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While riding a Dumb Hummer almost hit me.....(69 posts)

While riding a Dumb Hummer almost hit me.....african
Dec 5, 2003 10:34 AM
well not really but anyway. I was riding one time at band camp... ok not really but I was riding one time and I saw this freaking bright yellow behemouth.... and I now am an anti hummer cyclist.

Here is a link for my fellow cyclists that don't like hummers. It contains some funny hand signals directed at hummers.

http://www.fuh2.com
the idiots who buy these thingsPmbH
Dec 5, 2003 11:17 AM
are SO predictable!

I just finished my marketing degree.. My school group consistenly used the H2 as our case study because it was SO easy to profile the morons who buy these things! You would not believe how predictable and superficial the average H2 customer can be... Amazing.
So what exactly is the profile of a person who buys a Hummer?Softrider
Dec 5, 2003 11:37 AM
One of my partners has one, it would be interesting to see if he fits the mold.
I'll dig up the case studies for ya (nm)PmbH
Dec 5, 2003 11:40 AM
two typesPmbH
Dec 5, 2003 12:01 PM
This is rough results from dealership research

type 1:
Demographics
• $181K household income
• Age 45+
• 81% Male
• Less likely to be married
• Less likely to have kids at home
Lifestyle and Attitude
• Adventurous
• Competitive
• Spends money on outdoor activities
• Proud of accomplishments
• Likes to demonstrate control
• Seeks to reconnect with his youth
• Brand-conscious

type 2:
Demographics
• $229K highest household income
• Business owner
• Age 30-44
• 82% Male
• Have children under 18 at home
Lifestyle and Attitude
• Enjoys stylish/finer things
• Likes to show others how successful he is
• Prefers attention getting vehicles
• New family
• Value exclusivity
• Brand lover
Uh, there is a third type:ElvisMerckx
Dec 5, 2003 12:07 PM
Soldiers, but their Hummers are issued, not bought.

Personally, I'd prefer a good hummer to a Hummer any day.
Uh, there is a third type:MShaw
Dec 5, 2003 3:50 PM
Issued = Humvee, not a Hummer. At least it was when I was in the Army.

Mike
what about other vehicle types?DougSloan
Dec 5, 2003 12:07 PM
Seems to me that those exact same profiles would describe a BMW, Saab, Mercedes, etc., owner, or owners of just about any expensive vehicle. Sure, probably won't describe a minivan or Honda Civic owner, but still lots of other vehicle types.

Doug
what about owners of Colnago ? nmafrican
Dec 5, 2003 12:19 PM
there's an epiphanyDougSloan
Dec 5, 2003 1:00 PM
Is it surprising that people with more disposable income buy more expensive things, whether they be bikes, cars, or houses?

Doug
I'm shockedDave Hickey
Dec 5, 2003 1:07 PM
Next you're going to tell me they also help keep people employed that make those bikes, cars, and houses... What a concept...
Got that right.No_sprint
Dec 5, 2003 12:45 PM
The list of cars, let alone toys that could be added to that list is endless.
What about them?purplepaul
Dec 5, 2003 5:50 PM
Okay, I'm getting in late here and I may be a little bit biased because I've actually read a book about them, but SUV's infuriate many people, myself included, because they are unabashedly indulgent and unnecessary for 99% of those who buy them

AND

they waste fuel like an open spigot

AND

they kill other drivers so disproportionately (watch out for teenagers driving old, cheap SUV's; the carnage hasn't even begun)

AND

they kill their own drivers so disproportionately while pretending to be "safer" than sedan-type cars

AND

they increase traffic (studies show that because SUV's are so much larger and harder to see around than cars, other drivers give them more space; this allows fewer cars per stop light to make it through intersections and, thus, increases traffic)

AND

despite being worse for the environment, worse for national security, worse for the trade deficit and making traffic congestion worse, they actually get incentives to buy the damn things!

Of course people should be allowed to buy Hummers. What makes me crazy is that so many people actually choose these stupid things and push the consequences off on society. Has nothing to do with being envious. I don't happen to think wearing your narcissism on your sleeve is something to be proud of.

Now, if cars below a certain mileage were charged $10 a gallon to help cover their costs to society, I wouldn't mind so much.
Type two describes my largest client perfectly.Aztec
Dec 5, 2003 1:19 PM
38, new family, owns his own business, etc.

Scary.
If we are to believe their advertising ...Humma Hah
Dec 5, 2003 11:43 AM
... they are after aggressive drivers who wish to run down other drivers and bully them off the road. Intimidation and aggression are the underlying theme in their ads.

