SUVs are the most popular type of cars nowadays. Their name stands for Sport Utility Vehicle, meaning that they provide the best performances and high clearance, so they are capable for easier off-roading. But there are so many models and each one is the best in a specific segment. The following cars are the best SUVs of 2017.
1. Best Subcompact SUV: 2017 Mazda CX-3 ($26,200)
Subcompact SUVs are larger versions of subcompact cars, so they offer more space and usually have better performances. But, they are smaller than compact SUVs and they are not equipped for off-roading. All of this Mazda CX-3 offers with high results. We chose this model due to the fact, it offers the best handling, best fuel economy (29/34 mpg) and the best crash results.
Engine with 145HP is more than just sufficient for this lightweight car. It has power in all gears and with 4WD, it will be capable of easy off-roading. If we look in the interior only, we get one of the best SUVs within this price range. In addition, CX-3 is one of the most affordable models from this segment. Affordable price, revy engine, and interesting design made this car a common choice of younger drivers. If we add the aforementioned safety ratings, we actually get superb teen-car.
2. Best Compact SUV: 2017 Honda CR-V ($33,700)
Almost all SUV reviews have this model rated among the first and the best SUVs we have on the market today. There is a perfectly clear explanation for that. First and foremost, safety ratings, fuel economy and reliability, in general, are guaranteed. Engines available are 2.4L with 184HP or 1.5L with 190HP. Front wheel is standard and highly recommended, but just in case, all-wheel drive is available. In both cases, automatic transmission (continuously variable automatic gearbox) is standard.
Space inside is more than enough and cargo space is very practical. In fact, Honda managed to create enough room for 2 bicycles. Ride is more focused on sport than on comfort, but without a question, it isn’t stiff vehicle. One reason for that is the fact the body was developed with the help of Takaaki Nagadome, the same man who developed a body of legendary NSX.
3. Best Midsize SUV: 2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee ($31,500)
Jeep Grand Cherokee is the best rated SUV in this segment, thanks to excellent off-road capability. Of course, in this case, you would need 4WD and manual transmission. 3.6L, V6 with 295HP is standard. It comes with rear wheel drive and 8-gears automatic transmission. Diesel engine, V6 with 240HP is an option as well. The most powerful version you can get will have V8 and 360HP, from 5.7L. When it comes to drive, Jeep offers 3 different versions of the all-wheel drive. They make the car suitable for all kinds of terrain.
The cabin is a very pleasant place. It is modern, touchscreen is standard and seats are comfortable. Regardless of the application and terrain where you drive this car, comfort and functionality will be provided. The top speed of the base model is 118 mph and the fuel consumption is 18/25 mpg.
4. Best Large SUV: 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS ($68,000)
The price isn’t the question here. All large SUVs are expensive and it is the fact! But, one of the best SUVs money can buy is Mercedes GLS. It is big, it looks great and it is reliable. The interior is also one of the best in the class. There is wood, leather and high-quality materials only. In general, spending time in the cabin is desirable and something you will definitely want to do more and more. Room for 7 is another reason why we rated this car as the best. Even adults will have a great time inside.
Engines available with this model are powerful and massive, but choosing the right one may be tricky. For most drivers, engine types are complicated to explain. For example, car will have GLS450 marking, which means that it has 4.5L, V6 engine. Basically, the number stands for the size of the engine, not the trim level. This unit actually produces 362HP and it is the most common choice. We also liked V8 with 450HP or most efficient 3.5L diesel with 250HP. All of them come with all-wheel drive and transmission with 9 gears (automatic). The safety is important for powerful car, so Mercedes offers collision-prevent, auto-braking and cross wind assistance as safety features.
5. Best Hybrid SUV: 2017 Porsche Cayenne Hybrid ($80,000)
Porsche Cayenne isn’t just the best hybrid SUV, it is also one of the best SUVs in general. Usually, hybrids are designed to be economical, but this one moves the limit and adds impressive performances and off-road capabilities. Don’t think that it isn’t fuel efficient. The hybrid version archives 47 MPGe, which is a great result. The power is obtained from V6 with 412HP, 3.0L. Front wheel drive is standard, but all-wheel drive is preferred. Sporty performances include a top speed of 151 mph and 0-60 mph time of just 5.1 seconds. This means that Cayenne is faster than most sports cars and sedans, despite the fact it is much larger and heavier vehicle. The transmission is Tiptronic with 8 gears.
Sophisticated features are available, obviously. So, we can get energy generated from braking, start-stop system, hydraulic valve adjusting and much more. In short terms, this is a premium-grade vehicle, so all features Porsche offers are available, but most of them as optional extra only. The mentioned price is for the premium model, which comes with all of the advantages. Pure electric mode is supported, but the car will be able to reach only 78 mph due to the weight of 2.5 tons! Electric unit is 95 HP motor which offers most of the torque at 1400 rpm. The interior is cozy and modern. Touchscreen is standard and seats are supportive even when you ride on rough terrain or on a track. An interesting fact to know is that this vehicle has plenty of connections with Porsche 918, a car that costs almost $1 million.
