Itâ€™s enough money to buy a new one on a budget â€“ but is it better spent on a pre-loved example of something posher?
If youâ€™ve got access to Â£25,000, there are plenty of SUVâ€™s available to buy new. But theyâ€™ll tend to be on the small side, or from towards the bottom of their manufacturerâ€™s range.
For the same sort of money, though, there are some very tempting vehicles on offer on the used market. As the following selection shows, you can get yourself into a premium model with serious badge cred â€“ or even buy something nearly-new thatâ€™s barely run in and has almost all its life ahead of it.
1: Audi Q5
One we found: 2.0 TDI SE (2014), 10,000 miles, Â£24,490
The Q5 has a roomy cabin with very flexible seating â€“Â but itâ€™s for people who would really prefer an agile road car. Thatâ€™s how it feels to drive, which means a fairly heavy ride â€“ but what is one of the most athletic suspension set-ups in any SUV. Interior quality is right up to Audiâ€™s usual standards, but avoid the 2.0-litre petrol engine unless you have a fetish for filling stations â€“ and make sure the auto box is in good nick unless you love spending money by the fistful.
2: Volvo XC60
One we found: D4 SE Lux Nav (2014), 23,000 miles, Â£23,000
Volvo called this its safest ever car when it was new. Thatâ€™s an indication of what you get â€“Â simply an outstanding family wagon. As well as being comfortable, it has a classy cabin with plenty of cool styling touches that make it a pleasure to sit in, so itâ€™s a pleasingly relaxed cruiser â€“ albeit not the most engaging driverâ€™s car. As this example shows, itâ€™s exceptional value second-hand, and if you keep it properly maintained it should be a pain-free SUV to own.
3: BMW X5
One we found: xDrive 35d SE (2009), 44,000 miles, Â£22,495
This sort of money only buys the previous-generation X5, but with the handling of an athletic saloon car thatâ€™s not what youâ€™d call a hardship. Donâ€™t expect the best of rides, though, even in SE form â€“ but a slick, classy cabin might make up for that. The X5 could be specced with seven seats, so thereâ€™s the first box to tick when narrowing down your search; just as important, though, is to look for any signs that the air suspension on the back wheels is in anything other than tip-top nick, because it definitely costs tip-top money to put right.
4: Kia Sorento
One we found: 2.2 CRDI KX-2 (2015), 12,000 miles, Â£24,999
A used car with a longer warranty than most have from new? Nice. The Sorento started with seven, so the sums are easy â€“ even if the 2015 example we spotted will use up all our budget. With a huge seven-seat cabin and Kiaâ€™s famously thorough approach to equipment (including safety kit), itâ€™s hard not to conclude that itâ€™s worth every penny.
5: BMW X3
One we found: xDrive 20d SE (2013), 13,000 miles, Â£23,995
The X3 is a fine-handling SUV whose multimedia system is right at the top of the tree. Thereâ€™s a good choice of engines, too, and itâ€™s a popular vehicle so there are plenty on offer. The SE model is best, as it has the most comfortable ride and wants little for kit, but buy with care â€“Â the 2.0-litre diesel has been known to suffer from a stretched timing chain, and if that happens youâ€™ll be forking out for a new engine.