Skip to main content

For those with an optimistic outlook on things, there are many used SUVs to choose from. However, finding a reliable option in the sea of popular used SUVs can be overwhelming. Even though pickup trucks were the most popular used vehicle type, these compact sport utility vehicles from Chevrolet, Toyota, and Nissan were close behind.

What is the best SUV to buy used?

When iSeeCars looked at some of the most popular used cars in the U.S., the Chevrolet Equinox was at the top. The Equinox accounted for 2.2% of used car sales in 2022, one of the only SUVs in the top five. Drivers like this Chevy SUV because it has a higher towing capacity than most of its competition and has a history of outlasting some similar options. Drivers seem to hold onto the Equinox longer, which adds to the resale value.

The average three-year-old Chevrolet Equinox is only $26,294, leaving some wiggle room in the budget. It also earned a reliability score of 7.7, landing this sport utility vehicle in the top 10 for reliability. Around 0.3% of all Equinox SUVs on the road also have 200,000 miles or more. Landing on the list of the most reliable used SUVs is something this Chevrolet does all the time, which is why there are so many on the road.

It might not come as a surprise that the Toyota RAV4 made the list of the most popular used SUVs. Toyota SUVs have a long history of reliability and longevity, especially when it comes to the RAV4 nameplate. Drivers like the compact SUV because it is easy to drive and pretty low maintenance. It earned a reliability score of 8.6, accounting for 1.7% of used car sales in 2022. That is quite a lot of RAV4 SUVs on the road.

Karl Brauer, iSeeCars Executive Analyst, says, “Buyers continue to prioritize the utility and flexibility offered by SUVs. Second only to full-size trucks, the compact crossovers have become the most sought-after vehicle in the U.S., as reflected in our most popular list.” Since this Toyota SUV also has a reputation for being safe and fuel-efficient, it makes sense it makes up a large portion of popular used SUV sales. Some used Toyota RAV4s might exceed budget, but some are as low as $25,898.

Compact options like the Nissan Rogue are in demand

The Nissan Rogue Sport is one of a few popular used SUVs
The 2020 Nissan Rogue | Sjoerd van der Wal/Getty Images

Used Nissan Rogue SUVs accounted for 1.7% of total used car sales last year, tied with the RAV4 for popular used SUVs. It is similar to the other options on the list, falling into the compact crossover sub-category. Demand for small or compact SUVs like the Rogue is still high, which is why so many are on the market.

The average cost of a three-year-old used Nissan Rogue is $26,208, leaving a little room in the budget. It earned a reliability score of 7.3 and ranked near the top for being one of the most fuel-efficient options in the segment.

These are some of the most reliable used SUVs on the market right now that are still affordable. iSeeCars looked at more than 9.8 million one to five-year-old vehicles on the market last year to see which ones were the most popular. Small vehicles are also quite fuel-efficient, and with unpredictable gas prices constantly on the horizon, these options from Toyota, Nissan, and Chevrolet check that box.


The Worst Compact SUV of 2023 Is Also the Most Affordable