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You win some, you lose some. Even though reliability is an essential factor with SUV shoppers, it doesn’t always pan out for some models. These luxury SUVs ranked at the bottom of the class for predicted reliability, but how bad is it? The good news is that despite a low score for overall dependability, most of the small SUVs below from Volvo, Lexus, and Audi still have plenty of positives to report.

What is the least reliable small luxury SUV?

This small luxury SUV from Volvo has mixed reviews
A 2023 Volvo XC60 | Volvo

Unfortunately, the usually dependable 2023 Volvo XC60 luxury SUV landed on the low end for reliability. U.S. News and J.D. Power gave the compact vehicle a 62 out of 100 predicted reliability score. Even though the Volvo brand is known for making safe vehicles, this one did not impress in the realm of reliability.

Starting at $43,450 for the base XC60, a fully loaded Ultimate (the top trim) costs $55,800. Even though it didn’t rack up many points for reliability, the XC60 still has a lot going for it. Volvo offers the XC60 in various options, including the Polestar Engineered version and a plug-in hybrid model with 35 miles of electric range.

The Volvo XC60 earned the IIHS Top Safety Pick Plus award, the highest designation an SUV can get. It also earned a five-star safety rating from the NHTSA.

Is the Lexus NX a reliable luxury SUV?

The 2023 Lexus NX is good luxury SUV
A 2023 Lexus NX | Amanda Cline, MotorBiscuit

While this luxury SUV has a history of being reliable, the 2023 Lexus NX earned a low predicted reliability score of 67 out of 100 from J.D. Power. It isn’t clear why this version earned such a low score for 2023, but the small SUV segment is quite competitive. This Lexus SUV is known for offering good value and holding onto that value over time.

The compact Lexus NX is a comfortable SUV with an upscale interior that shoppers have come to expect from the brand. It also comes equipped with many standard safety systems to keep everyone safe on the road. Starting at $38,605, the base NX 250 is a good budget-friendly option for some. The fully loaded NX 350 Luxury is faster, decked out with features, and adds some upgraded exterior details.

The 2023 Lexus NX earned an IIHS Top Safety Pick Plus award. This small luxury SUV earned high marks in the main crashworthiness, crash avoidance, and crash mitigation tests.

Is the Audi Q5 a good luxury SUV?

The 2023 Audi Q5 compact luxury SUV
A 2023 Audi Q5 | Audi

Generally, the 2023 Audi Q5 is a good luxury SUV. While it only earned a predicted reliability score of 69 out of 100 from J.D. Power, it has many other characteristics to make up for that. Audi offers a well-appointed interior and a long list of standard features.

For 2023, the Audi Q5 starts at $44,200 for the Premium trim. A fully loaded S-line Prestige will run you $57,400 or so with all the bells and whistles. With five comfortable seats and standard all-wheel drive, the Q5 makes for a good small SUV. Audi’s base engine is a turbo four-cylinder with a few horsepower options. It also comes in a plug-in hybrid variant. The 2023 Q5 earned a five-star safety rating from the NHTSA and an IIHS Top Safety Pick award.

The good news is that a predicted reliability score is just that, predicted. These luxury SUVs have many standard safety systems, a variety of trim levels to choose from, and many positive attributes besides the reliability score. It is a good thing to consider, but a test drive and budgeting might be more important.


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