Most Comfortable SUVs: 10 SUVs With A Magic Carpet Ride

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Long road trip ahead? Here is a selection of SUVs for the comfiest possible ride.

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When comfort is a priority, an SUV is the vehicle of choice for many prospective car buyers. Core ideals like a spacious interior, advanced comfort and convenience features, and a plush ride are all integral to making modern SUVs ultra comfortable places to spend time. They may often compromise on sporty handling, but the same tall suspension that gives them a higher center of gravity often means greater wheel travel and comfort.

Beyond these core traits, though, the modern SUV has become the ideal vessel for comfortable travel, with automakers leaning into their softness with quality materials, comfortable seating, massaging chairs with lumbar support, heating, and ventilation. If it was on a Mercedes S-Class a decade ago, you can probably get it on a family SUV in 2023.

With all that in mind, we've picked out ten of the most comfortable SUV options currently on the market:

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1. Kia Telluride

With three rows of seats that can fit up to eight passengers, including a third row spacious enough to accommodate adult passengers, the Kia Telluride does not compromise on comfort for family road trips. Thanks to an opulent interior with high-end materials and comfortable seating with a choice of either synthetic leather or real leather upholstery, it delivers a luxury SUV experience at an affordable price (starting at just under $36,000). The top-level SX Prestige X-Pro ($53,185) trim includes additional extras such as heated and ventilated second-row seats. The recently updated model also has dual 12.3-inch infotainment screens and a Harman Kardon premium sound system.

A smooth ride, ample cargo space, and a 3.8-liter V6 engine with 291 horsepower and a 5,000 lb towing capacity complete the package, making the Kia Telluride a great choice for families looking for a balance of comfort and practicality.

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2. Subaru Outback

Thanks to a high ground clearance (8.7 inches) that allows passengers to get in and out comfortably and a well-tuned suspension that provides a smooth ride both on and off-road, the Subaru Outback is a fantastic choice for those looking for a comfortable drive on all types of terrain.

The Outback comes with two choices of engine: a 182-hp naturally-aspirated 2.5-liter four-cylinder as a base option or a 260-hp turbocharged 2.4-liter available with selected higher-trim versions. With standard all-wheel drive, advanced safety features, and cushy, supportive seats, the Outback is among the most comfortable midsize SUV options available that don't break the bank.

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3. 2025 Chevrolet Suburban

Go big or go home: the Chevrolet Suburban is the quintessential large family SUV, with enough interior space for eight passengers to stretch their legs and more cargo room than its slightly smaller sibling, the Tahoe. Freshly facelifted ahead of the 2025 model year, the Suburban is now better than ever. Buyers have a choice of three engines, from a 5.3-liter V8 (355 hp/383 lb-ft) to a 6.2-liter V8 (420 hp/460 lb-ft), with a heavily revised 3.0-liter diesel option now pumping out 305 hp and 495 lb-ft.

The refresh has also seen the suspension updated for better body control, and upper trims feature Air Ride Adaptive Suspension, along with Magnetic Ride Control as an option.

Sharing a platform with the Cadillac Escalade, the Suburban is now one step closer to its upmarket sibling thanks to a new interior with a 17.7-inch infotainment screen and 11-inch digital instrument clusters, with full Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity. And there's plenty of tech available for the kids in the rear seats, too: an optional rear seat entertainment system keeps boredom at bay during family road trips.

2021-2024 Chevrolet Suburban Forward View CarBuzz 2021-2024 Chevrolet Suburban Side View CarBuzz 2021-2024 Chevrolet Suburban Rear-Facing View CarBuzz
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4. Bentley Bentayga EWB

One of the most striking optional features of the Bentayga, more specifically the Bentayga Extended Wheelbase, is what the Bentley team calls "Airline Seat Specification." These mega-luxury seats elevate the experience of traveling in a Bentayga from a simple drive to a first-class flight. Described by Bentley itself as "the most advanced seat ever fitted to a car," the airline-spec seats have undergone a long phase of meticulous real-world testing during their development to ensure optimum levels of comfort for a variety of bodies. With temperature and heat sensors and 22 electric motors, Bentley has taken the concept of comfort to obsessive levels to create the perfect journey. Even the standard Bentayga is incredibly comfortable, with air suspension to smooth out the bumps, but it's the EWB that gets our vote.

The standard Bentayga has two engine choices: a 542-hp twin-turbo V8 or a 443-hp hybrid V6, but the EWB gets the V8 only.

