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These Are The Best Luxury SUVs You Can Buy Right Now

Best Luxury SUVs 0 Hero
Photo: BMW XM Label

Like pickup trucks, sport utility vehicles have incredibly utilitarian roots. In more recent years, however, the SUV space has been increasingly inundated with extremely plush, high-performance models as a growing number of elite luxury marques have started tossing their respective hats into the proverbial sport utility vehicle ring. The increased popularity of this space has given way to more options for buyers than ever before, though it’s also made it more and more difficult to sort through the sea of available options in order to hone in on the latest and greatest the segment has to offer. Knowing this firsthand, we’ve thoroughly scoured the space in order to deliver this hand-picked guide to the best luxury SUVs. 

The Best Luxury SUVs

Genesis GV80 3.5T V6 AWD

Genesis GV80
Photo: Genesis
Why It Made The Cut
  • A thoroughly elegant and upscale luxury SUV delivering exceptional value.

We’ll start our writeup of the Genesis GV80 by acknowledging that it stands out pretty drastically from the rest of the models on this list with the smallest engine, least power, and lowest 0-60mph time — and by a pretty significant margin. Having said that, the GV80 manages to deliver pretty exceptional value, with a level of interior luxury and an exterior appearance that’s legitimately on par with SUVs costing three-to-four times as much — a fact that’s somewhat unsurprising when you consider that Genesis is just a more premium sub-brand of the Hyundai Motor Group.

The GV80 3.5T V6 AWD’s sub-$65,000 MSRP also gets you an impressive suite of tech, heated and ventilated seats, a panoramic sunroof, all-LED lighting, and a twin-turbocharged hybrid powertrain that makes 375hp and nearly 400ft-lbs of torque. This model’s maintenance costs are also considerably lower than pretty much every other SUV on this list.

Engine: Twin-Turbocharged 3.5L V6
Power: 375HP & 391FT-LBs
0-60MPH Time: 5.3 Seconds
Top Speed: 149MPH
MSRP: $64,600

Audi RS Q8

Audi RS Q8
Photo: Audi
Why It Made The Cut
  • A certified Super SUV based on the same frame and twin-turbocharged engine platform as the Lamborghini Urus. 

First debuting as a concept in early 2017 before an official launch in 2019, the Audi RS Q8 is a bonafide super SUV that offers some pretty extreme performance capabilities — a fact that should come as no surprise considering it shares its engine and platform with the Lamborghini Urus. In fact, it features the Lambo crossover’s same twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter, adjustable air suspension, four- wheel steering, active electromechanical anti-roll bars, active rear differential, and even its carbon-ceramic brakes — and does so while costing more than $100,000 less than the Audi’s Italian counterpart.

Like the Urus, the RS Q8 comes loaded with tech, a plush interior, and a special aero kit complete with a myriad of exposed carbon fiber elements. And, while it admittedly isn’t quiet as fast as the Urus, the RS class Q8 still offers a 3.7-second 0-60mph time and a top speed that’s been electronically-limited to a still-respectable 155mph. 

Engine: Twin-Turbocharged 4.0L V8
Power: 591HP & 590FT-LBs
0-60MPH Time: 3.7 Seconds
Top Speed: 155MPH (Electronically Limited)
MSRP: $125,800

Cadillac Escalade-V

Cadillac Escalade V
Photo: Cadillac
Why It Made The Cut
  • A range-topping 682-HP V-Series version of the American brand’s full-size flagship SUV. 

While most other automotive brands around the world are all toning down their offerings, producing new ones that are a bit smaller and more city-friendly, Cadillac is still producing their commuter tank that is the Escalade. In fact, they’ve even made a version called the ESV that’s even bigger than the original — along with a forthcoming all-electric version of the flagship SUV, and a newly-unleashed range-topping V-Series version.

Despite a curb weight of over 6,200lbs, the Cadillac Escalade-V packs a hand-built 6.2-liter V8 with a 2.65-liter R2650 TVS supercharger and 682hp on tap that can propel the full-size SUV to 60mph from a complete standstill in only 4.4 seconds — an astonishing feat considering the size and weight of this vehicle. It doesn’t end there, however, as the Escalade-V also gets Magnetic Ride Control 4.0, Air Ride Adaptive Suspension, V-Series-specific front and rear fascias, a quad exhaust outlet setup, six-piston Brembo brakes with red calipers, and model-exclusive 22” aluminum wheels — all as standard amenities.

