June 12th, 2005 04:31 AM
While we're on cars... my anti SUV rant
I don't like SUVs. And it has nothing to do with the fact that they've driven up my insurance rates or that their fuel economy is bad for Mother Earth. The hippies can go cry about that.
The reason I don't like it is because the SUVs you see really aren't SUVs. They're two wheel drive abominations that couldn't climb a rock if it was in fact a smoothly paved 25 degree incline. The only one with an honest name is the Suburban. At least it's not fibbing.
"But I live in a rural or semi rural area and I need to haul stuff..."
THEN GET A TRUCK! That's what I did!
I worked at Lowe's for 4 years and I can tell you the vaunted cargo hauling capabilities of the SUV are absolute crap versus a cargo van or a pickup truck. You can't even lay down a sheet of sheetrock flat in most SUVs. Think about all the crap you might haul, say your La Z Boy Recliners. They'll fit in a cargo van with a little maneuvering, they'll fit in a pickup bed no problem, but put that thing in your SUV and half of it will be dangling over the edge of the tailgate.
For 4 years I loaded all sorts of cargo in all sorts of vehicles every day. In reality the SUV offers little advantage. Yes it's better than a car for cargo depending on the size of the items involved, but it's a poor choice next to other body styles.
"But I have to haul kids/people..."
It is called a van with 6 captain's chairs. It's way more comfortable than the cramped back benchseat of any SUV. Anyone who's ridden in the middle or back seat of an SUV knows it's not the way to travel. Even the supposedly luxurious Escalade has a back seat that I found cramped; it was like a leather rumble seat.
"But I have to drive down the highway to work every morning..."
It's called... get this... A CAR!!!! Yes A CAR!!!
"But I'm a teacher/salesman/other person that hauls a lot of crap to work every day..."
It's called A FULL SIZE CAR!!! Do you know how much stuff you can cram in an Impala or a Crown Vic?
On top of that once you get used to driving the car it's more comfortable, it handles better, it accelerates better, and you'll save gas because it's a CAR.
Okay if you have a need to daily haul a small amout of cargo offroad, I can understand having a 4WD SUV. There is a purpose and a need for the body style.
Even at that, in the rural utility business, where they have to take some tools out to sites well off the paved highway, they use pickup trucks. They work better.
Give me 10 SUV owners and I can show 9 of them a different vehicle type that will work better for them if they'd just try it. Yeah drive whatever you want, but for the amount of money you're spending on that SUV you're probably selling yourself short.
I think I'm even driving the wrong vehicle. I would be better served by something like the Colorado, which I had actually intended to buy orginally but then my Plymouth's engine block cracked and... well anyway. I don't think much of SUVs.
June 12th, 2005 06:56 AM
All right euc show me a fully loaded truck i can pay less than i did my suv... LOL not gonna happen .. would i prefer a truck you bet fullsize wont fit in garage though ...
But i agree these city slickers who will never go off road... Humm getting to break in the new suv this week on off roading .... Should have a suv and as for the i got all these little brats to haul should have stopped while they are ahead i agree get a van...
Now here the one that gets me just what the hell do you need a hummer for in the city????
I mean jezz i dont think i could fit one in my driveway here in the city i know it wont go in the garage.
June 12th, 2005 07:39 AM
Depends on the SUV, but I really like 'em for the most part, especially those made by Ford and Toyota. A new Expedition would be EXCELLENT.
June 12th, 2005 08:28 AM
Could probably break off a different thread to address the "high insurance" aspect cause it's a heck of lot more than just SUV owners impacting that. I can understand the stance that a lot of SUV owners use and that's that it fits an "all around" need in a vehicle....they're nice looking, they transport more than two people at a time, you can haul more stuff than a car, and yes, they perhaps provide a bit more protection in a crash than the average sedan.
Economics plays in here a bit too, I'm sure. If I had the money to do so, I'd have one vehicle for each "special purpose" need....a small two seater car for commuting to work, a truck for hauling stuff, a nice sedan for those social trips carrying more than two people, a dedicated off-road vehicle for those prospecting trips....that totals a crap load of greenbacks just to buy them....then figure maintenance and licensing and insurance.
I don't have kids at home anymore, so I rolled all my needs into getting a Chevy S-10 4x4...put a camper top and rhino sprayed liner in it and a good trailer rig (for those 4x8 sheets, and dirt, gravel,...etc.). It's my all-in-one vehicle of choice. I like the full-size trucks, but they can't go some places I venture into with the smaller truck. Bought new in 1998 and have just clicked over 182K miles. The only reason I bought it was that the Nissan 4x4 I traded in was a 4-banger and just didn't have the umph needed for me...had it for 13 years....suspect I'll have the S-10 a bit longer than it.
