.

When deciding whether to buy a Jeep or an SUV, a shopper should learn the differences between each vehicle type, including model availability and any features that a shopper wants in his or her vehicle. While Jeeps and SUVs may seem similar in many ways, key differences do exist between the two types of vehicles, including some key luxury variations and the ability to go onto rougher terrain. Shoppers should carefully assess the differences before selecting the vehicles that best fit their needs. Prospective car buyers can find Jeeps and SUVs at local vehicle dealerships, on various online vehicle sites, and on eBay.

The Difference Between a Jeep and an SUV

The main difference between a Jeep and an SUV revolves around the more durable off-road capabilities of a Jeep. While SUVs in general have the ability to perform in an off-road capacity, they are more limited when compared to the more robust capabilities of a Jeep. An SUV, on the other hand, offers a more luxurious look and feel and gives vehicle owners some of the elements of an off-road vehicle with the comfort of a luxury vehicle. What a shopper wants in a vehicle with off-road capabilities ultimately influences the final decision about whether to buy a Jeep or an SUV.

Jeep Models

The name Jeep is synonymous with overland vehicles that give their owners the ability to complete a variety of off-road activities while still providing the comforts of an on-road vehicle. Developed from the Jeeps used in World War II, the modern Jeep comes from a long history of reliable and functional vehicles. The table below describes the most current model of Jeep, the Jeep Wrangler.

Jeep Type


Jeep Wrangler JK

Current version of the Jeep Wrangler

Both two-door and four-door models

Longer wheelbase than previous model, although shorter in length

Jeep Wrangler JK Unlimited

Like the Jeep Wrangler JK, except with a longer wheelbase

Same engine and transmission choices of the JK model

The Jeep brand has also taken steps into the SUV field. Jeep brand SUVs include the Jeep Grand Cherokee, Liberty, Compass, and Patriot models, all of which have basic SUV designs in large, family models and smaller crossover SUVs.

Jeep Capabilities

When shopping for Jeeps, buyers should seek Jeeps with the features they desire, including the appropriate off-road capabilities. For example, smaller Jeeps have smaller overall wheelbases to give them a more compact centre of gravity. Another example deals with ground clearance. The more ground clearance, the higher the centre of gravity. In these cases, vehicle owners should consider subsequent increases in the width of the wheels to spread the weight of the vehicles out to give them more stability.

Comfort plays a large part in the overall value of a Jeep. Those models with higher levels of comfort in the form of leather seats, heated seats, and other high-end options demand higher prices from sellers. Barebones vehicles used as work vehicles and recreational off-road vehicles should not cost as much.

Off-Road Capabilities

The Jeep Wrangler remains one of a few four-wheel drive vehicles with both a solid front and rear axle. This gives Jeep axles better articulation and durability and makes them easier and less costly to lift with an aftermarket suspension system. The benefit of a lifted suspension is that the Jeep can fit larger wheels, and this gives drivers better ground clearance and allows the vehicles to move across more difficult terrain. Combined with better articulation, a Jeep customised in this way can move across bigger obstacles with ease. Smaller Jeeps, on the other hand, allow vehicle owners to drive them into places that most off-road vehicles cannot travel.

Shoppers can choose from two Trail Rated 4WD systems when selecting a Jeep 4x4: the 'tough-as-nails' Command-Trac and the 'made-for-mountains' Rock-Trac.


When it comes to comfort, Jeeps offer a wide variety of options, including heated leather seats, navigation systems, a host of entertainment features, removable hard and soft tops, and top-of-the-line audio systems, among other options. When buying Jeeps, shoppers should carefully assess standard and optional features before making their final selections.

Fuel Mileage

On average, Jeeps achieve about the same fuel mileage as the typical light truck. This means that they do not garner as good fuel mileage as most SUVs. This has not stopped Jeep lovers, however, from purchasing the most current models of these versatile, off-road vehicles.

Types of SUVs

Sport utility vehicles give vehicle owners the ability to ride in luxurious comfort with some off-road capabilities. Geared for a range of buyers, including high-end buyers, SUVs come in a variety of sizes. The following table details the different SUV types that are available, including mid, large, and crossover styles.

