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Tyres /  Tyre News4x4 & SUV / Cars that will get you home for Christmas

Cars that will get you home for Christmas  

Jeep Wrangler

Who needs Rudolf and his eight antlered pals when you’ve got four-wheel drive and Michelin all-season traction? Choose one of these trusty sleighs to make it to family festivities on time.  

In Chris Rea’s famous 1986 car carol, Driving Home for Christmas, he describes the trials and tribulations of the great mass migration we undertake every December. From negotiating the bipolar British weather to braving miles of stop-start traffic, it’s a journey that’s often fraught with challenges. That’s why, this year, you’ll want a car that you can rely upon to deliver you unscathed and unstressed to the most wonderful time of the year. May we suggest one of these? 

Toyota Land Cruiser  

Toyota Land Cruiser
The new Land Cruiser has character aplenty but none of its rival’s reliability foibles.
Image credit: Toyota

If you’d rather listen to Rea’s Jazzy musings than the sounds of tyres spinning hopelessly — or a starter motor groaning lethargically — Toyota’s new Land Cruiser offers unparalleled reliability with sublime off-road ability. And with either five or seven seats to choose from, this rugged Toyota has larger families covered too.  

What’s more, with its retro-inspired styling you’ll likely turn a few heads as you pass lesser, pseudo-off-roaders, flummoxed by a few inches of snow. There’s just one problem: getting a hold of this latest model before Auld Lang Syne rings out might be a challenge. Toyota is yet to confirm exactly when the UK will receive its allocation of ‘Cruisers.

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Jeep Wrangler 

Jeep Wrangler
You might struggle to notice the difference between this and the old Wrangler, but the real changes run more than skin deep.
Image credit: Jeep

If your in-laws live way out in the sticks, you’re going to need something with serious go-anywhere pedigree this festive season. And what better machine than from a brand whose name is now literally synonymous with all-terrain vehicles: Jeep. More specifically, the recently revised Wrangler.  

Jeep’s latest utilitarian off-roader takes things up a notch from the Land Cruiser. From its exposed door hinges and slab-sided physique, to the sidestep and body-on-frame design, the Wrangler is sure to win favour with that annoying uncle who likes to reiterate, “they don’t build ‘em like they used to!”.  

Plus, Jeep’s recent suite of interior improvements mean the Wrangler’s cabin isn’t as spartan as it once was. Standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto will facilitate any Christmas playlist of your choosing, while an optional reversing camera will ensure that you don’t flatten Granny’s Hydrangeas as you back into the drive.  

BMW 3 Series xDrive Touring 

BMW 3 series Touring
The 3 Series received a raft of improvements in a recent LCI facelift. 
Image credit: BMW

If we’re honest, unless you live deep in the highlands of Scotland the previous options on this list might be a little overkill. Afterall, you probably won’t need a winch and diff-locks to make it up Auntie Bessie’s sleet dusted cul-de-sac. 

More realistically, you will benefit from the all-wheel-drive traction BMW’s venerable xDrive system has to offer, but the 3 Series’ lower ride height and rear-wheel-drive bias means you’ll cut your fuel bill considerably compared to the Wrangler and Land Cruiser.  

Those still worried about getting stranded in a snow drift can achieve further peace of mind by swapping on a set of winter wheels shod with a quality all-season or winter tyre – Michelin’s Cross Climate 2 or Continental’s Winter Contact TS860 are both safe bets.  

With a plethora of engines to choose from (petrol, diesel, or hybrid) you can also decide whether you want your winter road trip to be uber efficient or a barrel of laughs. Opt for the frugal 320d if MPG is key, or the high performance M340i if you want to make it there before Santa leaves his grotto.  

And, for the icing on the cake, a 500-litre boot should easily swallow the questionably gift-wrapped copy of Mary Berry’s autobiography and the dreaded but inevitable, seasonal socks… 

So there you have it, our three top picks to keep your festive plans on track. But what will you be driving home this Christmas?  

Hero image credit:  Jeep

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