Engine: Supercharged 6.2L V8
Power: 682HP & 653FT-LBs
0-60MPH Time: 4.4 Seconds
Top Speed: 125MPH (Electronically Limited)
MSRP: $149,695

Mercedes-AMG G63

Mercedes AMG G63
Photo: Mercedes-Benz | Mercedes-AMG
Why It Made The Cut
  • A high-performance rolling status symbol that possess some impressive off-roading capabilities. 

It should come as no surprise that Mercedes-Benz really set the standard for luxury 4x4s with their G-Class SUV — after all, they’ve been faithfully building it in some form or another since the 1970s when the model first emerged as a military vehicle. Still, that has definitely not caused the brand to rest on their laurels, as they’ve just recently overhauled this legendary vehicle, making it better than ever. Available with up to 577hp and 627ft-lbs of torque, and standard 4WD, the G-Class is ever-true to its all-terrain heritage and will go down in history as one of the best 4x4s ever envisioned — the factory-lifted and kitted 4×4²-spec, even more so.

Additionally, its twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 cranks out a cool 577hp and 627ft-lbs of torque — allowing for a respectable 0-60mph time of 4.5 seconds. Mercedes also offer the AMG-Wagen with a huge range of bespoke colors and options inside and out — though for those looking for an even more exclusive take on the G63, there are plenty of even more elite iterations of the SUV from outfits like BRABUS, Performmaster, and Mansory. 

Engine: Twin-Turbocharged 4.0L V8
Power: 577HP & 627FT-LBs
0-60MPH Time: 4.5 Seconds
Top Speed: 137MPH (or 149MPH w/ AMG Driver’s Package)
MSRP: $179,000

BMW XM Label

Photo: BMW
Why It Made The Cut
  • A super-high-performance luxury hybrid SUV that’s state-of-the-art in every way possible.  

Aiming to offer what the Bavarian brand describes as  a combination of “performance driving and luxury living,” the BMW XM Label is a state-of-the-art vehicle in practically every sense of the word, from its cutting-edge hybrid powertrain to its ultra-sleek appearance to its thoroughly high-tech interior. On the performance side, you get Adaptive M Suspension Professional, an M Sport Differential, and the intelligent M xDrive all-wheel drive — all as standard.

Oh yeah, and the thing is kicked along by a M TwinPower-turbocharged 4.4-liter hybrid V8 that makes a collective 738hp and foot-pounds of torque — figures that allow it to do 0-60mph in 3.6 seconds and top out at an electronically-limited 168mph. Inside, the hybrid SUV features an incredibly plush cabin that boasts a host of race-inspired elements as well as a massive slew of available bespoke options that are unique to the Label-spec. It also doesn’t hurt that BMW’s XM is capable of delivering an all-electric range of around 30 miles. 

Engine: Twin-Turbocharged 4.4L Hybrid V8
Power: 738HP & 738FT-LBs
0-60MPH Time: 3.6 Seconds
Top Speed: 168MPH (Electronically Limited)
MSRP: $185,000

Porsche Cayenne Turbo GT

Porsche Cayenne Turbo GT
Photo: Porsche AG
Why It Made The Cut
  • A spacious, 190-mph family-hauler with driving characteristics comparable to that of a sport wagon. 

With less than 6.5” of ground clearance and an aero kit, the Porsche Cayenne Turbo GT doesn’t exactly lend itself to off-roading. Its stance and low ride height are a major part of what makes this model so special, however, as it exhibits performance characteristics that are much closer to a high-performance sport wagon or sedan than your average sport utility vehicle. With up to 650hp on tap courtesy of a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8, Porsche’s range-topping Turbo GT-spec Cayenne affords supercar-esque performance capabilities in the form of a 3.1-second 0-60mph time and a top speed that’s just shy of 190mph.

