What SUV has the least road noise?


Sound isolation is one of the most important aspects of a luxury SUV. It’s hard to imagine a luxury car that does not benefit from extensive use of sound-deadening materials or double-glazed windows. Moreover, most newer SUVs are designed more aerodynamically to further reduce noise.

The quietest compact SUV title is being contested by the Audi Q5, Mercedes GLC, BMW X3, Volvo XC60, Porsche Macan. But you can get a quiet compact SUV experience even if you opt for more affordable options like the Mazda CX-5, Chevy Equinox, or the Honda CR-V.

If you want your mid-sized SUV to be as quiet as possible, you might want to check out the Volvo XC90, Audi Q7, Mercedes GLE, Porsche Cayenne, or the BMW X5. Even though you can source out more affordable SUVs that are indeed quiet, they can not match the levels of serene auditory blankness these executive SUVs do.

Full-size SUVs on the other hand should prioritize comfort, luxury, style, technology, and quietness. And no one does it better than the Rolls Royce Cullinan. But if you want a more affordable option, the Kia Telluride offers a fairly quiet experience. In the executive segment, the Range Rover, BMW X7, and the Mercedes GLS are the quietest of the bunch.

Quietest compact SUV

The Compact SUV segment is becoming one of the most popular car segments in existence, and it’s rather obvious as to why so many car manufacturers just keep on pumping compact SUVs. And with such fierce competition, there are loads of amazing options to choose from.

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But the Audi Q5, BMW X3, Volvo XC60, Porsche Macan, and the Mercedes GLC are the most refined compact SUVs on sale. As a great all arounder, an SUV that can drive dynamically and comfortably at just a press of a button, the Audi Q5 seems like a perfect middle ground between sport and comfort.

It’s more or less the same story with the XC60 even though the Swede is not as refined as the Q5. The BMW X3 and the Porsche Macan are your sporty picks of the bunch and there are certain times when you do sense an increased level of noise penetrating the cabin.

And finally, the Mercedes GLC is set out to achieve the highest levels of comfort and luxury, and even though luxury is more or less the same as all the rest of the executive compact SUV segment, the comfort levels are indeed high, and the GLC is likely the quietest compact SUV on sale.

Quietest mid-size SUV

If you decide to upgrade from a compact SUV to a mid-size SUV, you are looking at a steady bump in price, build quality, space, power, and most important luxury and comfort. The Volvo XC90 is an incredibly popular choice for elderly people as it offers an extremely quiet cabin and engine combo.

The Audi Q7 on the other hand is even larger than the XC90, and if you opt for a diesel engine, you are not going to hear the engine as you do in a diesel XC90. Audi’s 3.0L diesel can only be heard on startup on colder mornings.

The Mercedes GLE and the BMW X5 are positioned a bit differently. The X5 offers a sportier edge, a more engaging drive which can sometimes be seen like the whole experience is just a little bit less refined. It’s mostly a thing of preference, but the GLE does seem like a more serene experience.

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All of these mid-size SUVs are extremely quiet. They can be optioned out will double glazed windows, dedicated tires that reduce tire noise, and all of these can change their height so they can adapt a perfect aero profile that is optimal for noise reduction.

Quietest full-size SUVs

Whether you have a large family, or you just want the best SUV experience out there, a full-size SUV is bound to make you feel like the king of the road. And thankfully, the options here are plentiful and they range from relatively affordable to eye-wateringly expensive.

Starting from the bottom, the Kia Telluride. While some might deny the luxury aspect, it’s 100% true that the Telluride punches way above its limit and that the levels of comfort and quietness are indeed impressive. But the Telluride does fall short when compared to the Merc GLS, BMW X7, and the Range Rover.

The Range Rover wins here as it does offer the quietest experience, even though the top-of-the-line Maybach and Alpina versions of the GLS and the X7 are even more comfortable and quiet. But the undisputed king of all full-size SUVs is the one and only Rolls Royce Cullinan.

It’s really hard to talk about comfort and luxury without mentioning Rolls Royce as this Goodwood England brand has long been known to produce the quietest and most serene post-opulent luxury vehicles on the planet.

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FAQ Section

Are sedans quieter than SUVs?

More often than not you will encounter a sedan being quieter than an SUV. It’s just the fact that a sedan sits lower to the ground which makes it easier to be more slippery and thus quieter. But some high-end SUVs try to negate that with extended use of sound deadening.

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It all boils down to the segment in question because a $200k SUV is most definitely going t offer you a more upscale experience compared to a $100k sedan. And the noise levels and the sophistication of the stereo system are also likely to scale up with the price of the car in question.

What coupe SUV has the least road noise?

This title is being contested by the Lamborgini Urus, Audi Q8, Porsche Cayenne Coupe, BMW X6, and the Mercedes GLE Coupe. And the quietest coupe SUV of them all is the Audi A8 as Audi purposely made the Q8 the opposite side of the spectrum when compared to its bigger brother – the Urus.

All of these aforementioned coupe SUVs are extremely quiet, and opting for one over the other is most definitely dependant on other aspects and not the quietness levels.

 

What EV SUV has the least road noise?

EVs don’t have a running engine, so the entire experience is vastly more different. But even so, the Tesla Model X, Tesla Model 3, and the Audi e-Tron are the EV SUVs with the lowest amount of noise penetrating the cabin.

It’s worth mentioning that this segment is at its infancy and in a few years or so we are likely going to have 5 times as many EV SUVs as we do now.

Marko Mikulic

Why do you love writing about cars? I love writing about cars as cars are a huge personal interest of mine. I was raised in a car enthusiast community and ever since I was young, I always wanted to do car-related work.

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