Though wagons are no longer the stereotypical family car on American roads, today’s wagons are just as practical as the one you may have grown up with. Wagons can be more fun to drive, less expensive and offer more cargo space than comparable crossovers. If you’re considering a crossover, you should check out these wagon alternatives.
Volkswagen Tiguan vs. Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen
The Volkswagen Tiguan is a great small crossover. Car reviewers love that it provides sportier performance than most of its competitors. If you want more cargo room than the Tiguan provides, Volkswagen offers a great alternative, and you won’t need to leave the dealership. The Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen has more cargo space and a lower price tag than the Tiguan. The Jetta SportWagen has 32.8 cubic feet of cargo space behind its second row and 66.9 cubic feet of cargo space overall, while the Tiguan only has 23.8 cubic feet of cargo space behind its back seat and 56.1 cubic feet of total space.
Not only does the Jetta SportWagen get better gas mileage than the Tiguan, but it’s also available with a fuel-sipping TDI engine that gets up to 42 mpg on the highway. (The gas-only Tiguan gets 26 mpg on the highway.) Unless you need the Tiguan’s available all-wheel drive or want more horsepower, the Jetta SportWagen trumps the Tiguan when it comes to practicality, price and fuel economy.
Acura RDX vs. Acura TSX Sport Wagon
The Acura TSX Sport Wagon costs nearly $2,500 less than the Acura RDX, and its available cargo space trumps its counterpart’s. With three rear passengers, the TSX Sport Wagon has 31.5 cubic feet of cargo space, which is 5.4 cubic feet more than what the RDX offers with the rear seats in use. The TSX Sport Wagon also offers more cargo room when the rear seats are folded: 66.2 cubic feet, compared with the 61.3 cubic feet the RDX offers with the second row folded down.
Though the TSX Sport Wagon is the better choice if cargo room is your main concern, car writers prefer the RDX’s smooth, 273-horsepower, V6 engine over the TSX Sport Wagon’s 201-horsepower, four-cylinder engine.
Subaru XV Crosstrek vs. Subaru Outback
The Subaru Outback is one of the larger wagons you can buy, and its standard all-wheel drive causes many potential buyers to cross-shop it with crossovers. The all-new Subaru XV Crosstrek also has standard all-wheel drive and is a great alternative to the Outback. The Outback has a starting price of almost $23,500, and the XV Crosstrek starts at almost $22,000. The XV Crosstrek’s gas mileage is better than the Outback’s. It gets an EPA-estimated 25/33 mpg city/highway with an automatic transmission and four-cylinder engine, while the Outback gets 24/30 mpg city/highway with the four-cylinder engine and automatic.
When it comes to cargo capacity, the XV Crosstrek has a maximum 51.94 cubic feet of space, while the Outback has 71.3 cubic feet. If cargo space is a priority, the Outback is the clear choice, but the new XV Crosstrek has a lot of pros when compared to the Outback.
Cadillac SRX vs. Cadillac CTS Sport Wagon
Both the Cadillac CTS Sport Wagon and Cadillac SRX crossover offer luxurious interiors and rewarding drives. When you compare the two, the SRX does offer more cargo space, with a maximum of 61.1 cubic feet of cargo space, while the CTS Sport Wagon only has 58 cubic feet. As for fuel economy, the SRX gets 17/24 mpg with rear-wheel drive, while the CTS Sport Wagon gets up to 18/26 mpg city/highway. The SRX is less expensive and starts at about $37,000, while the CTS Sport Wagon starts at about $39,000.
In terms of cargo space and gas mileage, the SRX manages to run neck-and-neck with its wagon brand mate. However, if you’re looking for the best combination of sports-car performance and utility, the Cadillac CTS-V Wagon will have you covered. With a starting price of about $64,500, the CTS-V Wagon’s price is in luxury sports car range, but its 556-horsepower, supercharged V8 will make any grocery run or car pool trip fun.