Priced starting from just below the $200,000 mark, this Cayenne variant makes for an exceptional daily-driver and family hauler, while still maintaining the ability to hit the canyons or deliver lightning-fast lap times at the track. Having said all that, with the right modifications, the Cayenne Turbo GT  can be transformed into a remarkably-capable — and wildly powerful — off-road-ready SUV. 

Engine: Twin-Turbocharged 4.0L V8
Power: 650HP & 626FT-LBs
0-60MPH Time: 3.1 Seconds
Top Speed: 189MPH
MSRP: $196,300

Aston Martin DBX 707

Aston Martin DBX 707
Photo: Aston Martin
Why It Made The Cut
  • A 707-HP “Super SUV” maintaining Aston Martin’s signature brand of performance. 

Though it may have been the British brand’s first-ever attempt at producing a sport utility vehicle, you wouldn’t know it from its end result, as the Aston Martin DBX currently stands as one of the most capable models in its class — and more than earns the title of “super SUV.” Retaining Aston Martin’s signature brand of high-performance driving characteristics, the DBX comes outfitted with a ZF active anti-roll system, triple-chamber adjustable air springs, and a Terrain+ feature that affords 9.3” of ground clearance — the latter of which gives this luxury SUV a surprising amount of competence when off-road.

What makes the 707-spec of the DBX so special, however, — and what gives it its name — is its 707-hp twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 engine, which generates over 660ft-lbs of torque and rockets it to 60mph from a complete standstill in just 3.3 seconds. The DBX 707 also tops at 193mph — placing it on par with a decent number of today’s supercars, and making it one of the fastest SUVs currently in production.  

Engine: Twin-Turbocharged 4.0L V8
Power: 707HP & 663.8FT-LBs
0-60MPH Time: 3.3 Seconds
Top Speed: 193MPH
MSRP: $236,000

Bentley Bentayga Speed

Bentley Bentayga Speed
Photo: Bentley Motors
Why It Made The Cut
  • An ultra-premium SUV combining world-class luxury with supercar-grade performance abilities. 

The Bentley Bentayga Speed is a particularly special breed of luxury SUV that boasts a bevy of world-class features and capabilities. While it does have a stability-control system that individually activates each wheel in order to maintain traction at all times, the Bentayga Speed is far from your best option when it comes to off-road-capable luxury SUVs. That’s largely because that wasn’t what this vehicle was designed for. What it lacks in go-anywhere prowess, Bentley’s Bentayga Speed more than makes up for with its awesome performance — and insanely-well-crafted interior.

Along with Bentley’s usual brand of world-class luxury, the Bentayga Speed benefits from a 626-hp twin-turbocharged 6.0-liter W12 engine that allows it to do 0-60mph in 3.8 seconds and reach a top speed of 190mph — making it the fastest Bentayga that Bentley currently offers. Unsurprisingly, this ultra-premium SUV doesn’t come cheap, with this trim level starting from just north of the quarter-million-dollar mark.

Engine: Twin-Turbocharged 6.0L W12
Power: 626HP & 664FT-LBs
0-60MPH Time: 3.8 Seconds
Top Speed: 190MPH
MSRP: $251,425

What Factors Should I Consider When Buying A Luxury SUV?

There’s no shortage of areas one can take into account when shopping around for a luxury SUV, however, there are a few factors that trump all others in terms of importance — the most crucial of which we’ll be breaking down directly below.

Powertrain: As the literal heart and soul of the vehicle, an SUV’s powertrain is of monumental importance. When looking at an SUV’s powertrain, you’ll want to pay close attention to the vehicle’s engine, it’s displacement (size), number of cylinders, and layout/configuration. Additionally, on top of looking into the type of transmission that comes bolted to the engine, you’ll also want to explore whether said engine features any type of hybrid drive system and whether to not it’s naturally aspirated or equipped with any turbochargers or superchargers. When dealing with fully electric vehicles, you’ll want to review the powertrains number of motors and the battery pack that said motor or motors draw from. You also may start to notice a lot of twin-turbo 4.0-liter V8s popping up in this segment.

