9 Fastest SUV Under $40,000 (2022)

The way they are right now, SUVs are one of the most common vehicles of choice for family cars due to their comfortableness that comes at the expense of speed or, at the very least, cost if you’re trying to go for both.

Despite their bulky design and other shortcomings, fast SUVs such as Volvo, Acura, Lexus, and others are still fast.

Here are some choices of fastest SUVs under 40k that you can add to your reference list:

2021 Volvo XC40 (6.2 Seconds)

So, the first entry in the fastest SUV under $40,000 listing, Volvo’s 2021 XC40 model, definitely takes the cake. Out of all the SUVs listed in this article, it is cheaper, starting at $35,700.

And despite its relatively low price, its performance is nothing to scoff at when it comes to fast SUVs. Every XC40 comes equipped with a turbocharged 2.0-liter engine with a horsepower of up to 248hp for its T5 model.

2020 Volvo XC40 Lease

Due to this, it can reach 60mph in a measly 6.2 seconds, which is absurdly good for an SUV that’s more meant for comfort rather than speed.

The Volvo XC40 T5 does not win the most efficient fuel efficiency when it comes to this list. But it’s still one of the best fastest SUVs for under $40,000 due to its pros above.

2021 Acura RDX (6.6 Seconds)

The next SUV for the second spot lands at Acura’s 2021 RDX.

Though it is hard to compare to Volvo XC40 in the first place, Acura’s RDX model is still a great vehicle with great features at the cost of a steeper price than usual at $38,200.

Under the hood, every single one of Acura RDX comes with 272 horsepower charged 2.0-liter four-cylinder in them.

2021 Acura RDX Pictures

The Acura RDX reaches 60mph in 6.6 seconds, just 0.4 seconds of difference from Volvo’s XC40, which, again, is pretty decent and average for SUVs under $40,000, ensuring you fast travel through highways and cities.

As for its fuel efficiency, the RDX scores worse when it comes to MPG than Volvo XC40, with a score of 25mpg on highway tests.

2021 Lexus NX (6.9 Seconds)

Now, to be upfront, the 2021 Lexus NX is a bit of a downer when you compare it to both entries above. But, it’s also way cheaper too with it starting at $36,510.

New Lexus NX SUV Redesign & Improvement

But despite being cheaper, its 235-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine is more than enough for it.

The car’s engine can accelerate from 0-60mph in 6.9 seconds which is still very good for a bulky SUV like the 2021 Lexus NX.

Thankfully, it holds up quite well in fuel efficiency, with ratings of 22mpg for city driving and 28mpg for highway driving.

2021 Mazda CX-30 Turbo (5.8 Seconds)

Coming in at $30,050, the 2021 Mazda CX-30 is a beast when it comes to acceleration and speed. This is mainly due to its 2.5-liter I4 turbo pushing 250hp for the car to use.

Due to this turbo, the car’s acceleration reaches 60mph in just around 5.8 seconds, way league every other entry before it.

And as for its fuel economy, it scores an average of 25mpg combined, which is not bad but not mind-blowing either.

Overall, the Mazda CX-30 is one sexy speedster, but not much else aside from that.

2021 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring (6.1 Seconds)

While Mazda’s CX-30 trades many things at the cost of speed, Mazda CX-5 is the opposite. It’s not as quick as the one above, but it makes up in other areas while not lagging in the fastest SUV under $40,000 race.

Starting with its engine, it uses 187hp four-cylinder engine that allows it to reach 60mph in 6.1 seconds.

It’s also quite good fuel-economy-wise at 25mpg city-wise and 31mpg highway-wise.

So, if you’re looking for the sexy bodywork and fun experience of driving a Mazda while still being relatively fast for an SUV, the CX-5 Grand Touring got you covered at $30,560.

2021 BMW X1 (6.8 Seconds)

Fast and Practical. That’s what the 2021 BMW X1 is as an SUV. It’s not winning any award for design, but it makes up for it in speed and fuel economy with its engine.

The 228hp four-cylinder engine in this car allows it to reach 60mph in 6.8 seconds while maintaining good fuel economy at 24/33 mpg and 23/31 for both FWD and AWD, respectively.

As such, the BMW X1 is an excellent choice for $35,400.

2021 Ford Escape (7.7 Seconds)

If you’re looking for an SUV with outstanding fuel economy combined with respectable acceleration and speed, the 2021 Ford Escape is for you.

Starting at $24,900, the Ford Escape has a ton of trims and powertrains for you to choose from. Starting from two gasoline engines, a hybrid, and a plug-in hybrid.

The Escape cheapest model uses a turbocharged 1.5-liter three-cylinder engine that produces 181hp, translating into a 7.7 second in its 0-60 mph test.

2021 Mazda CX-9 (7.0 Seconds)

Luxurious, comfy, and fun to drive.

The 2021 Mazda CX-9 uses a standard turbocharged four-cylinder engine coming in at 231hp for its engine. Due to this, its 0-to-60 is still respectable at around 7.0 seconds that will be enough for most drivers.

Its fuel economy leaves something to be desired, but the main selling point of the CX-9 is the experience of driving one, and you can experience said thing starting at $34,160.

2021 Lincoln Corsair (6.0 Seconds)

The 2021 Corsair from Lincoln is a handsome and refined SUV that gets the job done for you.

Its 250-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four powerhouse allows it to reach 60mph in just 6 seconds and 22/30 mpg, respectively.

There aren’t as many bells and whistles that come with it unless you’re okay stepping out from the $35,945 model.

Though it still is a pretty great contender for one of the fastest SUVs.

Final Word

And that’s pretty much it for the fastest SUV under $40,000. There are many of them, so try not to feel too overwhelmed when you’re choosing your own to buy. If you’re on a budget that’s over 40K, I recommend checking out the Fastest SUV under $50,000, or if your budget is under $40,000, you can check the fastest SUV under $30,000.