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What SUVs Have V6 Engines In 2021? [A Look At Midsize And Full-Size SUVs]

A V6 engine is the perfect sweet spot between the towing power of a V8 and the fuel-conscious 4-cylinder engine. If you are shopping for a new SUV this year, you may be wondering which models come with a V6 engine. Luckily, we've done all the research and have the list of V6 SUVs for you here in this post. 

For the 2021 model year, 38 total SUVs run on V6 engines. The top 10 models according to performance and variety are as follows: 

  1. Ford Expedition (Full-size SUV)
  2. Kia Carnival MPV (Full-size SUV)
  3. Lincoln Navigator (Full-size SUV)
  4. Chevrolet Blazer
  5. Honda Pilot
  6. Jeep Cherokee
  7. Nissan Pathfinder
  8. Toyota Highlander
  9. Range Rover Sport
  10. Porsche Cayenne S

Those are just the top 10 out of all 38 available V6 SUV models. To see the complete list of 2021 models, please continue reading. Additionally, we will discuss the engine and spec details of each of the top 10 models.

A Porsche Cayenne S on car motor show, What SUVs Have V6 Engines In 2021? [A Look At Midsize And Full-Size SUVs]

2021 SUVs with V6 Engines 

While many of these models come standard with a V6 engine, some have it only as a potential upgrade option in the premium editions of the model. Here is the complete list of V6 SUVs for the model year 2021 separated by vehicle size:

Full-size SUVs

  1. Ford Expedition 
  2. Kia Carnival MPV
  3. Lincoln Navigator

Medium-size SUVs

  1. Acura MDX
  2. Buick Enclave
  3. Buick Enclave Avenir
  4. Cadillac XT6
  5. Cadillac XT5
  6. Chevrolet Traverse
  7. Chevrolet Blazer
  8. Chevrolet Acadia
  9. Ford Explorer
  10. Honda Pilot
  11. Honda Passport
  12. Hyundai Palisade
  13. Infiniti QX60
  14. Jaguar F-Pace
  15. Jeep Cherokee
  16. Jeep Wrangler
  17. Kia Telluride
  18. Range Rover Velar
  19. Range Rover Sport
  20. Range Rover Discovery
  21. Lincoln Aviator 
  22. Nissan Pathfinder
  23. Nissan Murano
  24. Toyota Highlander
  25. Toyota 4Runner
  26. Volkswagen Atlas
  27. Porsche Macan S
  28. Porsche Macan GTS
  29. Porsche Macan Turbo
  30. Porsche Cayenne
  31. Porsche Cayenne S
  32. Audi SQ5
  33. Audi Q7
  34. Audi Q8
  35. Audi A6 Allroad

Most Popular 2021 SUVs with V6 Engines

Since that is such an exhaustive list of vehicles, we thought it would be best to narrow down the list to the top 10 to examine a few models more closely. Because there are only three full-size SUVs that come equipped with a V6, they will start the list. After that, the remaining seven positions will be the best of the medium-sized V6 SUVs from various manufacturers. 

1. Ford Expedition (Full-size)

The V6 in the 2021 Ford Expedition is a genuinely great engine with good fuel economy and power. It is a 3.5-liter V6 that gives the driver 400 horsepower and 490 foot-pounds of torque. With an optional tow packaged added to the vehicle, the Expedition has a towing capacity of 9,300 lbs.

The SUV comes with 3rd-row seating that seats up to eight people and has plenty of interior room and features for added comfort. Several trim and spec options increase in price with more add-ons. 

New model Ford Expedition seven passenger SUV at a dealership

2. Kia Carnival MPV (Full-size)

The 2021 Kia Carnival MPV is a family-oriented full-size SUV that comes standard with a V6 engine. This V6 is a 3.5-liter engine that provides the Carnival with 290 horsepower and 262 foot-pounds of torque. This SUV can also tow small loads of 3,500 lbs maximum with proper gear. 

This Kia Carnival has seating for up to seven people and is outfitted with the latest technologies like auto-braking and lane following. There are five available trims with additions and luxury supplements. 

KIA Carnival display at KIA car dealership

3. Lincoln Navigator (Full-size)

The full-size 2021 Lincoln Navigator comes equipped with a 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6 engine. Built for on-road performance, the standard models come with five driving modes, while the upgraded 4x4 model comes with an additional mode called Slow Climb, particularly suited for towing. 

The Lincoln Navigator seats seven people with 2nd-row captain's chairs and a 3rd-row bench. All of the rear seats fold down to allow for a truck bed's worth of interior storage space. 

4. Chevrolet Blazer 

The 2021 model of the Chevy Blazer is a medium-sized SUV that has been on the market for many years. The SUV has a maximum available towing of 4,500 lbs. The standard engine is a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder, but all trims after the 2LT are available with the 3.5-liter V6. The standard model has front-wheel drive, but the upgraded versions come with an all-wheel-drive better suited to towing. 

The Chevy Blazer is rather sporty looking than the bigger, full-size SUVs earlier on the list. The upgraded trims change the car's cosmetics, but at its core, it's a tremendous five-seat mid-size SUV. 

A 2021 Chevrolet Blazer mid size sport utility vehicle at a dealership

5. Honda Pilot

The Honda Pilot is considered a medium-sized SUV, but with 3rd-row seating, it has the functionality of a full-size. There are six available trims for the 2021 Honda Pilot, and they all come standard with the same V6 engine. The engine provides 280 horsepower and 262 foot-pounds of torque. 

