JD Power lists Ford Explorer, Jeep Grand Cherokee and Jeep Wrangler as the most popular midsize SUVs, based on sales reports in April 2014. Meanwhile, U.S. News Rankings and Reviews lists Nissan Murano, Hyundai Santa Fe and Toyota Highlander as the best vehicles in this class as of March 2015.
Ford Explorer is equipped with a V6 engine and front-wheel drive. Despite not getting the "Top Safety Pick" citation from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and only earning average ratings for quality and reliability, Ford Explorer was a hot purchase at the time of its release. Jeep Grand Cherokee was similar to Ford Explorer in terms of not faring well in safety tests and reliability rankings, but this five-seater vehicle was the second most popular midsize SUV in the United States. The third most popular unit on JD Power's list was the Jeep Wrangler, which held the title of being the only convertible with four doors.
The 2015 Nissan Murano scored high on reliability, interior quality and critics' evaluation of test drives and published reviews. Its positive attributes include comfortable interior, user-friendly tech gadgetry and efficient fuel economy. Hyundai Santa Fe, which placed second in the U.S. News rankings, earned top marks from the IIHS. Toyota Highlander, meanwhile, was cited for its powerful V6 engine, quiet ride and top-notch materials.