2014 is a year that has seen a lot of changes on the SUV front, with many manufacturers bringing all-new models to the market. Some of the best new suvs actually hailed from the more affordable spectrum of family vehicle sales, with entry-level and mid-size vehicles making a strong play for your hard-earned dollars. As always, the luxury segment isn't far behind, with a significant number of new 2014 SUVs offering premium technology that pushes the limits of the possible.
Let's take a quick look at 10 of the best new SUVs for 2014.
Best New SUVS 2014 - 01 - 2014 Land Rover Range Rover Sport
The 2014 Land Rover Range Rover Sport illustrates how much can be accomplished with an SUV simply by putting it on a diet. With close to 700 lbs shaved from the Land Rover Range Rover Sport's platform by way of the intensive use of aluminum, the mid-size luxury vehicle is quicker, nimbler, and more fuel efficient than ever before. It's available with a third row of seating, but that's strictly for children only - the Range Rover Sport is better appreciated from the first and second rows, which offer prime placement for experiencing its phenomenal acceleration and excellent off-road capabilities. With the choice between either a 340 horsepower, supercharged 3.0-liter V-6 or a 510 horsepower, supercharged 5.0-liter V-8, paired with standard four-wheel drive and an eight-speed automatic transmission, this Land Rover is a formidable premium SUV option.
Best New SUVS 2014 - 02 - 2014 Toyota Highlander
The 2014 Toyota Highlander has been given a thorough redesign in order to better appeal to budget-conscious family buyers who need hefty amounts of interior room. In fact, the Toyota Highlander can seat up to eight passengers across three rows, and in addition to its massaged sheet metal the SUV it's also seen the quality of its interior materials spruced up to offer a more appealing package. You'll want to avoid the entry-level 2.7-liter, four-cylinder engine as its forward thrust is middling at best - the 270 horsepower, 3.5-liter V-6 delivers 270 horses with almost no fuel mileage penalty compared to the four-banger. All-wheel drive is also available when choosing the six-cylinder model, and a six-speed automatic is standard across the board.
Best New SUVS 2014 - 03 - 2014 Nissan Rogue
The 2014 Nissan Rogue is a completely new take on what has been a consistent compact SUV seller for the Japanese brand. Most compelling are the Nissan Rogue's updated looks, which shrink down the brawny curves of the full-size Pathfinder onto a more city-friendly platform. Three rows of seats are available in the Rogue, but even more so than the Range Rover Sport that last set of accommodations isn't adult-friendly. Fuel mileage has been enhanced for the new Nissan, with a 2.5-liter, 170 horsepower four-cylinder engine working together with a continuously-variable automatic gearbox in order to post 26-mpg city and 33-mpg highway. All-wheel drive is in the cards as an option for certain models.
Best New SUVS 2014 - 04 - 2014 Subaru Forester
The 2014 Subaru Forester is marketed as a compact SUV, but this fresh design packs a ton of cargo space (74.7 cubic feet in total) as well as more legroom in the second row for additional comfort. Still featuring the upright styling that has become a Subaru Forester trademark, the vehicle's standard all-wheel drive and car-like handling make it a versatile hauling option. The base 2.5-liter, four-cylinder Forester engine puts out 170 horsepower and provides 32-mpg on the highway when ordered with its optional CVT, but a more impressive 250 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque are available from the XT trim's turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder unit.
Best New SUVS 2014 - 05 - 2014 Acura MDX
The 2014 Acura MDX is, for many families, the perfect mid-size premium SUV. Not flashy, particularly sporty, or overwhelmingly luxurious, the Acura MDX (which is all-new for the current model year) combines ample interior room, a healthy list of available amenities, and a very smooth and controlled ride. The MDX features seven passenger seating, a new touchscreen interface that helps to clean up the number of buttons on the vehicle's dashboard, and a weight loss of almost 300 lbs that works to improve fuel mileage to 23-mpg combined (a 17 percent improvement over 2013). The Acura is motivated by a 3.5-liter V-6 that generates 290 horsepower and 267 lb-ft of torque, and of course all-wheel drive can be added to the SUV.
Best New SUVS 2014 - 06 - 2014 Jeep Cherokee
The 2014 Jeep Cherokee is a more comfortable and practical effort from the domestic brand than the Liberty it replaces, and while its styling is certainly polarizing, there's no doubt that the SUV stands out from the rest of the compact pack. The Jeep Cherokee preserves the automaker's status as the purveyor of off-road-ready rides by way of the Trailhawk trim, which takes the SUV's Fiat-sourced, front-wheel drive platform and adds low-range four-wheel drive and a number of suspension and equipment changes designed to ruggedize the truck. Four-wheel drive is available on other, more urban-oriented models too, and buyers of the Cherokee can choose between either a 184 horsepower, 2.4-liter engine or a 3.2-liter, 271 horsepower V-6. Each of these motors are matched with an industry-first nine-speed automatic transmission.
Best New SUVS 2014 - 07 - 2015 Porsche Macan
The 2015 Porsche Macan will be available towards the end of 2014, giving Porsche fans the chance to slide behind the wheel of an SUV with a smaller footprint than the Cayenne. The compact Porsche Macan pairs performance with practicality, providing 340 horsepower from its base 3.0-liter turbocharged V-6 and an impressive 400 horsepower from the Turbo trim's blown 3.6-liter V-6. All-wheel drive is standard with the Macan, as is a seven-speed dual-clutch automated manual transmission, and the vehicle also provides five passenger seating as well as 53 cubic feet of cargo space.
Best New SUVS 2014 - 08 - 2014 BMW X5
The 2014 BMW X5 is a redesign that slides under the radar due to the similarities in styling and performance between the current and previous models. The BMW X5 SUV strongly resembles its predecessor, and it also offers the same base 3.0-liter turbocharged six-cylinder engine that is good for 300 horsepower. The 4.4-liter twin-turbo V-8 pulling duty in the top-tier X5 upgrades to 450 horsepower, and you can also get a torque-happy turbodiesel engine if you are looking to balance frugality with power. Three rows of seating are available with the X5, all-wheel drive is included free of charge, and the German SUV's handling is much more like a large sedan than a traditional truck.
Best New SUVS 2014 - 09 - 2014 Kia Sorento
The 2014 Kia Sorento hasn't undergone quite as dramatic a redesign as some of the other vehicles on this list, but a bit more than 80 percent of this mid-size SUV's components have been reconfigured so as to update its family-friendly package. Most notable: last year's base four-cylinder engine is history, leaving the Kia Sedona's 2.4-liter, 191 horsepower unit to soldier forward as the entry-level mill. A new 3.3-liter, 290 horsepower V-6 also becomes available for 2014, and the Sedona's three rows of seating are joined by a new Uvo vehicle interface as well as a stiffer platform and sharper suspension tuning.
Best New SUVS 2014 - 10 - 2015 Subaru Outback
The 2015 Subaru Outback is just a few short months away from going on sale, but here's what we know about this new SUV so far. The Subaru Outback is based on the same platform as the Subaru Legacy, which means it offers the choice between either a 175 horsepower, 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine or a 256 horsepower, 3.6-liter six-cylinder. Each of these engines comes match exclusively with a continuously-variable automatic in order to boost efficiency, and all-wheel drive and 8.7 inches of ground clearance remain standard with the Outback. Expect more room inside, too, as the SUV is a bit larger in every dimension compared to the 2014 model that it replaces.