Advancements in technology, especially in terms of engine efficiency, have brought about a craze for SUVs and 4x4s in the UK. These large cars have a commanding ride height, plenty of practicality and thanks to these new engines are fairly cheap to run as well.
SUVs and 4x4s used to be mainly used by farmers and those who live out in rural areas to traverse the tough terrain they encounter in their daily driving - but these days, this type of car is seen all over the country, with plenty to be found deep in the big cities.
Cars like the Range Rover still have the kind of ability that would impress a mountain goat, but these models aren't the cheapest to run. The Land Rover Discovery, for example, is a brilliant and hugely capable off-roader, but it can barely manage to get 30mpg - for many, that's worth the trade-off, though.
Of course it's not always expensive to get into a 4x4: the Dacia Duster happens to be one of the UK's cheapest new cars, but can still tackle the rough stuff and can be used as a practical everyday car as well.
Gettign a model with four-wheel drive will mean the car performs better in any situation where more grip is required - having four wheels turning instead of just two is obviously a big benefit in adverse weather conditions. In snow you'll still need to get some winter tyres on, though - 4x4s may have more grip on the move, but that doesn't mean they can stop on a dime as well.
In some models the suspension, engine and transmission settings can be changed to cope with different terrain, with a setting for the car to automatically detect the conditions as well.
If you're looking for a 7-seater car then a large 4x4 might be something you'll be interested in: they tend to be more desirable than MPVs and can offer a great deal of practicality. With their huge boot space, roof racks and towing capacity they make great cars for going on holiday, too.
Towing a caravan or trailer is a common use for these cars as well - and if that's your plan, the high torque of a large diesel engine is the best choice for load-lugging. Check out our review of the best tow cars in Britain to find out more.
To help you choose which 4x4 is right for you, we've rounded up 10 of the best. Click the links on the left or the next page link below to find out more.