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Roomy and Powerful: 2011 Honda Accord Crosstour

How often have you wondered ‑ What if my car could have extra room, or my SUV could be more fuel-efficient and easier to handle specially in traffic or city driving? Well the answer lies in Honda’s new offering, writes our automotive editor Sally Miller Wyatt.

(Above): Exterior view of the 2011 Honda Accord Crosstour.

Honda certainly has a loyal following when it comes to their best-selling sedan, the Accord. It’s hard to fault a vehicle that has been around for so long and has so many happy owners.

But, I’d venture there are a few loyal Accord owners who wished they could have just a bit more when it comes to owning a sedan. Like, when you’re at the garden supply store and need to haul some fence boards home. Is that the time you wish you could trade in your trusty sedan for a truck or sport utility vehicle? Well, here’s an answer to your wishes: the 2011 Honda Accord Crosstour. It’s based on the sedan platform, but has aspects of an SUV.

The Accord Crosstour starts with the all-too-familiar Accord V-6 sedan, and then blends in a few features that now resemble some of the better attributes of a sport utility, such as greater cargo space and fast-changing seating solutions.

On the exterior, you see the familiar lines of the Accord from the front of the car. But, as you move around to the sides and rear, you see that it has morphed into the longer lines of something else. Poke around on the interior and you’ll find under-floor storage in the rear of the vehicle and reversible cargo floor panels for those times when you have to transport muddy sporting equipment or plants from the nursery. The cargo area is also easily accessed by a low lift-over height, a wide opening and tailgate that lifts high. And those rear seats can quickly fold flat – in a 60/40 configuration – with the flip of a lever in the rear cargo area, to open up the rear area as wide as you may need it to be. And it passed our garden supply store test with flying colors, as we hauled home fence boards, paving stones, bags of cement and mulch without any problem at all.

(Above): Exterior view of the 2011 Honda Accord Crosstour.

The Honda Accord Crosstour is available in two trim levels, the EX and EX-L. The EX offers dual-zone automatic air conditioning with second row ventilation. This really adds to the comfort factor for those who must always ride in the back. Also standard on the EX is a 360-watt AM/FM, six-disc audio system with seven speakers; 17-inch aluminum wheels; cruise control; moonroof; auto up/down driver and front passenger side windows; rear privacy glass; steering wheel controls; compass and outside temperature indicator; fog lights; and chrome door handles.

We test drove the EX-L which had as upgrades leather interior, heated from seats, automatic day/night dimming rearview mirror, 18-inch aluminum wheels, memory driver-side seats, memory side view mirrors with a tilting feature when you put the car in reverse, a cargo privacy cover and USB audio interface, to name a few.

You can also add Real Time AWD and a Navigation System, if so desired.

(Above): Interior view of the 2011 Honda Accord Crosstour.

There are lots of safety features on board, as well, including Honda’s ACE body structure for enhanced passenger safety, Vehicle Stability Assist, anti-lock brakes with electronic brake distribution and brake assist, side curtain air bags with a rollover sensors, as well as a host of other air bags, and active front head restraints.

Designers have altered the dashboard a bit, to put the more-used controls closer to the driver, and less-used ones on the right side of the control stack.

(Above): Interior view of the 2011 Honda Accord Crosstour.

On the road, I found the Honda Accord Crosstour offered a smooth, quiet ride. Steering was quick and effortless, as was acceleration. Visibility is good to the front and sides, but a smallish rear window does restrict rear visibility, however. The rear seat is great for two passengers, a bit on the tight side for three.

Gas mileage is not bad, with a rating of 18 for city driving and 27 for highway driving.

I did like the Honda Accord Crosstour’s versatility, packed on a sedan frame. It goes a long way in offering you the best of both worlds, when it comes to comfort and functionality.

Sally Miller Wyatt is a freelance writer who writes family-oriented auto reviews for newspapers, magazines and the Web.


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