1. Home
  2. >
  3. Buying Guide
  4. >
  5. Deep Research
  6. >
  7. In-depth investigation of the...

[YesAuto In-Depth Investigation] As the rainy season approaches, we have also restarted the investigation of vehicle wading depth. In this article, we collected data on popular SUVs such as Volkswagen Tiguan, Ford Maverick and Toyota RAV4. Hope these data can make you more safe and less dangerous in heavy rain.


● Measurement items

Half-height wheels: The standard for half-height wheels is a safe wading height proposed by some old drivers or some “experts”, but in fact this is not a scientific standard for measuring wading performance, we are just using it as a reference.

The height of the door frame from the ground: When the accumulated water reaches this height, there is a risk of water ingress in the cabin, which may cause damage to electrical equipment, interior trim and other parts.

Exhaust port height: When the water level reaches the exhaust port position, although it will not cause the engine to stall, if the exhaust pressure is insufficient, it will still cause water to flow back and cause permanent damage to the three-way catalyst.

Air intake height: This is the vehicle's limit wading index. Once water enters here, it will directly cause the vehicle to stall. In serious cases, it will suck water into the engine and cause permanent damage.

● Measurement purpose

    Since we made the first article of the wading survey, many netizens have launched heated discussions around our measurement standards. It is true that it is difficult for us to draw conclusions about the actual wading depth of the vehicle from the static measurement, but the data we measured are all important factors that determine the wading of the vehicle, and more than each one may cause damage to your vehicle. Irreversible damage. As far as the purpose is concerned, the production of this topic is only a display of the various hardware indicators of the vehicle, and the actual wading performance must be determined in conjunction with the site conditions.

● Correct wading method:

1. Observe the depth of the water before wading, you can pass the car that successfully waded ahead or the car that unfortunately stalled in the water as a reference, and do what you can according to your own car's performance and your own driving skills.

2. Choose a low gear, maintain a deep throttle depth in the wading water, and stabilize the throttle to ensure sufficient exhaust pressure.

3. Keep an absolute distance from the vehicle in front, and wait for the vehicle in front to pass before driving to avoid water waves entering the air inlet.

4. If you accidentally turn off the fire in the water, remember not to start it in the water. You should check whether there is water in the air filter and the power distribution box after the stagnant water is pushed out. If you can't confirm it by yourself, it is recommended to call for rescue.


Ford Escape

    The specifications of the wing tiger tire we photographed is 235/50 R18, the tire radius reaches 33cm, the exhaust distance of the double row and double outlet is 35cm from the ground, and the threshold is 44cm above the ground. Therefore, as long as you drive safely, even if the water flows over it. If the wheel is half or higher, the wing tiger can pass safely.

The air intake of the Maverick is concealed under the cover, basically above the chrome-plated banner of the middle mesh, opening forward, 78cm from the ground. Theoretically speaking, if the standing water reaches near the headlights, it is already close to the maximum wading depth of the Maverick. At this time, it is not recommended to continue to venture into the water.

Data summary

Maverick Wading Depth Investigation
project Tire radius Threshold height Exhaust height Intake height
height 33cm 44cm 35cm 78cm

Volkswagen Tiguan

    The tire specification of the 2013 2.0TSI automatic four-wheel drive flagship Tiguan is 235/50 R18, and the distance from the ground to the center of the tire is 34cm, but the height of the exhaust is only 31cm and the opening is straight and lacks bending, so when the water reaches half of the tires When the exhaust gas is completely submerged in the water, once the flameout occurs, it is likely to cause backflow.

Tiguan’s air intake is located at the front end of the engine compartment and also uses a hidden design. The air intake is located 83cm from the ground. You can try to wade cautiously when the stagnant water is completely over the wheels, but if the water level reaches the headlight position, it is better to avoid wading.

