Best-Selling SUVs in America – Q3 2020

© Toyota Motor Sales USABest-Selling SUVs in America
U.S. vehicle sales figures for the third quarter of 2020 have been released, and while the worldwide Coronavirus outbreak has impacted overall sales, a number of models have shown improvements during the third quarter of 2020 — as well as during September alone. Although SUV sales continue to make up a large segment of the market, even these popular vehicles are not immune to the economic slump — almost all models are down for the year compared to 2019, and sales of the 25 best-selling SUVs have dropped 16.7 percent through September. Here are the best-selling SUVs in America based on sales for the first nine months of 2020, according to numbers compiled from auto manufacturers’ sales reports.

© Kia Motor America25. Kia Sportage
2020 Sales: 62,400
Vs. 2019: –4.2 %
Kia’s compact crossover SUV, Sportage has been one of the Korean automaker’s top-selling models in the U.S. market for many years, and was updated for 2020. Sportage sales surged in September — up 4.4 percent over the same month in 2019, and year-to-date sales are down only 4.2 percent compared to last year. The redesigned Sportage has a more aggressive exterior including new headlights with available LED turn indicators, redesigned projector-beam fog lights, available LED headlights with available LED fog lights, as well as a new grille, front bumper and wheel designs. At the rear, the 2020 Sportage features new taillight trim, rear bumper and exhaust tip designs.

© Hyundai Motor America24. Hyundai Santa Fe
2020 Sales: 70,420
Vs. 2019: –26.8 %
Santa Fe has been Hyundai’s most successful SUV in the U.S. market, and with the arrival of an all-new fourth-generation 2019 model sales increased 8.8 percent for 2019 but slacked off in 2020. By the end of the third quarter of 2020, sales dropped 26.8 percent compared to 2019 and the Korean automaker hopes to reverse that slide with significant updates for the 2021 model year. Released exterior photos reveal revised exterior styling with a wider grille, slim headlights and new taillights, but additional details are forthcoming. Hyundai’s rear cross-traffic collision avoidance assist is standard. Safe exit assist uses radar to detect cars approaching from the rear and cautions passengers exiting the vehicle, alerts the driver and the rear doors remain locked until the approaching vehicle has passed.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience23. Chevrolet Blazer
2020 Sales: 71,356
Vs. 2019: +103.3 %
One of only three models in the top 25 best-selling SUVs in America to post a sales increase for the first three quarters of 2020 compared to 2019, the new Blazer launched in the first quarter of 2019, so sales are still on the increase despite the current pandemic. The all-new Blazer marks the return of a storied name from one of the original truck-based SUVs that debuted 50 years ago. Unlike the original boxy design, the new Blazer is a bold, sporty midsize crossover with a wide stance, sleek headlights, high beltline and dual exhaust. Available as the L, Blazer, RS and Premier, the Blazer comes well equipped with an 8-inch touchscreen display, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and dual-zone climate control. The standard engine is a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder unit producing 193 horsepower and 188 lb-ft of torque. A 3.6-liter V6 is standard for RS and Premier and optional for Blazer, producing 308 horsepower and 270 lb-ft of torque.

© Volkswagen of America22. Volkswagen Tiguan
2020 Sales: 75,563
Vs. 2019: –11.0 %
The second-generation Tiguan arrived as a 2018 model, and 2018 sales increased by 119 percent followed by a modest increase of 6.7 percent for the next year. Sales for 2020 are off by 11 percent — not bad given the circumstances — and third-quarter sales were nearly identical to 2019 numbers. Volkswagen’s compact crossover was redesigned specifically for the U.S. market, offering more interior space and third-row seating. Adopting Volkswagen’s current design language, the exterior includes sharper, stronger lines and a lower, wider stance. Motivated by a new version of the German automaker’s turbocharged 2.0-liter TSI engine producing 184 horsepower and 221 lb-ft of torque, Tiguan delivers power to the front wheels through an 8-speed automatic transmission. Volkswagen’s signature 4Motion all-wheel drive with Active Control is optional. Other options include Volkswagen’s Digital Cockpit display, and an available Car-Net system offers connected vehicle services.

© Ford Motor Company21. Ford Edge
2020 Sales: 76,862
Vs. 2019: –23.8 %
Ford’s midsize crossover received a new exterior look for 2019, boosting Edge sales to a modest 3.3 percent increase for the year. Sales have slowed significantly for the first three quarters of 2020 — down nearly 25 percent with a 28.5 percent drop in the third quarter. Edge is offered in SE, SEL and Titanium trim levels, as well as the new Ford Edge ST — the first utility vehicle from Ford Performance. All trim levels received new front and rear fascias as well as a new grille, hood and liftgate. The Edge ST is motivated by a 2.7-liter twin-turbocharged EcoBoost engine producing 335 horsepower and 380 lb-ft of torque. It also has an 8-speed automatic transmission, standard all-wheel drive with selectable traction control, ST-tuned suspension and an available performance brake package. A new Titanium Elite Appearance Package includes 20-inch bright machined aluminum wheels and a body-color rear bumper, front bumper and lower fascia.

