Top 10 SUVs For Rear Legroom in 2020
By Jakob Hansen, 1/8/2020
Our legs are important, give them some space!
When shopping for SUVs, rear space is clearly an important factor. While front seat space is important, we want our passengers to be as comfortable as well. Most of us buying third-row SUVs have families, with children or teens that occupy the rear seats on a daily basis. SUVs without ample space in the back are as useless as a white crayon on white paper.
With all of the new vehicles and updates for the 2020 model year, which SUV offers the most rear legroom? Since we’re so nice and caring, we decided to make the shopping just a little bit easier for you. We went ahead and compiled the list of the top ten third-row SUVs for rear legroom in 2020.
Using second row legroom as a measure, we compare the top models and their MSRP to find the best choice for you and your family.
Top 10 Cars For Rear Legroom in 2020
- Kia Telluride
- Hyundai Palisade
- Nissan Pathfinder
- Ford Expedition
- Buick Enclave
- Chevrolet Suburban
- GMC Acadia
- MAzda CX-9
- Kia Sorento
- Ford Explorer
#10. 2020 Ford Explorer
Base MSRP Range: $32,765-$58,250
The all-new 2020 Ford Explorer is an engineering marvel. Ford’s bold return to a RWD based platform has proved successful, and the 2020 Ford Explorer has so far proven itself as a capable and competent SUV.
Rear seat space is comfortable for a vehicle in its class. The 39 inches of second row legroom earns it a spot as #10 on this list. The way back seats, the third-row, have an adequate 32.2 inches of legroom. Not enough that I would personally want to take a long trip back there, but it's more than enough for smaller children or short jaunts around town.
#9. 2020 Mazda CX-9
Base MSRP Range: $33,790-$46,115
The 2020 Mazda CX-9 is one of our personal favorites on this list, purely for aesthetic reasons. We just love the way it looks, both inside and out.
We were, however, pleasantly surprised to know that the rear passenger space stands up to some of the competition, especially since the 2020 Mazda CX-9 is a smaller SUV overall than many others on this list.
The second row legroom clocks in at 39.4 inches. Impressive for a vehicle with an overall length that clocks in at a mere 115.3 inches.
Unfortunately, that length has to come from somewhere, and Mazda prioritized an attractive, lengthy hood over third row legroom. With only 29.7 inches of third row space, it is one of the smallest third rows on the list.
Mazda took a risk prioritizing aesthetics over practicality. It was a risky move, but not everyone frequently uses their third row, so compromising space for appearance may be a luxury they can live with. It’s a decision we support, as long as you don’t force us to sit in the third row.
#8. 2020 Kia Sorento
Base MSRP Range: $26,690-$39,990
The 2020 Kia Sorento surprised us with its space. Coming in with an impressive 39.4 inches of rear legroom, the Kia Sorento surpasses many other larger and lengthier SUVs in its class.
Despite being shorter than every other SUV on this list, the Sorento also sports roomy third row seats. With 31.7 inches of third row legroom, the Sorento is large enough to comfortably transport most regularly sized humans around for at least short periods of time.
The top feat of the Sorento, however, is the starting price. The 2020 Kia Sorento starts at a mere $26,690, one of the lowest-priced third row SUVs around. This combination of ample space and a low MSRP give the Kia Sorento a solid check-in our value book.
#7. 2020 GMC Acadia
Base MSRP Range: $29,800-$46,300
The 2020 GMC Acadia is a proud looking SUV. The upright stance, squinty eyes, and high-waisted rearend make for an attractive vehicle with a presence. You notice when an Acadia rolls up. It’s not just another bland SUV that blends in with its surroundings.
Unfortunately, we don’t feel the same way about the interior as we do about the exterior. The plushy and “soft” interior negatively contracts the imposing exterior. The quality of the interior, however, is excellent for its price point.
The rear space is equally impressive. With 39.7 inches of second row legroom, and 31.1 inches of third row legroom, the Acadia can comfortably transport most average-sized adults.
#6. 2020 Chevrolet Suburban
Base MSRP Range: $51,700-$65,500
It’s not surprising that the 2020 Chevrolet Suburban made the list. As one of the longest vehicles available on the road today, the Chevrolet Suburban had BETTER bring some rear passenger space to the table.