SUV Type


Crossover SUV

Smallest SUVs on the market

Handles similar to a car

Better fuel mileage than large SUVs

Mild off-road capabilities

Four-cylinder or six-cylinder engines

Mid-Size SUV

Attached to truck-like frames

Handle more intense off-road situations

Most do not have independent rear suspensions

Large SUV

Truck-based SUVs

High centre of gravity requires caution when driving

Least fuel efficient of the SUV types

Best on snowy or slippery roads

Shoppers should buy the SUVs that meet their needs, whether this includes comfort, off-road capabilities, or good fuel mileage. Other considerations include engine type and whether shoppers want four-cylinder, six-cylinder, or eight-cylinder engines.

SUV Capabilities

Unlike Jeeps, SUVs are filled with many luxury features. This remains the main factor that sets them apart, along with their lessened off-road capabilities. Fuel mileage may also become a concern since some of the larger SUVs do not get very good fuel economy.

Off-Road Capabilities

They are not as capable as Jeeps when it comes to off-road performance, but SUVs do provide some ability to travel off-road. This mainly comes into play with mid-size and larger SUVs, as smaller versions do not usually possess the clearance or engine power to function as reliable four-wheel-drive vehicles. Some vehicle experts also point out that the higher centre of gravity with larger SUVs presents a rollover hazard in certain situations.


When it comes to comfort, few vehicles can compare with SUVs. For the most part, SUVs offer top-of-the-line amenities. This may include leather seats and dash materials, wood panelling and trim, and other luxury items that are only found in high-end vehicles. Those who are looking for new vehicles can also find a variety of other options, including entertainment perks like built-in DVD players, state-of-the-art audio systems, and the latest GPS devices.

Fuel Mileage

Until recently, SUVs were held to the standards of light trucks. New legislation, however, has placed SUVs in the same category as cars when it comes to emission standards. This, in turn, has led to an improvement in overall fuel mileage among SUVs. Out of all the SUV types available, the small crossover SUVs get the best fuel economy per mile travelled, followed by mid-size SUVs, and then by the larger, more luxurious SUV models.

Finding Jeeps and SUVs on eBay

When searching for a new vehicle to buy, the standard way of shopping does not always provide the best options. An increasing number of individuals are going online to eBay to find a wide variety of products, including new vehicles like Jeeps and SUVs. If you want to shop online for a vehicle, go to the eBay website and begin searching for the model of your choice. Start by typing keywords into the search box on any eBay page. Use terms like 'black Jeep' or 'Crossover SUV', for example, to begin your search. If necessary, shorten the list of results by clicking on the filters that are listed. To find out some effective search techniques on eBay, visit eBay's Search Tips page.

Shopping using eBay's vast product network provides a quick and secure shopping experience. Start off by looking through product listings that match your search criteria. When looking through the listings, read all the important details regarding item quality, colour, and any other important information. Check with the seller if you have other questions by clicking the Ask a Question link on the seller's listing page. Finally, before buying a product, check the seller ' s feedback rating to make sure he or she meets exceptional customer service and product standards.


Four-wheel drive and all-wheel drive enthusiasts have a big choice to make when it comes to deciding between Jeeps and SUVs. For true off-road capabilities, the Jeep stands out since most SUVs have very basic capabilities when it comes to cross-country movement. On the other hand, SUVs offer much more luxury appeal as compared to Jeeps. Although the fuel mileage ratings were low when SUVs were first introduced, most modern models now feature much better fuel consumption rates. The Jeep's performance in this area still pales in comparison to SUVs.

When choosing between an SUV and a Jeep, vehicle owners need to determine what features they really want in their new vehicles, including engine specifics, GPS capabilities, fuel economy, audio systems, and other features. While SUVs offer more luxurious interiors and options, no other vehicle can beat the off-road performance of a Jeep. When purchasing either Jeeps or SUVs, buyers can find many models and options available on eBay or through local dealers.

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