Worst 2015 SUVs

Buyers of 2015 SUVs have a number of excellent models to choose from, but some models don’t so well when it comes to reliability, resale value, and fuel economy. We look at our five picks for worst 2015 SUVs.

Nissan Armada

The Armada is a large full-size SUV that has a powerful V8 engine and is rated to tow up to 9,000 pounds. However, the model has used the same engine – 5.6 liter V8 317 horsepower – and transmission (five speed automatic) for over a decade.

2012 nissan armada platinum

Nissan’s luxury line version of the model the QX80 increases horsepower to 400 out of the same engine with a seven speed automatic transmission, but Nissan has not matched it in the Armada. The Nissan Titan full-size pickup is also built on the platform.

The antiquated power train really shows in fuel economy for the Armada. With an EPA rating of 12-mpg city and 18-mpg highway with all-wheel drive, the Armada has among the lowest fuel economy of 2015 models and is our pick for worst full-size SUV.

Furthermore, Armada received low marks in J.D. Power’s initial quality and reliability scores and also garnered among the lowest overall scores in Consumer Reports testing.

Lincoln MKT

The MKT is a wretched three-row luxury crossover. We’ve ranked it as one of the worst SUVs for years. It ties for the lowest score in IntelliChoice’s five year retained value rating. It also received below-average scores from J.D. Power for initial quality and reliability.

Remarkably, the MKT has been around for nearly a decade and is unchanged for 2015. The MKT is our pick for the worst luxury SUV.

Jeep Patriot

The Patriot was featured in our worst 2014 SUVs post and it returns for 2015. The good news is that with the launch of the all-new Jeep Renegade compact SUV, Jeep is expected to eventually phase out the Patriot and Compass models.

The Patriot received low marks in reliability and performance in J.D. Power testing and got a below-average score from ALG for depreciation. The Patriot is our pick for worst compact SUV.

Jeep Patriot

Jeep Compass

Jeep doesn’t fare too well in the compact SUV department. However, with a base price under $20,000, the Compass may compete better against subcompact SUV models.

The Compass has also received some minor cosmetic updates, which makes it more closely resemble the Grand Cherokee but it doesn’t avoid the same detriments that plague the Patriot.

Dodge Journey

The Journey has been around since the 2009 model year and is grouped in the midsize SUV category. The 2015 Journey has 67.6 cubic feet of storage space with the seats folded, which is less than compact models like the Subaru Forester and Honda CR-V.

With a fuel economy rating of 19/26 with front-wheel drive and the four-cylinder engine, the Journey has considerably worse fuel economy than both of these models. The Journey uses an antiquated four-speed automatic transmission with four-cylinder trims.

In testing, Consumer Reports faulted the Journey for its lack of agility and below-average reliability. ALG gave the model a below-average resale value rating.

The Journey is an entry-level people mover that uses the same chassis as the shorter Dodge Grand Caravan. While the Journey is one of the most affordable SUV models with a V6 and available small third row seating, for the reasons above we pick it as the worst midsize SUV model.


If you’re shopping for a new SUV, these five models, which include our picks for worst compact SUV, worst midsize SUV, worst full-size SUV, and worst luxury SUV, are best avoided. What are your picks for worst 2015 SUVs? Take our poll below or let us know in the comments.

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