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Buyer’s remorse is a real thing, and it’s the last feeling you want to have when you’ve bought a luxury SUV. Even though you found yours as a pre-owned model, you still spent more for the luxury amenities than you would have if you had purchased a mainstream model. The last thing you want to feel is regret for your decision, but these five SUVs could cause you to feel that pain.

Lincoln MKT – lots of cargo space, but not much else

The Lincoln MKT is bland and boring at best. This is one of the luxury SUVs you should avoid buying.
Lincoln MKT | Lincoln

Drive the Lincoln MKT, and you can carry quite a bit of cargo with you, but you might not think this SUV has much else going for it. The design doesn’t quite reach Lincoln standards, and the depreciation of this SUV reaches more than 66% in the first five years. This could be good for you to buy it on the used market, but you’ll have a hard time selling it later.

Volvo XC90 – a luxury SUV dichotomy

Gold 2022 Volvo XC90 on the street
Volvo XC90 | Volvo

When you drive the Volvo XC90, you’ve got a lot of power at your disposal. This SUV is powerful, fast, and stylish. Why then does it make the list of regretful models? According to Hot Cars, this SUV has some major brake problems and lacks the reliability scores you desire in a luxury vehicle. Considering Volvo’s reputation for safety and reliability, this could be an SUV you should avoid.

Cadillac Escalade – no longer the status symbol it once was

A dark colored 2022 Cadillac Escalade driving down a road.
Cadillac Escalade | Cadillac

The superior comfort and impressive technology you admire about the Cadillac Escalade are still present. This big SUV continues to make strides and bring advanced features. If you consider a used model, you might want to think twice. Some previous versions of the Escalade lack the ride quality desired, have terrible handling and suffers from brake issues. You’ll pay a lot for this big brute on the used market, and it could become a luxury SUV you can’t unload.

Acura MDX – what did this luxury SUV do to end up on this list?

Silver 2022 Acura MDX in the snow. This is one of the most reliable luxury SUVs you'll find.
Acura MDX | Acura

Normally, the conversation around the Acura MDX is nothing but positive vibes and accolades. This SUV is known for its great handling, comfort, and safety features. The affordability makes the MDX a luxury SUV almost everyone can afford. The one major flaw with the MDX is the infotainment system. This system is troublesome at best and completely useless at worst. You might need to think twice before buying this Acura SUV.

Mercedes-Benz GLA – appealing on the outside, but trouble on the road

Mercedes-Benz GLA 250 Luxury SUV
Mercedes-Benz GLA 250 Luxury SUV | Mercedes-Benz

The style of the Mercedes-Benz GLA makes it one of the most attractive compact luxury SUVs in the market. Add the AMG model to the mix, and you feel like you’ve got something special. Unfortunately, this SUV is rated as one of the least reliable in its class because of complaints of mechanical issues, durability problems, and a lack of certain interior features.

What is the most unreliable used luxury SUV?

One of the five mentioned also makes it to the list as one of the least reliable models from Consumer Reports. If you’re shopping for a used luxury SUV, you’ll want to avoid the 2020 Acura MDX. This vehicle hits the bottom of the barrel for reliability and could give you nothing but problems.

What are the most reliable luxury compact SUVs?

A silver 2022 Acura RDX small SUV is driving on the road.
Acura RDX | Acura

This might be a bit of a head-scratcher for you. Considering the 2020 MDX is the least reliable SUV rated by one expert group, it seems odd the Acura RDX is the most reliable when rated by Repair Pal. This might seem at odds with what you would expect, but the RDX has the lowest annual repair costs, which is the overall score used. Other compact luxury SUVs you can trust are:

  • Lexus NX200t
  • Infiniti EX35
  • Volvo XC60
  • Mercedes-Benz GLK350
  • BMW X1
  • Lincoln MKC
  • Land Rover LR2
  • Land Rover Range Rover Evoque
  • BMW X3

What are the most reliable midsize luxury SUVs?

Consumer Reports fuel-efficient used midsize SUVs
Lexus RX450h | Getty Images

Using the same system as the compact models, the most reliable SUVs in this class are:

  • Lexus RX450h
  • Acura MDX
  • Lexus RX350
  • Infiniti FX35
  • Lexus GX460
  • Volvo XC70
  • Cadillac SRX
  • Volvo XC90
  • Lincoln MKX
  • Mercedes-Benz ML350

What does this information tell us about luxury SUVs?

Some models are rated as reliable by some experts while others fall into the unreliable category. If we take the Acura MDX as an example, this SUV is rated as unreliable for its infotainment system and one model year, but across the board, it’s a pretty solid SUV. This tells us how important it is to gather information and determine if you need to avoid some model years or some models entirely.


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