Everyone shopping for a V8-motivated sport utility vehicle has their own reasoning. Some have a need for speed. They may not be driving a sports car, but they still enjoy feeling a little rumble when they push the gas. Then, there are some who have a heavy load to tow like a boat or a trailer of snowmobiles. Of course, there are also plenty of buyers who have always had a V8 and don't believe that a V6 could ever power an SUV, even though some six-cylinder engines do a phenomenal job.... (full review continues below)
Everyone shopping for a V8-motivated sport utility vehicle has their own reasoning. Some have a need for speed. They may not be driving a sports car, but they still enjoy feeling a little rumble when they push the gas. Then, there are some who have a heavy load to tow like a boat or a trailer of snowmobiles. Of course, there are also plenty of buyers who have always had a V8 and don't believe that a V6 could ever power an SUV, even though some six-cylinder engines do a phenomenal job.
The best V8 SUVs are those that provide an abundance of horsepower and torque. Some vehicles make the list for performance and power, while others are also preferred for off-road use as well. Either way, don't expect any favors at the gas pump.
Starting the list of best V8 SUVs is the Infiniti QX56, a full-size luxury vehicle capable of towing 8,500 pounds in style. It's equipped with a 5.6-liter V8 that provides 400 horsepower and 413 pound-feet of torque. The engine is paired with a seven-speed automatic, which features manual shift controls and rev-matched downshifts.
Another one of the best V8 SUVs is the BMW X5 M. It's powered by a fierce twin-turbo 4.4-liter V8 good for 555 horsepower and 501 pound-feet of torque. Zero to 60 mph is accomplished in a swift 4.5 seconds. If you care, fuel economy is 14 mpg combined.
A substantial upgrade in the Porsche Cayenne is the 4.8-liter V8 engine that is married to an eight-speed automatic transmission, which features a standard automatic start/stop. It delivers 400 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque, and reaches 60 mph in a staggering 5.4 seconds.
The V8 Audi Q7 can see acceleration times of 7.7 seconds to 60 mph. When it was still made, this 350 horsepower beast could easily tow 5,000 pounds, but it was terribly thirsty and has now been replaced by a turbocharged V6. If you want a V8, a lease turn-in would be your best option.
Dodge Durango is next on the list of best V8 SUVs. Standard on the R/T and optional on Crew and Citadel is a 5.7-lliter V8 that puts out 360 horsepower and 390 pound-feet of torque. An all-wheel drive version returns only a combined average of 15 mpg.
The only engine available in the Toyota Land Cruiser is an extremely strong 5.7-liter V8. It can easily tow an impressive 8,500 pounds, thanks to 381 horsepower and 401 pound-feet of torque.
The 5.7-liter V8 in the Lexus LX earns it a place on the list of best V8 SUVs. It features a full-time 4WD system with a multi-terrain system, crawl control and hill start assist, and it is motivated by 383 horsepower and 403 pound-feet of torque. This is another thirsty vehicle at 14 mpg combined.
Next is the Cadillac Escalade. Its gutsy 6.2-liter V8 can tow 8,300 pounds. This engine paired up with a six-speed automatic transmission is good for 403 horsepower and 417 pound-feet of torque.
It should be no surprise that Chevrolet Tahoe is on the list, as this is a vehicle known for being a powerhouse on the road. Its 5.3-liter V8 engine generates 320 horsepower and 335 pound-feet of torque and can tow 8,500 pounds. Combined fuel-economy is 17 mpg, which is a little better than other V8 SUVs on the road.
Finishing off the list of best V8 SUVs is the GMC Yukon Hybrid, which happens to be a relative to the Tahoe. Its 6.0-liter V8 engine works with two 60-kilowatt electric motors that are packaged in the transmission. You essentially get two transmissions in one. Combined output is 379 horsepower, towing capacity is 6,000 pounds and fuel economy is generous at 20 mpg in the city and 23 mpg on the highway.