Reliability is often cited as one of the most important factors when buying a new or used car. A new vehicle already costs more than it used to, and buying a new SUV over a comparable sedan or sometimes even a minivan can be an even more significant financial commitment. Thankfully, companies like Consumer Reports and J.D. Power and Associates rate new and used vehicles’ reliability.
Nobody can know for sure right now which exact model will make the most reliable used SUVs in the future, but both Consumer Reports and J.D. Power have different ways of using present factors to get the best reliability scores they can. The result is that each comes out with a yearly list of its own least and most reliable vehicles.
If you are currently considering buying a new SUV, check out our list of the most reliable SUVs you can buy on the market right now. Our rankings are based on data from J.D. Power and Consumer Reports so that you get the most accurate and up-to-date information.
The Mazda CX-9 starts our list strong with a perfect five-out-of-five predicted reliability rating from Consumer Reports. J.D. Power has not yet rated the 2023 CX-9, but they gave the 2022 model year a great reliability rating of 81 out of 100.
Classified as a midsize SUV, the Mazda CX-9 exchanges some of its third-row usability and cargo space for its exceptional styling. What it lacks in the space department, it more than makes up for in its best-in-class interior, superior driving dynamics, and excellent safety scores.
Standard all-wheel drive and a 227-horsepower turbo four-cylinder engine make the CX-9 feel peppy and smaller than it is. A large 10.25-inch infotainment system display is accompanied by other standard features like Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, tri-zone automatic climate control, adaptive cruise control, and blind-spot monitoring to provide buyers with a well-rounded crossover experience.
Ford Bronco Sport
The Ford Bronco Sport was the less-hyped Bronco model when it was introduced, but it has its big brother beat in the reliability department. With a perfect Consumer Reports predicted reliability score and a J.D. Power quality and reliability rating of 87 out of 100, it has many of its competitors beat as well.
It may not quite have the quite the off-road chops of the regular Ford Bronco, but the compact crossover can still go just about anywhere. It comes with a standard turbocharged 181-horsepower three-cylinder engine and an eight-speed automatic transmission. You can also opt for a 250-horsepower turbocharged engine. Regardless of your choice, power is sent to all four wheels.
Superior safety scores highlight the Bronco Sport’s offerings to its buyers. Cargo space behind the second row comes in at 32.5 cubic feet. Fuel economy is average for the compact SUV class with a combined rating of 26 MPG. The interior is simple with quite a bit of hard plastic, but Ford chose to go that way to make it easier to clean after a day of hitting the trails.
Buick has a couple of new SUVs on our list, the first of which is the Envision. It is handsomely styled, reasonably priced for an entry-level luxury SUV, and of course, it is reliable. It earns a perfect predicted reliability score from the fine folks at Consumer Reports and a quality and reliability score of 85 out of 100 from J.D. Power, making it one of the most reliable SUVs available.
A fuel-efficient 228-horsepower engine and front-wheel drive make up its base powertrain. Standard Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, automatic high beams, blind-spot monitoring, an 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system, and LED headlights highlight the features list. Some amenities like heated seats and dual-zone climate control are surprisingly optional.
Though it provides a spacious interior and a comfortable ride, its cargo space is only average for the class. Despite its shortcomings, there are minimal changes on the slate for the 2023 model year. Most likely, that means the 2023 Envision will remain a reliable pick for Consumer Reports when they rate it. +
Many people just expect Toyota to offer some of the most reliable SUVs on the market. By and large, they do. The Highlander highlights the Japanese automaker’s reliable crossover list by earning a perfect five-out-of-five predicted reliability rating from Consumer Reports and a J.D. Power reliability score of 81 out of 100.
The Highlander is highlighted by its standard V6 engine, its smooth eight-speed automatic transmission, its use of high-quality build materials, its lengthy standard features list, and its comfortable ride. High safety scores and towing capacity for up to 5,000 pounds make it a good family vehicle. Front-wheel drive is standard, and all-wheel drive is available on all trims.
A cramped third row, subpar fuel economy compared to other midsize SUVs with smaller engines, and a relatively high starting price are minor drawbacks. Even with these drawbacks, the Highlander has its Toyota 4Runner sibling beat handily in the refinement department. The traditionally reliable 4Runner still earns better-than-average reliability ratings from CR.
