One has to wonder if Honda's vaunted packaging engineers were out to lunch the day this design came through their office. The major oversight with the Crosstour is the way the rear-struts poke into the rear cargo hold. The similarly sized Toyota Venza also uses struts in back, but somehow avoids such sacrifices in interior space. This design flaw, along with the sloping profile puts the Crosstour at a huge utility disadvantage compared to the Toyota.
Thankfully, the engineers in charge of driving dynamics ate at their desks and then went to work making the big hatchback go down the road almost as gracefully as the Accord on which its based. As Jen noted, the steering is quick and precise. The silky smooth V-6 and strong brakes likewise never give the impression that they were designed for a lighter, smaller car, as so often feels the case in car-based crossovers. Of course, the Crosstour isn't an S2000, and it understeers at the first sign of aggressive driving. But for most average drivers, the transition from mid-size sedan to tall hatchback will seem completely seamless.
Honda also did a good job upgrading the interior so that even at our test car's $36,220 sticker, it doesn't feel like merely an expensive Accord. The high-brow Berber carpeting, soft-touch, tastefully grained dash, and upscale, if somewhat busy center console are all live up to the premium pricing, and are a marked contrast to the Tupperware plastics one finds inside the Venza.
David Zenlea, Assistant Editor