Families come in all sizes, so it should come as no surprise that automakers provide them with a variety of choices for the best family SUVs 2011. Here we take a look at what are generally considered to be the best family SUVs 2011 from a variety of standpoints: safety, passenger and cargo capacity, styling, fuel economy, and affordability.

  • 2011 Kia SorentoConsumer Reports highlighted the redesigned 2011 Kia Sorento in its April 2011 issue as a top family SUV. Giving points to the Sorento’s roomy interior that can seat up to seven passengers (with optional third-row seating) with comfortable seats and easy-to-use controls, the publication also hailed the SUV’s smooth V-6 engine for a good balance of fuel efficiency and performance. Editors noted: “The Sorento is also stocked with an inviting list of features, making it one of the bargains of this class.”
  • 2011 Chevrolet EquinoxAlong with its corporate sibling GMC Terrain, the 2011 Chevrolet Equinox is one of the best

    family SUVs 2011 in the under $25,000 price range, according to the editors at Edmunds.com. Editors especially like the back seat in the Equinox (and Terrain) that “slides and reclines to a degree that provides limo-like space, and all its seats are especially comfortable. Its quiet cabin and well-sorted ride are more indicative of a more expensive SUV.”

  • 2011 Dodge DurangoThe redesigned 2011 Dodge Durango (and its corporate stable-mate Jeep Grand Cherokee) midsize SUV provides seating for seven in three rows, a comfortable ride, refined interior, availability of a V-8 engine, and best-class towing capability. The 2011 Dodge Durango was also recently named a Top Safety Pick by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
  • 2011 Ford FlexWith seating for up to seven passengers in three rows, the 2011 Ford Flex provides families with the

    ultimate in passenger and cargo flexibility. Families love the large, multi-panel Vista Roof, turbocharged EcoBoost engine, Active Park Assist and refrigerated second-row console, although these will add to the bottom line. Kelley Blue Book offers: “With room for lots of their friends, the Flex can easily transform itself from family transport to Friday-night cruiser with just a turn of the ignition.”

  • 2011 Honda PilotYes, the 2011 Honda Pilot still looks trucky on the outside, but it offers families generous space and

    comfort on the inside. Consumer Guide gives it a Best Buy status, saying the “Pilot is as carlike as any vehicle in this class” and that its “combination of performance, utility and passenger accommodations make it worthy of a high place on your shopping list.”

  • 2011 Audi Q5Looking for a little luxury in the best family SUVs 2011 costing less than $45,000? Look no further than the 2011 Audi Q5, a compact luxury crossover SUV that, as Edmunds.com says, “delivers best-in-class fuel economy from both its V6 and new turbocharged four-cylinder power plants. Relatively agile handling and an opulent interior are other Q5 attributes.”

With the exception of the Honda Pilot, all of the abovementioned SUVs are IIHS Top Safety Picks.

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