Best Medium SUVs of 2023: Best Mid-Size SUVs Picks

The medium SUV class is Australia's most popular vehicle class, with 20% growth in 2022. In 2022, 216,151 medium SUVs were sold, accounting for one of every five new cars sold in Australia. This segment is highly competitive, with almost every mainstream and luxury car manufacturer offering a medium SUV model.

Key Takeaways:

  • Medium SUVs are the most popular vehicle class in Australia.
  • In 2022, 216,151 medium SUVs were sold in Australia.
  • Almost every mainstream and luxury car manufacturer offers a medium SUV model.

The Winner: Nissan X-Trail

The Nissan X-Trail has won the Best Medium SUV by Drive Car of the Year. Offering a combination of style, performance, and efficiency, the X-Trail stands out in the competitive medium SUV segment.

The X-Trail is equipped with a powerful 2.5-litre petrol engine that delivers impressive performance on the road. The engine is paired with a CVT transmission, providing a smooth and refined driving experience. The judges were particularly impressed by the X-Trail's quiet and intuitive ride.

In addition to its exceptional performance, the X-Trail offers hybrid variants for those looking for a more fuel-efficient option. While these variants come at a higher price point, they provide a greener, more sustainable driving experience.With its winning combination of performance, style, and hybrid options, the Nissan X-Trail is a top choice for those in the market for a medium SUV.

Runner-up: Kia Sportage

The Kia Sportage has earned the prestigious runner-up recognition in the Best Medium SUV category. This mid-size SUV offers a delightful experience with its ride on locally tuned suspension, providing exceptional comfort and smoothness on the road. The Sportage boasts an extensive list of standard safety features, ensuring peace of mind during family adventures.

With 11 variants, the Kia Sportage caters to a wide range of preferences and budgets. Prices for this versatile SUV start at $32,795 and go up to $52,720. However, it's worth noting that some judges highlighted the base 2.0-litre petrol engine as underwhelming, and the petrol models may be a bit thirsty for fuel. Additionally, specific variants may not include features like sat-nav and digital radio.

Key Features of Kia Sportage:

  • Ride on locally tuned suspension for exceptional comfort
  • An extensive range of 11 variants to suit different needs and budgets
  • Standard safety features for enhanced protection
  • Competitive starting price of $32,795Overall, the Kia Sportage offers a great blend of comfort, safety, and affordability in the mid-size SUV category. While it may have a few limitations, its locally tuned suspension ensures a smooth and enjoyable ride, making it a compelling option for those seeking a reliable and stylish vehicle for their everyday needs.

Finalist: Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace

The Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace is a formidable contender in the Best Medium SUV category. Its seven-seat flexibility and massive boot space offer practicality and versatility for families and adventure enthusiasts alike. The Tiguan Allspace comes in nine variants, catering to different preferences and budgets, with prices ranging from $42,490 to $70,490.

While the Tiguan Allspace impresses with its spaciousness, some aspects must be considered. Judges noted that the dual-clutch automatic transmission can sometimes be hesitant, potentially affecting the overall driving experience. Additionally, the ride can be firm and harsh, which may not suit those seeking a softer, more comfortable ride. However, the Tiguan Allspace compensates for these drawbacks with its luxurious feel and European design, exuding a sense of sophistication on the road.

Table: Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace Variants and PricesWith its range of options and impressive features, the Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace stands as a strong finalist in the Best Medium SUV category. Whether you require a vehicle capable of accommodating a growing family or need extra space for your outdoor gear, the Tiguan Allspace delivers on both practicality and style.

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    The Medium SUV Segment in Australia

    The medium SUV segment in Australia is a booming market, accounting for 37% of all SUV sales and surpassing passenger car sales. With 42 different models, buyers have a wide range of options. This segment is highly competitive, with popular brands like Hyundai, Kia, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Subaru, Toyota, and Volkswagen all offering medium SUV models.

    Medium SUV Segment Statistics

    To understand the significance of the medium SUV segment, let's take a closer look at the sales figures. In 2022, there was a 20% growth in medium SUV sales, with 216,151 units sold. This means that one out of every five new cars sold in Australia was a medium SUV. The popularity of these vehicles can be attributed to their versatility, spaciousness, and practicality.

    The medium SUV segment outperforms the latter when comparing SUV sales to passenger car sales. The medium SUV segment accounts for more than all passenger car sales combined. This indicates a shift in consumer preferences towards more extensive, versatile vehicles that can accommodate their growing needs.

    Wide Variety of Medium SUV Models

    Buyers have many options, with 42 different medium SUV models currently available in Australia. Each brand offers unique features and designs, catering to other consumer preferences. Whether you're looking for a reliable family SUV, a fuel-efficient option, or a luxury model, a medium SUV suits your needs.As you can see, there's no shortage of options for choosing a medium SUV. Whether you prefer a Hyundai, Kia, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Subaru, Toyota, or Volkswagen, you'll find a model that suits your style, budget, and requirements.