Soooo, I accept other people's choice in driving SUVs...it likely meets their need. I just wish most of them knew how to drive them responsibly!
"Endeavor To Persevere"
Chief Dan George
June 12th, 2005 09:25 AM
I've used a Van as my main all purpose vehicle. I have used an SUV for the same purpose. I like the SUV better. They handle much better than a van to me and they pull a horse trailer better in my opinion. The van served well for a long time, but it nearly the vehicle that my inlaws' Tahoe is. I'd rather have a full size dual cab truck with a means of locking the bed for cargo and luggage if need be, but the Tahoe is nice. The SUV does much better than a van when it needs to be taken out into the fields and such. If I need to haul something that won't fit in the cargo area I'll pull a trailer behind the SUV.
My wife drives a Honda CRV, which I guess falls into the SUV class. It is a great little vehicle. It has much more room than a Escort or Civic or other such vehicles. It gets good gas mileage as well. When I had my German Shorthair Pointer, I could drop the rear seat and put her crate in the back. I couldn't do that with an economy car. It gives a better field of view than does a little car as well. It actually does very well as an off road vehicle as well.
June 12th, 2005 10:16 AM
Well, since it's my money, you don't have any input, but that's a different issue...
Now, down to the reasons "I" have an evil SUV. I bought mine because I do go offroad with a bunch of gear AND when I get to my camping/hunting spot, I sleep in the back. I don't bother with a tent. My 4Runner will go offroad and handle the type of offroading we have here in Va easily. I have true 4wd, not this pansy AWD crap. I even have low range gears, so it's no wannabe offroad vehicle. It also takes us out onto the beach at OBX when we want to do a bit of surfcasting at Oregon Inlet. Try that with your fullsized car or minivan. We saw people try. They had to wait till someone could pull them out. Try driving this in your fullsized car or van: http://www.4x4icon.com/offroad/07050...line/index.htm. I've driven it in my 4Runner twice. The last time, I camped up there in the back of my evil SUV (we found a flat spot off the trail).
I also need it to travel with my family. I have a wife, daughter, and dog. On most trips, the dog goes with us. Wife's in the front seat, daughter's in the back seat, and dog's in the cargo area. We use half of the cargo area for luggage and half of the backseat if necessary. Quite often, we even put one of those nifty receiver hitch platforms on the back to carry more gear. A van would work in this case, but then I'd have two large vehicles since I still need the SUV for camping/hunting/fishing/offroading. I'd rather have the SUV and a compact car (like I have now).
As for hauling stuff, I haven't had to haul anything yet that wouldn't fit inside. When I hauled my recliner from the furniture store, I simply removed the back and slid it in next to the base. No problems closing the tailgate then.
No problems with gas mileage either. My 5spd 4Runner gets 17+ around town and 20+ on the highway. Many non minivans can't do better than that (most minivans aren't much better).
June 12th, 2005 12:36 PM
My wife is a teacher. We have severe snow storms, often without warning, in Wisconsin. If a storm hits, my wife wil be trapped at school, several miles from our home. She has her cell phone and an SUV.
She might never climb rocks, but her Ford Explorer isn't really made for that. It does have a smaller 6-cylinder motor, and it does have 'granny low' in case she has to crawl to get home. I think this is a realistic solution for her, after all, she's a girl raised in the suburbs, not on a ranch.
Now, I have a truck. I carry stuff. I also like/need to get to where prairie dogs live.
My F-150 has a V-8, my front wheels 'lock' into position with an in-cab lever, no 'computer assist' for this truck. I have 17" wheels, a factory lift kit and four wheel drive with skid pans. Seriously, I think the only thing that could get away from me in the back country is a Hummer One.
However, I don't 'jack rabbit' start from stoplights. I do pass slower cars 'aggressively' as my motor is also found in Mustangs. I drive in over-drive on the freeway and I have my truck maintained on schedule. If there ozone from accessive burning, I contribute as little as possible.
In fact, cars older than eight to ten years are more of a detriment than my truck.
You seem tense and judgemental, Euc. Did you and Geraldine have a spat, or in her case, a 'flat.'
June 12th, 2005 01:37 PM
Hey people can drive whatever they want. This is America. And I'm sure some people actually benefit from this vehicle type.
But when most people are driving these things like cars or trying to make them work as trucks it starts to give me an aneurysm thinking about why they're so popular.