Power Figures & Performance: In order to provide an objective sense of an SUV’s power, manufacturers cite horsepower and torque figures. When coupled with a sport utility vehicle’s weight (and a few other factors), these power figures will play a direct role in determining its performance capabilities including its acceleration and top speed, as well as its payload and towing capacities — making this another monumentally important area to review when shopping. 

Power Delivery: How an SUV transmits its engine’s power to the ground is of pretty extreme importance as well — making this yet another pivotal area to review when shopping for a luxury sport utility vehicle. This includes everything from traditional FWD and RWD models, as well as 4WD and AWD offerings. Additionally, power delivery will also play a major role in both the vehicle’s on-road driving characteristics and its off-road performance. 

Seating & Storage Space: Not unlike station wagons, one of the major advantages offered by SUVs is their ample seating and storage space. As a result, you’ll want to look into an SUV’s number of seats and their accompanying legroom and headroom, as well as their storage capabilities. This includes the vehicle’s cargo space, as well as its total storage volume with its rear seats folded down. 

Dimensions: Modern luxury SUVs vary in size, from small sporty crossover models to fully-size behemoths. Consequently, you’ll want to explore an SUV’s dimensions and weight, as these factors can pretty hugely impact the overall day-to-day user experience — as well as equally-crucial areas such as cargo space, fuel economy, and driving characteristics. 

Tech & Connectivity: Whether it’s a sedan, roadster, or full-size pickup, pretty much every new luxury vehicle comes loaded with an ever-more-advanced slew of technological bells and whistles. This obviously includes connected touchscreen infotainment and driver’s displays, onboard wireless device charging, 360° camera systems, smart cruise control, and in some cases even various levels of autonomous driving capabilities. Because an SUV’s suite of technology can massively impact the overall user experience — as well as the price of the vehicle — tech and connectivity are undoubtedly another area worth paying very close attention to when shopping for one. 

Cabin & Creature Comforts: By their very definition, modern luxury SUVs pretty much always feature incredibly plush and well-appointed interiors. Often taking inspiration from yachts and boutique hotels, the cabins of luxury SUVs can easily rival that of today’s most elite luxury sedans, with super plush and comfy seats, state-of-the-art infotainment units, and trim packages that often sport precious materials like bog-wood or carbon fiber. 

Driving Characteristics: While traditionally SUVs haven’t offered the most impressive handling and driving characteristics, more recent years have given way to a growing number of seriously sporty sport utility vehicles with speed, acceleration, and cornering that’s on par with some of today’s sports cars. The vehicle’s running gear will also play a massive role in determining its driving characteristics. 

Running Gear: A major part of how an SUV performs is owed to its running gear and componentry. In addition to braking hardware, you’ll also want to pay close attention to an SUV’s suspension package, as some setups offer more travel and are more geared towards off-roading while others boast much tighter, sport-focused suspensions. It’s also become increasingly commonplace to see SUV’s with electronically-adjustable suspension, and/or active suspension setups. 

Off-Road Readiness: Despite being objectively luxurious, many of today’s most premium sport utility vehicles feature some surprisingly capable off-roading abilities. When looking at an SUV’s off-road-readiness, you’ll want to review elements such as its ride height, ground clearance, suspension travel, and approach, break-over, and departure angles. What’s more, if you plan on routinely off-roading your new luxury SUV, you’ll want to look into the available factory off-road upgrades offered by the manufacturer — such as skid plates, snorkels, rooftop tents, bumpers, winches, auxiliary lighting, etc — as well as the availability of aftermarket off-road and overlanding upgrades

Price: Luxury SUvs can hugely vary in terms of pricing, with some costing tens of thousands of dollars while others extend well into six-figure territory. While some models offer better value than others, luxury sport utility vehicles generally afford pretty poor bang for your buck, as you’re undeniably paying a financial premium for the prestige and exclusivity of whatever badge adorns the hood. 

The Best Sport Wagons

Best Sport Wagons 0 Hero
Photo: BMW M3 Touring

Looking for another selection of vehicles that offer a stellar mix of practicality, storage space, and performance capabilities? Then be sure to cruise over to our guide to the best sport wagons for a hand-picked list of family-haulers that maintain track-ready performance standards.