Crossover SUVs are incredibly hot right now. Whether consumers are looking for a bare-bones affordable crossover or a high-end luxury one, the market is filled with attractive choices. With 35 luxury crossovers available today, eight luxury brands have a crossover SUV as the top-selling vehicle in their overall lineup.
Tip of the hat here to John D. Stoll of The Wall Street Journal for pointing this fact out. Here we take a look at each of the eight, along with our comments.
2016-2017 Acura RDX – With a long list of standard features – more than many competitors – the 2016-2017 Acura RDX small luxury crossover SUV offers strong acceleration, generous legroom and a commanding view for rear-seat passengers, impressive cargo room, and more. There’s only a single engine, the 279-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 engine, but fuel economy is now 23 mpg combined with front-wheel drive, 22 mpg combined with all-wheel drive. Year-to-date sales of the Acura RDX luxury crossover are 22,683. The 2017 Acura RDX starts at $35,370.
2016 Audi Q5 – A compact luxury crossover, the 2016 Audi Q5 boasts timeless elegance, high-quality construction, standard all-wheel drive and spacious seating. Rear seats recline and slide fore and aft, making for easier ingress and egress. Available in Premium, Premium Plus and Prestige, the Q5 pricing starts at $40,900. A separate model, the 2016 Audi Q5 hybrid, starts at $53,300.
2016-2017 Buick Encore – The Buick brand now has three crossover SUVs in its lineup: the 2016 Encore, 2016 Enclave and the all-new 2016 Envision. The 2016 Encore was by far the best-selling vehicle in the entire Buick lineup, accounting for nearly a third of the brand’s overall sales in 2015. Starting price for the 2016 Encore is $24,065.
The 2017 Buick Encore compact crossover SUV, introduced in March 2016, goes on sale this fall. Highlights include new design, the quiet cabin, top safety scores, good fuel economy and impressive list of safety and technology features, including new connectivity with available Apple CarPlay and Android Auto supported by a next-generation IntelliLink system with an 8-inch diagonal touch screen.
2016/2017 Cadillac XT5 – The outgoing 2016 Cadillac SRX luxury crossover has nothing on the all-new 2017 Cadillac XT5. Everything about the XT5 is new, including a unique chassis and structure. It’s also the first of four new crossovers to come from Cadillac. Lighter than the SRX by 278 pounds, the XT5 has 3.2 inches more rear seat legroom than the current SRX. Power comes from the new 310-horsepower 3.6-liter V6 engine that debuted on the ATS and CTS sports sedans and is also on the CT6. MSRP on the 2017 Cadillac XT5 starts at $38,995.
2016 Lexus RX – So far this year, the completely redesigned 2016 Lexus RX luxury crossover has sold 41,367 units. That’s up 12.6 percent over the 2015 YTD total of 37,046. There’s a lot to like about the changes Lexus made to the five-passenger midsize RX, and most of them are substantive. Interior space for passengers gets a boost, thanks to the increase in wheelbase and overall length, as well as increased ride height that makes for abundant head- and legroom in both rows of seating. The 2016 Lexus RX is available in regular and F Sport, as well as a hybrid version, the RX 450h. Pricing starts at $41,900, $52,235 for the hybrid.
2016 Lincoln MKX – The revamped midsize luxury crossover SUV from Lincoln, the 2016 MKX, is doing very well for the brand. In fact, it’s Lincoln’s best-selling vehicle, selling 2,794 units in May. That’s up 88 percent and marks Lincoln’s best SUV sales month of May since 2003. Comfortable and well-equipped, the 2016 MKX has a new turbocharged engine option and active suspension dampers on all-wheel drive versions. Although the MKX is still based on the, Lincoln has done an excellent job differentiating itself. Available in four trim levels, the 2016 Lincoln MKX pricing starts at $38,260.
2016 Porsche Cayenne – It’s been called “sporty and indulgent,” and the 2016 Porsche Cayenne might just be the best all-around luxury crossover on the market. Boasting the top-selling vehicle badge in 2015 with 6,691 sales, the Porsche Cayenne is currently in nearly a dead heat with the 2016 Macan for best-selling vehicle this year. We’ll have to see how it plays out later, but for now, it’s close. The Cayenne sold 6,777 units through the first five months of 2016. The Macan is just a bit higher at 6,907. Pricing for the 2016 Porsche Cayenne starts at $59,600 for the Cayenne, up to $159,600 for the Cayenne Turbo S.
2016 Volvo XC90 – Sporting a complete redesign, the 2016 Volvo XC90 midsize luxury crossover offers a pleasing design, simple uncluttered luxury, space for up to seven passengers, 85.7 cubic feet of cargo space, an EPA-estimated 26 mpg highway fuel economy (with the five-passenger T5 front-wheel drive), and a starting price of $43,950. There’s even a hybrid available.
Standard safety features include frontal collision protection with automatic braking – including a feature that automatically applies the brakes if the driver attempts to turn in front of another vehicle, such as in an intersection, and a rearview camera. The all-new 2016 XC90 also debuts run-off road protection. This safety feature automatically tightens the seatbelts if the crossover veers off the road, and the seat cushions absorb the impact forces from coming down hard on the suspension.