2010 TOYOTA 4RUNNER
The fifth-generation 4Runner is taller, wider and longer than the vehicle it replaces, and it retains its body-on-frame construction for off-road ruggedness. In a return to its roots, the new 4Runner will offer a 4-cylinder engine (2.7 liters, 157 horsepower), though only on the basic SR5 4×2 model
Most 4Runners will be powered by a 270 hp 4.0 liter V6. The V8 engine from last year’s 4Runner has been dropped. Model offerings include SR5, Limited, and a new Trail model specially designed for off-road performance. The 4Runner Trail offers Crawl Control and Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System, both of which, until now, were exclusive to Toyota’s top-of-the-line off-roader, the Land Cruiser.
Everything’s very solid and buttoned down for the interior. Switches and knobs are in the right places, and operate with authority. Technologically speaking, it’s possible to load down 4Runner with a ton of state of the art, near luxury features, including dual zone air conditioning, DVD-based navigation, reverse camera, BlueTooth, keyless ignition, leather seating surfaces (SR5 and Limited only), and a third row of seating.
2010 HONDA ACCORD CROSSTOUR
The Accord Crosstour is a new BMW X6-style fastback SUV similar in shape to the Acura ZDX. (Acura is a division of Honda), the Crosstour offers a car-like driving experience with the all-weather performance of a vehicle.
It rides the same 110.2″ wheelbase, although its bulky body makes it slightly longer and wider and significantly taller. Up front, the Crosstour wears a bulbous version of the Accord’s grille; out back there’s a swoopy Saab-like tailgate that opens from the back edge of the roof all the way down to the bumper, creating a yawning chasm for cargo.
The Crosstour is powered by a 271 hp 3.5 liter V6 tied to a 5-speed automatic transmission. It’s a lovely engine that runs smoothly and quietly at low speeds and gives off a racy snarl at full throttle.
The Crosstour’s dashboard is nearly identical to that of the plain sedan Accord, although the view out over the hood makes the Crosstour feel a great deal wider.