It's just one of those quirks of human nature that baffles me. Why are people willing to tear up a perfectly good screwdriver to open paint cans?
You don't have to be big into cars to understand what it's good for and what it's not. I'm sure it works out for some people but given their popularity and trendiness, I sincerely doubt most people are actually benefitting from them.
I mean come on... you go to any dealer and the lot's covered in them. Do that many people really benefit from these things as much as they would something else?
To me it's like everyone decided to get their nostril pierced. Okay that's fine it's your nostril, and I'm sure for some of you there's a reason, but overall, why?
June 12th, 2005 02:11 PM
Originally Posted by Euclidean
Euclidean, ever tried one of these? http://www.turkeyhuntingsecrets.com/...h-silencer.htm
Then you wouldn't wear out as many keyboards.
Bumper, what about a "Rediculously Off-Topic" section?
June 12th, 2005 03:33 PM
Well, lets see. I started out as a kid driving a VW bug and thenm an Austin Healy Sprite. Very practical for a kid, not very practical for most adults. When I got married I owned a Jeep CJ which I drove all over Dallas and Ft Worth. It worked for me because back then I absolutely lived for my vacations to the old ghost towns and mining camps of Colorado. When I moved to Colorado, that Jeep CJ was not as practical because I couldn't adequately lock it up when I went skiing. So I bought a Nissan 4wd pickup, which I later traded for a V6 Nissan hardbody 4wd truck because the little one didn't work with my popup camper. But, when I wore that one out, I bought my first SUV, a Nissan 4wd Pathfinder, which I drove until I moved to Arizona (the Pathfinder had no air conditioner). I bought a Ford conversion van. It was big, it got crappy gas mileage, it knocked, it rattled, it took too long to cool down in 120 degree heat, I felt like a "snow bird" so I traded it on a Chrysler Cirrus lxi. It was a very good car that took me the 18 miles to downtown Phoenix by freeway every weekday very well. On weekends, when I needed to haul stuff, or when I wanted to go fishing or prospecting or camping, it was a complete failure. I traded it in on a V8 4wd Jeep Grande Cherokee with just about every available option. It got me to work like the Cirrus, except with a better sound system, more power, legroom, headroom. It gets me off road like the Jeep CJ and the Pathfinder. I can haul most stuff I usually need to in the rear cargo area. I don't do sheetrock like apparantly everyone else does, but if I do, I have the ability to trailer it, like I do my boat. And I can put that boat in at the Lake Powell boat ramps that require you to back about a 100 yards into the water. It also allows me to tow out the retards that tried it in a van. Open the sunroof on an fall through late spring day and it is every bit as great as having the top down on the Sprite. Car buying is an evolutionary thing. You buy what best meets your needs. For most people that means cars are at one end of the spectrum, pickup trucks are on the other end, SUVs (car or truck variety, there's a difference) are smack in the middle. I submit that, once again, your math may be correct but you are seriously flawed in your logic. I can't figure out how a pickup truck of any type can be the correct vehicle for you under your own logic. A single math teacher that lives in an apartment should probably be driving a Yugo.
Quite frankly, I believe most people's "problems" with SUVs is simply because they can't afford one. Used car lots are not full of SUVs because they didn't work out for their previous owners, they are there because a significant part of the population likes to change vehicles every 1-3 years. I am one of those. Three years in the same vehicle and I am ready to burn it on the side of the road. Although I have had my Jeep for almost 5 years, it's the first one that I haven't felt that way about. I am ready for something different just the same and it will be similar to the Grand Cherokee.
When people question my logic in buying an SUV over a Honda hybrid or some other "solution", I tell them to mind their own damned business. They aren't an expert or even an adequate representative of the population, in general. If they were, they would probably drive an SUV.
You seem judgmental in your rant to me as well. But then we know you....
Coimhéad fearg fhear na foighde; Beware the anger of a patient man.
June 12th, 2005 03:56 PM
Well, Bud, I'll bite on this one even though the Hummer H3 is close to the size of my Jeep. People buy different veicles because they either need them or they just like them and can afford them. They may need one in the city because they live in the city but on the weekend they need it to go off road to their mountain cabin, boating, canoeing, hunting, prospecting or any number of other reasons. Or they may buy them because they are tired of the agressive drivers in smaller cars cutting them off on the freeway. They may just like it because it's cool to them or they are tired of having the same thing all of the neighbors have in their driveway. I have to admit I like the idea of roaring into our neighborhood in a Hummer and thumb my nose at all of my Lexus, Mercedes and BMW owning neighbors. Knowing the people around here, I expect they will all gasp and whisper that "he's not one of us." I'm not. And I don't want to be....
