Combining many of the attributes of a mini-van, and an SUV in a package not much larger than a traditional station wagon, automakers have been quick to jump onto the "Crossover" bandwagon.
Ford's offering in the genre is the Taurus X that comes in three trim levels, the SEL, the Limited and the top of the line Eddie Bauer.
The family resemblance is clearly visible from the three-bar horizontal front grille and high belt-line to the 17 or optional 18" alloy wheels. But the real story is the overall size as compared to a traditional SUV. The Taurus X is nearly 10 inches lower and 21 inches shorter than its full size big brother, the Ford Expedition. And it still offers seating for 6 or 7 adults.
There is one engine/transmission package available across the model line, a 3.5-Liter 263 horsepower V6 connected to a six-speed automatic transmission. Buyers can choose between the standard front wheel drive and optional all-wheel-drive that also comes with traction and electronic stability control on all models.
Braking for all models is provided by four-wheel discs with ABS.
The EPA notes that 16 MPG City/24 Highway can be expected for the FWD Taurus X with the AWD version delivering slightly less in each category.
Functionality is equally important on the inside as a feature shared by all models is the fold-down front passenger seat that, in combination with fold-flat second and third row seating allows for maximum flexibility of the available 85 plus cubic feet of cargo space.
A leather-wrapped, adjustable multi-function steering wheel is standard and such features as up-rated audio, leather trimmed seats, dual-zone climate control and power adjustable front row seats come on the upper trim levels.
Available as options are rear seat DVD entertainment and DVD-based Navigation systems.
MSRP for the Taurus X ranges from $26,615 for the SEL to $28,970 for the Eddie Bauer model and each comes with a 3 year/36,000 mile warranty.
If the thought of downsizing to a smaller vehicle and at the same time retaining 6 or 7 passenger convenience appeals to you, you may want to crossover to the Ford Taurus X.