2010 Honda Crosstour: Crossover Cross-shopping
December 20, 2010
I drove the Crosstour for the first extended time this past weekend. Not just a lunch time errand or a commute home late night and back early in the morning. But all weekend, holiday shopping running out to dinner and the movies kind of weekend driving.
Ok, I'm going to say it right out: I think this thing is hideously butt-ugly. Now that we're past that, I think this is a pretty solid choice vehicle. Here's why:
My primary interest in the Crosstour is that I've been thinking of a vehicle like this for my future. I love trucks, but seeing how gas prices are climbing back up, I'm hesitant to drop a good amount of money on a vehicle that chugs gas at $4 a gallon (future forecast price for arguments sake and yes, Southern California gas prices are just that ridiculous). For most of the outdoorsy stuff I do, it would require a above average clearance, a capable AWD system, and flexible cargo capacity. That means my choices boil down to that fact I'd want the light truck capability but in a more reasonable gas efficient vehicle. Simply put, a crossover.
Most of the cute-ute crossovers don't do much for me. That puts the wagon-like crossover options front and center for my considerations. Keeping all this in mind, I closely paid attention to what the Crosstour had to offer this past weekend.
First off, I thought that the 271-horsepower 3.5-liter i-VTEC V6 was pretty awesome. Tons of power when you needed it, not a lot of lag when you stab the gas pedal, and the G-logic transmission management system kept the engine power right in the sweet spot for active driving without hunting for another gear.
With all the rain dumping on LA these last few days, the pot holes were opening up all over the place. The Crosstours ride was compliant enough to manage all the bumps and bangs with a great amount of comfort. I'd agree with Erin Riches that the interior is incredibly quite. I was very surprised by the Crosstours level of ride refinement.
While the button waterfall center console was a bit much for me, the overall interior is really quite nice in my opinion. I know many of the Editors had issues with the build quality, but maybe those pieces were snapped/glued back into place before I got there because I didn't notice them. Contrary to many of the other Editors on staff, I found the seats very comfortable. As added bonuses there were plenty of thoughtful touches throughout, like the automatic activation of the rear wiper when putting the car into reverse (when your windshield wipers are on). Overall I felt the Crosstour is a solid, comfortable and city capable vehicle.
I say city capable because of the optional real-time 4WD is a simple mechanical system that lacks locking differentials, computer optimization, and front/rear torque vectoring. This kind of system would work for inclement weather, but I worry about it's effectiveness for off-roading. It seems the Crosstour has focused me onto the Subaru line with it's capable asymmetrical AWD system.
Would I buy the Crosstour? Honestly, probably not. The price point, the simple AWD system and the overall exterior styling are probably deal killers for me. Is it a bad car? No. I think it's a good car. Just not a great car for me.
Scott Jacobs, Senior Photographer