Nissan Rogue Sport
Not to be confused with the larger Nissan Rogue, the subcompact Nissan Rogue Sport combines its funky styling with a comfortable ride, a host of standard safety features, and up to 22.9 cubic feet of cargo space to display its appeal. Second-row headroom is surprisingly good, but legroom is unsurprisingly cramped for larger passengers.
Despite its lack of high-quality build materials, the Nissan Rogue Sport is one of the most reliable small SUVs on the road. Consumer Reports gives it a perfect five-out-of-five predicted reliability score. J.D. Power also rates it quite high with a score of 82 out of 100 for quality and reliability.
The Rogue Sport’s price tag is one of its major downfalls. Its sub $25,000 MSRP gets you Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, a 7-inch touchscreen infotainment display, blind-spot monitoring, and rear cross-traffic alert, but the cheap interior materials, an underwhelming 141-horsepower engine, standard front-wheel drive, and lackluster performance make $25,000 seem a bit pricey.
2022 Toyota RAV4 Prime
The Toyota Prius Prime is one of the best cars to buy if you want reliable transportation while saving some fuel. Toyota decided to take that recipe and reimagine it to create the Toyota RAV4 Prime. It earns top marks from J.D. Power and a perfect predicted reliability rating from Consumer Reports. Surprisingly, the regular Toyota RAV4 only receives an average reliability score from the CR panel.
In addition to its outstanding reliability, the RAV4 Prime aims to fight carbon emissions. It is a plug-in hybrid SUV that can drive for over 40 miles on all-electric power. In hybrid mode, it will achieve a combined 38 MPG. Its hybrid powertrain is good for a combined 302 horsepower, offering peppy acceleration when prodded.
Fuel economy is not all it has to offer. Standard features like an 8-inch touchscreen, a Wi-Fi hotspot, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, a 7-inch digital gauge cluster, dual-zone climate control, adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, and rear cross-traffic alert come on each RAV4 Prime trim level.
The Kia Telluride is an impressive three-row SUV. It is one of the larger midsize SUVs available, it comes standard with a host of tech and safety features, it comes with an industry-leading warranty, it is stylish, and it is an IIHS Top Safety Pick award winner. Available all-wheel drive and 5,000 pounds of towing capacity further its case to be one of the best SUVs currently on the market.
The Telluride also happens to be one of the more reliable crossover SUVs on the market. Consumer Report rates it much better than average with a perfect five-star rating. J.D. Power also gives it a lofty quality and reliability rating of 85 out of 100. It edges out its corporate cousin, the Hyundai Palisade, though the Palisade still earns four stars from CR for predicted reliability.
A standard 291-horsepower V6 engine sends plenty of grunt through the 8-speed automatic transmission, but it also leads to one of the Telluride’s few weaknesses. EPA fuel economy estimates come in at 20 MPG in the city and 26 MPG on the highway for front-wheel drive models. AWD models fall to 19 and 24 MPG in the city and on the highway respectively.
The Lexus GX is not just a reliable vehicle. According to Consumer Reports, it was the most reliable vehicle you can buy in 2022. J.D. Power’s ratings back this up with an 86 out of 100 rating of their own. Despite its high reliability scores, The GX does not fair nearly as well in CR’s overall ratings with poor fuel economy and poor handling.
Its fuel economy ratings of 15 MPG in the city and 19 MPG on the highway come courtesy of its 4.6-liter V8 engine. 301 horsepower is sent through a six-speed automatic transmission, and four-wheel drive is standard. Being a traditional body-on-frame SUV, it is a capable off-roader, but the tradeoff is a rough ride. Towing capacity is rated at 6,500 pounds.
As a three-row luxury SUV, it can seat up to seven passengers, but the third row will be most comfortable for children as it is too small for most adults. The GX has quite a few drawbacks, but its Lexus roots still shine through. Its use of high-quality materials throughout the interior and exterior, as well as its host of standard safety features, remind buyers that the Japanese automaker still means business.
The Hyundai Tucson is fresh off of a redesign for the 2022 model year. Some will find it refreshing and futuristic while others will find it a little odd. Either way, Hyundai has packed the Tucson with premium materials for its price, a ton of active safety features, a variety of standard tech features, and one of the largest cargo areas in the compact SUV class.
In addition to Hyundai’s 10-year/100,000-mile warranty and available all-wheel drive, potential buyers will be pleased to know that Consumer Reports has given the Tucson a five-out-of-five reliability score. They have also given it an overall score of 89 out of 100 for its comfort, overall driving dynamics, and predicted owner satisfaction.
