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Published February 07, 2022
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Sports Utility Vehicles (SUVs) are a popular choice for families – they look great on the road, with big, beautiful designs, and have space for families of all sizes.
But with so many to choose from, how do you decide the best SUV for you? Here, we pick the greatest seven-seaters and five-seaters available and tell you why they’re worth your time and money.
There are lots of reasons why SUVs are great for families:
If you’ve got a big family, a larger, 3-row SUV might be the right option for you. Here’s our pick of the best large family SUVs with space for seven.
The Honda Pilot is substantial in size and built with the innovative Honda SENSING safety features. A fun feature included with some trims of this model is Cabin Talk. Want to tell your kids in the back that you’re nearly at the beach? They’ll hear you through the speakers or their headphones.
The Ford Explorer was the motoring giant’s first SUV and remains one of the best on the market. Top features include Active Park Assistance, which helps you navigate tricky parking spots. Stay safe on the road with the Co-Pilot 360 safety package, with blind-spot alerts and lane-keep assist.
Audi’s MMI multimedia interface and virtual cockpit are a joy to operate, with a map to your destination in front of you rather than to the side, which means safer driving. Intelligent pop-ups warn of potential hazards, so you can prepare in advance. Avoid wet feet as you exit, thanks to door puddle lights.
A great option for large families, the Highlander can fit eight people inside with room to spare. It has great fuel economy and the Toyota Safety Sense suite, featuring low-light pedestrian detection and full-speed adaptive cruise control. The 2021 model won the coveted Top Safety Pick+ award from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
Mazda knows how to make drivers and passengers as comfy as possible in the CX-9. Its luxury interior features plush, heated and ventilated seats, with climate controls for rear passengers. If you need to attach a trailer or camper, it can tow up to 3,500 lbs, and with all-wheel drive, the CX-9 can tackle slippery snow and gravel paths with ease.
This model is another 2021 Top Safety Pick+ award winner. Safety features include adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection and seven airbags. This SUV also includes an 8-inch infotainment screen, wireless smartphone integration and ambient cabin lighting with surround sound stereo in more premium trim levels.
The Sorento is perfect for large family holidays, featuring ambient mood lighting and leather upholstery. More premium trims include ventilated seats, with a Bose 12-speaker system and panoramic sunroof.
The Acura MDX boasts Super Handling All-Wheel-Drive, which makes for smooth traveling. Fuel economy is also top-notch with an estimated 20 MPG in the city and 27 MPG on highways. The infotainment system will keep everyone happy – there’s Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, six USB ports and rear-seat entertainment to keep children distracted on long drives.
One of the most affordable SUVs out there, the QX60 is great for those looking for a luxury car on a budget. This versatile crossover promises a perfect blend of performance and efficiency, reaching up to 29 MPG on highways at 268 horsepower. The Around View Monitor helps maneuver the QX60 in tricky parking spots.
The standout feature of Nissan’s Pathfinder is its excellent towing prowess. The latest model can shift 6,000 lbs, which is very near top of the class. Its fuel economy is also great, reaching an estimated 27 MPG on highways. Storage in the trunk can reach up to 80.5 cubic feet with the second and third row seats down.
You may be looking to spend less on an SUV, or not need the space a seven-seater provides. Check out our top 10 crossover SUVs for families of five or less.
Toyota’s RAV4 is one of the best all-rounders money can buy. It has a spacious cabin, high-end materials in the interior, Wi-Fi smartphone connectivity, intuitive touchscreen and fuel economy that leaves many others trailing behind – 28 MPG in the city and 35 MPG on the highway.
Kia can always be relied on to make brilliant cars on a budget, and the Sportage is no exception. Despite its size, it’s pleasingly light, practical and dependable. Optional extras include state-of-the-art tech to keep you safe such as lane-keeping assistance and road sign recognition software.
Any car made by Jeep is going to be able to take on all you throw at it, and that includes family fun AND off-roading adventures. The Grand Cherokee is no exception, with its standard 295-horsepower V6 engine, but it’s also a great all-rounder.
If you’re looking for a 4x4 SUV that’s great in most terrain, the 4Runner is a strong candidate. It has around 5,000 lbs of towing capacity and the most recent model has toned down the noise and increased the wow factor of its infotainment.
For a midsize SUV, the Santa Fe has lots of cargo space – 36.5 cubic feet behind the rear seats and 72.1 cubic feet behind the front seats - plenty of room for family luggage and more besides. Hyundai hasn’t scrimped on exciting features, including push-button start, proximity keyless entry and dual-zone automatic climate control available.
Volkswagen’s Tiguan is reliable, comfortable, practical and easy to handle – which makes it a top family SUV. Taller family members will find nothing to complain about thanks to its impressive size and space. Its infotainment is state-of-the-art, featuring smartphone connectivity, and the optional Harman Kardon sound system comes highly recommended.
When it comes to compact SUVs, the Forester is one of the best you can buy. There’s a wide choice of trim levels, but whichever you choose, you’re getting first-class safety features as standard. Lane departure warning, lead vehicle start alert and pre-collision throttle management are just some of the ways Subaru keeps you safe.
Another great all-rounder, this time from Hyundai. Its superb handling skills make it easy to twist and turn on the windiest of roads. Its gas mileage is notable, getting 33 MPG on highway drives. The infotainment system is easy to use and optional extras include automatic climate control, proximity keyless entry and push-button start.
Another SUV from the ever-reliable family favorite. The Escape’s sleek exterior will turn heads, as will the turbo power, impressive cargo capacity and ample room inside. It has a variety of engine options, including hybrid versions. The 2021 hybrid’s 44 MPG in the city is noteworthy, as is towing capacity – up to 3,500 lbs.
The Outback lives up to its name, with excellent off-road prowess. For more adventurous families, Subaru has also provided roomy cabins and lots of cargo space – so there’s no need to travel light.
You can buy a range of amazing, family-friendly used SUVs at EchoPark. Our Experience Guides can help you narrow down which one is right for you.