Best Midsize SUV

Best Midsize SUV – 11 Most Reliable Players on/off the Road

Midsize SUV is among today’s most popular vehicles for good reason. With seating for five to eight passengers, cargo space, and power liftgates, plus essential tech offerings, it often strikes the right balance for big families on the go.

By mixing sedan comfort with the utility of a covered truck, crossover SUV offers a multidimensional advantage. Also, there’re myriad engine configurations, including gas, diesel, and hybrid options.

Some platforms aren’t much larger than compact SUVs, while others hang around the fringes of the full-size SUV class.

Moreover, there’s a solution for almost any budget, with prices ranging from the mid $20,000s up to $100,000 and beyond.

So, what is the best midsize SUV – check our list of the top 11 sport utility vehicles to narrow down your options.

1. Dodge Journey

Walking the fine line between sport utility vehicles and minivan, the Dodge Journey is the best crossover for families thanks to its lower step-in height, which accommodates pint-sized passengers.

You can also find models with a 5-passenger configuration, plus this most affordable midsize SUV offers a range of trim levels that differ from one year to the next.

Two specifications you’ll find across the board are available all-wheel drive and the Journey’s engine configurations. A 2.4-liter 4-cylinder with 173 hp and 166 lb.-ft. of torque is standard, or you can opt to a potent 3.6L V6 with 283 hp and 260 lb.-ft. of torque.

Our favorite, the Journey SXT, serves the following standard features:

  • Second-row in-floor storage bins;
  • Roof-rack side rails;
  • 3-inch touchscreen;
  • Dual-zone manual temperature control;
  • 17-inch aluminum wheels.

Note – The Journey’s interior is spacious and functional with second- and third-row seats that fold flat to make about 68 cubic feet of cargo space.

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2. Chevrolet Equinox

This 5-passenger platform is comfort-oriented, making it an excellent daily driver. 2018 and 2019 model show off a trio of turbocharged engines, including a 170-hp 1.5L turbo 4-cylinder with 203 lb.-ft. of torque, an available 2.0-liter turbo 4-cylinder with 252 hp, and 260 lb.-ft. of torque, or an optional 137-hp 1.6-liter turbo-diesel 4-cylinder with 240 lb.-ft. of torque.

Each one delivers you adequate power for road trips while the Equinox’s 4 trims—L, LS, LT, and Premier—have the advanced gear you want.

Our selection, the Equinox L sports the following standard features:

  • Rearview monitor;
  • 4G LTE connectivity and WiFi hotspot;
  • 7” touchscreen with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay;
  • Cloth upholstery;
  • 17-inch painted-aluminum wheels;

Note – cargo capacity on all models maxes out at 63 cubic feet with the rear seats folded, which is plenty of space for vacation journeys.

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3. Kia Sorento

The Kia Sorento is a child-friendly solution with its three-row design and space for seven seats – but this most-safest midsize SUV really excels in catering to the comfort of your whole group.

LX and higher trim levels include acoustic windshield glass to provide a hushed cabin.

Standard features on the Sorento L model are:

  • Steering-wheel audio controls;
  • Bluetooth connectivity;
  • Rearview monitor;
  • Cloth upholstery;
  • 17-inch alloy wheels.

Note – Cargo space maxes out at 73.5 cubic feet for 2017 and 2018 models with all seats folded down, or a maximal 73 cubic feet in 2019 Sorentos.

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4. GMC Acadia

If you want an SUV customized to your lifestyle, the GMC Acadia provides a flexible interior with five-, six-, or even seven-passenger platforms – depending on the model you pick.

This SUV comes with a standard 2.5-liter 4-cylinder on SL, SLE, and SLT-1 trims, or you can upgrade to the 310-hp 3.6-liter V6 on SLT-1, SLT-2, and Denali trim levels. Both engines use a 6-speed automatic transmission and offer all-wheel drive, except on SL models.

Our choice Acadia SL trim comes standard with:

  • 17-inch alloy wheels;
  • Tri-zone automatic climate control;
  • A 7″ touchscreen with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay;
  • 4G LTE connectivity and WiFi hotspot.
  • Rearview monitor;

Note – With the V6, the 2019 Acadia can tow an estimated 4,000 lbs. when properly equipped.

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5. Ford Edge

Available in SE, SEL, and Titanium trims, 2017/2018 versions also include a Sport configuration with a turbocharged 2.7-liter V6 that produces 315 hp and 350 lb.-ft. of torque.

All-wheel drive is standard on the Sport trim, along with a sport-tuned suspension. For 2019, the ST substitutes the Sport but saves the turbo 2.7L V6 and AWD. It brings even more power and torque (335 hp, 380 lb.-ft.) and offers fantastic performance on the road.

Our pick, ST model comes standard with other cool features, such as:

  • Power-adjustable steering wheel with memory;
  • Dual trapezoidal and polished stainless-steel exhaust tips;
  • Perforated leather and simulated-suede upholstery;
  • Active noise control;
  • Power liftgate.

Note – All models seat five passengers and offer a maximum cargo capacity of 73.4 cubic feet behind the front seats.