© Subaru of America20. Subaru Crosstrek
2020 Sales: 76,924
Vs. 2019: –21.9 %
Sales of Subaru’s popular compact crossover fell in 2019 and have continued to drop in 2020, with numbers off 22 percent compared to last year. But that trend has already started to change; September sales were nearly equal to the same month in 2019 thanks to the arrival of the updated 2021 Crosstrek. For 2021 Crosstrek adds a new Sport trim level with more aggressive styling; unique wheel arch moldings; 17-inch alloy wheels with a dark gray finish; and a gunmetal gray treatment for the grille, side mirrors and badges. For 2021 the Limited and Sport trim levels are powered by a new a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine that produces 182 horsepower and 176 lb-ft of torque. All Crosstrek trim levels receive a new front fascia, new bumper, new grille and redesigned wheels.

© FCA US19. Jeep Compass
2020 Sales: 77,809
Vs. 2019: –29.7 %
Jeep Compass sales more than doubled in 2018 after the small SUV went through a redesign that ended up looking a lot like a miniature Grand Cherokee. Sales cooled in 2019 and have continued to slide through 2020. Built on FCA’s small-wide 4X4 architecture, Compass comes in four trim levels: Sport, Latitude, Limited and Trailhawk. Compass gets powered by a 2.4-liter Tigershark engine producing 180 horsepower and 175 lb-ft of torque, combined with a 6-speed manual transmission or a 9-speed manual transmission for 4X4 models and a 6-speed automatic for 4X2 versions. The Altitude Appearance Package is offered for the Compass Latitude, which includes a black roof, black exterior trim, black 18-inch aluminum wheels and piano black interior trim. The High Altitude Appearance Package is available for Compass Limited, which includes 19-inch Satin Gloss Granite wheels, HID headlights with an LED signature and LED taillights.

© General Motors18. Chevrolet Trax
2020 Sales: 80,193
Vs. 2019: –4.3 %
Chevrolet’s compact SUV posted a gain in the first quarter of 2020 with a sales increase of nearly 15 percent, although things have abated during the COVID-19 pandemic. Trax is offered in three trim levels: LS, LT and Premier, with the Trax LS starting at $21,300. Trax draws power from an Ecotec 1.4-liter turbocharged engine making 138 horsepower and 148 lb-ft of torque, combined with a 6-speed automatic transmission. All-wheel drive is optional on all trim levels. Trax receives EPA ratings of 26 mpg city / 31 mpg highway / 28 mpg combined, and when equipped with AWD is rated at 24 mpg city / 29 mpg highway / 26 mpg combined.

© General Motors17. Chevrolet Traverse
2020 Sales: 84,012
Vs. 2019: –26.0 %
Fueled by a redesigned 2018 model, sales of Chevrolet’s 3-row Traverse crossover were strong in 2019, although things have tapered off in 2020. Earlier this year Chevrolet debuted a refreshed 2021 Traverse scheduled for release this fall, but the launch has been pushed back to calendar year 2021 as a 2022 model. For 2020 Traverse is offered in seven trim levels: L, LS, LT Cloth, LT Leather, RS, Premier and High Country. The new Chevrolet Infotainment 3 is added and HD Rear Vision Camera is standard. The standard engine is a 3.6-liter V6 that produces 310 horsepower and 266 lb-ft of torque, combined with a 9-speed automatic transmission with either front- or all-wheel drive. The Traverse RS is offered with a 2.0-liter turbocharged engine that delivers 257 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque, paired with a 9-speed automatic transmission.

