Luxury SUVs come in all shapes and sizes, with features and distinctions appropriate to the brand. But not all luxury SUVs are equal – especially when considering which ones offer the most for discerning consumers looking for makes and models with just-right 3rd row seating.
These three make the list of best 2013 luxury SUVs with 3rd row seating for different reasons. But they all share two important attributes: each provides seating for seven passengers and all are Top Safety Picks from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
2013 Acura MDX – Families looking for a sporty mid-size luxury crossover SUV may find that the 2013 Acura MDX is just what they need. It seats seven, provides 83.5 cubic feet of cargo storage with the second- and third-row seats folded, boasts a high-quality interior, lots of standard features, and a 300-horsepower 3.7-liter V6 engine and standard all-wheel drive that make handling a breeze. Fuel economy is 21 mpg on the highway, and the MDX can tow up to 5,000 pounds. Although related to the Honda Pilot, the luxury Acura MDX is not only distinctly different in styling; it is also much more fun to drive. Although offered in one well-equipped trim level, starting at $43,280, there are progressive add-on packages (tech, tech/entertainment, and advance) that add excitement and safety features, topping out at a starting price of $52,905 (Acura MDX with Advance package).
2013 Infiniti JX35 – An all-new model this year, the 2013 Infiniti JX35 hits all the right notes for families requiring seven-passenger seating, copious room and all the right luxury amenities. Second-row seats tilt and slide nearly six inches forward and back, allowing easy access to third-row seats – even with a child seat installed in the second row. Even six-foot tall adults have plenty of headroom in the third row and both second- and third-row seatbacks recline. The Infiniti JX also offers the latest safety technology advances, including systems that help drivers avoid collisions from blind spots and while backing up – although these can get pricey. Fuel economy from the 265-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 engine and continuously variable transmission (CVT) is good in both front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive, with 24 mpg highway and 23 mpg highway, respectively. There is only one model, priced from $41,250.
2013 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class – Completely redesigned for the 2013 model year, the 2013 Mercedes-Benz GL is a comfortable, spacious, luxurious and very capable family hauler. Generous space for seven adults, generous 93.8 cubic feet of cargo space (with second- and third-row seats lowered), opulent materials and excellent craftsmanship, four models (GL350 Bluetec, GL450, GL550, and GL63 AMG), each with a different engine, seven-speed automatic transmission, and standard all-wheel drive, the 2013 Mercedes-Benz GL class, properly equipped, can also tow up to 7,500 pounds. The third row is especially comfortable for adults, and the power easy-entry second-row seats make it a snap to get back there, while a push of the button quickly folds and unfolds the third row. MSRP begins at $62,400 for the GL350 Bluetec and $63,900 for the GL450, up to $116,925 for the GL63 AMG.
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