The 25 Most Popular Rental Cars

Sometimes your own ride isn't an option. Whether for a vacation, a business trip, or as a short-term solution, it may be necessary to hire a vehicle every so often.

Options of rental cars can seem dizzying, so it's useful to narrow down the type of model you're after. Usually, hire cars are classed in various groups, such as Mini, Compact, Convertible, Estate, and Luxury. These are tailored to different needs, for example, cruising through the city or navigating bumpy, off-road terrain.

According to price comparison website TravelSupermarket, fullsize cars are the most popular with renters. Recent search data indicates that 25 percent of customers clicked on this category, ahead of Intermediate (18 percent) and Economy (15 percent).

Only 6 percent of hire car customers look to splash out on luxury vehicles—but when they do, there are few complaints.

This rundown, below, has been compiled using customer ratings on rental sites in the largest U.S. cities. Take a look through the cars that prove most popular with rental customers.

Ford Explorer

With three rows of seats, the Ford Explorer is an ideal rental for small groups and families on vacation. The car has potent turbocharged engines, gets good gas mileage, and delivers a smooth ride.

Ford Explorer Most Popular us Car Models
The 2021 Ford Explorer is primed for modern-day exploration Ford

Toyota Corolla

The Corolla is available in four-door saloon, five-door hatchback, or touring sports estate types.

Introduced in 1966, the Corolla is historically a popular car, achieving the title of best-selling car worldwide by 1974. It has low running costs and avoids diesel.

#7. Toyota Corolla
The Toyota Corolla is available as both a four-door sedan and as a hatchback. otomobil / Shutterstock

Volkswagen Jetta

A car with substantial boot space, this is a great rental car for carrying lots of luggage.

Jetta
The Volkswagen Jetta is handy for carrying lots of luggage

Chrysler 300

A luxury addition to the list, this model is for those who want to travel in style.

This sedan features a high-tech and functional interior, with available AWD, 4G LTE and Wi-Fi Hotspots that would suit a business trip.

Chrysler
The Chrysler 300 S is on display at the 112th Annual Chicago Auto Show at McCormick Place in 2020. (Raymond Boyd/Getty Images)

Ford Mustang Convertible

A modern twist on an American classic, this sports car offers a straight-line acceleration and poised handling.

Reliable when exploring new territories, Ford Co-Pilot 360 safety tech is installed on the latest Ford Mustang models, as are auto high-beam headlights and rain-sensing window wipers.

Ford Mustang
Ford Mustang 5.0 V8 sports car on display at Brussels Expo in 2020. (Sjoerd van der Wal/Getty Images)

Chevrolet Tahoe

Currently, in its fifth generation, Chevy's full-size SUV has only got more popular with time.

Not only has the most recent model of the vehicle become larger, but Chevy is also offering a total of six trim levels and different wheel sizes.

Chevy Tahoe Recall
The 2018 Chevrolet Tahoe includes an infotainment system and standard safety features. Raymond Boyd/Getty

Ford Edge

Another SUV, this is a decent mid-sized family car comprised of five seats. With an easy-to-use infotainment system and standard safety features, it's a reliable, no-frills rental.

07 Ford Edge
The 2018 Ford Edge had some of the lowest ownership costs over the last five years. Ford

Kia Soul

The South Korean made car received a revamp in 2013, becoming all-electric. The car is affordable, with spacious seating and ample cargo room.

20 Kia Soul X-Line GettyImages-1066473348
A car from the Kia Soul X-Line with spacious seating and ample cargo room. Frederic J. Brown/AFP

Toyota Camry

The Camry is a traditional saloon with four doors and a large boot underneath a separate boot lid. Drawbacks include a relatively small trunk and noticeable cabin noise.

Toyota Camry
The Toyota Camry boasts hybrid technology and high standard of comfort Toyota

Mazda CX-5

Often praised for looking sleek despite its practical SUV proportions, this is an easy car to drive around in towns or the countryside.

With five seats and a low roof, it's also not a nightmare to handle in a multi-storey car park.

09b Mazda CX5
2018 Mazda CX-5, a compact and easy to handle SUV. Mazda North American Operations

Nissan Armada

Often compared to the Chevy Tahoe this SUV is perfect for more adventurous vacations. The four-wheel-drive system has plenty of suspension travel to navigate landscapes with rocks and ruts.

2021 Nissan Armada
A 2021 Nissan Armada. This car has a four-wheel-drive system has plenty of suspension travel. Josh Smith

Nissan Quest

Another Nissan, though this time a people carrier.

