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5 Best Cars to Rent for a Road Trip

May 23, 2017

Renting a car for a road trip is a really great idea for certain people in certain circumstances. Maybe your daily driver isn’t that reliable, comfortable or spacious. Maybe you live in the middle of an urban area and don’t even own a car. Renting a vehicle means that you can get a 4-wheel drive SUV if your daily driver is a small 2-door coupe so you can hit the trails on your trip. You’ll not only save wear and tear on your everyday car, but it’ll feel even more like you’re on a special vacation with a vacation vehicle!

If you want to rent something for your road trip, here are 5 of the best cars for that. We included a variety of sizes from sedans to vans, all with great to above average gas mileage, and a focus on comfort. All are incredibly common at rental car locations so you shouldn’t have an issue finding any of them at the rental place near you.


Pick the perfect car and then start planning your road trip!


Ford Focus


If you’re looking for a really comfortable, basic vehicle that has a smooth ride, is great on gas, and can fit up to 4 of your friends and their stuff surprisingly well, go with a Focus. There are a few different models, so check to see what’s available from your preferred rental company. The hatchback will give you more room for longer or oddly shaped items you may bring along or want to take home, but the sedan may be preferred if you’re taking more people along. Both have lots of legroom.


You can get up to 38 miles per gallon on the highway so you’ll be able to cover so much ground without killing your road trip gas budget too fast.


Hyundai Tucson


Hyundai consistently tops the list of most rented cars in America, and you can easily find all different types of models at most car rental places, including the road trip-read compact crossover Tucson. This small but capable SUV can be found with all-wheel drive for covering any type of terrain you want to cross. You’ll get an impressive average of 32 mpg, which is better than some sedans.


Premium interior features and lots of added-in compartments for maps, drinks, electronics and other road-trip necessities make this such a comfortable car to travel in. Your passengers will love the spacious back seat, or fold down the seats and you’ll have about 62 cubic feet of cargo space back there.


If you need more room for things like snowboards, dogs, camping equipment, friends or anything else, consider renting a Tucson. You won’t end up spending much more in gas, and the extra room and comfort will be priceless after hours on the road.


Toyota Corolla


Toyota cars are so commonly rented out because they’re so reliable and efficient. What more would you want for a road trip vehicle? This basic but favorite sedan has everything you need, and nothing you don’t. With room for up to 5 people comfortably, about 34 mpg on the highway and little touches like USB chargers, satellite radio and built-in personal storage cubbies, the Corolla is an excellent car to rent for a road trip.




Another excellent small SUV that’s easily rentable and excellent for a road trip is the RAV4. Tech-based comfort features like dual-zone climate and cruise control help keep everyone comfortable. An average mpg of 30 on the highway will keep your gas budget in check. You can tow up to 1,500 pounds so whether you want to take along a motorcycle, some kayaks or anything else to play with on your road trip, you can do it with ease in the RAV4.


Dodge Grand Caravan


If you want to bring along a lot of people, a lot of stuff, or both, the Grand Caravan is a seriously grand option for you. These vans are so popular and because of that they’re practically everywhere and should be easy to find at most car rental places. They definitely aren’t fancy, but they’re reliable, roomy and pretty good on gas given all the space you get, averaging 25 mpg on the highway and a still-impressive 17 or so in the city. You can easily fit up to 7 passengers, or fold down the back seats and have room for cargo storage.

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