Seniors Are Buying These 5 SUVs in 2019

Seniors in North America want to drive vehicles that are spacious, reliable, and efficient. But even more importantly, seniors have different needs when they hit the road. Older drivers can face challenges like changing eyesight, slowed response time, and a lack of confidence behind the wheel. Fortunately, plenty of today’s SUVs offer features and capabilities that can combat these difficulties.

According to Consumer Reports, the following SUVs are highly recommended for various life stages after retirement.

2019 Subaru Forester


  • Base: $24,295
  • Premium: $26,695
  • Sport: $28,795
  • Limited: $30,795
  • Touring: $34,295

The 2019 Subaru Forester has seen some dramatic updates from the previous model year, including some that are great for seniors.

Every Forester runs on the trademark 2.5L BOXER engine that generates 182 horsepower and 176 lb-ft. A horizontally opposed layout makes this powertrain stand out in a market that’s saturated with I4 engine blocks. With assistance from the all-new Subaru Intelligent Drive, senior drivers will handle this SUV with ease. Plus, the SI-DRIVE technology tunes the four-cylinder engine and Lineartronic transmission for smooth driving.

When it comes to the fuel economy, the 2019 Forester is fairly efficient. It gets 33 mpg on the highway and 26 mpg in the city.

Most of the safety features in the Forester come from the EyeSight Driver Assist bundle. Debuting in 2019, the DriverFocus technology helps a senior avoid distractions behind the wheel.

The STARLINK Multimedia system contains all the car’s applications, including navigation, traffic feeds, and music channels. Multi-gesture technology makes it easy to select apps on the eight-inch LCD monitor. From Yelp to SiriusXM Travel Link, the STARLINK portal has many popular apps for modern driving.

2019 Hyundai Santa Fe


  • SE: $24,500
  • SEL: $25,850
  • SEL Plus: $28,050
  • Limited: $30,100
  • Limited 2.0T: $31,700
  • Ultimate: $32,950
  • Ultimate 2.0T: $34,600

Having a seven-model lineup, the 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe gives seniors more options than many other SUVs on the market.

When equipped with a 185-horsepower 2.4L engine, this Hyundai gets 29 mpg on the highway and 22 mpg in the city. At the expense of more powerful output, the gas mileage for the 235-horsepower 2.0L turbocharged engine drops by four mpg on the highway and two mpg in the city.

An optional AWD with the HTRAC platform allows seniors to navigate wet roads with better stability. The SmartSense suite also helps older drivers avoid accidents and be more alert. For instance, the Driver Attention Warning detects sleepy and distracted driving.

From rock to jazz music, classic hits play with pristine sound on the Santa Fe’s 12 Infinity speakers. Tech-savvy seniors could also take advantage of Hyundai’s signature mobile services that are part of the Blue Link suite. Remote services, directions, and digital valet are some of the features of the smartphone-optimized bundle.

2019 Kia Sorento


  • L: $26,290
  • LX: $27,650
  • LX V6: $31,290
  • S V6: $32,690
  • EX Sport: $34,990
  • EX V6: $35,590
  • SX: $39,990
  • SX Limited: $44,690

Priced at $26,290, the 2019 Kia Sorento holds a good stance in the three-row SUV segment. With eight trims to choose from, seniors will find a great balance between affordability, performance, and utility.

Gas mileage for the Sorento’s 185-horsepower 2.4L engine is 29 mpg on the highway and 22 mpg on urban streets. On the flip side, the 290-horsepower 3.3L V6 engine is rated at 26 mpg on the highway and 19 mpg in the city.

The Dynamax AWD allows seniors to drive through inclement weather with more reassurance. Plus, this Kia SUV has a locking center differential that governs torque flow in hazardous situations.

With access to a handful of the Drive Wise features, you can command the car with fewer worries. From automatic braking to parking guides, this signature bundle adds best-in-class active safety technology to the vehicle. Parking sensors also closely monitor the distance to any obstacles around the Sorento.

A vivid eight-inch display with the UVO eServices is optional in the 2019 Sorento. There’s no need to worry about tapping the wrong app on the touchscreen since the Voice-Command Navigation allows you to use your voice to ask for directions. Songs on HD Radio and SiriusXM sound great through the 10 Harman Kardon speakers. Moreover, seniors with hearing impairment will love the enhanced acoustics from the Clari-Fi system.

2019 Honda CR-V


  • LX: $24,350
  • EX: $27,250
  • EX-L: $29,750
  • Touring: $32,750

The 2019 Honda CR-V fully embraces efficiency and utility. As such, this compact SUV comes in four trims are ideal for urban or suburban rides.

The CR-V’s 190-horsepower 1.5L engine gets 34 mpg rating on the highway and 28 mpg in the city. The 184-horsepower 2.4L engine gets 32 mpg on the highway and 26 mpg on urban roads.

By eliminating fixed gear speeds, the CVT gives senior drivers more leverage for handling this Honda SUV. In terms of safety, a multi-angle rearview camera, which comes standard in each model, is useful for low-speed movement in reverse. Also, the EX and above editions are loaded with standard active safety installations that form the Honda Sensing package.

Since the graphics on the CR-V’s seven-inch WVGA monitor are clearly, there’s no need for seniors to squint when looking at the large icons on the infotainment system. Delivering 330 watts, nine speakers entertain passengers with music from the Pandora or SiriusXM channels. Driving around town should be simple with some guidance from a satellite-linked navigation system, which also provides radio-based feeds on local traffic flow.

2019 Mazda CX-5


  • Sport: $24,350
  • Touring: $26,615
  • Grand Touring: $30,045,
  • Grand Touring Reserve: $34,870
  • Signature: $36,890

Four trims are available for the 2019 Mazda CX-5, a two-row SUV with a dynamic body and an inviting cabin.

The CX-5’s 187-horsepower 2.5L engine guarantees a highway fuel economy of 31 mpg and a city fuel economy of 25 mpg. When running on the 227-horsepower turbocharged version, this Mazda achieves a fuel economy of 27 mpg on the highway and 22 mpg in the city.

Both engines have the SKYACTIV-G heritage for sporty handling. So, if you lose control of the steering during a turn, the G-Vectoring Control Plus will prevent further trouble.

Engineered to respond to sudden changes on the road, the i-ACTIVSENSE emboldens senior drivers who handle the 2019 CX-5. Urban traffic congestion won’t be too frustrating when the Advanced Smart City Brake Support is at your disposable. Elderly drivers who have poor vision at night will benefit from the Adaptive Front Lighting technology that tilts the LED headlights in sync with the steering and wheels.

Additionally, the Mazda CONNECT is packed with security, guidance, and entertainment functions. Aha and Stitcher are notable music options in the CX-5, which also boasts 10 speakers from the Bose Centerpoint 2 series.

Final Thoughts

The best SUVs for seniors deliver excellent combinations of fuel economy and sporty handling. Whether it is for transporting grandchildren around town or going to social gatherings in another city, the premium models mentioned above are designed for a modern senior lifestyle.

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