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5. Volvo XC90

The Volvo XC90's optional rear air suspension ensures a comfortable ride over any road surface, while the brand's reputation for safety is upheld by features such as automatic emergency braking and lane-keeping assist, which keep passengers protected from any hazard before it becomes an impact.

Three powertrain options are available: a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine with a mild hybrid system producing 247 hp, a 295-hp version of the same that adds a supercharger, or the twincharged motor with a plug-in hybrid powertrain generating 455 hp combined.

Whichever you opt for, the choice of materials, such as natural wood trim and wool-based upholstery, keeps the interior quality high, giving the XC90 a luxurious feel on every journey, and the infotainment system comes with an elegant nine-inch touchscreen and an optional Wi-Fi hotspot to keep passengers connected. Just make sure to avoid the 21- and 22-inch alloy wheels for the smoothest possible ride.

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6. Chevrolet Traverse

Another option in the three-row category is the Chevrolet Traverse, with a third row of comfortable seats that can easily fit adults and a total capacity of up to eight passengers. While the Traverse's size causes it to struggle in tight spaces, it's also an advantage when it comes to hauling passengers and luggage. The spacious cabin, 10 (!) cupholders, and abundance of USB ports for charging devices will keep everyone comfortable, hydrated, and entertained throughout the whole journey, while the 310-hp, 3.6 liter V6 engine (soon to become a turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder in the upcoming 2024 Traverse) gets everyone from A to B.

Additional creature comforts, such as a heated steering wheel, power-adjustable front seats (both driver's seat and passenger's), and heated front seats, are available with the higher-level LT trim.

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7. Hyundai Palisade

A family-friendly, midsize SUV with three rows, plenty of space in the rear seats, and a comfortable ride, the Hyundai Palisade will carry kids, dogs, and luggage everywhere without breaking a sweat thanks to its 291-hp V6 engine. The second-row seats can be configured as bench seating or two captain's chairs, the former giving the Palisade a capacity of up to eight passengers. Although the third row is better suited to kids thanks to its smaller legroom, the first and second rows are comfortable for passengers of all sizes, even on longer trips.

A host of advanced safety features, such as automatic emergency braking and adaptive cruise control, complete the picture, keeping you and your family safe on all journeys. A facelift for the 2023 model has kept the Palisade fresh, but in the three-row midsize segment, this has always been a CarBuzz favorite.

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8. Lexus RX

The Lexus RX is a fantastic choice for those looking for a smooth ride, even on long journeys, as long as you steer clear of the F Sport package. An upgraded infotainment system, with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay to seamlessly connect your own device, brings the RX in line with similar models in the category. The quiet interior filters out road noise, allowing you and your passengers to have a conversation without shouting even at highway speeds, and the front seats are comfortable and cushioned, with plenty of lumbar support your back will thank you for after a long road trip: a luxury experience for a not-quite-luxury price tag.

The RX comes equipped with a 275-hp turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinderengine in standard form, but two hybrid alternatives are also available for those with a greener conscience.

Whereas the RX was previously an also-ran in the segment, the new generation has forged itself anew as a genuine rival that can go toe-to-toe with its German compatriots. It may only have two rows of seating, but the five occupants it can contain will enjoy every second of the journey.

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9. Mercedes-Maybach GLS

When it comes to most comfortable rides, the Maybach GLS is high on the list: its high-tech air suspension system comes with electronic anti-roll compensation and employs cameras to scan the surface ahead and pre-prime the suspension to handle whatever comes its way. This prepares the dampers in advance for any bumps in the road, creating the illusion of floating rather than driving while the 550-hp, twin-turbocharged V8 takes you to your destination. It also has a "Maybach" driving mode that pulls off in second gear and makes the experience even smoother, adjusting the suspension to prioritize the comfort and wellbeing of passengers.

The power-adjustable reclining seats, with heat and massage functions, give the GLS's occupants the ultimate high-end travel experience, complemented by the interior's premium materials such as real wood trim and Nappa leather. It's no wonder it picked up a CarBuzz Award win this year.

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10. Ford Expedition

With plenty of space in the rear rows, including a third row of comfortable seats spacious enough for adults to sit in, the Ford Motor Company has a strong contender in the large SUV category with the Expedition. The ride remains comfortable despite the Expedition's large size and F-150-based underpinnings, and the interior comes with several luxury features as standard, including the tri-zone climate control system. The infotainment system boasts a large 12-inch touchscreen, which also comes as standard. The Expedition comes with a twin-turbo 3.5-liter V6 engine, which produces 375-440 hp depending on your trim choice.

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2022-2024 Ford Expedition Forward Vision
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