As early as just a few years ago, everyone was rushing out to purchase a full-size SUV. “The bigger, the better,” many people thought. Well time changes, and so do people’s tastes. While monstrous cars like Suburbans and Explorers are still popular, these days it’s all about getting back in touch with the road. So why are crossovers becoming so popular?

  • More connection with the road

Simply put, SUVs are too big. Built with the same body-on-frame style as pick up trucks, full-size SUVs are better suited for heavy duty towing than everyday driving. Even the best luxury SUV will offer extremely inefficient fuel economy because full-size SUVs tend to weigh more than your average car.

Crossovers are pretty much the opposite and offer the following advantages:

  • The overall design is more similar to a car platform
  • Lighter weight means better fuel economy
  • Smaller size means increased agility and responsiveness

All of these things result in an overall better connection with the road. Crossovers handle like cars because they are built like them, but you don’t sacrifice much of the space offered by SUVs.

  • Smaller with all of the same utility

Crossovers are the perfect blend of SUV utility with the handling and feel of a regular car. People often refer to crossovers as compact SUVs because of their small size and ample storage. The average SUV ranges from 198 inches (2017 Ford Explorer) to 224 inches (2016 Chevy Suburban) in length. Crossovers certainly take a more moderate approach to size with the 2017 Audi Q3 coming in at 173 inches in length. Despite being a full 25 inches smaller than the 2017 Ford Explorer, the Q3 still has 16.71 cu.ft. of cargo space.

There’s even evidence that customers are even beginning to choose crossovers over traditional sedans.

  • Crossovers are safer than SUVs

There are plenty of advantages to an SUV, like towing capacity and increased cargo space, but when it comes to safety, SUVs fall a little short in comparison.

Bigger isn’t always better in terms of crash safety. People often assume SUVs are the safest cars on the road due to their size; however, because they are built like trucks, full-size SUVs actually lack a substantial crumple zone. Crumple zones are typically at the front and rear of a car to absorb energy during a collision and keep the driver safer.

Luxury car manufacturers are leaping onto the crossover bandwagon.

Every car manufacturer has some form of SUV on the market. Audi’s Q series features a wide array of luxury mid-to-full-size crossovers like the 2016 Q7, 2016 Q3, and 2016 Q5.

In the 2016 Audi Q7, you’ll be hitting the road with a full 14.8 cubic feet of cargo space and spacious seating for up to seven. The Q7 is built with lightness in mind so you can have the handling and lively performance you dream of.

Earlier, we talked about the 2016 Audi Q3’s dimensions and impressive cargo space, but where does it stand in terms of performance? Crossovers may be built to handle more like cars, but with Audi’s legendary quattro® all-wheel drive system, you get maximum traction even on the slipperiest surfaces. Did we mention the fuel economy? In the Q3 you can achieve an impressive 29 highway mpg.

As an IIHS Top Safety Pick+ for 2016 when equipped with the available Driver Assistance package, the Audi Q5 has it all. Offering 29.1 cubic feet of cargo space, seating for up to eight people, plus an available Wi-Fi hotspot with 4G LTE connectivity, your crossover will quickly become the go to roadtrip vehicle among your friends.