Originally Posted by Bud White
Coimhéad fearg fhear na foighde; Beware the anger of a patient man.
June 12th, 2005 04:21 PM
I disagree Bumper. The SUV market is open to an awful lot of people.
Here are two domestic SUVs and an import all under $22,000 sticker price. I realize that not everyone is so fortunate they can afford $22k, but the point is these are brand new models at MSRP. This is before any incentives, any haggling, and I'm completely ignoring the used market. There are a lot of people who can afford these things.
As for my individual situation, I am the exception and not the norm. Later on today after I finish typing lesson plans I'll be in the company of other single people and guess what they all drive? SUVs.
Show someone a spec sheet about what kind of performance another vehicle type offers and point out its general dimensions and many if not most people will say "Man why am I driving this thing?"
Honestly my whole concern with the matter stems from some misguided altruism. It's like when I see someone using a dull pencil when there's a pencil sharpener right next to them they're unaware of. I have to say something or they'll never even think to try it. Now if they go on using a dull pencil anyway, well that's their call and I done spoke my peace about the matter.
To draw a parrallel, a lot of kids go to college because, well that's what you do after high school. It's all they know to even consider doing. And then they flunk out and they've wasted time and money. They won't look at other options unless someone points out that 4 year colleges aren't all that and a bag of chips for many people. It's the same reason I tell teenagers to consider technical school or the military in addition to traditional colleges.
In my experience with vehicles, which has consisted of loading them up and investigating customer complaints, the SUV format has always been problematic and its for most users its purpose eludes me. At my father's power company he tried to use them several years ago to survey lines and to use as an executive shuttle, purchasing several expensive vehicles with lots of options for both purposes. They didn't work out in either faculty, and this was a consistent pattern over 3-5 years across several brands and models. When they placed my father in charge of buying all of the vehicles he made a flat declaration of no more SUVs.
The funny thing is the reaction was almost violent. "Why no more SUVs? SUVs are good. This is stupid..." And this was from the same people who had complained about the SUVs and why they were a waste of the company's money.
Now on the other hand I do realize it works out for some people. I am good friends with a former co worker who has to haul sensitive electronic equipment. It doesn't take up too much space but it's more than will fit in a trunk, and it needs to be kept in an enclosed space. He also travels extensively through rural areas and needs the 4WD and offroad capability.
But it seems to me though that for every person like him there's 9 others who made their purchasing decision on superficial factors. I guess I'm trying to understand it...
June 12th, 2005 05:38 PM
This paragraph tickles me. First off, maybe some people prefer dull pencils and don't really feel they need to have the pencil sharpener pointed out to them. I have to say that if you and I worked together I would have some fun with you. I love to drive people up a wall that obsess over such silly things. But I guess it's fortunate to have people around us that know more about what's good for us than we do. What do they call those people again? Liberals, yeah, that's it. People with similar obsessions about guns are the ones that are constantly trying to tell us all why we shouldn't have them. Everyone has their preferences and they should be allowed to go about their business without someone telling them how logically unsound their decision is.
Originally Posted by Euclidean
I think research would show that your thoughts about the usefullness of and how owners feel about SUVs is seriously off. Just because SUVs didn't fit in well with your Dad's business situation, doesn't mean that there are not thousands more that find them to be exactly what they needed.
Coimhéad fearg fhear na foighde; Beware the anger of a patient man.
June 12th, 2005 09:07 PM
EUC...since this is a rant time.....do you really think the majority of folks out here give a rats behind about vehicle spec sheets and performance data? It's mainly about "eye candy". Why does anyone really give a hoot about the reasons somebody wants a particular vehicle...in this case an SUV. Geesh...we are in fact a materialistic society, like it or not, and thank god, buddah, allah, or whatever that we don't have to explain any of it to anybody. Is it really all that important? Not to me and I suspect, a whole lot of other folks. Like Bumper says, lots of folks swap cars out every 1-3 years just because they like to have something new, or their "needs" change. More power to them...I happen to be one that has found a long term solution to my vehicle needs, but many would seem to question me why I keep one for so long. Why would anybody care?
"Endeavor To Persevere"
Chief Dan George
June 12th, 2005 09:53 PM
I really love my '96 GMC sierra. It may not be new , but it gets me and all my gear where I wanna go. Be it kayaking, camping, hunting or just hauling stuff. I scoff at these new H2 hummers. A real hummer has mucho clearance and few ammenities. And definitly no vanity mirror.
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