© Toyota Motor Sales USA16. Toyota 4Runner
2020 Sales: 86,827
Vs. 2019: –9.3 %
After 35 years 4Runner remains one of the few truck-based SUVs on the market. This highly capable contender has a loyal following, although sales took a 5 percent dip last year and that slide strengthened in 2020 — down nearly 10 percent for the year. The 4Runner continues to be powered by a 4.0-liter V6 engine producing 270 horsepower and 278 lb-ft of torque, delivered through a 5-speed automatic transmission. New for 2021, the 4Runner Trail Edition is based on the SR5 trim with a choice of 2WD or 4WD and exterior color choices of Army Green, Cement, Midnight Black and Super White. The 4Runner Trail Edition includes black exterior badging, black seating with tan stitching, all-weather floor liners, dark gray TRD Off-Road wheels, a Yakima LoadWarrior rooftop cargo basket, a custom 40-quart cooler and a sliding cargo tray.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience15. Honda Pilot
2020 Sales: 90,002
Vs. 2019: –13.4 %
Even though the Honda Pilot was refreshed for 2019, sales dropped 15 percent that year and the trend continues through the third quarter of 2020 with sales off 13.4 percent. The refreshed Pilot features more aggressive exterior styling, an available hands-free power tailgate, powertrain refinements, and an available new Display Audio touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Pilot is powered by a 3.5-liter 280-horsepower V6 engine combined with available all-wheel drive. For 2021 the V6 gets paired with a 9-speed automatic transmission, paddle shifters and Idle Stop for all trim levels. For 2021 Pilot also adds the Special Edition with black 20-inch wheels, black trim, wireless phone charging and a hands-free-access power liftgate.

© Hyundai Motor America14. Hyundai Tucson
2020 Sales: 91,139
Vs. 2019: –11.4 %
On the heels of a downward sales trend at the end of 2019, Tucson sales remain in negative territory for the first three quarters of 2020. Hyundai introduced the latest version of the Tucson in 2018 when it received updated styling as well as a range of new features and powertrains. This 5-seat crossover comes equipped with a 7-inch touchscreen display, multiple USB ports, a rearview camera and standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Forward collision-avoidance assist and lane-keeping assist are standard as well, with additional safety and technology features available such as blind-spot collision warning and rear cross-traffic alert. Two engines are available, including a 2.4-liter 4-cylinder unit producing 181 horsepower.

© FCA US13. Jeep Cherokee
2020 Sales: 97,919
Vs. 2019: –34.4 %
The Jeep Cherokee received an update for 2019 — the first time the SUV had a refresh since returning to the Jeep lineup as a 2014 model; however, thanks to renewed competition sales lagged 20 percent for 2019 and nearly 35 percent thus far in 2020. Exterior changes include a revised, more vertical 7-slot grille; a new fascia; new headlights and a lightweight aluminum hood. An all-new turbocharged 2.0-liter direct-injection engine was added, producing 270 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque. Also available is a 3.2-liter Pentastar V6 that produces 271 horsepower and 239 lb-ft of torque, as well as a 2.4-liter Tigershark MultiAir2 four cylinder that produces 180 horsepower and 170 lb-ft of torque. A new 9-speed automatic transmission is standard. Like all Jeeps, this popular SUV delivers legendary off-road capability with available features including a lifted off-road suspension, skidplates, tow hooks, Selec-Terrain traction control, and Selec-Speed Crawl Control.

© Mazda North America12. Mazda CX-5
2020 Sales: 104,277
Vs. 2019: –8.3 %
Mazda CX-5 sales were up slightly in 2019, posting the fourth consecutive year of record numbers. That trend continued into 2020 until the pandemic struck, and then CX-5 sales took a downturn along with most new vehicles. Although overall sales are still down, the CX-5 had a 31 percent increase in September sales versus 2019, and CX-5 U.S. sales continue to be higher than the combined numbers of all other Mazda models. Adopting the styling of the larger CX-9, the CX-5 is refined in nearly every way with a revised chassis, an updated SKYACTIV-G 2.5-liter gasoline engine, a new interior and many available features. The new CX-5 was the first Mazda to feature G-Vectoring Control, which enhances vehicle responsiveness and stability while reducing sideways sliding of occupants. For 2019 Mazda turned up the heat by adding the Grand Touring Reserve and Signature trim levels, both powered by the turbocharged SKYACTIV-G 2.5T engine, rated for 2020 at 250 horsepower and 320 lb-ft of torque with premium fuel; i-ACTIV all-wheel drive is standard.

© Subaru of America11. Subaru Outback
2020 Sales: 106,346
Vs. 2019: –24.3 %
The best-selling model in the Subaru lineup, the Outback is one of the original crossovers, combining SUV utility with the comfort and convenience of a wagon. Despite the arrival of the all-new 2020 Outback, sales are not immune to the current slide although for September Outback posted a 50 percent increase compared to a year ago. The latest Subaru to be built on the company’s new global platform, the 2020 Outback gets updated exterior styling, many new features, a greatly improved interior, updated powertrains and the latest version of EyeSight — Subaru’s suite of advanced safety technology. EyeSight includes adaptive cruise control, pre-collision braking, lane departure warning and lane-keeping assist. All Outbacks feature Subaru’s Symmetrical all-wheel drive with active torque vectoring, vehicle dynamics control and a generous 8.7-inches of ground clearance.