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6. Nissan Murano

The Nissan Murano blends sedan-like responsiveness with SUV utility in one powerful package. With seating for five and a maximum 67 cubic feet cargo capacity, you’ll get access to the space you need.

The steering system feels lightweight at lower speeds, making it easy to handle through tight parking lots.

This SUV doesn’t skimp on standard connectivity features either with navigation, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto on its models. It’s available in 4 trims—S, SL, SV, and Platinum.

The base model features the following capabilities:

  • Forward-collision warning with automatic emergency braking.
  • 10-way power driver seat, plus 2-way power lumbar support;
  • Keyless entry and ignition;
  • 8-inch touchscreen interface;
  • 18-inch alloy wheels.

Note – All Murano models roll on a 3.5L V6 delivering 260 hp and 240 lb.-ft. of torque with optional all-wheel drive for better traction.

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7. Honda Pilot

If your big family needs a minivan, but an SUV is your desire, the Honda Pilot is a superb option with great passenger room, cargo space, and a bunch of useful features.

This top-rated midsize SUV is Available in 5 trim levels – LX, EX, EX-L, Touring, and Elite. All provide seating for eight, except the Elite, which has second-row captain’s chairs that reduce seating capacity to seven.

If you want your surf equipment to come along too, the 3.5L V6 model can tow an estimated 3,500 lbs. with front-wheel drive, or an estimated 5,000 lbs. with all-wheel drive when adequately equipped. It’s the most fuel-efficient midsize SUV on the list with 23 mpg combined (20 city/27 highway).

Our choice the mid-trim Pilot EX-L comes standard with:

  • One-touch sliding second-row seats;
  • One-touch power moonroof with tilt feature;
  • Heated front seats;
  • Power tailgate;
  • Leather upholstery and a leather-wrapped steering wheel.

Note – Its cargo room is impressive with 16.5 cubic feet of space behind the third-row, but that figure expands to a maximum of 83.9 cubic feet by folding the second and third rows.

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8. Nissan Pathfinder

Pathfinder is a 3rd-row, seven-passenger SUV available in 4 trim levels: S, SV, SL, and Platinum. All Pathfinders include a 3.5L V6 with 284 hp and 259 lb.-ft. of torque paired to a CVT with optional all-wheel drive.

If you like adventure and off-road trips, AWD models feature hill-descent control and a unique 4-wheel-drive locking feature for enhanced traction. Its V6 capability also boasts an estimated 6,000-lb. towing capacity when properly equipped.

Standard features on the Pathfinder S are:

  • Rearview monitor.
  • Tri-zone automatic temperature control;
  • Bluetooth capabilities;
  • Eight-inch color display;
  • Cloth upholstery;

Note – With the second and third rows folded, cargo space maxes out at 79.8 cubic feet for 2018 Pathfinders or 79.5 cubic feet for 2019 versions.

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9. Jeep Grand Cherokee

The Cherokee’s choice of three engine options set this SUV apart. You can find Cherokees with a standard 295-hp 3.6L V6 with 260 lb.-ft. of torque, a turbocharged 3.0-liter diesel V6 with 240 hp, and 4lb.-ft. of torque, or a 360-hp 5.7-liter V8 with 390 lb.-ft. of torque.

If you haul an ATV or camper, the V8 AWD offers a best midsize towing capacity of 7,200 lbs.

Typical features on the 2017 Cherokee Laredo include:

  • Dual-zone automatic climate control.
  • Rearview monitor with rear parking sensors;
  • Fog lights;
  • Five-inch display with a six-speaker sound system;
  • 17-inch painted aluminum wheels;

Note – With seating for five and a maximum cargo volume of 68.3 cubic feet, Cherokee is a top midsize SUV if you like to travel with family or friends.

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10. Ford Explorer

Looking for the SUV with minivan functionality, the Ford Explorer will seat any group of seven comfortably.

Limited, Sport, and Platinum trims come standard with a PowerFold third-row that opens up to 43.8 cubic feet of storage via the push of a button – plus the hands-free foot-activated liftgate makes loading your things effortless.

On the base trim, you’ll find the following features:

  • 18-inch painted aluminum wheels;
  • Rearview monitor;
  • The 4.2″ display and SYNC infotainment system;
  • Cloth upholstery;
  • 8-way power driver seat, along with manual lumbar support.

Note – This SUV features 5,000-lb. towing capacity with the 290-hp 3.5-liter V6 or the turbocharged 3.5-liter V6 with 365 hp.

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11. Lexus RX 350

It’s the best midsize luxury SUV for a buyer whose priorities center around a top-class luxury driving experience with performance to spare. The confidence comes from the brand’s reputation for reliability and resale values.

This five-passenger vehicle has two trim levels – Base and F Sport – and runs on a 295-hp 3.5-liter V6 with an 8-speed automatic transmission and optional all-wheel drive.

Even with the base model, you’ll find many advanced features, like the following:

  • 10-way power-adjustable front seats.
  • Adaptive cruise control;
  • Eight-inch color multimedia display;
  • Power liftgate;
  • Smartphone-integrated navigation.

Note – Upgrading to the F Sport model will get you a few extra accessories, including 20-inch wheels, heated/ventilated sport seats, and adaptive suspension dampers.

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