The all-electric iX is spacious, comfortable, surprisingly efficient and ridiculously agile for its size. If… you can get past its slightly polarizing design, you may just fall in love with this electric BMW.
SUVs are a commanding force across the automotive landscape. This is especially true of luxury SUVs, which account for well over half of luxury vehicle sales. Manufacturers continue to introduce models to respond to demand, which has been stimulated by SUVs' increasingly car-like fuel economy. An SUV also provides special benefits, including an elevated driving position, available all-wheel drive and a large, flexible cargo area. It's no wonder buyers are flocking to luxury SUVs despite the price premium they command over upscale sedans.
Luxury SUVs are distinct from their non-premium counterparts in several areas. Most vehicles in these categories boast upper-crust interior materials and build quality. The best examples offer pillow-soft suspensions that glide over even the roughest roads. Powertrain options run the gamut from electric SUVs and fuel-sipping plug-in hybrids to immensely powerful gasoline SUVs, with all manner of automatic transmissions on offer. And of course, there's the prestige that comes with owning a vehicle that is a clear cut above an everyday SUV.
Our list of top-rated luxury SUVs is the result of hundreds of hours of driving, testing and comprehensive evaluation. We take each vehicle to a private test track, where we measure acceleration, braking and handling performance. Next, we drive it on a real-world driving loop that tests its performance on city streets, through twisty mountain curves, and in high- and low-speed freeway conditions. Finally, our editors take a turn at the wheel and come to a consensus on an overall rating for the vehicle relative to its competitive set.
While many luxury SUVs come well-equipped, they all offer myriad options and features for a somewhat custom feel. Look for frills such as leather upholstery, premium audio and a sunroof for a true luxury experience. Ventilated seats are must-haves for many shoppers but aren't always available on smaller luxury SUVs. Modern safety features, including adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist and 360-degree parking cameras, are par for the course and essential for easily placing large SUVs on the road.
There are dozens of luxury SUVs spread across many competitive segments, so it can be difficult to figure out where to start. Subcompact (“X-Small”) and compact ("Small") crossovers offer a strong value statement to city dwellers, empty nesters, and those who simply want something that stands out from a typical SUV. Small families that need a bit more passenger and cargo space will likely find an appropriate vehicle in the midsize class. Full-size SUVs are perfect for growing families or, again, individuals who just want to make a statement. No matter which luxury SUV type appeals to you the most, Edmunds has the tools to point you in the right direction in your search for the perfect luxury SUV.