For those after something more old school than an SUV, it's a spacious family-friendly option. Alas, the Quest was discontinued in 2017.

Nissan Quest
The Nissan Quest is seen at the premiere of Disney's 'Mars Needs Moms' at the El Capitan Theatre in 2011. (Charley Gallay/WireImage)

Chevrolet Spark

A popular city car, the Spark is usually responsive and easy to drive, easily handling turns and tight parking spots.

21 Chevrolet Spark
The Chevrolet Spark is a popular car for driving in cities. Newspress

Ford Ecosport

Originally designed for emerging markets in South America and Asia, this car is still a winner in terms of affordability and ground clearance. More recent models have updated, sleeker interiors.

Ford Ecosport
A Ford Ecosport St-Line car is presented at the Frankfurt Auto Show. TOBIAS SCHWARZ/AFP via Getty Images)

GMC Yukon

This bold car has enough space for eight people, as well as plenty of cargo and towing capacity.

Thanks to triple-sealed doors and valved exhaust system, the Yukon also makes for a smooth and quiet ride.

GMC
The GMC Denali Yukon AT4 is on display at the 112th Annual Chicago Auto Show at McCormick Place in Chicago in 2020. (Raymond Boyd/Getty Images)

Chevrolet Cruz

This car has been classed as the most important model for General Motors since the company's bankruptcy in 2009.

It's a popular car for first-time car owners, as well as a reliable vehicle for renters.

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Mary Barra, head of global product development for GM, with a 2011 Chevrolet Cruze. John F. Martin / Courtesy of GM

Jeep Compass

Described by its manufacturers as having "a sloping roofline and muscular arches" the Compass is as practical as it is stylish.

Very capable off-road due to an increased ride height and skid plates, this is a better car for venturing into the wilderness.

Compass
The unveiling of the restyled 2011 Jeep Compass. GEOFF ROBINS/AFP via Getty Images

Nissan Altima

A gentle, commuter car, this is a safe bet for city driving.

The Nissan Altima is a midsize car that has been manufactured by Nissan since 1992, making it a highly reliable choice.

Nissan Altima
Nissan Altima is a reliable, midsize car. Scott Olson/Getty Images

Hyundai Santa Fe

A sporty offering from South Korean manufacturer Hyundai, the Sante Fe is a well-built family SUV that seats seven.

08b Hyundai
The 2018 Hyundai Santa Fe seats seven comfortably. Hyundai

Toyota Corolla

The Corolla is available in four-door saloon, five-door hatchback, or touring sports estate types.

Introduced in 1966, the Corolla is historically a popular car, achieving the title of best-selling car worldwide by 1974.

Toyota Corolla Hybrid 2018-10-02T121152Z_32599100_RC1D6470E5E0_RTRMADP_3_AUTOSHOW-PARIS
The 2018 Toyota Corolla Hybrid. Benoit Tessier/Reuters

Ford Focus

With a reputation for being more fun than your average family car, this hatchback has staples such as good cabin space and well-performing engines.

20 Ford Focus RS
The Ford Focus has good cabin space and well-performing engines. Newspress

Volkswagen Polo

This basic supermini has been produced by the German car manufacturer Volkswagen since 1975. It's easy to drive, affordable to run and spacious inside.

Volkswagen Polo
A 2011 Volkswagen Polo SEL 1.2 (National Motor Museum/Heritage Images/Getty Images)

Audi Q3

An all-rounder that suits a special occasion or everyday driving, this five-door SUV is a well-made car from the German market.

 Audi
Audi has made cars since 1909 including the popular Audi Q3. MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty

Nissan Rogue

Thanks to a redesign, the compact SUV/has more attractive styling, modernised interior tech and improved performance.

Nissan Rogue
The latest generation of Nissan Rogue included a significant redesign. Sjoerd van der Wal/Getty Images

Buick Encore

On the luxurious end, this subcompact crossover SUV is of a neat size which makes manoeuvring easy and handling sound.

Buick Encore
The Buick Encore is on display at the 110th Annual Chicago Auto Show at McCormick Place in 2018. (Raymond Boyd/Getty Images)

Infiniti QX60

Breaking into the market in 2013, the Infiniti QX60 is a midsize luxury SU. With plenty of passenger and cargo space and various technology installed, this car is for those willing to splurge on a rental.

11a Infiniti
2018 Infiniti QX60: Second Best Luxury 3-Row SUV for the Money. Infiniti