Editors' Picks September 2021 | Genesis GV70, Grand Cherokee L and more

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This month of Editors' Picks saw us award the honor to a few top-notch crossovers and SUVs, plus one luxury sportback. Manufacturers keep rolling out excellent new crossovers, and the Genesis GV70 and Jeep Grand Cherokee L are great examples of recent success. Plus, living the good life with our long-term Hyundai Palisade has been evidence enough that it's worthy of an editor's pick. Read on below for the full breakdown and see what made the cut for September.

In case you missed our previous Editors' Picks posts, here’s a quick refresher on what’s going on here. We rate all the new cars we drive with a 1-10 score. Cars that are exemplary in their respective segments get Editors’ Pick status. Those are the ones we’d recommend to our friends, family and anybody who’s curious and asks the question. The list that you’ll find below consists of every car we rated in August that earned an Editors’ Pick.

2022 Genesis GV70


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Quick take: Genesis' first shot at a compact luxury crossover is a strong one that moves the segment forward and makes for an excellent alternative to one of the many other established options.

Score: 8

What it competes with: BMW X3, Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class, Audi Q5, Lexus NX, Acura RDX, Volvo XC60, Lincoln Corsair, Infiniti QX50, Porsche Macan

Pros: Gorgeous looks inside and out, forward-looking tech, good ride and handling balance

Cons: Nothing budget about it, no true performance option

From the editors

Editor-in-Chief Greg Migliore — "Blending style and power, the GV70 shows Genesis is serious about delivering a strong execution in a critical segment. Props to Genesis for its risk-taking design, which has remade its lineup with confidence. The GV70 is just the latest in a series of wins for Genesis."

In-depth analysis: 2022 Genesis GV70 First Drive Review | The real deal

2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee L


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Quick take: The 2022 Grand Cherokee L is inarguably immense, swank, and much better on-road than the previous SUV. It even keeps up the Jeep tradition of being great off-road while still carrying tons of passengers and gear.

Score: 8

What it competes with: Kia Telluride, Hyundai Palisade, Chevy Traverse, Honda Pilot, Subaru Ascent, Ford Explorer, Toyota Highlander, Mazda CX-9, Kia Sorento, Buick Enclave, Nissan Pathfinder, VW Atlas

Pros: Massively utilitarian, capable off-road, luxurious interior

Cons: Styling is conservative, a pricey option, less-than-stellar fuel economy

From the editors:

Senior Editor, Green John Beltz Snyder — "This three-row Grand Cherokee might look and feel like a luxury vehicle, but it’s true to its rugged roots. If you’re going to take five of your friends off-road, why not do it in comfort and style?"

Editor-in-Chief Greg Migliore — "The Grand Cherokee L is the three-row SUV Jeep buyers have been asking for; it's rugged, distinctive and now it's better for family use. With a handsome interior and plenty of tech and creature comforts, the Grand Cherokee L immediately rises to the top of the segment."

In-depth analysis: 2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee L First Drive Review | Jeep, elevated (and elongated)

2021 Hyundai Palisade


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Quick take: Hyundai hit a homerun with the Palisade on its first try. It's loaded full of great tech, excellent materials and is hugely spacious. A more powerful engine would be nice, but nothing else is missing from this three-row family crossover.

Score: 8

What it competes with:Kia Telluride, Jeep Grand Cherokee L, Chevy Traverse, Honda Pilot, Subaru Ascent, Ford Explorer, Toyota Highlander, Mazda CX-9, Kia Sorento, Buick Enclave, Nissan Pathfinder, VW Atlas

Pros: Exemplary all-rounder, superb interior and tech, plenty big for families

Cons: Powertrain is merely average, some top features are locked into higher trims

From the editors:

Road Test Editor Zac Palmer — "After spending a month in our long-term Palisade, I can confidently say it'd be my pick of the litter when it comes to three-row family crossovers. It simply excels at everything, be it easy-to-use tech, interior quality, ride smoothness and even looks. There's a reason why folks want to buy the Telluride and Palisade so badly. They rock at their intended purpose."

Senior Editor, Green John Beltz Snyder — "I feel so confident recommending the Palisade to potential buyers that I put my money where my mouth is, and purchased one. It’s already made long trips much more convenient and comfortable, and it saved my wife and infant daughter from serious injury when they got slammed into on the highway. Hyundai is entering a golden age, and the Palisade is exemplary of that."

In-depth analysis: 2022 Hyundai Palisade Review | Our 1b choice among three-row SUVs

2021 Audi A7/S7


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Quick take: Audi has had a winner with the A7 from the start. The sportback has a modern tech-forward interior with tons of space, a powerful variety of engines and strikes a great balance between everyday usability and performance. Its price is steep, but it’s worth your dollar.

Score: 8

What it competes with: Porsche Panamera, BMW 8 Series Gran Coupe, Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class

Pros: Looks and feels expensive, slick styling, tons of utility

Cons: Is expensive, competitors have sportier focus

From the editors:

Road Test Editor Zac Palmer — "I really dig the A7 and S7, even if the styling of this generation isn't as smooth and pretty as before. The powertrains are dynamite, and the interiors are large oases of luxury. You can have fun on a wide open back road in these cars, but also be luxuriously coddled on the way to the office. It's a best of both worlds situation."

In-depth analysis: 2020 Audi S7 Road Test | Sportback fans sign up here

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