Choosing a luxury crossover

As Labor Day weekend approaches, many dealers will be offering incentives on 2010 models in order to make way for the new 2011 stock. That means that late-model 2010 vehicles will soon be hitting the used car market.

Crossovers are a popular vehicle among those shopping for used autos, and most companies now offer multiple crossover models. The mix of an SUV’s utility with the fuel economy and drivetrain of a smaller passenger vehicle has enticed a number of buyers.

Drivers shopping for a crossover will probably be looking at used Hondas, Fords and Nissans, among other brands. Yet because drivers are shopping on the used car market, they might opt to step up into a luxury crossover.

There are a number of luxury crossovers, but recently listed a few of the better ones on the market. The Acura MDX, Buick Enclave and Lincoln MKT all have their fair share of followers, but the news source broke down the cars feature by feature.

In terms of price, buyers will find the Enclave as the cheapest of the three, with the MDX and MKT slightly higher. Yet the MDX and MKT both offer all-wheel drive, while the Enclave only has front-wheel drive.

The MKT blew away the competition in the horsepower department, with a turbocharged V6 engine and reactive transmission. The MKT’s handling was also praised.

However, the news source named the MDX as the best-handling vehicle, calling its ride experience “flat-out fun.” The MDX also won points for its recently redesigned exterior styling.

While all three models sport large interiors with three full rows of seats that fit seven passengers, they differed in cargo space, legroom and headroom. The Enclave took the cake on these fronts, with the roomiest experience. In the end, the website preferred the Enclave because of its cheaper price but competitive features.

Yet these aren’t the only three luxury crossovers in the game. Those looking for used autos will find options from several other manufacturers in regard to the luxury crossover, many of which can be found for quite a bit cheaper than the MDX, Enclave and MKT.

U.S News and World Report ranked Nissan’s Infiniti EX as the top crossover in the segment, beating out a host of other vehicles. Although the car’s engine may not be as powerful as some of it’s competitors and its interior is a bit more constrained, the car took top marks in safety features for around $35,000 new. A used Nissan Infiniti EX could most likely be found for quite a bit cheaper.

Mercedes-Benz offers two options for luxury crossovers. The company has the slightly smaller GLK-Class, which also retails in the $30,000 range, or the more expensive but also more spacious R-Class. The two models are considered to be top of the line in terms of engines, and come with the added prestige of the Mercedes name.

Finally, drivers should consider a used BMW X3 and X5. If buyers don’t need the extra space, the X3 offers great safety features and sporty handling. Those who want a slightly larger vehicle can instead opt for the X5, another solid choice for a crossover.