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Best crossovers and SUVs of 2022: Our top 8 picks, from Nissan to Rivian

There's no shortage of exciting new crossovers and SUVs to buy next year.

2022 is a year full of hope, promise, and a whole bunch of new cars. Fingers crossed we’ll soon be flying out of the supply-chain mess that’s been slowing production and deliveries.

But in the meantime, carmakers have been hard at work on a whole crop of new vehicles — not all of which are electric, it’s worth noting. EVs might be the future, but gasoline-powered vehicles are gonna be with us for a while.

So with that in mind, here are my top eight picks for the most interesting crossovers and SUVs launching for 2022.

8. Nissan Pathfinder (2022)

The Pathfinder is at home on or off the pavement.Nissan

The Nissan Pathfinder is 35 years old, believe it or not, and this is the fifth-generation variant. It’s been completely redesigned, fitting above the Rogue and below the Armada in the Nissan SUV lineup. It’s a sharp-looking, capable SUV with an excellent interior that makes it a solid family hauler.

7. Kia Carnival

The Carnival is a minivan with an SUV design, and I’m here for it.Kia

Kia swears this is a “multi-purpose vehicle” and passionately decries any description of it as a “minivan,” even though that’s exactly what it is. But with SUV styling and a raised seating position, I’ll include it on this list. It’s terrifically designed and turned heads when I drove it (really!), and might show how to bridge the gap between exciting SUV and boring old minivan.

6. Infiniti QX60

The Infiniti QX60 is a sharp luxury crossover.Infiniti

A luxury sibling to the new Pathfinder, the QX60 is a strong return to form for the brand. With an elegant appearance inside and out, and even includes Zero Gravity front seats that were designed in partnership with NASA to reduce strain on your rear during long journeys. There’s a swoopier QX55, too if you want something a little more stylish.

5. Volvo C40 Recharge

The Volvo C40 Recharge is one of the most fun-to-drive EV crossovers around.Jordan Golson / Inverse

Volvo’s EV transition is underway with the new XC40 Recharge crossover and now the similar-but-somehow-cooler C40 Recharge that is the same car at the front but with an attractive, coupe-like rear end. It has performance chops and Volvo’s new Google-powered infotainment system, and it’s one of the best-looking small luxury EVs you can find.

4. Genesis GV70

The Genesis GV70 is simply one of the best luxury crossovers on the market.Genesis

Genesis is Hyundai’s luxury brand (think Lexus to Toyota) and it is releasing some incredible vehicles that are well-equipped and well-priced. They’re also very well designed, with an interior that wouldn’t look out of place in a much more expensive ride. There’s an electric version coming, too.

3. Lexus LX

The Lexus LX is the biggest Lexus, and that means it has the biggest Lexus hourglass.Lexus

I don’t know why, but I adore the Lexus LX. The biggest SUV Lexus makes, it’s a relative of the Toyota Land Cruiser and it’s a world-conquering, explore-anywhere in style and comfort beast. And I think it’s fair to say that it has the largest, most-impressive grille to be found on any automobile. This is the new LX, and expect it to be filling private school drop-off lines any day now.

2. BMW iX (2022)

Like so many modern BMWs, the kidney grille on the front of the iX is a love-it-or-hate-it proposition.BMW

I suspect there will be a lot more EVs when I write this piece for 2023, but for now, there are only a handful. One of them is the new BMW iX, the first all-electric SUV from BMW. With a range of around 300 miles and fast charging, the iX checks all the EV boxes, but with a BMW touch with a unique new interior and a sharp, futuristic exterior that will stand out at the charging station.

1. Rivian R1S

The R1S takes an already impressive formula and SUVifies it.Rivian

I was blown away by Rivian’s R1T pickup when I drove it, and I’m fully prepared to be blown away by the R1S when I get behind the wheel of it. Taking the R1T formula and applying it to a three-row SUV, Rivian is primed for success thanks to its ultra-lux interior and incredible drivetrain. If you want to convince an EV skeptic, show them this.

To learn more about all the new SUVs and crossovers on the market, sign up for Jordan Golson’s free car reviews newsletter on Substack.

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