Data summary

Tiguan wading depth survey
project Tire radius Threshold height Exhaust height Intake height
height 34cm 47cm 31cm 83cm

Toyota RAV 4

The tire specifications for all models of the 2013 Toyota RAV4 are 225/65 R17, even the “Beggar Edition” models in front of us. From the data point of view, the Toyota RAV4 has a tire radius of 35cm, a height of 48cm from the ground in the car, and a height of 33cm of exhaust. It is conservatively estimated that its safe wading depth is about 30-50cm.

Unlike the two models previously introduced, the air intake of Toyota RAV4 is not designed at the front end of the engine compartment, but “hidden” under the left fender, slightly higher than the outline of the bottom of the headlights, and approximately from the ground. It is 82cm. From the results, although the design is different from conventional models, the difference in height is not very large.

Data summary

RAV4 wading depth survey
project Tire radius Threshold height Exhaust height Intake height
height 35cm 48cm 33cm 82cm

Nissan X-Trail

The current X-Trail tire specifications are all 225/60 R17. According to the rumored method, X-Trail's safe wading depth, that is, the tire radius, is 33cm. In addition, the exhaust height of X-Trail is 32cm, and the door frame is 45cm from the ground. Therefore, if the stagnant water is close to the top of the wheel, for the protection of the vehicle interior, it is recommended not to rush through.

If the wading depth of the vehicle is judged only by the height of the air intake, then X-Jun is undoubtedly the highest model in this survey. The air intake at the front end of the engine compartment is as high as 93cm from the ground, which also proves the passability of Qijun from another angle. In case of standing water, headlights can be used as a reference. When the standing water reaches the headlights, it is close to the extreme wading depth of Qijun.

Data summary

Hyundai ix35

    The tire specifications of the 2012 Beijing Hyundai ix35 are divided into 215/70 R16 and 225/60 R17. The model we photographed is equipped with a larger 17-inch wheel with a tire radius of 33cm. The door inner frame is 50cm from the ground. The exhaust The height is 31cm, but because the exhaust port has a certain curve downward, the water will not easily enter the exhaust pipe.

Like the previously introduced Escape and Tiguan models, the air intake of the Hyundai ix35 is also designed at the front end of the engine compartment and hidden under the cover. From the data point of view, the height of 85cm from the ground is not low, and the hidden design can also prevent the splashing of water waves to a certain extent.

Data summary

ix35 wading depth survey
project Tire radius Threshold height Exhaust height Intake height
height 33cm 50cm 31cm 85cm

Peugeot 3008

    The domestically produced Dongfeng Peugeot 3008 has all wheel hub specifications of 225/50 R17, and the tire center is 32cm from the ground. This is its safe wading depth measured by the standard of the shop. The height of the exhaust pipe of the Dongfeng Peugeot 3008 is 31cm, but the downwardly curved design can make it resist deeper water.

The air intake of the Dongfeng Peugeot 3008 should be the most special of these models. The air intake on the right side of the engine compartment is directly connected to the air collecting box, and a protective cover is installed on the outside. From the perspective of height, this design has no advantages. The height from the ground to the air inlet is only 72cm. This data is the lowest of the 6 models in this survey.

Data summary

3008 wading depth survey
project Tire radius Threshold height Exhaust height Intake height
height 32cm 42cm 31cm 72cm

Data comparison

6 SUV wading depth survey
Model Wing tiger Tiguan RAV4 Qijun ix35 3008
Tire radius 33cm 34cm 35cm 33cm 33cm 32cm
Threshold height 44cm 47cm 48cm 45cm 50cm 42cm
Exhaust height 35cm 31cm 33cm 32cm 31cm 31cm
Intake height 78cm 83cm 82cm 93cm 85cm 72cm

Through this measurement, we found that the half-height of the current mainstream SUV models are basically around 32cm, and the exhaust and threshold heights are both 31cm and 43cm. It is conservatively estimated that the safe wading depth is around 50cm. In terms of extreme wading, the air intakes of the 6 SUV models are all above 70cm, and their positions are basically level with or above the headlights. Therefore, the driver can use it as a reference when the water level reaches the headlights. Forcible wading is not recommended. (Photo/Text Car Home Li Weilong)