Luxury SUVs are popular and it’s easy to see why. They combine elements of passenger cars with off-road features and higher ground clearance. Most include impressive technology, productive powertrains, and advanced safety features. When designed well, SUVs can be the perfect vehicle.
When they’re not designed well? They become overpriced ordeals. The following vehicles have a history of poor reliability ratings based on data from agencies like J.D. Power. A low predicted reliability score indicates a higher likelihood that it will need repairs as it ages.
1. 2019 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque
- U.S. News Reliability Score: 2.5/5
While lively and athletic, the 2019 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque is a mediocre subcompact SUV. Sure, you can take on nearly any terrain due to its sporty handling and robust off-road capability. But that’s not enough reason to buy it.
The Evoque has a handsome profile but Land Rover shaved off visibility and interior space to get the look. It’s the only luxury SUV available as a convertible. Most models have a stationary roof with four doors. With a z-folding soft top and two doors, the convertible models offer only a small, hard-to-reach cargo area.
The Ranger Rover Evoque prioritizes style over function. Its standard nine-speed automatic transmission isn’t even or responsive, taking its time finding the appropriate gear. A noisy ride, the SUV’s controls are temperamental.
You can get the Evoque with optional lane-keeping assist and a standard InControl infotainment system. There are new seats but again, only the ones up front are comfortable for longer trips. There’s also an available 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine with a 286-hp output.
2. 2019 Land Rover Range Rover Sport
- U.S. News Reliability Score: 2.5/5
Based on the original Range Rover, the 2019 Land Rover Range Rover Sport is a decent midsize luxury SUV. With an upscale cabin and energetic handling, it has a good towing capacity and a nice selection of powertrains. When it comes to off-roading, the Sport is among the best in its class.
Now, let’s talk about the problems with the Ranger Rover Sport. Yes, it handles well. But there’s too much emphasis on the handling and not enough given to comfort or off-road ability.
In 2019, the Sport’s original V6 engine gives way to an in-line six-cylinder engine. You can select a supercharged V8 or V6 engine or a more powerful SVR V8. A plug-in hybrid, the P400e is available for 2019 with a 31-mile electric range. The standard transmission is an eight-speed automatic. You also get an optional low-range gearing.
While Sport’s driving experience and handling are superb, the ride itself is rigid and a little rough. The sound of the exhaust is a little much. Many drivers find the controls, particularly the ones for the infotainment system, antiquated and frustrating. It has limited cargo space and below-average fuel economy using combustion engines.
3. 2019 Land Rover Discovery Sport
- U.S. News Reliability Score: 2/5
The Land Rover Discovery Sport is far from exciting entry in its segment. The car doesn’t hold its own even when compared to small mass-market SUVs. It’s got some positives, however, so let’s start with those. When it comes to off-road capabilities, the Discovery Sport performs impressively. It has a solid four-wheel-drive system that’s standard.
The Discovery Sport has a roomy cabin with standard leather upholstery and lots of cargo space. Although the interior is on the plain side for a luxury brand, the second-row seats are very comfortable. This SUV is available in a two-row model that seats five or a three-row version that seats seven. You have a choice of two infotainment systems and an optional InControl Touch Pro system.
There are a lot of problems, unfortunately. When you take Discovery Sport off the pavement, the ride quality suffers and its handling becomes uninspired. The delivery from the turbocharged four-cylinder engine is wonky. (There is a stronger 286-hp engine available.) There’s either too much acceleration or not enough. Like its sibling, the Range Rover Evoque, its transmission isn’t responsive or effortless.
Off-road, the Discovery Sport is capable. But the on-road ride is inflexible and lacks the sporty experience the exterior leads you to believe it has.