Crossovers are some of the hottest vehicles on the market today. With the popularity of full-sized SUV s declining in direct proportion to the rising cost of fuel, crossovers are a great way to either downsize from that SUV or upgrade from a sedan. However, with a dizzying array of makes and models to choose from, buying a crossover can feel a little intimidating at first. The good news is it doesn’t have to be. Before investing in a crossover, these are five things you need to know:
Crossovers are more like cars than like SUVs
An SUV has a body-on-frame construction and is built on a truck platform. A crossover has a unibody construction and is based on a car platform. This means not only are crossovers more comfortable than SUVs, but they also handle and perform like cars, as opposed to trucks. This makes crossovers highly desirable for sedan drivers who want more space, but who don’t want to feel like they’re driving a truck.
Crossovers get better gas mileage than traditional SUVs
That statement might seem obvious, but what isn’t obvious is not all crossovers get the same range of gas mileage. Crossovers with larger engines and with AWD (all-wheel drive) can get as low as 19mpg in the city while hybrid crossovers can get up to 32mpg on the highway. Hybrids are a great way to combine both power and fuel economy but in order to save at the pump, you may have to pay a higher price at the dealership.
Crossovers offer third row seating…
…but that seating is not always so comfortable. Third row seating is a big part of what separates crossovers from sedans and other cars. The ability to carry large families – or the entire basketball team – is one of the reasons crossovers are so popular. However, the third row is often awkward to get to, with either folding or sliding second row seats that must be moved first. The third row also tends to be a tight squeeze for adults, but is ideal for kids.
Crossovers are versatile
While you won’t be rock crawling or doing serious off-roading with a crossover, you can still get performance and features you won’t get from an average sedan. Most crossovers have an AWD option and some models still have a respectable towing capacity, which means you can still easily tow your boat to the lake. In addition to AWD and towing capacity, crossovers have a variety of popular options to choose from, such as high-end electronics and fold-down seats. The main thing to keep in mind is that crossovers vary widely depending on the make and model, so chances are there’s a model just right for your specific needs.
Crossovers are stylish AND affordable
There’s a reason crossovers have made the boxy and matronly-looking minivans nearly extinct. Crossovers are designed to look and feel like stylish cars, while still doing the work of a larger vehicle. The pricing for some base models starts as low as around $16,000. Depending on the options added this will, of course, go up somewhat – but not as much as you might think. There are several factors that keep the overall pricing for crossovers down including:
- Lower manufacturing costs. The crossover’s unibody frame is less expensive to manufacture because it is all one piece. The manufacturer also saves money by using drive trains and styling elements from other vehicles in the product line.
- A la carte options. Usually dealers offer bundled option packages for cars and SUVs. Crossovers, on the other hand, are easy and less expensive to customize. Because options are available al a carte, you only pay for the options you want rather than for a bundle you don’t really need.
- A competitive market. Because there are so many quality crossover vehicles available, the market is highly competitive. This keeps prices down, making it easier than ever to afford a crossover.
Of course, there are high-end crossovers available upwards of $80,000 for those who are inclined, but most popular makes and models are in the $20,000 to $30,000 range.
With car-like handling, SUV-like roominess and great gas mileage – as well as affordable pricing – there isn’t really a reason not to drive a crossover. And if you have just purchased a cross-over like a Volvo, which you’ve chosen to repair here is a place to buy Volvo parts online.
This post was written and contributed by Edson Farnell. Edson writes about various automotive topics. Many of Edson’s friends refer to him as the Auto Parts Geek.