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Vehicle Roundup: 3 of the Funkiest Crossovers on the Market Now

The newest wave of subcompact SUVs is tailored to the young and urban

Silver Ford Ecosport glistening in late afternoon light parked beside cobblestone sidewalk

There was a time not too long ago when most SUVs were gas-guzzling behemoths. Not anymore. A new era of subcompact SUVs—or crossovers—is upon us. Built on the same platforms as sedans, these vehicles are fuel efficient, loaded with technology and offer enough space for a modest Ikea run—a mix carmakers hope will be intoxicating to Canadian millennials. Here are three of the most distinctive of these pint-sized SUVs.

The Space Saver: Hyundai Kona

Base price: $20,999

Engine: 2.0-L V4 with 147 hp

Fuel economy: 8.6 L per 100 km city, 7.0 L per 100 km highway

Lime green Hyundai Kona with surfboard on roof rack parked on grass

How small is the Kona? At 4,165 millimetres from bumper to bumper, it’s about half a metre shorter than a Honda Civic. Still, 60-40 fold-down seats and the Kona’s extra height make it more versatile than your average subcompact. The Kona is also packed with all the tech a millennial could ask for: Bluetooth, a rear-view camera, and Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are all standard. High-end models come with a head-up display and a touch screen infotainment system with navigation. Hyundai is even planning an electric version of the Kona capable of travelling more than 400 kilometres on a charge.

The Thrifty Pick: Nissan Kicks

Base price: $17,998

Engine: 1.6-L V4 with 125 hp

Fuel economy: 7.7 L per 100 km city, 6.6 L per 100 km highway

Red Nissan Kicks crossover parked in front of high rise buildings

The Kicks and Kona are seemingly cut from the same cloth: not only are their names similar, but they both also have two-tone paint jobs and they’re heavy on technology. (The top-end Kicks has Bose headphones built into the front headrests.) The Kicks boasts great fuel economy, though its relatively small engine puts out fewer horses than other vehicles in this category. Storage space is strong for a car this small—Nissan says you get 915 litres—and some advanced safety features, like automatic braking, come standard. 

The WiFi Enabled: Ford EcoSport

Base price: $20,985

Engine: 1.0-L V3 with 123 hp

Fuel economy: 8.6 L per 100 km city, 8.1 L per 100 km highway

Dark blue Ford EcoSport crossover sedan speeding down freeway

While the base EcoSport comes with a teeny three-cylinder engine, the powerplant is turbocharged, giving the vehicle decent pep. If you want more power, you can upgrade to a 2.0-litre four-cylinder. Like its competitors, Ford has loaded the EcoSport with in-vehicle tech—a WiFi hot spot for up to 10 devices is available on most models. (Ford says you can still get a signal up to 50 feet away from the vehicle.) Through a Ford app, you can also remotely start the EcoSport, lock and unlock it, and check your fuel level.

Looking for more on the latest SUVs and crossovers?

Find out which vehicle is the bestselling PHEV SUV, see how Ford has updated its SUV lineup for 2018 and check out our review of the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek.

Plus, discover how auto insurance from CAA can help protect your SUV lifestyle.

Image credit: Courtesy of manufacturers