Gone are the days of the woody station wagon but the rumor that wagons are not popular or modern is definitely not true. Wagons today have style, practicality and performance built in and the finalists for the Autobytel 2012 Wagon of the Year all show their substance as people and cargo movers.
While many wagons have gone the way of the more popular crossover category, a few manufacturers still believe in the iconic American family car in the form of a wagon. Made to have people moving capacity and bonus cargo space with the comfort of a car, wagons today are stylish enough even for an executive to drive. Some wagons are even built for impressive performance driving while still remaining practical.
Read on to see which wagons made the top of the list for the Autobytel 2012 Wagon of the Year.
The winner of the Autobytel 2012 Wagon of the Year is a favorite among car enthusiasts including the iconic former head of General Motors, Bob Lutz. The 2012 Cadillac CTS Sport Wagon is a high performance estate from the American luxury car builder that combines refined aggressive styling with a very utilitarian layout with room for five full size passengers inside and up to 58 cubic feet worth of cargo capacity, with the second row seats folded flat. Cadillac offers the Sport Wagon in four distinct trim packages ranging from the Standard, to the Luxury, Performance and finally Premium.
Designed with the clean lines of the Cadillac CTS in mind, the more utilitarian CTS Sport Wagon is a luxurious solution to versatility. Featuring Glide-Up Touch-Screen Navigation with a full music management system and a rearview camera, the technology available in the 2012 Cadillac CTS Sport Wagon bring the people mover to the 21st Century. The sculpted profile of the CTS Sport Wagon is designed for athletic perfomrance with optional upgrades including AWD, steering-wheel mounted paddle shift controls and enhanced suspension and brakes for performance driving.
Coming is as a finalist for the Autobytel 2012 Wagon of the Year is the sporty 2012 Acura TSX Sport Wagon. The Acura TSX Sportwagon is a four door five passenger estate, which combines the Japanese luxury automaker’s build quality with sharp aggressive styling and a very functional layout that offers up to 60.5 cubic feet of cargo capacity with the second row folded flat. Estimated at 22 MPG in the city and as much as 30 MPG on the highway, the TSX Sport Wagon comes in on par with other members of this category with similar powerplants. Acura offers the entry-level TSX Sportwagon in just two trims: the $30,000 standard package that includes heated seats or the $34,810.00 Technology Package, which adds navigation system, voice commands, Bluetooth mobile-phone interface, the power hatchback and Acura’s 10-speaker ELS Surround-sound audio system.
Wagons are very popular in Europe and the 2012 Volkswagen Jetta Sportwagen brings sporty and refined Euro-wagon style to North American shores. Chosen as a finalist for the Autobytel 2012 Wagon of the Year, the Jetta Sportwagen melds a sports sedan with the versatility of a 5-door and, as Volkswagen says, with "Vroom to spare".
Reflecting the same new design theme of the rest of Volkswagen's latest offerings, the 2012 Volkswagen Jetta Sportwagen adds a fastback appearance to the horizontal lines. Inside, the wagon has an epic 66.9 cubic feet of cargo area with the rea seats folded flat. Bluetooth® connectivity is standard and the SE trim expands the sound system to 10 speakers with Media Device Interface. Of course, like the sedan counterpart, the Jetta Sportwagen gets either a 2.5-liter inline five-cylinder gasoline engine, or the highly-acclaimed, 50-state compliant 2.0-liter TDI® Clean Diesel which can get up to 42 mpg highway.
The editorial staff of Autobytel has chosen the previous three wagons as the best of what we have seen for 2012, and while there are many others in this class that probably deserve some kudos as well, we'd love to hear which one of the previous three you would choose for yourself.
Autobytel 2012 Compact Car of the Year
Autobytel 2012 Convertible of the Year
Autobytel 2012 Sedan of the Year
Autobytel 2012 Luxury Car of the Year
Autobytel 2012 SUV of the Year
Autobytel 2012 Luxury SUV of the Year
Autobytel 2012 Crossover of the Year
Autobytel 2012 Sports Car of the Year
Autobytel 2012 Alternative Fuel Car of the Year
Autobytel 2012 Pickup Truck of the Year
Autobytel 2012 Van/Minivan of the Year
Autobytel 2012 Wagon of the Year