Honda Crosstour Concept at the 2012 New York Auto Show

  • Looks like: A more lovable-looking Crosstour  
  • Defining characteristics: A passenger side camera  
  • Ridiculous features: The fact that Honda's calling this a concept  
  • Chances of being mass-produced: 110%

For the 2013 model year, the Honda Crosstour Concept gets a significant midcycle refresh and adopts the face of the next-generation Honda Accord. It also receives some interior and mechanical updates.

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The Crosstour Concept gives an unmistakable preview of what the production version will look like. Honestly, at this point, we don't even know why Honda bothers with these "concepts." The main attributes distinguishing it from the production model are the concept's 19-inch wheels — Honda says the production model will have 18-inchers — and the fact that we don't know what the interior looks like … 'cause there isn't one yet.

Starting with the redesigned front end, the Crosstour Concept gets a new grille, bumper, fog lights and front diffuser designs. The exaggerated flares of the lower front intake are likely homage to the upcoming 2013 Honda Accord. Even though the Crosstour dumped "Accord" from its name, the two models share a strong kinship.

Along with the front-end changes, the model features black composite plastic along its sill plates and its front and rear bumpers' edges, which gives it a more rugged look. It looks like Honda is borrowing styling cues from the Volvo XC70 or the Subaru Outback in that regard.

Underneath the hood, models using the 3.5-liter V-6 get a newly developed six-speed automatic transmission (replacing the five-speed auto). Honda says the new transmission will increase fuel economy; the current V-6 Crosstour gets 21 mpg overall. The four-cylinder is still available but with the five-speed transmission. Honda made no mention of any improvements in fuel efficiency for that model, which currently gets 24 mpg combined. Both models come in front-wheel drive; four-wheel drive is optional for the V-6.

In the cabin, Honda says newly available features include an 8-inch display, keyless ignition and paddle shifters. The cabin also will feature "heavily revised trim materials" according to the carmaker. Crosstour Concept standards include an auto-dimming rearview mirror, automatic headlights, Bluetooth connectivity and USB inputs.

New safety technology includes a forward warning collision system, which uses a camera mounted behind the windshield, to alert drivers if there's an impending collision. Also newly available is a blind spot warning system that features a passenger-side camera displaying an enhanced view of the car's blind spots. Honda says the safety system is exclusive to the model. Also increasing visibility are re-shaped rear head restraints, a rearview camera and a convex spotter mirror on the driver's side, which all come standard.