When it comes to towing, the pickup is king. But nothing says that you need to use a pickup to haul that trailer and leave your luggage out in the cold, damp bed. Depending on what you're towing, an SUV or a crossover might be just the right thing to help you haul your trailer, your passengers, and even your stuff in nice, dry, climate-controlled comfort. We've made a list of the 10 SUVs that can tow the biggest loads and we've broken it down into those that offer two rows for five passengers and those that have three rows to let you seat up to seven.
#4 (tie): Jeep Grand Cherokee
When it comes to two-row crossovers, the list is as heavy on European vehicles as the trailers they can tow. But we'll start with the sole domestic on this half of the list. The Jeep Grand Cherokee was one of the crossovers to help make the luxury crossover one of the most popular on the road. Thanks to the beefy 5.7L Hemi V8 with 360 hp and 390 lb-ft of torque, this crossover can tow 3,266 kg. The eight-speed automatic has a Tow mode that adjusts the all-wheel drive for better traction and more smoothness.
#4 (tie): Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe
That's right, one of the most stylish large SUVs on the market can also haul a big trailer. Its more upright sibling would have made the list, but it's now a three-row vehicle. The GLE Coupe is for sale only as an AMG model: the GLE 43, with a twin-turbo 385 hp V6, and the GLE 63 S, with its 577 hp 4.0L V8, giving this one plenty of sports to go with that utility. Like the Jeep, the GLE Coupe can do 3,266 kg.
#4 (tie): BMW X5
A close competitor to the GLE Coupe, though slightly less stylish, BMW's X5 can handle a lot more behind the bumper than you might think. With 355 hp in the xDrive40i and 456 hp from the xDrive50i, both X5s can tow 3,266 kg if you get the accessory hitch that folds handily and cleanly under the bumper. And yes, we know that this tie means we have six on the list, but that's okay. Our top 10 list can go up to 11.
#1 (tie): Audi Q8
Audi Canada doesn't have figures for this one, but the US Q8 can tow 3,500 kg so ours should be capable of the same. The 3.0L twin-turbo V6 makes 335 hp and 369 lb-ft from 2,800 rpm. With an eight-speed automatic and quattro all-wheel drive to help it get those big campers or your new boat up and moving down the highway. The accessory hitch comes with wiring and a new computer calibration for the side-assist driver aids.
#1 (tie): Land Rover Range Rover
That's right, the Rangie's full name's a bit of a mouthful. But this off-road legend is ready to go anywhere and then help you haul anything while you do it. This tow rating of 3,500 kg applies to all trims of the Range Rover including the gas and diesel choices but also the mild hybrid option as long as all are fitted with the trailering package. This might be the most luxurious hauler on our list, and it can tow a suitably luxurious trailer. Or, as shown by the Virgin Galactic Astronaut Edition, a priceless spacecraft.
#1 (tie): Porsche Cayenne
What better to tow your 911 GT3 to the track than your Porsche SUV? The German automaker obviously thought that it was a great combination because that's exactly what the Cayenne's 3,500 kg tow capacity allows: bring your sports car, your tools and spare tires, and your entire family to the race track. Of course, on non-racing weekends it can tow whatever else you'd like as well.
#5: Land Rover Discovery
The Discovery shares much of its chassis and underpinnings with the Range Rover on the two-row list, but this one has an extra row of seats in the back. 3,500 kg is an impressive amount of capability for this crossover, made possible by a pair of 3.0L V6 engines. One a 3.0L 254 hp diesel and the other a 340 hp supercharged gas engine.
#4: Nissan Armada
The Armada is one of the old-school body-on-frame SUVs, and it's the first one to make it onto this list. Because these SUVs are largely trucks under the skin they're also able to tow more truck-like loads. With a big 5.6L V8 and 390 hp, the seven-seat Armada can haul plenty of trailer – 3,855 kg of it – plenty of people, and plenty of cargo. Features like the intelligent rear-view mirror with built-in camera help you better see and handle challenging driving conditions with a trailer attached.
#3: Chevrolet Tahoe and GMC Yukon
The big GM twins can handle plenty of trailer. It's almost like it's what they were designed for. Well, it really is what they were designed for, since these are basically a Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra underneath. While adding four-wheel drive cuts into the max capacity for trailering, the two-wheel drive versions use their 5.3L V8s to lug an impressive 3,900 kg.
#2: Dodge Durango SRT
That's right, the SUV from Dodge's performance arm is able to haul trailers as well as it hauls, uh, derrière. The 6.4L Hemi V8 makes 475 hp and 470 lb-ft of torque. With a strong eight-speed automatic, the SRT Durango is able to run a quarter-mile in the 12-second range and it's also able to haul a trailer that weighs up to 3,950 kg. An impressive combination.
#1: Ford Expedition
The Expedition is closely related to the Ford F-150, which has been the best-selling pickup on the market for decades. It's no wonder that some of the towing capability that goes into the pickups has rubbed off onto the SUV side of the truck department. Though this one has a 3.5L twin-turbo EcoBoost V6 and not the big V8 you might expect, that doesn't hurt capability. With the heavy-duty tow package fitted, a 4x2 model can tow 4,200 kg and the 4x4 is close behind with 4,150 kg of available towing.