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I’ve been on plenty of road trips, all in a variety of different cars. There was the Texan Corvette dream car, the Croatian Sixt Audi, the cake-filled MINI, the MotoGP Abarth, and the mercifully gigantic Renault Captur.

Choosing a road trip car is about practicality but if, like me, you love a stylish shot of your car in front of a beautiful vista, looks have to come into it too. Here are some tips for what to look for in a road trip car.



Sometimes a road trip might be short and you can get away with a silly sports car but for something more epic, you’re going to need space. A big 4×4 would be preferable here, especially if you’re going to be tackling some tricky terrain too.


I’d always prefer to roar around in a powerful car (because I’m a girl racer at heart) but a bit of power makes mountain roads much easier, it allows you to merge more easily onto motorways and get on with the more dull parts of the journey. There’s also something really wonderful about putting your foot down in something that does 0-60 in 3.2 seconds.


If you’re going for something sporty, looking for a car that has active suspension. This means it’ll adapt to the road condition and your driving style. This makes bumpy roads much more comfortable. Pillowy suspension in a larger vehicle (especially one with big wheels) can also make the ride more comfortable.


I’d always rather have a manual but an automatic car can make a long, long drive very easy. This is what we had on our Sixt rental car in Croatia and, I have to say, it was wonderful.

Fuel consumption

Road trips can either be the most economical way to travel or it can be hellishly expensive. The cost difference between my electric road trip and my Corvette trip was astonishing…

Whether you’re looking at Cars.com to buy a car or are considering renting one for a short trip, take into consideration what you love to drive, where you’ll be driving it and the kind of space you need.

Good luck in your road trip car search.