The roads are flushed with a variety of SUVs that offer owners unheard of luxury and utility features. Technology and safety features add even more pampering treats, making these luxury SUVs affordable options when you consider the return on investment.
Several industry influencers have added their stamp of approval to these SUVs with stellar rankings. Specifically, U.S. News and World Report was the resource used to compile this list, as it is considered a go-to authority by consumers. Information about each of these top SUVs follows, with a look at several areas including pros, cons, and starting MSRP for each model reviewed.
Arguably many consumers consider the MDX to be the flagship for Acura’s SUV lineup. Not much has changed with exteriors or interiors, as this stand-out refused to reinvent the wheel. Instead, it offers drivers a load of luxury features and reliability as it rings the affordability bell.
- Luxury Features: Standard luxury features abound, with more help from three packages including Advance, Entertainment, and Technology. Each adds upgrades such as 16-inch ultra-wide entertainment screen.
- Utility Features: Luxury SUVs for families all have third row seating in common. The MDX is no exception with leather seating and versatile second row positions that include sliding, reclining, and captain’s chairs.
- Pros: The responsive V6 engine is one of the most fuel-efficient on the market with a complementing nine speed transmission. This is the winner of the best luxury SUV with third row for the money.
- Cons: With all the technology, drivers may need more than an owners’ manual to operate the bells and whistles. Third row seating is a tight fit for occupants.
- Price: MSRP $44,000
U.S. News and World Report is raving about the Audi Q7 as number three on their 2016 best SUVs list for the mid-size class. It is alongside some pretty heady competition such as Tesla and Porsche with a price tag well over $20,000 less.
- Luxury Features: The three trims: Premium, Premium Plus, and Prestige have Xenon headlamps, panoramic sunroofs, and a BOSE stereo system with an amplifier. Head-up display and run flat tire technology are more driver conveniences.
- Utility Features: Safety features such as the optional autonomous crash-avoidance system make this a safety-first luxury SUVs for families. The Top Safety pick from the IIHS is more confirmation of the craftsmanship owners purchase with this choice.
- Pros: The powerful 333hp V6 is a 3.0L supercharged engine that has exceptional handing, braking, and acceleration. It also ranked number two in three categories including midsize luxury, luxury SUV with three rows, and luxury crossover.
- Cons: There may be room for seven passengers, but there is not much cargo space for other items. It is pricier than the other mid-size offerings.
- Price: MSRP $54,800
You will find three classes where this brand made it to the top three best SUVs position for U.S News and World Report. The subcompact and compact class have the BX1 and BX3 listed respectively. BMW classifies them as SAVs or sports activity vehicles.
- Luxury Features: Innovation such as wireless charging, hot spot, and Bluetooth are a technology boon for owners.
- Utility Features: Power lift gates use motion-activation giving owners a virtual helping hand. There is a rear or all-wheel option with either a turbo inline four or six cylinder 2.0L or 3.0L engines. The 40/20/40 second row positions offer a functional cargo space.
- Pros: Earning two best SUVs categories are a big pro that translates to maintaining the loyal consumer base of repeat buyers. sDrive and iDrive innovation is available for all power-trains.
- Cons: Leather is not a standard feature in any trim. There is no third row in the X1 or X3.
- Price: MSRP $34,000
The Escalade has reached the pinnacle in the large luxury category as one of the 2016 best SUVs. Family oriented is another deliverable, with a comprehensive entertainment system in the rear positions.
- Luxury Features: Cadillac SUV hits all the luxury bases with standard 4G LTE hot spots, Surround Vision, and heated and cooled front and rear seating.
- Utility Features: Cavernous third row seats fold flat with the touch of a button. Exteriors have invisible rear wipers and hands-free lift gates. A robust towing capacity of 8,300 pounds is unmatched by the competition.
- Pros: This is the winner of the number one luxury SUVs for families with several versions including the ESV.
- Cons: Drivers will need to take advantage of specials and offers to make this solid investment affordable.
- Price: MSRP $72,900
The QX60 may not have made the top three of any class on the rankings, but the features such as third row seating makes it a great value luxury SUVs for families. An Eco-friendly hybrid offers better mileage for those long road trips.
- Luxury Features: This is one standard feature-laden SUV with leather, innovative multimedia system, and dual-sunroofs.
- Utility Features: Expansive third row access comes with a walk-through design not available with the competition.
- Pros: A bevy of safety features include standard emergency response systems, backup collision intervention. Technology has wireless headphones integrated with two seven-inch rear-seat screens.
- Cons: Captain’s chairs are not available. The third row seating can be a tight space especially with an installed child’s seat.
- Price: MSRP $42,600
There is another American automaker with a long history of luxury and affordability in the SUV category. Consider the MKX, with its third row seating and towing capacity leaving consumers scratching their heads about the mid-size category listing.
- Luxury Features: Comfortable seats have supple leather with tons of legroom to stretch out. These features are bolstered by the optional 22-way seats and massage functionality.
- Utility Features: Inflatable safety belts protect rear seat passenger with a 60/40 split for cargo. The panoramic Vista Roof has power slide and tilt versatility.
- Pros: This is the winner of the best cars for the money category with its slew of technology and cabin features. The elegant styling has real wood and a robust Revel sound system.
- Cons: The entertainment system lags and could use an upgrade.
- Price: MSRP $38,000