6. Best Crossover SUV: 2018 Nissan Qashqai ($45,000)
It has a name that cannot be pronounced, but the design and the performances are well-known and the car is great value for money. The model in question is Nissan Qashqai. Currently, 2017 model is available, but in July, a new, 2018 version will become available. A Severe facelift is the main reason to consider the new model. It looks much better than the previous one and it brings plenty of improvements. First of all, the entire front end, especially the bumper have been redesigned. The interior share the same advantage. The steering wheel is all-new, gearbox knob is better and there are several other features that are upgraded.
Engines available are 1.2L and 1.6L, both with a turbocharger. Due to lightweight construction and engines of the latest generation, power won’t be an issue. Still, if you want more of it, 1.5L diesel unit should be chosen. This car will come with the autonomous driving option, called Pro Pilot. Chassis has been improved and now you can get a much better Tekna+ trim level. In addition, BOSE surround sound is available. Other changes that must be mentioned are bonnet, wheels, headlights and cargo space. All of this means that the car looks more appealing and offers, even more, cargo space. For the passengers, new cabin features provide more space than before. The final verdict is that this car is one of the best SUVs in the class.
7. Best Off-road SUV: 2017 Jeep Wrangler ($43,200)
If the design isn’t the main factor for you, but off-road capabilities are, this car is definitely the one you need. We will discuss the Unlimited Rubicon Hard Rock version. This is improved and more sophisticated version of the standard model, specifically designed to provide great capabilities on rough terrain. Obviously, 4WD is available (rear wheel drive is available as well with other versions) and there are several models. Future owners can choose between types of 4WD system and they range between simple, useful and advanced.
The engine is 3.6L, V6 with 285HP. The transmission is 6 gear manual, which we prefer or 5 speed automatic, which limits the off-road capabilities and isn’t available with the premium model. 17/22 mpg fuel consumption isn’t great, but keep in mind that this is one of the best SUVs available right now. A new version will be launched soon, so Jeep invested in minor redesign features of the current model. You can get all-season floor mats, heated seats, remote start and LED headlights. This car will stay special as long as you own it. The design and the special addition fact will eventually make it priceless.
8. Best 2-row SUV: 2017 Ford Edge ($40,000)
Here we have one of the best SUVs on the market as a 2-row vehicle. This rating is deserved, thanks to plenty of space inside, great safety and a variety of the engines and transmissions. The bottom line is that you can customize this car as you want and it will still be safe and provide more space than you actually need. There is room for 5 passengers, even for those on back seats. The interior is modern and well-made. The accent is placed on the practicality, so we have a lot of places for belongings while the cargo space is above the average.
Front-wheel drive is standard, but drive on all 4 wheels is an option. 2.0L engine with 285HP is better with front wheel drive, but a more powerful version with 315HP should be paired with the 4WD. In both cases, you will get the automatic transmission and fuel consumption between 21/29 mpg and 17/24 mpg. The base trim, SE will cost $28,000 and you get enough of features but not too much.
9. Best 3-row SUV: 2017 Chevrolet Traverse ($44,000)
The starting price for Chevrolet Traverse is $28,500, so it is more affordable than all other models in this segment. Of course, adding several optional extras and choosing a more powerful engine will increase the price significantly. Nevertheless, this car is one of the best SUVs in the world. The ride is smooth and gentle. It feels more like an ordinary car than like a large SUV. The entire car is focused on performances rather than on sporty or off-road drives. Inside, there is space for 7 or 8 people, depending on the version. Even those in the third row will get plenty of comforts.
Engine is V3, 3.6L with 281 or 288HP. All transmissions are automatic and they are available with front or all-wheel drive. Fuel economy is 15/22 mpg regardless of the engine and the drive. That’s why it is a much better option to choose a more powerful version.
10. Best Luxury SUV: 2017 Land Rover Discovery ($51,000)
This is one of the best SUVs on the planet. It looks better than most of the competitor models, it is powerful and it is luxurious. Unique and extraordinary colors are available, which are the best way to make the entire car stand out from the crowd. Ground clearance is 11.1 inches, and all-wheel drive is available. With these two only, you can expect great for off-roading capabilities. Towing capacity is 8.200 pounds and the car has towing assistance feature which will steer the car while reversing.
Engines available are V6, with 340HP, supercharged version and a diesel with 245HP. Both of them come with automatic transmission with 8 gears and AWD. This powertrain will ensure fuel consumption of 16/26 mpg. Interior is luxurious as you would expect. High-quality materials, leather and all gadgets possible are available. There will be space for 5 to 7 passengers inside a cabin. The car is fully capable of meeting the toughest challenges and still providing ultimate comfort. Tests were performed in deserts and the results were more than just good. 0-60 mph time is 6 seconds, meaning that you also get a fast car.
Here are the best SUVs of the year 2017. Soon, all of them will get new versions, but this one will stay reliable, functional and superb value for money. Even during the next year, you can expect them to be popular and desirable.