Americans turned their backs on sedans about a decade ago. In their place, drivers gravitated to sport utility vehicles, crossovers and pickups. Ford went so far as to eliminate most of the sedans sold in the United States. Ironically, it makes the best-selling vehicle in America, the F-series, a full-sized pickup truck.
Vehicle sales have reached the point where people might go back to smaller cars. Gasoline prices in many parts of the nation have risen above $4 for a gallon for regular. Electric cars, most of which are sedans, have become popular. (Ford recently said it would make an all-electric F-series.)
Given the number of SUVs on the road today and the ongoing brisk sales of these vehicles, it is hard to sift through the brands and consider them by size, price and the number of people they can hold.
Car research firm Edmunds rated the best 2021 and 2022 SUVs on a scale with the highest score of 10. It divided the SUVs into categories, so there is an apples-to-apples comparison. That is, small SUVs were ranked against other small SUVs, and luxury SUVs were ranked against others of its type.
Among all the SUVs rated, regardless of category, the one with the highest rating was the Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class with a total score of 8.6. Edmunds puts it in the large luxury SUV category. It is extremely expensive, with a manufacturer’s suggested retail price range of $76,000 to $132,100.
The GLS-Class also gets very high marks from Car and Driver, which gives it a grade of 9 out of 10, and Kelley Blue Book, which rates it 5 out of 5. It is relatively new by SUV standards, first introduced in 2006.
Mercedes calls the GLS-Class “the pinnacle of SUVs.” It is hard to argue it is not at the top of the category. The AMG version of the car has a massive four-liter V-8 bi-turbo engine that puts out 603 horsepower and moves it from 0 to 60 in 4.1 seconds. It has Napa leather seats and Grey Linden wood trim. Parts of the interior are made of carbon fiber.
The only problem with the Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class is that almost no one can afford it.