The standard 187-horsepower four-cylinder is nothing to write home about, but it helps the Tucson achieve 29 combined MPG in its front-wheel drive layout. Its spacious interior, comfortable ride, and features like wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto will make road trips feel easier than ever for you and your family.
The Buick Encore finishes our list strong. A J.D. Power quality and reliability score of 88 out of 100 is one of the highest on our list. Consumer Reports’ five-out-of-five predicted reliability score backs up J.D. Power’s findings. Unfortunately, Consumer Reports’ overall rating of 72 means that it does not impress as much in other areas.
Everything starts pretty well. A sub-$25,000 MSRP is appealing for a subcompact entry-level luxury SUV. You get 155 horsepower from a tiny 1.4-liter four-cylinder turbo, good for a combined 27 MPG in its standard front-wheel drive layout. A Wi-Fi hotspot, Apple CarPlay, Anrdoid Auto, and a 7-inch touchscreen also come standard at that price.
Its status as a subcompact SUV does not hinder interior comfort that much. It uses what little space it has quite well. The second row is fairly comfortable, even for regular adults. The Encore begins to fall a little flat when taking its short list of safety features, lack of overall driving character, and limited optional features into consideration.
As with any top ten list, there are bound to be a few honorable mentions that miss the list by just a few points. There are a few SUVs that still score high enough in Consumer Reports’ reliability list that deserve a shout out.
The Subaru Crosstrek, Chevrolet Trailblazer, Toyota Venza, Cadillac XT5, and Mini Cooper Countryman all have perfect predicted reliability scores of five-out-five from Consumer Reports.
A few notable SUVs that Consumer Reports has given a better-than-average four-out-of-five star predicted reliability rating include the Subaru Forester, Chevy Blazer, Nissan Murano, Buick Encore GX, Lexus NX, Volvo XC60, Porsche Macan, Ford Mustang Mach-E, and Acura MDX.
Mazda makes a good showing here with three crossovers deserving of honorable mention: the Mazda CX-30 and CX-5, and the all-new 2023 Mazda CX-50. Several other models come with a four-out-of-five score from CR for 2023. They include the Honda CR-V, Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class, Toyota Sequoia, Audi Q5, and Lexus RX.
On the flip side of the coin, there are several SUVs to avoid if you are looking for the most reliable vehicles on the market.
Representing the non-luxury SUVs, the Kia Seltos, Volkswagen Tiguan, Subaru Ascent, Ford Explorer, and Kia Sorento only earn a one-out-of-five for predicted reliability from Consumer Reports.
Luxury SUVs that receive the same low reliability rating include the Cadillac XT4, Lincoln Corsair, Tesla Model Y, Alfa Romeo Stelvio, Lincoln Aviator, Audi Q8, Volvo XC90, Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class, Tesla Model X, Genesis GV80, Audi e-tron, and Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class.
Large SUVs in particular, do not make a good showing for 2023. General Motors’ quartet of the GMC Yukon, Chevy Tahoe, Chevy Suburban, and GMC Yukon XL all receive a one-out-of-five predicted reliability score from CR.
Beyond the Toyota Sequoia, other full-size SUVs like the Ford Expedition, Lincoln Navigator, BMW X7, and Lexus LX, are only able to muster an average predicted reliability score at best.
Consumer Reports: How They Rate Reliability
Consumer Reports sends out surveys each year asking people to rate the experiences they have had with their vehicles. They get information like the kind of repairs owners have had to perform, the satisfaction they have had with a particular automaker, and what kind of problems they have experienced with their vehicle.
They compile this data for their used vehicle reliability ratings. For new vehicles, they consider the technology, features, and other factors being passed down to the next model year of each vehicle. From there, they can get a good idea of how a particular vehicle will hold up in the future. This is where they get their predicted reliability scores.
J.D. Power: How They Rate Reliability
J. D. Power has several different awards they give out each year. Their quality and reliability ratings are based on a combination of their quality ratings and dependability ratings. Their dependability ratings are based on consumer feedback after three years of ownership, and their quality awards are based on consumer feedback during the first ninety days of vehicle ownership.
They also rate things like performance, dealership experience, and vehicle resale strength. Similar to Consumer Reports, they also do vehicle reviews, previews, and lists which you can research further for yourself.
https://www.autolist.com/guides/most-reliable-suvs Most Reliable New SUVs for 2023