© Ford Motor Company10. Ford Escape
2020 Sales: 131,753
Vs. 2019: –32.0 %
Ford’s compact 5-seat crossover, Escape had been the best-selling American-brand SUV for many years, but a sales decline last year and a slow start for 2020 moved Escape down the list. Once overall U.S. vehicle sales begin to recover, the Escape should experience a sales bump since it was all new for the 2020 model year. The 2020 Ford Escape is lower, wider and longer than its predecessor, with a look quite different from the current generation. The front end features an all-new grille surprisingly similar to those on the Focus and Fusion passenger cars rather than Ford SUVs. The 2020 Escape is available with a choice of four engines; the standard unit is a 3-cylinder 1.5-liter EcoBoost producing 180 horsepower. For 2020 Ford also brought back the Escape Hybrid — available as a standard hybrid as well as a plug-in.

© Subaru of America9. Subaru Forester
2020 Sales: 134,082
Vs. 2019: +2.0 %
Following the arrival of the fifth-generation 2019 model, Forester set a sales record in 2019 and is one of the few models experiencing some success in 2020, with sales up more than 16 percent in September, which helped Subaru set a new sales record for the month. The current generation Forester is the roomiest version ever offered with a 1.2-inch-longer wheelbase, more rear-seat legroom and more cargo capacity, as well as improvements in crash protection, comfort, quietness and driving dynamics. EyeSight driver-assist technology is standard, and Forester Touring debuts DriverFocus safety technology that can alert the driver of fatigue or distraction. The new Forester is powered by an updated direct-injection 2.5-liter Boxer engine that produces 182 horsepower and 176 lb-ft of torque. Forester is available in standard, Premium, Limited, Touring and Sport trim levels.

© Toyota Motor Sales USA8. Toyota Highlander
2020 Sales: 141,301
Vs. 2019: –21.6 %
The Toyota Highlander was all new for the 2020 model year and sales were trending upwards until March, which had a drop of almost 50 percent versus a year earlier, and sales have continued to decline compared to last year. The fourth generation of this popular crossover is built on Toyota’s New Global Architecture. Highlander gets fresh styling with a bold black grille, available premium projector headlights and a 3.5-liter V6 engine that produces a plentiful 295 horsepower and 263 lb-ft of torque combined with a Direct Shift 8-speed automatic transmission — enough power to provide a maximum towing capacity of 5,000 pounds when properly equipped. The Highlander Hybrid is powered by the new-generation Toyota Hybrid System that combines a high-efficiency 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine with two electric motors for a total output of 243 horsepower in a system that’s more compact and more efficient than before.

© FCA US7. Jeep Wrangler
2020 Sales: 150,202
Vs. 2019: –14.7 %
Following the introduction of the all-new 2018 Jeep Wrangler, the model set an all-time sales record for 2018. Sales continued near the same level through 2019, but even the Wrangler is not immune to the current market — sales dropped almost 15 percent for the year. If any vehicle deserves the “iconic” label, it’s the Jeep Wrangler — the modern descendant of the original U.S. military vehicle that spawned the Jeep name and began the legacy of extreme off-road capability. The Wrangler retains its 7-slot grille and round headlights but is more aerodynamic than the previous generation. Both 2- and 4-door versions are available in Sport, Sport S, Sahara and Rubicon trims. For 2020 Jeep adds a fuel-efficient diesel powertrain to the Wrangler, as well as the new luxurious High Altitude edition.

© FCA US6. Jeep Grand Cherokee
2020 Sales: 152,856
Vs. 2019: –17.4 %
One of the original and most popular SUVS of all time, the Jeep Grand Cherokee set a new sales record for 2019 and moved past Wrangler as the top-selling Jeep model. That trend might have continued if not for the pandemic, but even Grand Cherokee is not immune with sales down 17.4 percent for the year. Remaining true to the original formula it debuted more than 25 years ago — and without a major redesign since 2011 — Grand Cherokee continues to weather strong competition thanks to time-honored off-road capability in an attractive package. Offered with several 4WD systems as well as trim levels, the Grand Cherokee line now boasts the off-road-focused Trailhawk, the luxurious Summit, as well as the Trackhawk, which gets motivation from a supercharged 6.2-liter engine producing 707 horsepower and 645 lb-ft of torque — providing capability to accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds. For 2020 Jeep adds more standard equipment across the Grand Cherokee lineup, as well as the latest advanced safety features now available on the base-level Laredo.

