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Top Five Best Handling Family Cars


2010 Honda Accord Sedan

2010 Honda Accord Sedan

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With summer coming up, it's time to attack some back roads. Here then, is one auto reviewer's list of the top five best-handling family cars currently on sale.

1. 2010 Ford Fusion:  It's hard to think of a car that mixes sublime handling with composed ride quality any better than this offering from Ford.

2. 2010 Mazda 6: This car shares it's platform with the Fusion, so it's only natural that it shares that car's sharp moves.

3. 2010 Suzuki Kizashi: Suzuki's newest offering is sweet in the corners, and it's clearly aimed at those who don't want to give up on fun just because they have a family.

4. 2010 Honda Accord: It's not as sharp as previous generation Accords, but it's still plenty of fun to hustle on a back road. It hasn't lost its athleticism yet.

5. 2010 Nissan Sentra SE-R: The regular Sentra is kind of forgettable, but in SE-R trim, it's quite the fun vehicle to hustle through the twisties.

Agree with these assessments? Disagree? Chime in below in the comments section.

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Comments (4)
  1. Tim, you need to start by defining what you mean by "Best Handling". Living Room comfort and total absence of road feel seem to be your criterion. Enthusiasts might have a quite different definition. None of these cars corner flat, are devoid of body roll, have tidy steering radii or brake on a dime. On the other hand, they won't upset the wife's texting, or let you corner fast enough to get yourself sideways. Should be titled "Most Whitebread Marshmellows You Can Buy". To call them "Best Handling" is to steal all meaning from the phrase...
     
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  2. @Craig: It's true that family cars don't handle as well as sports cars, so there are some trade-offs involved. That said, these are the best handling family cars currently on sale that I personally have tested in the past year and a half or so. Perhaps I should have defined that better, but I think it's a given that most family cars have trade-offs in handling and ride.
    @cheap car leasing: I haven't tested a M-B or BMW product thoroughly in the past two years. The ones I have driven were high-performance models with high sticker prices, and my time behind the wheel was short. Sure, an X5 M can be considered a family car, but I simply felt it was unfair to judge it against the others. Three of the five cars in my list spent a week with me, one I drove extensively on a press launch, and I drove an older version of one to Detroit and back almost two years ago, and that car (Accord) hasn't changed much since 2008.
     
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  3. Hey, what about the Nissan Altima, the VW Jetta, the VW Passat, the Audi A3 and A4 ?
     
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  4. It's clear this comparison was of best handling family cars in the sub-$30K range. As for the poster who made the comment about BMWs, Fusions are fantastic handlers. I might direct you to this recent Motor Trend article:
    http://motortrend.automotive.com/133446/112-1005-best-selling-midsize-family-sedan-comparison/2010-ford-fusion.html
    Quotes: One reviewer-"Chassis is the best here...outstanding steering feel...After a few turns you'd believe it's really a BMW."
    Other reviewer-"Suspension works out the canyon-road kinks much better than that BMW I drove over in [a 335i cabrio camera car]."
    a
    I'd take a Fusion over a Jetta 7 days of the week.
     
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