NEW YORK ( MainStreet) -- An SUV is like an old Macy Gray album or Sex And The City episode: It seemed like a good idea in the early 2000s, but looks like an embarrassing, frivolous waste now.
Automakers are trying to change that.
Suburban assault vehicles gave way to car-based crossovers years ago, but their mileage is finally catching up with conservative car buyers. A lot of drivers out there still want SUV-style space -- or at least more room than their subcompact or sedan -- but don't want to sacrifice that small-car mileage.
With gas prices triple what they were in the SUV-happy market of a decade ago, we went to TrueCar for suggestions about how to own an SUV without streaming money directly into the gas tank. The following vehicles offer the space drivers loved when they were singing I Try in traffic, but the mileage they craved since Sex and the City hit the big screen:
Combined miles per gallon: 21.5
General Motors ( GM) lowered the mileage on these twin behemoths, but the hybrid model is only about three miles per gallon better than the standard engine. At a $12,000 premium over the base model, that's about $4,000 per saved gallon. The V-8 engine, seating for eight and more than 100 cubic feet of maximum cargo space are a minimal consolation at the pump, which may explain why only 3% of SUV buyers purchase vehicles this size anymore.