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Some of the most popular new cars on the market right now are midsize SUVs, and that’s especially true for midsize SUVs with three rows of seats. It’s a very competitive segment though, and many automakers, foreign and domestic, are competing to put out the best three-row midsize SUV. Here’s a look at the three most popular three-row midsize SUVs from American automakers so far this year.

3. The 2023 Dodge Durango is struggling against its rivals

GM Authority published the sales data for the first quarter of 2023, and overall, the three-row midsize SUV segment is doing well. As a whole, the segment has sold just over 300,000 units in the first three months of the year. That’s a significant improvement from the roughly 260,000 units that the segment sold in the first quarter of 2022. That nearly 40,000 unit difference represents a 14.5% increase.

The Dodge Durango was partially responsible for that jump. In the first quarter of the year, it saw a nearly 22% increase compared to last year. But, in terms of raw numbers, Dodge only sold about 17,500 units of the midsize SUV in the first quarter. That’s more than the 14,000 units that the company moved in the first quarter of 2022, but far less than what its rivals are doing.

Currently, the Durango is responsible for about 6% of segment sales in the year. That number is better than rival SUVs like the Mazda CX-9 and the Subaru Ascent, but worse than most of its rivals, including the Hyundai Palisade and the Nissan Pathfinder.

2. The 2023 Chevy Traverse is growing in popularity

The second most popular American three-row midsize SUV is the Chevy Traverse, and it’s one of the best-selling options in the segment overall. In the first quarter of the year, Chevy’s already sold about 31,500 units of the midsize SUV. That’s an increase of about 8,000 units from last year, which means that its numbers have grown by over 34%. 

This gave the Chevy SUV a 10% share of the segment. It also made the Traverse the third best-selling SUV in the segment overall. It has a long way to go to second place, however. Currently, the Toyota Highlander is in second place, and the Japanese auto giant has sold over 55,000 units in the first quarter of the year.

Regardless, the Traverse is doing so well that Chevy dealerships are having supply issues. In January, there were 16 days of new-vehicle inventory for the Traverse. In February, that number was 17 days, and in March, it was 21 days. In April, it was 19 days. For context, 60 days of new-vehicle inventory is considered ideal. 

Lastly, the Ford Explorer was not only the most popular three-row midsize SUV from an American automaker, but it was the best-selling option in the entire segment. Ford has moved about 58,000 units of the Explorer in the first quarter of the year. That’s a big jump from the 43,000 units that the automaker did in the first quarter of 2022. It’s equal to an increase of about 36%. 

That number represents 19% of the segment, and it’s also allowed the Explorer to take the lead over the Highlander. That being said, Ford is cheating a bit with the numbers.

As GM Authority explained, Ford has started counting the police versions of the Explorer as part of the SUV’s total sales. This wasn’t the case in the past. Since the midsize SUV is a popular option for police departments, that naturally inflates its numbers. But even without these counted toward its total, there’s no dobut the Explorer is one of the most popular three-row midsize SUVs on the market.


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