What is surprising, however, is its placement on the list. The Suburban, despite having the longest overall length on the list (by far, might I add), only clocks in at Number 6 on the list, and has a smaller third row than several vehicles lower on the list than itself.
The 2020 Chevrolet Suburban comes with 39.7 inches of second row legroom, and a depressingly low 34.5 inches of third row legroom. Each remaining vehicle on the list has more third row legroom. For this being the longest vehicle in the class, it makes terrible use of space.
Clearly, the Suburban was designed to have larger cargo space than passenger volume, however, it’s clear to me the space needs to be more smartly allocated.
Interestingly enough, the 2020 Chevrolet Tahoe didn't even make the list, with only 39 inches of second row space and an abysmal 24.8 inches of third row space.
#5. 2020 Buick Enclave
Base MSRP Range: $40,000-$56,100
The 2020 Buick Enclave, sharing a platform with the Chevrolet Traverse, GMC Acadia, and Cadillac XT6, would be expected to have a similar-sized rear passenger volume. Somehow though, Buick was able to squeeze an additional inch or two for each seat.
Second row legroom is a healthy 39.9 inches, more than enough for your high school linebacker. Third row is also impressive with 33.5 inches of legroom. While still not as much as I would like if making a trip to Narnia, it’s more than enough if I needed to take a short jaunt around town.
#4. 2020 Ford Expedition
Base MSRP Range: $52,810-$73,935
The other longboy of the crew, the 2020 Ford Expedition is the second longest SUV available today. The Ford Expedition is Ford’s answer to those that need space, power, towing, and everything else. The Expedition is, in our opinion, the correct answer when asked “Suburban or Expedition?” The placement on this list only solidifies that answer.
The Ford Expedition comes with an impressive 41.5 inches of second row legroom. The third row is nothing to complain about either. The 40.9 inches of legroom back there are more than enough to move around even larger adults.
#3. 2020 Hyundai Palisade
Base MSRP Range: $31,550-$46,400
The 2020 Hyundai Palisade is going to be seen on many lists throughout this year. The vehicle is beyond impressive, and boldly stands out in a crowded, competitive class. The design rivals that of far more expensive vehicles and the insane amount of available features are impressive even to us.
Space is also a point of interest. The second row receives a massive 42.4 inches of legroom. The Korean engineers clearly did a good job of space allocation, reserving ample space for the second row and cargo space.
The third row is slightly slacking for this taking the second spot on the list, with only 31.4 inches of legroom overall. However, for the customers that Hyundai is pursuing, they clearly did their research on where that space should go, and chose to take some inches from the third row to dedicate other more crucial regions.
#2. 2020 Kia Telluride
Base MSRP Range: $31,690-$41,490
Sharing a platform with the Hyundai Palisade the 2020 Kia Telluride has the same dimensions as its relative. Much of the rest of the vehicle are shared as well, with the largest differences being styling and interior materials. The Hyundai has admittedly nicer use of materials and a classier looking cabin, however the Telluride is attractive in its own right and uses the correct materials for the price point throughout the cabin, while the Hyundai attempts to upscale the appearance of the cabin, while using materials that can’t quite stand up to the way they look.
The second row has an impressive 42.4 inches of legroom, and the third row has an equally impressive 31.4 inches, though we would have liked to have seen a slightly larger third row.
The only reason we placed the Telluride in front of the Palisade is you can get a top level Telluride for a lower price than the Hyundai. Plus, we just prefer the way it looks to be honest.
#1. 2020 Nissan Pathfinder
Base MSRP Range: $31,680-$$42,920
The 2020 Nissan Pathfinder is a vehicle that has fought hard to earn its place on this list. The Pathfinder is a light of fresh air for Nissan, a company that has posted steady losses, particularly since their recent “trouble” the former CEO Carlos Ghosn has faced.
The Pathfinder is a substantial vehicle that has plenty to offer consumers, and at a reasonable price. Nissan has also developed the platform with a substantial amount of room, making clever use of every inch of the Pathfinder.
The second row is treated with 41.7 inches of legroom, which is more than enough for a tall adult to sit comfortably. The rear is slightly less impressive, at 30.7 inches, yet is fine for smaller humans.