Best New Crossovers & SUVs of 2022

Tall-riding crossovers and SUVs have quickly become America’s favorite type of vehicle, and their practical attributes are especially attractive to families. Although the smallest examples of the breed are basically tall hatchback cars with more rugged styling, there are several models that offer true off-road capability along with their truckish looks. Because SUVs and crossovers have proven so popular, there’s been an explosion in the number of desirable and worthy options, and all those listed here have earned our coveted 10Best or Editors’ Choice awards for 2022.

Whether you call them crossovers or SUVs, this body style is diverse and hugely popular, and we think these picks are the best models out there.

Subcompact: Hyundai Kona


When an SUV delivers as crisp a driving experience as the 2022 Hyundai Kona, it’s hard to get hung up on the usual anti-crossover sentiment—so we won’t. The subcompact Kona is, simply put, a great package that blends carlike on-road behavior with bold styling, a dose of practicality, and an elevated driving position; we like it so much we gave it an Editors’ Choice award. Two four-cylinder engines are offered: a 2.0-liter four, which is admittedly pretty poky, and a more desirable turbocharged 1.6-liter four that delivers a lot more punch. Sticking to Hyundai’s value-forward approach, the Kona comes with a long list of standard features which only grows as you move through the more expensive trims—the top few of which get downright posh. The Kona is one of the smaller offerings in the subcompact SUV segment, so it gives up cargo and passenger space to some of its larger rivals, but we think the trade-off for the Hyundai’s compact package and fun-to-drive nature more than makes up for those shortcomings.

Subcompact: Mazda CX-30


Looking like a taller, more rugged Mazda 3 hatchback, the 2022 CX-30 snuggles up next to the CX-5 and CX-50 on the small end of the brand’s SUV lineup. Its curvaceous exterior design and near-premium cabin give the CX-30 an upscale appearance that almost puts it in contention with subcompact luxury crossovers such as the Audi Q3 and the BMW X1, but its pricing is more aligned with mainstream subcompact SUVs such as the Hyundai Kona and the Volkswagen Taos. The entry-level engine is a 2.5-liter four-cylinder, which delivers tepid acceleration; hot-shoe drivers will find the optional turbocharged 2.5-liter far more desirable. Handling is agile and the CX-30’s on-road demeanor is reminiscent of Mazda’s sportier offerings, which we greatly appreciate; so much so, that we gave it an Editors’ Choice award. A generous helping of infotainment and driver-assistance features is standard and, starting this year, so is all-wheel drive.

Subcompact EV: Hyundai Kona Electric

Turns out that the subcompact Hyundai Kona SUV is a fine basis for an electric vehicle, as the 2022 Kona Electric retains everything we like about its gas-powered counterpart. Instead of a four-cylinder engine, the Kona Electric is powered by a 201-hp electric motor, and its large battery pack is good for up to 258 miles per charge. That’s key because an EV’s range number is the most important factor in the revved-up electric vehicle marketplace. Chevrolet’s new Bolt EUV carries a claimed 250-mile range while the Tesla Model Y is good for up to 326 miles per charge. On top of its competitive estimated driving range, the Kona Electric delivers perky acceleration, spry handling, and an unbeatable standard warranty and complimentary maintenance package, making it worthy of an Editors’ Choice award.

Subcompact: Kia Soul


When it comes to toaster-shaped vehicles, the Kia Soul reigns supreme, having outlasted the Honda Element, the Nissan Cube, and the Scion xB. Today it competes with more traditionally styled subcompact crossovers, including the Chevrolet Trailblazer, the Jeep Renegade, and the Kia Seltos, but it hasn’t given in to those proportions. It remains a quirky cube and we like it so much that we gave it an Editors’ Choice award. A 147-hp four-cylinder engine comes standard, but Kia offers a powerful 201-hp turbocharged four, which makes the Soul extra perky. The boxy shape provides plenty of room for four adults to cruise in comfort and a suitably large cargo area to hold their gear. If you need all-wheel drive, you’ll have to look elsewhere, as the Soul doesn’t offer it. Nor does it provide standard driver-assistance features.

Subcompact Luxury: Volvo XC40


Among the already fashionable lineup of Volvo SUVs, the even more chic 2022 XC40 is a hip and youthful one. The entry-level model is powered by a 184-hp turbocharged four-cylinder that wears the T4 badge, but the spunkiest version is the T5, which offers 248 horsepower and standard all-wheel drive. The XC40 brings with it plenty of tech, too, including available driver assists that are borrowed from higher-end Volvo models, including the Pilot Assist semi-autonomous driving mode. Still, the XC40 isn’t all flash. Its cabin is thoughtfully designed with clever storage opportunities, and its cargo area is generously sized, earning it a spot on our Editors’ Choice list. Plus, when compared to German rivals such as the BMW X1 and Mercedes-Benz GLA-class, the Volvo’s higher seating position will appeal to SUV enthusiasts. If you’re looking for an electrified SUV with similar traits, Volvo also offers the XC40 Recharge, which we review separately.

Compact Luxury: Porsche Macan


The 2022 Porsche Macan can dice it up with sports sedans on a racetrack and carry a reasonable cartful of groceries home from Costco. Offering a trio of turbocharged engines, the lineup culminates in the performance-oriented GTS model with a 434-hp twin-turbo V-6. But no matter which engine you choose, the Macan’s chassis is an athletic partner that goads you to hit apex after apex. All models come with all-wheel drive as standard, and those who want to enhance the crossover’s handling can do so via several options, including summer tires, an adaptive suspension, a torque-vectoring differential, and tungsten-carbide-coated rotors. Yes, it’s an SUV, but it’s also very much a Porsche. It fulfills its mission beautifully and earned an Editors’ Choice award for 2022.

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