A three-row SUV deal especially for active families

Demand for SUVs continues to grow, and so does the need for three-row models designed with active families in mind. Small SUVs are great commuter vehicles, but lack the space and capabilities that larger models have to offer families like yours. Three-row midsize SUVs, on the other hand, provide generous cabin space, comfort features for maximum enjoyment regardless of the length of the trip, and versatile performance to help you and your busy family with all your driving needs. Finding an affordable three-row SUV with everything you need for your family when you’re out on the road is where you can run into a bit of trouble. To help you in your search, take a look at these two mid-range priced, family-friendly three-row SUVs to compare for your next vehicle: 2022 GMC Acadia vs 2022 Honda Pilot.

The affordability factor

When you have a family to feed, recreational activities to pay for, and all the expenses that come with raising a child and adult in general, while a brand new 2022 BMW X7 is manageable, you can always use the extra money for more important and fun things to your family. At the other end of the spectrum, the most affordable option, the three-row 2022 Kia Sorento, might fit into the lower end of your budget, giving you plenty of extra money for family trips and splurges, but there’s a good chance it could be missing some of the premium features and performance options you get with mid-level models like the 2022 GMC Acadia or 2022 Honda Pilot. Both are good, reasonably priced options, but you can get more for less when you buy an Acadia.

The base SLE model 2022 GMC Acadia starts at $34,800 and is available with two engines and four trims to choose from, giving you the power to choose your style, comfort and performance. The 2022 Honda Pilot has just one engine option but a variety of trims to choose from, with its base Sport model starting at a higher price tag of $38,080. Some drivers may find it appealing to have seven trim levels to choose from, but it honestly did not speak. More detail just means that each model has little to offer, and you’ll have to spend a lot more than the base price to get what you and your family want and need in an SUV.

The comfort factor

What family doesn’t want a comfortable vehicle for their road trips? Whether you’re loading up the kids and their friends to head out to their soccer practice or you and your family are headed for a camping trip a few hours away, you’ll want plenty of interior space and plenty of comfort features and technology to last all connected and entertained, no matter where you end up. The 2022 GMC Acadia may seat one less person than the seven or eight that the 2022 Honda Pilot can carry when equipped with the standard bench seats compared to the available captain’s chairs that are standard with the two top tiers, but it has plenty of other features to take the management in comfort.

Tri-zone climate control is standard on both the Acadia and Pilot, but for heated and ventilated front seats to keep you even more comfortable driving whatever the weather outside, you’ll have to spend at least $3,000 more for the Honda for this feature since it comes standard Top-of-the-line Pilot Elite and Black Edition compared to being a standard feature on all trims as with the 2022 GMC Acadia. The same goes for the ability for you and your backseat passengers to have a beautiful view of the sky while you’re on the road with either the panoramic sunroof on the Pilot or the dual skyscape sunroof on the Acadia.

For entertainment beyond the beauty of nature, you’ll be able to stream your favorite music with Bluetooth, satellite radio, Apple CarPlay or Android Audio through a premium 8-speaker Bose audio system, which is standard on all 2022 GMC Acadia except the base SLE model. But if you’re willing to shell out an additional $5,000, you can upgrade the 2022 Honda Pilot’s standard 7-speaker system to a 10-speaker sound system with Touring trims and above. Additionally, the top four Pilot trim levels also feature a rear seat entertainment system for all of your rear seat passengers’ video and audio streaming needs. However, to save a few thousand dollars, if necessary, you can purchase a manufacturer-built system to fit your Acadia.

The versatility factor

The 2022 GMC Acadia has an advantage over the 2022 Honda Pilot when it comes to providing versatile performance because it is available with different engine options. For the most fuel-efficient Acadia, you’ll want to invest in an equipped 2.0L turbo 4-cylinder engine to get an estimated 25 MPG with front-wheel drive and 24 MPG with all-wheel drive. The Pilot, with its 3.5L V6, is estimated to see a combined 23 MPG with front-wheel drive and 21 MPG with all-wheel drive. However, the Pilot is rated to tow 1,000 pounds more than the 3.6L V6 Acadia option, making it a better choice if you’re looking for the best towing model.

Since both of these three-row SUVs are available with four-wheel drive, there’s no need to stress over Mother Nature’s unpredictability. But for better control in unexpected weather and when venturing off the pavement, the 2022 Acadia AT4 provides additional support where it’s needed. Whatever the road conditions, you’ll have the confidence to conquer anything with the driver-selectable Traction Select System. This system is standard on all Acadias, with Normal (or FWD and AWD for all-wheel drive models), Snow, Sport, Trailer/Tow and Off-Road (only available for all-wheel drive models) modes. But for best off-road performance, the Acadia AT4 is the way to go. It comes standard with an Active Torque Control AWD system to ensure each wheel gets the power it needs, when it needs it, for the best grip at all times.

The 2022 Honda Pilot also comes standard with a traction management system, but rear-wheel-drive models only have the option of Normal and Snow modes, while the all-wheel-drive Pilots add Mud and Sand modes. Although the Pilot TrailSport is considered the trail-ready model, its rugged tires and other off-road features look good, but they hardly compare to the off-road assistance features the Acadia offers in addition to the aforementioned and its rugged all-terrain tires. The 2022 Honda Pilot doesn’t even offer Hill Descent Control for a smooth and controlled descent with any of its models.

The safety factor

Keeping the whole family safe when you’re out on the road, whether it’s for daily activities or that much-needed vacation, is important with any vehicle. While you’ll find that most three-row SUVs offer crash protection that extends to the third row, what you need to be aware of is what safety technologies and driver assistance features are available with each model to alert you to potential danger and help you control your vehicle completely clear of a collision. When comparing the 2022 GMC Acadia vs the 2022 Honda Pilot, it’s a tough call which can keep you and your family the safest. Both offer outstanding active safety technology, the Pilot with its Honda Sensing Suite and the Acadia with GMC Pro-Safety Assist, but the Acadia takes the lead in family safety with its Teen Driver Technology, which is exclusive to GM vehicles.

The day you have to let your teenage driver out on the road alone will forever be dreaded by parents around the world. Believe it or not, it’s just as scary for your new driver as it is for you. GM Teen Driver technology has taken some of the stress off your and your child’s shoulders when they have to drive on their own. Not only will it automatically activate all safety assistance features when switched on, but it can also mute all audio features until the front seat passengers are buckled up, limit the volume of the radio while driving, provide speed warnings and restrictions, and it can give you a report card on your teenager’s driving performance.

A silver 2022 GMC Acadia is shown from the front parked in front of a building.

How to choose the right three-row SUV for your family?

With a busy lifestyle, your family needs an SUV that can keep up and handle every task and adventure you throw at it. Three-row midsize SUVs are the perfect size with the right amount of power for truck-like characteristics. But to find a model that’s affordable and accommodating to your comfort, performance, and safety needs, you’ll need to look at mid-level three-row SUVs. A good place to start is by comparing models like the 2022 GMC Acadia vs 2022 Honda Pilot because no matter how similar they may be in price, size, amenities, performance and safety, one will always be superior to the other.

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