Article Highlights (Best Midsize SUV):
- With a wide array of options, the Kia Sorrento won best midsize SUV overall
- The Toyota Venza’s advanced technology snagged best hybrid
- The sporty and luxurious Mustang Mach E conquered best EV
More capable than a crossover and more efficient than a full-frame SUV, the midsize SUV is one of the most popular vehicle classes. Moreover, it seems automakers offer even better midsize SUVs every year. For this reason, Roadshow’s (by CNET) latest best midsize SUV ranking features several surprising nameplates that are brand new to the category. Read on for the details.
Kia Sorento: the best midsize SUV
The Kia Sorento is a slightly older member of the midsize SUV category. But the 2021 Kia Sorento redesign stands head-and-shoulders over the competition.
One central selling point of the affordable Kia Sorento is how incredibly customizable it is. The entry-level Sorento begins at just $29,390. But discerning buyers can order a fully loaded Sorento if they wish. For example, top-trim options include such luxury features as a quilted leather interior.
The Sorento’s most basic engine is an inline, four-cylinder engine. The next power level is a turbocharged inline-four. Kia also offers this midsize SUV as a hybrid and is soon rolling out a plug-in hybrid.
Toyota Venza: best hybrid midsize SUV
The Toyota Venza is an older nameplate but used to be attached to a bloated crossover. The new Toyota Venza is a capable, midsize SUV. Its impressive drivetrain features a 2.5-Liter gasoline engine and three separate electric motors. The result: 219 horsepower and an incredible 39 mpg (40 highway/37 city mpg).
What sets the award-winning Toyota Venza apart is its advanced technology. The Venza is available with a crisp 12.3-inch touchscreen. In addition, the automaker’s latest infotainment system perfectly balances useful information with keeping distractions to a minimum.
The Toyota Venza earns a unique wow factor with its electrochromic sunroof option. With just the push of a button, this piece of glass transforms from clear to opaque. Much of Venza’s advanced technology is invisible: this Toyota boasts some of the best ride quality of any midsize SUV, hybrid or traditional.
Ford Mustang Mach E: best electric option
The legacy of the Mustang includes generations of V8-equipped, gas-guzzling muscle cars. So when Ford named its electric midsize SUV the Mustang Mach-E, its choice confused critics and fans alike (especially with the golden opportunity provided by “Thunderbird”). But when reviewers began to drive the Mustang Mach-E, its sportiness lived up to its name.
The Ford Mustang Mach E features a 98.9-kWh battery. Its electric motors can lay down an eye-watering 332 horsepower and 417 lb-ft of torque. Because it’s electric, all of that power is available from zero RPM. Consequently, this Mustang is an acceleration beast. Motoring enthusiasts have begun to experiment with the EV’s one-pedal drive mode that gives the Mustang Mach-E distinctive driving characteristics.
The Mustang Mach-E comes in many configurations. For example, you can buy this midsize SUV with RWD or opt for AWD. There is also a range of battery packs. Therefore, the RWD Mustang with the largest battery pack earned an EPA-estimated 300-mile range.
What all the Mustang MACH-Es share is luxury-level build quality and a surprisingly plush interior. Technology abounds, including a 10.2-inch digital gauge cluster and a 15.5-inch display.