America sure does love crossovers, so it’s no surprise that many of the best family cars are SUVs. There is no shortage of options in 2020, and the competition is fierce. To earn the title of best SUV for families, contenders need to tick a variety of boxes. Some shoppers see the most affordable derivatives as the best family SUV, while others prefer the more lavish interiors and long list of features of a luxury brand.
Don’t let a cheap price tag distract you from the essentials, though. Size and capability definitely matter here. Smaller families can make do with the less expensive, compact models that still deliver a bit of fun driving, while big households need more space and enough comfort for everyone, which comes at a cost. Thus, the best SUV for a large family will likely be a five- or seven-seat midsize ute.
Sometimes, the extra money is worth it. While some of these vehicles have attractive starting prices, you’ll realize that a lot of the comfort features require extra investment. Some products that have a slightly higher MSRP come with far more standard-fitted indulgences, so the extra money is often well spent. If you live in an area prone to poor weather and road conditions, it may behoove you to consider a model equipped with AWD.
Those who value frugal fuel economy figures should stick with a smaller, punchy engine. Hybrid powertrains can offer both efficiency and power, although they do cost more upfront. Quite a few products in this segment are reliable and come with impressive warranties, so buying a used model from 2018 or 2019 is also viable.
While each brand has its own unique spin on these haulers, there are a few characteristics that stay the same among all variants:
Before making the big commitment, here are a few key characteristics of the ideal family hauler to think about:
With so many great options to consider, it is quite difficult to narrow the best down to just one. The Cadillac Escalade and Kia Telluride grab the two highest spots on the list, though the former is a lot more powerful and expensive than the latter. The Escalade produces 420 horsepower and costs just over $76k to start. It’s the better choice of the two, but it is far more costly.
Be sure to check out some of our reviews for some of the highest-rated family SUVs for sale in the US.