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GAUGING PRICE, FUEL COST

SUVs and crossovers have taken a back seat to more efficient cars recently. But some still need bigger vehicles to get their family or gear around town. Cars.com identified the SUVs and crossovers that offer the best bang for a consumer's buck based upon each vehicle's sticker price and estimated lifetime fuel cost.

Vehicle.......................MPG (city/hwy).....Base sticker.....Lifetime fuel.....Sticker / Lifetime fuel

1 Jeep Patriot.................23/28..................$16,485...........$19,193............$35,678

2 Jeep Compass.............23/28..................$17,475...........$19,193............$36,668

3 Kia Sportage...............20/25..................$16,050...........$21,840............$37,890

4 Ford Escape.................22/28..................$19,140...........$19,714............$38,854

5 Mazda Tribute..............22/28..................$19,240...........$19,714............$38,954

6 Hyundai Tucson...........20/25..................$17,420............$21,840...........$39,260

7 Nissan Rogue*.............22/27..................$19,430............$20,000...........$39,430

8 MazdaTribute hybrid*...34/30..................$25,310............$15,153...........$40,463

9 HondaElement*............20/25..................$19,780............$21,840...........$41,620

10 Mitsubishi Outlander*..20/25..................$19,990............$21,840...........$41,830

* Denotes automatic transmission

The list was compiled by combining each vehicle's base sticker price (as of Aug. 24) with a fuel-cost estimate based on the vehicle's EPA-estimated gas mileage. Fuel costs assume that the vehicle is driven 15,000 miles per year, 55 percent in the city and 45 percent on the highway; that the cost of regular unleaded gasoline is $4 a gallon; and that the vehicle is owned for eight years. All vehicles listed are two-wheel drive.

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