© Ford Motor Company5. Ford Explorer
2020 Sales: 160,209
Vs. 2019: +18.0 %
The best-selling SUV of all time, Explorer sales slowed in 2019 but the arrival of the all-new 2020 Explorer boosted sales and now the revamped SUV is one of the few vehicles posting positive numbers for 2020. With its first major redesign in 10 years, the new Explorer is built on an all-new rear-wheel-drive flexible architecture designed to improve ride, handling and capability. The standard engine is a 2.3-liter EcoBoost 4-cylinder unit producing 300 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque. Two new versions have been added: the powerful ST and the Limited Hybrid. Explorer ST is powered by a 400-horseower 3.0-liter EcoBoost engine and Limited Hybrid features a 3.3-liter hybrid system producing 318 combined system horsepower. A new feature for the 2020 model is a suite of safety features called Co-Pilot360, which includes automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, cross-traffic alert, lane-keeping assist, post-impact braking and a rearview camera with lens washer.

© Nissan North America4. Nissan Rogue
2020 Sales: 167,401
Vs. 2019: –38.5 %
The top-selling model in Nissan’s lineup, Rogue sales have cooled in 2020; however, an all-new 2021 Rogue should be arriving in showrooms soon. Rogue features a 170-horsepower 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine with an advanced Xtronic transmission with Eco mode, boasting a U.S. EPA fuel-economy rating as high as 33 mpg. Rogue also has a new hybrid in the lineup. Rogue Sport rides on a 2.3-inch shorter wheelbase and is 12.1 inches shorter than Rogue, motivated by a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine producing 141 horsepower. The 2019 Rogue was the first model to offer Nissan Safety Shield 360 — a suite of six advanced active safety and driver-assist technologies. All Rogues are now available with ProPILOT Assist — Nissan’s first step toward building autonomous vehicles.

© General Motors3. Chevrolet Equinox
2020 Sales: 191,727
Vs. 2019: –24.5 %
Chevrolet’s second-best-selling vehicle after the full-size Silverado pickup, the Equinox moved up to the second position on this list of best-selling SUVs for the first quarter of 2020, but lower sales have forced Equinox back to third place. A redesigned 2018 model drove sales to new records for both 2018 and 2019, and Equinox continues to be the best-selling American-brand SUV. Earlier this year Chevrolet debuted a refreshed 2021 Equinox scheduled to arrive this fall, but the launch has been pushed back to calendar year 2021 as a 2022 model. The Equinox features an exterior design with projector-beam headlights, LED running lights, wider horizontal taillights and LED taillights for upper trim levels. Inside, the Equinox features a down-and-away instrument panel with a low windshield base for improved outward visibility. Two engine choices for Equinox in the U.S. market continue to be a 170-horsepower 1.5-liter turbo and a 252-horse 2.0-liter turbo combined with a new 9-speed automatic transmission. For 2020 Chevrolet adds a Midnight Edition Equinox to the lineup.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience2. Honda CR-V
2020 Sales: 237,334
Vs. 2019: –15.5 %
The Honda CR-V set a new sales record for 2019, and up until March 2020 the compact SUV continued on the same pace, but since then things have cooled along with the rest of the U.S. market. The fifth-generation CR-V continues to be Honda’s top-selling model in the U.S. market, with more than 4.5 million sold since its introduction in 1997. The CR-V offers consumers a comfortable, small crossover with great utility and excellent fuel economy. For 2020 Honda has refreshed the CR-V’s exterior styling and added the first hybrid to the lineup. Similar to the Honda Accord Hybrid, the CR-V Hybrid uses a 2-motor hybrid powertrain that teams two electric motors with a 2.0-liter Atkinson-cycle engine for a combined output of 212 horsepower, making it the most powerful variant in the CR-V lineup.

© Toyota Motor Sales USA1. Toyota RAV4
2020 Sales: 302,574
Vs. 2019: –6.8 %
The Toyota RAV4 continues to be the best-selling SUV in America, and started off 2020 with a 16.5 percent sales increase for the first quarter, although sales have dropped 6.8 percent for the year. RAV4 finished 2019 as the best-selling SUV in America, thanks to the arrival of a redesigned 2019 model, as well as a 92 percent sales increase for RAV4 Hybrid. One of the original compact crossovers on the American market, the new RAV4 has bold styling, improved capability, better performance and an array of new safety and convenience features. In addition to the updated styling and efficient powertrains, RAV4 now comes with automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection — as well as lane departure alert — as standard equipment. For 2020 Toyota added the RAV4 TRD Off-Road, and the 2021 RAV4 Prime plug-in hybrid began arriving this summer. Not only is the plug-in more fuel efficient, it is also the second-quickest vehicle in the Toyota lineup behind the GR Supra sports car.

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