The three-row mid-size SUV is a base for larger families or drivers who expect to transport large amounts of cargo. For drivers interested in a new SUV, Car and Driver ranked all three-row midsize SUVs available. The following vehicles earned the unfortunate positions of the three worst three-row midsize SUVs, according to Car and Driver.
Car and Driver ranked the Chevy Traverse as the third-worst midsize SUV with a third row today, but not everything about the Traverse is bad. Car and Driver List notes that the Traverse has the most cargo space behind the second row compared to its competitors at 57 cu-ft. With this cargo space, the Chevrolet Traverse is also the longest midsize SUV at 17 feet. Whether this massive size is justified depends on how much a driver wants the extra cargo space.
Under the hood, the Traverse is powered by a 3.6-liter V6 with 310 hp. It can get 27 mpg on the highway, which is good enough considering the Traverse’s size.
With a starting price of $34,895, the Traverse’s cost is about average compared to other midsize SUVs. According to the Car and Driver Traverse review, if a driver wants to consider the Traverse, the base trim is the best option. Upgraded trims can’t compete with similar trims of other midsize SUVs.
According to Car and Driver, the GMC Acadia earns the spot for the second-worst midsize SUV. At its core, the GMC Acadia is like a smaller Traverse, but this is where one of its biggest problems comes in. The traverse may be too large for some drivers, but this comes with the benefit of cargo space. Meanwhile, Car and Driver notes that the GMC Acadia struggles with cargo space. It only has 41 cubic meters of space behind the second row and 12 cubic meters behind the third row, making it the worst overall on the list.
As for the Acadia’s engine, buyers can choose between a 2.0-liter, 288-hp inline-four or the 3.6-liter, 310-horsepower V6 found in the Chevy Traverse. The Acadia has no option for a continuously variable transmission, which is an odd feature to leave out.
Despite the drawbacks of the GMC Acadia, it earns points for being the second cheapest option on the list. Its $30,995 base price is a significant selling point, and the only cheaper midsize SUV is the $30,665 Kia Sorento.
The Toyota 4Runner earned the worst spot on Car and Driver’s list of midsize SUVs. Car and Driver noted the 4Runner’s outdated design as the SUV’s biggest drawback, as Toyota hasn’t redesigned the 4Runner or significantly updated it in general in 12 years. Because of this, a new 4Runner will likely feel dated compared to other similar SUVs.
The Toyota 4Runner comes standard with a V6 that produces 270 hp of power. As a road trip vehicle, the 4Runner would require frequent fuel stops, as it only gets 19 mpg on the highway and 16 mpg in the city.
Of the three worst midsize SUVs that Car and Driver ranked, the 4Runner is also the most expensive with a base MSRP of $38,820.
Despite all these complaints, not everything is bad about the Toyota 4Runner. In its review of the SUV, Car and Driver notes that the 4Runner performs well in off-road driving. As a three-row family SUV, it might struggle, but as an off-road vehicle, it might be the right choice.
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