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The Best Sports SUVs of 2023
Despite the fact SUV stands for sports utility vehicle, your average SUV tends to prioritise practicality and ease of use over sporty handling and pin-sharp driving dynamics.
Yet car makers are aware enthusiast drivers may need an SUV but still want an engaging drive, hence the proliferation of the sporty SUV.
Thanks to a combination of advanced suspension technology and engineering expertise, our top 10 list of performance SUVs are not just blisteringly quick in a straight line, but can tackle corners the panache, too. There’s an increasing number of electric options now, too.
So, if you are after the ultimate blend of performance and practicality then take a look at our best sports and performance SUVs below:
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SUVs are generally designed to be spacious, comfortable and practical. To add that sporty edge, manufacturers add more powerful engines, larger wheels and stiffer suspensions for better handling.
Some top-spec sporty SUVs come with adaptive suspensions which allow you to switch from a cosseting ride to a firmer track-friendly setup at the press of a button.
The very fastest sports SUV is the Tesla Model X Plaid. It produces 1,020hp and blasts from 0-60mph in 2.5 seconds. That is quicker than some supercars. Its in-gear acceleration is also phenomenal, thanks to the responsiveness of its tri-motor electric drivetrain.
You can't buy the Model X new anymore, but the Porsche Cayenne Turbo GT, Aston Martin DBX 707 and Lamborghini Urus Performante are currently tied for quickest accelerating petrol SUVs, all capable of getting from 0-62mph in 3.3 seconds. The Aston tops out at 193mph which is the fastest of all SUVs, even the Tesla.
On our list, theBMW iX undercuts the rest with a starting price of les than £65,000. If you don't want an electric car, the Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio is next best at £75,000.
At the other end of the scale, the Hyundai Kona N packs a 280hp punch and will launch from 0-62mph in 5.5 seconds, all for just under £35,000. That is a better price/performance ratio than you get in some hatchbacks.
The luxurious 296hp Audi SQ2 is quicker still, with a 4.9-second 0-62mph time, although pricing starts at just over £40,000.
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