I wouldn't say all Hummer drivers are that way, but it is very clear that's the marketing strategy.
respectfullly differDougSloan
Dec 5, 2003 12:02 PM
I respectfully disagree, to an extent. Most of the ads I've seen portray people driving them in the Alaskan wilderness or to the top of a roadless mountain peak. Now, I agree that almost no one actually does that or even should do that, but I've not seen the aggression oriented ads you describe.

Doug
Seems pretty aggressive to me.czardonic
Dec 5, 2003 12:43 PM
The ads clearly target people who's idea of enjoying the outdoors involves plowing plowing across it at high speeds.
Like this Hummer driver?????????african
Dec 5, 2003 12:52 PM
This chick took her mom and kids out for a ride at 3AM and saw construction and dirt and so forth around the campus. She thought to herself "hey, this is an H2, i saw it in a commercial and it could do anything. Its an all terrain vehicle, right?"

She then procedes to dive around campus for a while and then broke through the cable barrier (took 2 tries) that prevents idiots from running into the schools brand new samaritan statue. she then hit a 1' dirt curb at about 40mph, and then right into the statues cement base. Needless to say, the curb and cement were victorious.

When asked why she did it, she repiled "I wanted to jump the statue, i saw it on tv"

She wasnt drunk or under any kind of influence and yes, the kids were inside when it happened.
and another view close up ........african
Dec 5, 2003 12:53 PM
I doubt that will be made into a commercial nmDougSloan
Dec 5, 2003 12:58 PM
I doubt that will be made into a commercial nmpedalruns
Dec 5, 2003 4:30 PM
HAHAHAHA!! This would make a great jeep commercial!
LOL!!Good Stuff!!!Spoiler
Dec 5, 2003 2:24 PM
Sincerely
Kids' derby raceTypeOne
Dec 5, 2003 1:30 PM
The Hummer ad with the kids in the soapbox derby race is clever and well-done with a soundtrack from The Who. But after seeing it a few times, yeah, the message seems to be that you can go through or over whatever you want, rules be damned and other drivers beware. My wife's response to the ad: "Aw, that kid oughta be disqualified."
Well selected lyricsAlex-in-Evanston
Dec 5, 2003 1:35 PM
That song was selected to address exactly what we're discussing here. I have to admire how appropriate they are to the purpose.

The kids couldn't hurt Jack
They tried and tried and tried
They dropped things on his back
And lied and lied and lied and lied and lied
(the kicker)
But they couldn't prevent Jack from being happy.

I think that's how it goes. My reaction was the same as your wife's.

Alex
agree a littleDougSloan
Dec 5, 2003 1:36 PM
I think we all should acknowledge that the reason for being for these vehicles is, ostensibly at least, their off road capabilities. I don't find it odd that they would then market them that way. So, yes, the "rules be damned" as far as rules saying you cannot drive off pavement, which is another issue, but I don't understand the "other drivers beware" part of it.

Similarly, sports cars and crotch rocket motorcycles are marketed with an appeal to driving fast, some extremely fast -- is there equal contempt for that? Talk about "rules be damned" and "other drivers beware..."

Doug
agree a littleAlex-in-Evanston
Dec 5, 2003 1:46 PM
Sports cars and motorcycles are mostly a danger to their own drivers. 9,000lb vehicles that are wider than conventional driving lanes are dangerous to everybody but their own drivers.

Alex
agree a littleGiant_Tom
Dec 6, 2003 2:25 AM
H2 weighs 6700lbs and is 6'9" wide, GMC Sierra pickup is 6'6" wide. Driving lanes are 10' to 12' wide.

Must be that new math that you are using that's messing up your figuring.
I don't buy that for a second.czardonic
Dec 5, 2003 2:24 PM
The reason for being for these cars is that they look bad-a$$ and make the people behind the wheel feel bad-a$$. Which would be fine, but for the correlation between fantasy bad-a$$es and real-world dumb-a$$es.
pin dicks drive 'em anddesmo
Dec 5, 2003 1:46 PM
the folks that made that commercial should be shot for using a great song totally out of context.
But the all time worst misuse of a song in an ad goes to...russw19
Dec 5, 2003 4:23 PM
Carnival Cruise Lines for using Iggy Pop's "Lust for Life" which is a song about herion addiction! And they use it like hoping on the boat and playing will make all your dreams come true and make you happy.... frankly, I think a spike in the vein would make me feel better and be cheaper than a cruise too.