    How to Choose the Right Medium SUV

    When choosing the right medium SUV, there are several factors to consider. With so many models available, finding the one that meets your needs can be overwhelming. To make an informed decision, evaluating various commercial criteria, reliability, and consumer support is essential. By doing so, you can ensure that you select a medium SUV that will serve you well for years to come.

    Commercial Criteria

    Start by considering the commercial criteria of different medium SUV models. Look into brand sales volume and long-term market growth. Brands with consistently high sales volumes and a strong market presence tend to offer more reliable and well-supported vehicles. Prioritize established brands with a good reputation for customer care and product support. Avoid new brands with little track record, as their reliability and aftermarket support may be uncertain.


    Reliability is another critical factor to assess when choosing a medium SUV. Research the reliability ratings and customer feedback for the models you are considering. Look for vehicles with a track record of minimal mechanical issues and a reputation for durability. This information can often be found in reputable organizations' consumer reviews and reliability studies.

    Consumer Support

    Alongside reliability, consumer support is an essential consideration. Look for brands that offer comprehensive warranties and have dedicated customer support channels. A strong warranty can provide peace of mind and protect you from unforeseen repairs. Also, choose a brand with a nationwide network of authorized service centers to ensure you can easily access maintenance and repairs when needed.

    Shortlist of Viable Medium SUVs

    After careful consideration of commercial criteria, reliability, and consumer support, a shortlist of seven viable medium SUVs has emerged as top contenders for 2023. Each model offers unique features and strengths that cater to different needs and preferences. Let's explore the options:

    Nissan X-Trail

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    The Nissan X-Trail was declared the Best Medium SUV of 2023, offering a fresh design and impressive performance. Its standout features include a range of hybrid variants and a 2.5-litre petrol engine that delivers a quiet and refined driving experience. The X-Trail also boasts good fuel economy, making it an attractive choice for those conscious of its environmental impact and fuel costs.

    Kia Sportage

    As the runner-up, the Kia Sportage offers excellent ride comfort on locally tuned suspension. It stands out with an extensive range of 11 variants, catering to diverse preferences and budgets. While the base 2.0-litre petrol engine may feel underwhelming for some, the Sportage compensates with an array of standard safety features prioritizing passenger protection.

    Volkswagen Tiguan

    The Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace, a finalist in the Best Medium SUV category, presents seven-seat flexibility and a spacious boot. While its dual-clutch automatic transmission can sometimes be hesitant, the Tiguan exudes a luxurious feel with its European design. The seven-seat option is a compelling choice for families seeking versatility and functionality.

    When comparing these three models, key differences become apparent. The Nissan X-Trail stands out for its hybrid technology, the Kia Sportage excels in ride comfort and safety features, and the Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace offers seven-seat flexibility. Other factors to consider include fuel economy, warranty coverage, and overall value for money. By evaluating these aspects, you can decide which medium SUV best suits your needs and preferences.

    Hyundai Tucson

    The Hyundai Tucson combines practicality, style, and affordability. With a spacious interior, advanced safety features, and a range of engine options, the Tucson is a versatile choice for families or individuals seeking comfort and convenience.

    Mazda CX-5

    Known for its engaging driving experience and upscale interior, the Mazda CX-5 offers a blend of performance and refinement. With its sleek design, advanced safety features, and superior craftsmanship, the CX-5 is popular among SUV enthusiasts.

    MG HS

    The MG HS offers a compelling mix of value and features. With its spacious cabin, user-friendly technology, and competitive pricing, the HS provides an affordable yet well-equipped option for those seeking a stylish and practical medium SUV.

    Mitsubishi Outlander

    If you require seven-seat versatility, the Mitsubishi Outlander has you covered. With its roomy interior, ample cargo space, and efficient hybrid variant, the Outlander is a reliable choice for families needing practicality and fuel efficiency.

    Subaru Forester

    The Subaru Forester is renowned for its off-road capability and reliability. With its rugged design, symmetrical all-wheel drive, and advanced safety features, the Forester is an excellent option for adventurous individuals who enjoy exploring urban and outdoor environments.

    Toyota RAV4

    The Toyota RAV4 combines exceptional fuel efficiency with hybrid technology. With its spacious cabin, comfortable ride, and reputation for reliability, the RAV4 is a top choice for eco-conscious drivers who desire practicality without compromising performance.

    Each of these medium SUVs has its unique strengths and features. Consider your specific needs, budget, and preferences to find the perfect fit for your lifestyle.

