We all need a little extra room sometimes, and a third row often fits the bill. But, giant full-size SUVs like a Tahoe or Expedition are simply overkill for what most of us need. Also, they are a bear to park. So for many of us, a three-row small SUV fits our needs and for 2023 these are three Edmunds reviewers recommend.
What is a three-row small SUV?
Smaller three-row SUVs provide plenty of utility, and all of these SUVs start under $30,000. While the rear seats in this class don’t offer a lot of space, they’re all great for occasional use or for kids. They all offer driver assistance, plenty of power and, of course, luggage space when the third row is tucked away. it makes sense that edmundsa review site, I would name these three the best for 2023.
No. 1: Kia Sorento
The Kia Sorento has a lot of value and style in this segment. It’s easy to dismiss a three-row SUV as a mommy phone, but this one has an aggressive front end and street styling that gives it some cred that others don’t. For 2023, Kia added more to the Sorento’s driver assistance systems, such as blind-spot alerts and rear cross-traffic collision avoidance. Like others on this small list of three-row SUVs, keep the adults out of the way back.
Although the LX trim starts at $29,990, the S and EX trims offer more of what most want. The EX adds larger screens, wireless charging, and automatic wipers for $32,490.
No. 2: Mitsubishi Outlander
The Mitsubishi Outlander was redesigned for 2022 and Mitsubishi is hoping to have a bestseller on its hands. A lot has been done with the cool plug-in hybrid version, which has 38 miles of electric range. But the non-hybrid version is a big step forward for Mitsubishi. On a recent trip to drive an Outlander, MotorBiscuit discovered that the Outlander is a capable and enjoyable-to-drive SUV that’s finally big and powerful enough for American roads.
Although the Outlander has a third row, it’s really for occasional two-person use and is not recommended for full-size adults. The Outlander also has clever all-wheel drive, which allows the SUV to perform more like a rear-wheel drive SUV, which (trust us) is fun in the mud. The Outlander starts at $27,595, but the upgraded SE trim for $30,645 offers what most of us want, like heated seats, multi-camera views, and a bigger screen.
No. 3: Volkswagen Tiguan
The Volkswagen Tiguan falls somewhere between the smaller Taos and the larger Atlas, and for many it’s the perfect size. Its third row is great for occasional use, and when folded down, the generous cargo area helps hold a lot of luggage. The VW adds a touch of modern European design that the others on this list don’t, especially in the sporty R-Line trim. Like the others, it also offers driver aids, a large screen, and more. IQ.Drive offers even more to make driving easier.
The Tiguan starts at $26,950, and even base models get heated seats, blind-spot monitoring, and keyless entry. The move to the $30,580 SE trim adds app connectivity, dual-zone climate control, and leatherette seats.