Oh yeah, and another one that cracks me up to no end is seeing parents and kids rocking out at a sporting event to The Village People's "YMCA" if they really knew what anthem they were really dancing to...I think less people would be so jovial when singing along to that one! Now I'm not in the least bit homophobic, but somehow being at a hockey game and seeing 6 year old kids up on the jumbotron dancing to this song disturbs me. Where do you go to pick up other 15 year old gay boys... the YMCA... it's fun to stay at the YMCA... They have everything for men to enjoy. You can hang out with all the boys..... YMCA.

OK, I'm done now....

Russ
so right.desmo
Dec 5, 2003 5:04 PM
That one makes me want to retch, but hopefully the resdiuals are keeping Iggy comfortable in his old age. "YMCA" has always been a headshaker for me. Enjoyed by all sorts of homophobes, Republicans , and the like for years. The marketing guys with the good record collections that I really want to kill are those who used The Monks, "Black monk Time" in a Gatorade spot and those responsible for swiping an ultra cool Link Wray instro for Taco bell a few years back. Have they no descency!
I nominate Target's "My Favorite Things" ...Humma Hah
Dec 5, 2003 6:11 PM
Rogers and Hammerstein's sweet little song about the simple things in live bringing the most pleasure ...

"Girls in white dresses with blue satin sashes,
Snowflakes that fall on my nose and eyelashes ..."

as the soundtrack for a deluge of a consumer products that would have been better set to "Material Girl".
Yeah he should! Just likeSpecialTater
Dec 5, 2003 3:37 PM
Lance should have been in the TdF for going "off road". The cheater!

;) Just trying to hijack a dead horse topic with another.
Two aired recently in this area ...Humma Hah
Dec 5, 2003 3:09 PM
... one was a variant of the old "asteroids" electronic game. Little space ship is blasting away rocks, when a Hummer icon comes in from the left. Little ship blasts at it, but the projectiles bounce off. Hummer takes off after the little space ship, obviously intent on revenge.

There was a second ad running around that time, probably pulled on account of protests as I didn't see it long enough to remember the details clearly, that also very clearly promoted the Hummer as being ideal for intimidating other drivers. After some road-rage incidents here in recent years, I'd expect there were HOWLS of protest.

Between that one and the ad for the Mercedes with the monster under the hood that gets out and ravages the house (that's their idea for promoting the 467-horsepower -- yes, you read that correctly -- engine, plus the recent spate of "hemi" ads for Dodge trucks, I was about ready to ask my congressman to pass a couple of bills requiring automakers to have an ounce of intelligence.

I'm not sure I'd classify the "kid's derby" ad as aggressive. Naw, its about a social misfit who wants to win at all costs and doesn't play by the rules, but I'll accept that one as kinda cute, if misguided.
woman driving, caption readsPmbH
Dec 5, 2003 3:16 PM
"intimidate men in a whole new way"

that was the commercial
That's called Greenwashing, and it's pervasive in SUV Ads.russw19
Dec 5, 2003 4:07 PM
GM is one of the worst at doing it in the SUV market, but every company that relies on the use of fossil fuels does it. Start to pay actual attention to SUV ads... over 90% of the time they show the vehicle in some pristine environment, like driving on a beach where there are not only any other cars or people around, but not even tire tracks from other vehicles. Or Jeep comercials which show them high up in the mountains parking on rocks where there aren't even roads. Or my personal favorite is the GM commercial where the woman in a Suburban drives out onto a frozen lake??? to meet her husband getting off a submarine... and where did they take the wrong turn, Greenland... a country that most Americans know zero about but assume it to be an environmental paradise.

This campain is the reason that people buy these vehicles. Because of corporate greenwashing, few see the darker side of SUV's and their 10 to 15 mile per gallon fuel efficiency. The only real exceptions you see to greenwashed pristine environments is where you see people in SUV's either carrying expensive cargo or kids in child seats.... that's designed to give the impression that they are safer, and therefore worthy of carrying your children or fine art that you routinely stuff in the back of your Bronco.

Watch the ads... they get funny when you pay attention because it makes you wonder how the rest of the country misses this stuff. It's not a thick veil they cover it with, but it's effective enough to sell SUVs to people who certainly don't need them.

Russ
From the TV ads, very hot young women. nmBruno S
Dec 5, 2003 3:22 PM
A Honda Insight almost hit me off but I out ran it..Dave Hickey
Dec 5, 2003 11:36 AM
I'm not a big fan of Hummers but I'm also not a big fan of people telling me what I can and cannot drive.