    Summing Up

    The Best Medium SUV of 2023 has been awarded to the Nissan X-Trail, with the Kia Sportage as the runner-up and the Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace as a finalist. The medium SUV segment in Australia is highly competitive, offering a wide range of models to suit various needs, preferences, and budgets. When choosing the best medium SUV for your family, it is essential to consider factors such as engine performance, fuel economy, cabin design, safety features, and overall value for money.

    The Nissan X-Trail impressed the judges with its excellent engine and transmission performance, stylish cabin, and good fuel economy. It offers a range of hybrid variants, although they come at a higher price point. The Kia Sportage stood out for its ride comfort and an extensive list of standard safety features. At the same time, some judges noted that the base petrol engine can feel underwhelming and petrol models may need to be more fuel-efficient. The Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace offers seven-seat flexibility and spacious boots, but its dual-clutch automatic transmission can be hesitant, and the ride can be firm and harsh.

    With the medium SUV segment accounting for a significant portion of all SUV sales in Australia and more than all passenger car sales combined, it is clear that these vehicles are a popular choice among buyers. Ultimately, the best medium SUV for you will depend on your requirements, such as seating capacity, cargo space, technology features, and driving preferences. Consider test-driving multiple models and comparing their specifications and prices to make an informed decision. Whether you prioritize performance, comfort, safety, or fuel efficiency, the best medium SUV is available.

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    Frequently Asked Questions

    What are the best medium SUVs of 2023?

    The best medium SUVs 2023 include models such as the 2023 Volkswagen Tiguan, the 2023 Honda CR-V, and the 2023 Haval H6. These SUVs offer a blend of performance, comfort, and technology, making them popular mid-size SUVs.

    What factors should I consider when looking for the best mid-size SUVs?

    When searching for the best mid-size SUVs, consider factors such as fuel efficiency, interior space, cargo capacity, available technology features, safety ratings, and available powertrain options. It's also essential to evaluate each model's driving dynamics and overall value for the price.

    Are there any standout midsize SUVs in the 2023 lineup?

    Yes, the 2023 lineup includes standout midsize SUVs such as the Honda CR-V, which offers a reliable and efficient powertrain, and the 2023 Haval H6, known for its modern design and advanced features. These models are often considered top contenders in the mid-size SUV segment.

    What popular midsize SUVs are expected to be released in 2024?

    In 2024, car enthusiasts can look forward to the release of popular midsize SUVs such as the next-generation Volkswagen Tiguan and the highly anticipated update to the Honda CR-V. These upcoming models are expected to feature performance, technology, and design improvements.

    Which mid-size SUVs offer a seven-year warranty?

    The 2023 Haval H6 and some other mid-size SUVs come with a seven-year warranty, providing buyers with added peace of mind and long-term protection for their investment. The extended warranty period demonstrates manufacturers' confidence in the build quality and reliability of these vehicles.

    What are some key features of midsize SUVs on sale today?

    When shopping for midsize SUVs currently on sale, look for features such as all-wheel drive (AWD) capability for improved traction, plug-in hybrid options for enhanced fuel efficiency, and advanced safety technologies. Additionally, consider available configurations with five-seat or seven-seat capacity to suit your specific needs.

    What are the notable SUV rivals to consider when evaluating mid-size SUVs?

    When evaluating mid-size SUV options, consider notable rivals such as the 2023 Volkswagen Tiguan, 2023 Honda CR-V, and other models from well-established manufacturers. These SUV rivals offer a range of features and performance capabilities, presenting buyers with compelling alternatives in the mid-size SUV market.

    How do midsize SUV reviews in 2023 influence the decision-making process?

    Midsize SUV reviews in 2023 play a significant role in the decision-making process by providing insights into each model's performance, comfort, technology, safety, and overall value. Reading trusted reviews can help potential buyers make informed choices when selecting a mid-size SUV that fits their needs and preferences.

    What are the emerging trends in the mid-size SUV segment for 2023?

    In 2023, emerging trends in the mid-size SUV segment include expanding hybrid models, introducing new electric vehicle (EV) options, and focusing on advanced standard equipment across model lineups. Additionally, manufacturers emphasize build quality and innovative features that cater to the growing demand for mid-size SUVs.

    Which midsize SUV models are known for their build quality and reliability?

    Specific midsize SUV models, such as the 2023 Volkswagen Tiguan and the 2023 Honda CR-V, are known for their reputable build quality and reliability. These models offer dependable performance, durable construction, and well-crafted interiors, making them popular for consumers seeking a long-lasting and trustworthy mid-size SUV.

    Philana Kwan

    Philana Kwan is the marketing coordinator at Driva she has a demonstrated history in customer service excellence and is knowledgeable in all things car and finance related. When she’s not working Philana enjoys learning new things and keeping up with the latest trends in marketing and technology.

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