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Best and worst crossovers 2016

  • What Car?'s top five crossovers
  • and our least favourite
  • Find out which ones to go for
Words ByWhat Car? Staff

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Crossovers are SUV styled cars available in two-wheel drive and which aim to blur the boundries between SUV and coupes, superminis, small family cars and family cars.

They range from the relatively small, like the Skoda Yeti to bigger jobs like the Volvo XC60.

The best of the best
Peugeot 3008
Our top crossover is also our reigning 2010 Car of the Year the Peugeot 3008.

It's a superb family car. The cabin materials and design are lovely. Up front there's an aircraft cockpit-style feel, with a high centre console that sweeps between the driver and passenger, while the back seats are easy to fold.

Kneeroom might be a wee bit tight, but there's plenty of head and shoulder room and the boot is a good size and flexible, too. A split tailgate provides a great perch, while the split-level floor means you can keep the mucky puppies separate from the rest of your gear.

It's a great car to live with, then, and our pick of the range comes with a cracking petrol engine. It's responsive, smooth, provides excellent performance and the economy is brilliant.

Sport trim also brings better handling so this 3008 is fine on the motorway and fun on B-roads, even if a touch more feel through the steering would be welcome.
What Car? pick of the Peugeot 3008 range - 1.6 THP 150 Sport

The best of the rest
Volvo XC60
The Volvo is a real smooth operator with an incredibly comfortable ride and awesome refinement.

Long-distance cruising ability is second to none in the class, while build quality and cabin design are also highly appealing.

The seats are extremely comfortable, in the front or the back, while the boot is a good size and well shaped.

Safety, of course, also comes high up on the agenda with any Volvo. Besides excellent crash protection, the entire XC60 range is fitted with the City Safety feature which automatically brakes the car to avoid low-speed rear-end shunts.
What Car? pick of the Volvo XC60 range - 2.0 D3 DRIVe SE

Nissan Qashqai
This is one of the cars that helped to kick off the whole crossover movement.

It replaced the rather uninspiring Almera small family car and won the hearts of buyers with its flexible cabin, raised ride height, chunky styling and friendly road manners.

Affordable, and with strong residuals, the Nissan is also well-equipped.
What Car? pick of the Nissan Qashqai range - 1.6 Visia

Skoda Yeti
A funny name, and a bit of a funny looker, but you'll also be laughing when you go for a drive the Yeti knows how to handle itself.

The steering is sharp, the body doesn't flop about through the corners and there's a lot more grip than you might think.

The cabin and boot also provide plenty of space for passengers and their luggage. The second-row seats tumble forward and can be removed, although they are a little cumbersome.

The Skoda also scores on value for money, however, with reasonable prices, decent equipment levels and day-to-day running costs that don't cripple.
What Car? pick of the Skoda Yeti range - 1.2 TSI S

Volkswagen Tiguan
Smart, refined, comfortable and good to drive, the Tiguan is another great package.

The cabin's got plenty of space and the rear bench slides back and forward, although in the rearmost position it barely leaves any boot space.

The Tiguan is solidly built and, while it may be a little more expensive than most of our other top five crossovers, residual values are strong so it's a decent investment.
What Car? pick of the Volkswagen Tiguan range - 2.0 TDI 140 Bluemotion Technology Match

The not-as-hot
Toyota's Urban Cruiser looks fairly quirky from the outside, but the cabin is a dreary and it's just too expensive for the size of car it is.

Kia's Soul is another striking-looking car, with lots of kit, but the ride and handling are below par, and it's too noisy.

The big Ssangyong Kyron is okay off-road. Besides that and lots of equipment there's not much to recommend the car, which is cumbersome, noisy and has terrible residual values.