All-wheel-drive is available on all trims and comes standard on the Elite and Black editions. The Pilot seats either seven or eight people, depending on the trim, which also affects other cosmetic parts of the car as well as technology features. 

6. Jeep Cherokee

The Jeep Cherokee has a V6 in the upgraded Trailhawk trim. Most models are front-wheel drive only with a 2.4-liter inline 4-cylinder engine, but the Trailhawk is all-wheel-drive with a 3.2-liter V6. This engine offers 271 horsepower and a towing capacity of 2,000 lbs. 

Jeep prides itself on being the longest-lasting all-wheel-drive SUV brand with a high safety standard. The Jeep is perfect for highway and off-road use and will stand the test of time through either usage. The Jeep Cherokee seats five people regardless of trim, a true mid-sized SUV. 

7. Nissan Pathfinder

The 2021 Nissan Pathfinder is a great SUV for towing and off-road, multi-season use. All Nissan Pathfinder models come with a 3.5-liter V6 engine that puts out 284 horsepower and 259 foot-pounds of torque. Standard Pathfinders come with a two-wheel drive, but all-wheel drive is available as an upgrade. 

The Pathfinder seats up to seven people with its 3rd-row seating. The seats are also foldable to allow additional cargo storage when paired with built-in under-floor storage areas. 

2020 Nissan Pathfinder sport utility vehicles at a dealership

8. Toyota Highlander

The Toyota Highlander is a larger mid-sized SUV. Two of Highlander trims are hybrids and do not come fitted with a V6 engine, but the XLE trim includes a 3.5-liter V6 with 295 horsepower and 263 foot-pounds of torque. This same trim also comes standard with all-wheel-drive. 

The Highlander has between seven and eight seats in its interior, depending on which trim you choose. Either way, it's a spacious and technologically versed SUV. 

Toyota Highlander SUV on a street

9. Range Rover Sport

The Range Rover Sport is a higher-end medium-sized SUV. Range Rover will fit the Sport with either a V8 or a more tame P360 V6 with 355 horsepower or the P400 V6 with 395 horsepower. How much performance you want out of this vehicle is entirely up to you. 

Range Rover Sports are smaller than other SUVs in the mid-sized category as they only have seating for five people. But if you're more focused on luxury as opposed to seating capacity, then this could be the perfect SUV. Despite more limited seating than other SUVs, there is still a very spacious trunk for storage and luggage. 

Front view of black range rover parked in the street

10. Porsche Cayenne S

The Porshe Cayenne S is top of the line for luxury SUVs. Many of the various Cayenne trims come with a V6 engine for ultimate performance. For example, the Cayenne S comes with a twin-turbocharged V6 with 434 horsepower, definitely one of the most powerful on this list. 

If you're going to buy a Porsche, you probably don't want an SUV for towing purposes but more likely want such a vehicle for comfort and space. The Cayenne S comfortably seats five people and is covered with luxurious features. Of course, all of this comes at a price relative to the notoriety that comes with owning a Porsche. 

Porsche Cayenne S on the motor show

Can you tow with a V6?

If you are planning on buying an SUV, chances are you might have something like a boat or RV that you need to tow. While an SUV with a V6 might not tow as much weight as one with a V8, the vehicle will still handle most small boats, campers, and trailers. 

For example, according to a Consumer Reports study, substantial V6 engines in the range of 3.6 to 4.0 liters can tow up to 7,000 pounds. However, this study was done on trucks and not SUVs, and other factors determine towing capacity. 

Let's take one of the SUVs from the top 10 list above and take a closer look at its towing capacity. The Chevy Blazer RS edition has a 3.6-liter V6 engine has a maximum available towing of 4,500 lbs. Most automakers have towing capabilities listed on the product pages for their vehicles, so please see the respective manufacturer's website if you're curious about a specific model. 

Are V6 cars good on gas?

When you picture an SUV, the first that comes to mind is probably a gas-guzzling, V8-powered monster. But since many models come in a V6, fuel economy is no longer just a dream. Vehicles with V6 engines are better on gas than vehicles with V8s under the hood but still underperform next to 4-cylinder engines and hybrid models. 

The average V6 SUV gets somewhere between 20 and 25 miles per gallon (mpg). This fuel economy is much better than larger SUVs that can get as little as 16 mpg but not as good as many smaller 4-cylinder cars that now get well over 30 mpg. 

How long does a V6 engine last?

A V6 engine can have many reliable years with proper care, just as any other engine size. However, the life of a car engine isn't measured in years; it is measured by usage in miles. That's why the odometer is such an essential part of the vehicle and why altering its measurement can be punishable by law. 

It really depends on make and model, but some cars are built so well that they can last through 200,000+ miles of usage before mechanical failure. Of course, keeping a vehicle this long requires a lot of upkeep. To keep your V6 running for as long as possible, always ensure that fluids are at the right level, oil is changed frequently, and belts are changed with a manufacturer-suggested routine maintenance schedule.  

In Closing

You no longer have to choose between fuel efficiency and towing capability due to the many V6 SUVs on the market in 2021. Most of the V6 SUV models are mid-sized, but that doesn't mean they don't have plenty of interior space and towing capability. So, if you're looking for an SUV that is strong but not too bulky, the vehicles on this list should meet your needs. 

If you enjoyed this post, please check out a few of our others:

What’s The Jeep Grand Cherokee Towing Capacity?

Which SUV has the Best Gas Mileage?