The station wagon isn't dead, but it isn't all that far off.
Through June, there have been more than 264,000 minivans sold in this country. While that's more than the number of vans (230,000) sold during the same period, it's less than the number of luxury cars (452,519) and far less than the number of old-school truck-based SUVs (883,000) sold during the same period, according to MotorIntelligence.
The station wagon falls into a much tougher spot, largely because it's being attacked from all angles. The station wagon is basically a car with elongated cargo space, and cars have seen their sales numbers fall 11.4% so far this year. Granted, people love the extra space: They'd just rather see it in a car-based crossover SUV. Those vehicles have not only seen an 8.4% uptick in sales this year, but the 2.5 million sold through June has outsold every other class of vehicle out there.
In theory, U.S. drivers love a station wagon. They just don't love that it's so low to the ground. Spoiled by minivan and SUV height, drivers now enjoy that wide-open view of the road and all the space that generally comes with it. We say "generally," because the Environmental Protection Agency points out that there are still plenty of cars out there that they'd classify as station wagons. In fact, some of the most efficient new cars on the road still fall into that station-wagon category.
With hep from the EPA's FuelEconomy.gov, we've found ten wagons that make a strong argument for the category's existence. They aren't the hulking, wood-paneled beasts that the Vista Cruisers, Country Squires and Roadmasters that came before were, but they're just the right wagons for a crossover generation: