Consumer Reports doesn’t care about what’s popular. The standards are the same no matter what segment a vehicle belongs to. Sports cars are tested the same as trucks. What this means is that entire sections of CR reviews have the potential to go horribly wrong, which is what we have here. Not a single large SUV was recommended for 2023. Let’s see why.
Which large SUV did best in Consumer Reports for 2023?
Consumer Reports rated the 2023 Ford Expedition highest in its class, but that doesn’t mean they recommend it. Although it scored highest, it still didn’t do well enough to meet the “recommended” threshold for CR.
This is a bit surprising, given the enormous popularity of this segment. The other giants that didn’t make the cut are super-popular models like the 2023 Chevy Suburban, GMC Yukon, Chevy Tahoe, Jeep Wagoneer, and Nissan Armada. It’s worth noting that the 2023 Toyota Sequoia has yet to be tested.
Why Large SUVs Failed in Consumer Reports
CR rates vehicles based on a myriad of factors. Everything from reliability and seat comfort to handling and acceleration. While these beasts can be comfortable and luxurious, they are rarely handled well. Emergency maneuvers and braking damaged almost all of these land yachts.
With one exception, the 2023 Ford Explorer, all of these large SUVs struggle with predicted reliability. This score, above all else, has the potential to wreck a vehicle’s overall rating in Consumer Reports.
It almost goes without saying, but fuel efficiency is also graded, which affects a vehicle’s overall score. The big boys can’t help but get thirsty. Even with the great advances in engine technology, most of these large SUVs still employ the grunt of a big V8 to generate the power needed to move these behemoths down the road.
The best gas mileage of any of these SUVs tops out at 17 mpg combined. The only two that do well are the 2023 GMC Yukon and the 2023 Chevy Tahoe. Most of them got only 16 mpg combined. The worst of the bunch, the 2023 Nissan Armada (also the lowest ranked), only got 14 mpg combined. Nissan should be ashamed.
Should you buy a large SUV?
Large SUVs aren’t bad vehicles because they don’t drive like a Honda CR-V. These vehicles are intended to perform different tasks, mainly transporting tons of people. The benefit of these heavy SUVs is that they offer a lot of space, often a very smooth ride, and a comfortable driving experience. Most of them won’t be winning any races any time soon, and you’ll have to factor gas prices into the purchase price, but they’re not bad SUVs.