A red 2020 Toyota Highlander for sale is shown parked on a city street.

8 Signs a Crossover SUV is Right for You

If you’re like many drivers, you might develop a certain loyalty to a specific type of car. You might be a brand loyalist, or you might just love a certain body style. Making the jump to a new kind of car can feel intimidating or even make you feel not quite yourself. So, if you feel you’ve outgrown your smaller car–like your sedan or your mini–even doing preliminary research on something bigger can feel odd. You’ve always been a sedan person, or maybe you’ve always been a mini person, and doing an online search for something like a Toyota Highlander for sale can feel like you’re disrespecting your roots–your sedan-members-only club. Plus, driving a new style of car can take some getting used to. It’s no wonder so many drivers stick to the same type of car for years and decades on end. However, if you know your small vehicle is no longer serving you and you’re looking to graduate to a bigger class, you might want to check out a crossover SUV. Here are signs one might be perfect for you.

You Disdain SUVs

Transitioning from a sedan to a larger car can feel difficult, especially if you don’t like SUVs. No judgment–they’re not for everybody. Maybe you see full-size SUVs and think, “Ugh. You’re taking up too much room on the road,” or “What a gas guzzler.” Maybe you have bad memories of being in the backseat of the SUV during carpool as a kid. If you shudder at just the thought of driving an SUV but have outgrown your sedan, then you should consider a crossover SUV.

You Want to Park with Ease

You pull off a lot of six-point (or more) turns to get in and out of tight parking spots. You live somewhere where finding a parking spot is like finding a pot of gold. You never want to be held back by a massive car with a limited turning radius that feels impossible to see around. But, again, you need more space. A crossover SUV will still feel easy to park, similar to a sedan. They do offer more interior space than your sedan, but their dimensions aren’t so massive that they’re difficult to manuever. So if you can’t stand the idea of asking someone to spot you while you back a massive vehicle into a spot, stick to a crossover.

You Want Space but Not Bulkiness

You need interior space, but you don’t want to take up too much space. Some people don’t feel comfortable maneuvering a huge car with a massive curb weight and oversized dimensions. It can leave you feeling like you don’t have control over the car and for some, it simply feels unstable. If quarters have gotten too tight in your smaller vehicle, you should upgrade to a crossover SUV. You’ll really feel the difference on the inside as far as passenger comfort goes, but you won’t feel much of a difference as a driver–in a good way.

You Like a Sedan’s Driving Position

You don’t want a really high driving position. While some people like that about an SUV, some do not. Sitting that high up leaves some feeling disconnected from the ground. And, hey, some drivers just don’t like climbing into such a tall car. If you’ve always driven a sedan, then you’ve grown accustomed to a certain driving height, and you don’t have to change that now, just because you need more space. Crossover SUVs have driving heights that tend to resemble those of sedans more so than full-size SUVs. You won’t feel like you need a small ladder just to get into your car.

A red 2021 Mazda CX-30 is shown from the rear on a trail.

You Cover a Lot Of Ground

Types of ground, that is. If your spirit has become more adventurous than your car can handle, you might feel stuck. Planning that weekend in the mountains or in the woods means asking someone else to drive because your little sedan can’t handle it. It gets stuck in the mud, skids on the snow, and just isn’t safe for where you want to go. If you’re ready to have a car that can handle your adventures but you don’t want something that looks and feels like a monster truck, a crossover SUV could be a good fit for you. Many have all-wheel drive and can adapt to a variety of roads, but they also handle just fine on paved roads and highways.

You Need To Save On Gas

For some, a major concern of upgrading to a larger car is the gas price. You’ve heard the horror stories. Even when gas prices were bad, it wasn’t that bad for you because you had a small car. Meanwhile, your friend with the pickup would tell you what their gas cost, and it was more than you spend on food in a month. You don’t want that, so you don’t want a full-size SUV. The great news is that a lot of crossover SUVs get good mileage. Some of the crossover SUVs with the best mileage see an average MPG in the 30s.

You Need Something Stylish

If you need a car that looks sophisticated and professional for your work, you can feel limited to smaller vehicles. Many feel that large vehicles are synonymous with commercial vehicles or even just plain ugly vehicles. If you still want sleek body lines and an elegant profile, you might not know where to go beyond a sedan, but many crossover SUVs actually look quite stylish. In fact, there’s an entire market of luxury crossover SUVs that look even more upscale than many sedans. So if you aren’t ready to take on a car that looks purely utilitarian, consider a crossover SUV.

You Want Something Hybrid

Maybe you have your eye on a hybrid or plug-in vehicle. Unfortunately, the market for hybrid or electric full-size SUVs is incredibly limited. There are many in the mid-size variety, but not the full-size. The truth is that the world of massive cars and hybrid or electric cars don’t have much overlap for now, but there are a ton of hybrid crossover SUVs. You can have some fun shopping around in this category. Many of the top names offer something of this variety.

A red 2022 Kia Sorento Hybrid is shown driving on a mountain road.

An Easy Transition

The crossover SUV was practically made for sedan loyalists who have to face the music that their car is just too small for them now. A lot of people just don’t like full-size SUVs. They want to drive a car that feels easy to handle, and they don’t want to take up tons of space on the road. They want to be able to continue to park with ease, even in crowded cities, and they don’t want to spend too much on gas. That’s why the crossover SUV was invented. It feels and drives like a car, but it clearly has much more space than a sedan, so passengers can feel more comfortable on long rides, and you can have more space for your stuff. The behind-the-wheel experience barely varies from that of a sedan, so you can release any anxiety you have around upgrading to a larger vehicle. Thanks to crossover SUVs, the transition can be painless.