Enthusiasts have known it for years — wagons are awesome. When done right, wagons deliver dynamic handling, practical cargo space, and dare we say, great looks. And while the United States is currently in the middle of a crossover boom, buyers looking for a wagon have a bunch of great choices.
Notice we didn’t say “traditional station wagon?” That’s because these cars are light years away from the boat-like people movers of the past.
So if crossovers or SUVs leave you cold, and you’re in the market for something that can both tackle a twisty road and a conquer a Costco run, take a look at our list of cool 2018 wagons. Regardless of your budget, your local AutoNation dealer will help you find something you’ll love!
Volkswagen Golf Sportwagen S 4Motion
Starting at $24,785*
170 horsepower, 30.4 cubic-feet cargo space with seats in place, 66.5 cubic-feet with seats folded
22 city / 31 highway**
One of the qualities which has long distinguished Volkswagen is the ability to deliver cars which possess German driving dynamics at a price which won’t break the bank. In his review, our resident hot shoe Mike Musto had nothing but praise for the Golf Sportwagen he tested, calling it “a true beauty,” and stating “it’s not only fun to drive, but provides value, sport, and all-weather performance beautifully.” Keep in mind this is a guy who recently ran hot laps in the ferocious 2019 Corvette ZR1 at Road Atlanta — so that’s saying something. Head to the official VW site for more details.
Starting at $25,895*
175 horsepower, 35.5 cubic-feet cargo space with seats in place, 73.3 cubic-feet with seats folded
EPA estimated MPG: 25 city / 32 highway**
It’d be impossible to make a list of cool wagons without including the venerable Subaru Outback. In areas of the country used to inclement weather, the model named after Australia’s notoriously hostile terrain is a reliable mainstay. Go-anywhere ground clearance and impressively generous cargo space mean it makes a willing partner for all your weekend adventures, but those looking for a little more pep will want to opt for the 3.6-liter flat-six, as its 256 horsepower provides a welcome jump in performance over the base model’s 2.5-liter unit. Head to the official Subaru site for more details.
Buick Regal Tourx
Starting at $29,070*
250 horsepower, 32.7 cubic-feet cargo space with seats in place, 73.5 cubic-feet with seats folded
EPA estimated MPG: 21 city / 29 highway**
Don’t let the Buick badge on the front fool you — this versatile, attractive wagon is just as European as some of the other models on this list. The Regal Tourx was engineered by Opel, the German wing of parent company General Motors, and it’s built in the land of the autobahn. When the first official photos were released, the automotive press went bonkers over it, because the press is comprised of enthusiasts, and as we stated before, enthusiast love wagons. It’s also got all-wheel drive and a 250-horsepower turbocharged engine. So what’s not to love? Head to the official Buick site for more details.
Volvo V60 Wagon
Starting at $37,145*
250 horsepower, 29.6 cubic-feet cargo space with seats in place, 48.1 cubic-feet with seats folded
EPA estimated MPG: N/A**
OK, we’re going to admit it — it’s a bit of a cheat to include the Volvo on this list, as it won’t be available until early next year. But the V60’s million-dollar looks and very reasonable starting price made us feel like we had to include it. When it does reach our shores, buyers will have a few different powertrains to chose from. The base price will snag you the front-wheel drive 250-horsepower T5, while opting for the all-wheel drive T6 will increase the poke to an even-healthier 316 ponies. Since the Swedish company is moving aggressively into green vehicles, there will eventually be a plug-in hybrid model, but which flavor we’ll get here isn’t clear just yet. Head to the official Volvo site for more details.
Audi A4 allroad
Starting at $44,500*
252 horsepower, 24.2 cubic-feet cargo space with seats in place, 58.5 cubic-feet with seats folded
EPA estimated MPG: 22 city / 30 highway**
Since it began dominating the international rally circuit back in the ’70s, Audi has been synonymous with its surefooted quattro all-wheel drive technology, and that legacy should give you the confidence to tackle all kinds of weather in the A4 allroad. Along with spirited performance and solid cargo space, buyers of this sleek wagon will be treated to an interior design which is refined and technology-laden, but would never be called flashy. It’s a trick that Audi has manged to pull off year after year, which is why the company is often referenced as an industry benchmark for classy cabins. Head to the official Audi site for more details.
BMW 330i xDrive Sports Wagon
Starting at $45,645*
250 horsepower, 27.5 cubic-feet cargo space with seats in place, 61.5 cubic-feet with seats folded
EPA estimated MPG: 23 city / 33 highway**
BMW might have replaced its famous “Ultimate Driving Machine” slogan, but vehicles like the 330i XDrive Sports Wagon show that hasn’t stopped its engineers from making athletic vehicles that are as at home on a road course as they are in a Whole Foods parking lot. While some of the faithful have bristled at the fact that a manual transmission isn’t available, when you’re behind the wheel of this precision-tuned machine, it will be impossible to forget you’re piloting something that’s ready to sprint straight from soccer practice to a high-speed strafing mission on the autobahn. Head to the official BMW site for more details.
Mercedes-Benz E-Class Wagon
Starting at $63,050*
329 horsepower, 35.0 cubic-feet cargo space with seats in place, 64.0 cubic-feet with seats folded
EPA estimated MPG: 19 city / 25 highway
Mercedes-Benz has long made lust-worthy longroofs, and the company’s legendary build quality is just one of the reasons it’s not uncommon to see ’70s-era models still trucking along. This tradition of excellence continues with the current generation E-Class wagon, which has landed “best car” lists everywhere. Even the “base” model of the E-Class Wagon boasts impressive performance, and springing for options like all-wheel drive only makes them more capable. At the top end of the scale, there’s the 603-horsepower E 63 AMG, which the company proudly notes is the “world’s fastest wagon.” Head to the official Mercedes-Benz site for more details.
Jaguar XF Sportbrake
Starting at $70,450*
380 horsepower, 31.7 cubic-feet cargo space with seats in place, 69.7 cubic-feet with seats folded
EPA estimated MPG: 18 city / 25 highway**
When he founded Jaguar, Sir William Lyons famously said he wanted his cars to have “grace, space, and pace.” And while he left us back in 1985, there’s no doubt he’d be thrilled with new XF Sportbrake. This pretty kitty has all the luxury and performance you’d expect from something sporting a Jaguar badge, along with nearly 70 cubic-feet of cargo capacity. While there other engine options available overseas, the only one we get stateside is the 380-horsepower supercharged V6. But don’t expect us to complain about that. Head to the official Jaguar site for more details.
See something you like? Then head to your local AutoNation and schedule a test drive. If it’s been a while since you’ve gotten behind the wheel of a wagon, you’ll be surprised as just how much fun they can be!
*Vehicle MSRP excludes taxes, title, transportation, options, and dealer fees.
**Fuel economy values (mpg) are EPA estimates. Actual mileage will vary and depends on several factors including driving habits and vehicle condition.