One of the most popular vehicle segments in the world is the midsize SUV. As a result, many buyers are interested in finding out the best of the best. Moreover, Consumer Reports is one of the most trusted experts for those reviews. In the crowded segment, many models received the coveted “recommended” label from CR. However, not every model is recommended, and the worst midsize SUVs might surprise you.
Consumer Reports doesn’t recommend 4 midsize SUVs
Consumer Reports doesn’t recommend four midsize SUVs but recommends seven other models. Furthermore, it’s surprising that the long list of models is filled with more good than bad. What’s even more surprising is the popular models that appear at the bottom. All four models CR doesn’t recommend are very popular and will remain that way in 2022.
The 2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee is one of the worst midsize SUVs
Firstly, Consumer Reports highest-ranked midsize SUV that didn’t earn a recommendation is the 2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee. The best of the worst only fell short of the top models by a little bit. However, there is plenty to dislike about the fourth-worst midsize SUV. According to Consumer Reports, predicted reliability is very low based on previous model years.
In addition, the controls are “oddly designed,” CR says. Next, the cabin is modern and more premium than some rivals, but far better in top trims. Opting for a range-topping model improves the quality by a lot. Unfortunately, that means you’ll be paying closer to the fully-loaded $69,820 price than the affordable base $34,900 price for luxury. Lastly, the non-hybrid engines have poor fuel economy, averaging 14 city and 28 highway mpg.
Consumer Reports’ next worst midsize SUV is the Hyundai Santa Fe
Another model to avoid is the 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe. Consumer Reports rated it far lower than the Jeep Grand Cherokee, which isn’t recommended either. Despite a low starting price of $27,200, the Santa Fe fails to provide much value to owners. On top of poor predicted reliability, CR also dislikes the underpowered base engine. Moreover, it’s a 2.5-liter four-cylinder that produces 191 horsepower, which falls far behind the competition.
Next, CR says the Santa Fe’s ride quality is poor in non-hybrid models. Since a non-hybrid powertrain is standard and the most affordable, that’s a big problem. According to CR, “ride comfort remains overly firm, and rough roads bring out a jittery character.” Lastly, the push-button gear selector design seems like it’s trying a little too hard to be fancy.
The two worst midsize SUVs are very popular
Finally, Consumer Reports’ lowest-ranked midsize SUVs are the 2022 Ford Bronco and 2022 Jeep Wrangler. These two off-road models pale in comparison to every other SUV in the segment. Both scored far lower than every other midsize SUV, with the Wrangler even further back than the Bronco. For the Bronco, the main complaints are wind noise and poor fuel economy. CR discovered 13 city and 24 highway mpg was the average in its testing.
The predicted reliability for the Bronco and Wrangler are the same, and both are very poor. Based on previous model years for the Wrangler and early recalls for the Bronco, CR doesn’t have high expectations. Both models are capable of off-roading but aren’t the best options for everyday driving. However, CR says the Bronco’s on-road performance is superior to the Wrangler’s.
Unfortunately, the 2022 Jeep Wrangler suffers from the same wind noise problems as the Bronco. Both are likely due to removable doors and rooftops. Moreover, the Wrangler also has a stiff ride and awkward access to the interior. As an everyday on-road vehicle, CR likes every other midsize SUV over the Jeep offering. Lastly, its 13 city and 24 highway mpg are identical to the Bronco and just as bad.
Consumer Reports worst midsize SUVs
In conclusion, Consumer Reports recommends more midsize SUVs than it doesn’t. Only the Jeep Grand Cherokee, Hyundai Santa Fe, Ford Bronco, and Jeep Wrangler are not recommended in the crowded segment. Various issues plague the worst midsize SUVs, but none more than ride quality and fuel economy. Top-rated models like the Subaru Outback and Toyota Venza excel in these areas, so CR recommends choosing them.