Sorry for the rant but these SUV bashings really get old..
agree - it gets very oldDougSloan
Dec 5, 2003 11:59 AM
Actually, near here someone a bike ran a lady in a car off the road and killed her. Actually, I supposed, she came around a corner up in the hills and swerved to miss one or more cyclists. So, I guess cyclists or bikes deserve bashing, too.

I can't help but believe that much of the disgust stems from either conscious or subconscious envy, class warfare, or maybe just a jumping on the bandwagon style of group lynching of a politically correct target.

Now, I don't understand why people would buy Hummers unless they live in rural Alaska or 20 miles off a paved road in the desert. However, I equally don't understand all the hatred generated by them.

Here's the problem, in my mind. People express so much hatred for SUV's, and particularly Hummers, yet, they ignore other vehicles and lifestyle choices that are fairly equivalent. For example, where is the pickup truck bashing? Why does a vehicle become evil simply because a nearly identical chassis and engine has the bed covered and more seats? I've NEVER heard ANY pickup truck bashing. Pickups are almost the exact same vehicles in terms of dimensions, weight, cost, bumper height, engine, fuel mileage, etc. It just does not make any sense. The only difference I can understand is that most people view others driving pickups, right or wrong, as people who need them as work and utility vehicles, but SUV drivers are seen as wealthy ignorant wasters of resources and dangerous. The issue seems to be more about the people, or the perception of them, than the vehicles, with much of the aggravation caused by envy and prejudice.

Also, why no equal disdain for large houses, uninsulated houses, or people who just travel a lot or waste a lot of resources in various ways? What not hate people who commute 50 miles to work each way, even if it's in a Honda Civic? That's wasting gas, too.

Here on this Forum there has been a political correctness movement to generate contempt for SUV's and their drivers. I think many people have gotten sucked into the movement to go with the flow and identify with people who otherwise are very likeable, nice people, and with whom we obviously share a passionate common interest. However, I do not think that you need to hate SUV's or their drivers to be a cyclist or be accepted in this community -- SUV bashing is NOT essential to being a cyclist or decent human being.

Yes, it gets old.

Doug
pickups...gtx
Dec 5, 2003 12:08 PM
pickups, for the most part, are easier to see around or through on the freeway. That's my main beef with these things. Nissan is actually coming out with one called an Armada. If you have one of those ahead of you on the freeway and you're in a car you're driving on blind faith. And I'm talking even at a reasonable distance behind (you know, big enough so you might be able to stop in time but no so big that another huge SUV will immediately swing into the space and throw on its brakes). Oh, and the auto industry finally admitted yesterday that SUVs kill disproportionately in accidents and are introducing plans to try to deal with that. But that was quite an anti anti SUV rant, Doug. I'm impressed.
maybeDougSloan
Dec 5, 2003 12:55 PM
Yes, some SUV's can be more difficult to see behind you. However, I've driven school busses, large SUV's, loaded large double axle trucks, panel and 15 passenger vans, as well as other vehicles with visability issues (never even sat in one, but I've read that it is nearly impossible to see behind in a Lamborghini ;-). Yes, you do need to be more careful and modify your driving. However, it is completely doable. With large outside rear view mirrors and appropriate behavior, you can very definitely safely navigate traffic. Heck, semi-truck drivers manage to do it every day. On the other hand, I've witnessed dozens of times people cutting others off while driving vans and minivans -- where's the wrath against them?

It's just that there is so little consistency in the arguments against SUV's. Any argument made can apply to other vehicle types that escape all the hatred. (Pickups and SUV's have the exact same bumpers and heights, for example, if they both are 2x2 or 4x4.) A pickup with a camper shell is essentially an SUV. A large passenger van is the same thing.

Now, bad driving is bad driving. Many vehicle types require different skills and driving habits. You don't drive a Honda Civic the same way you do a motorcycle, Lincoln Continental, or pickup. So, if the real issue is education and/or behavior, then that's fair game. However, why just pick on one segment of drivers or vehicles, when there are nasty habits taking place in many other vehicle types?

I never doubted that SUV's kill disproportionately. They are bigger, higher, and heavier than many cars. But again, so are pickups, vans, and heavy trucks. Anyone doubt the result of a semi vs. a Honda? The physics are fairly undeniable. Bigger usually wins. And, by the same argument, even Honda Civics should not even exist, as they disproportionately kill cyclists and motorcyclists in car vs. bike crashes! It's the same thing.

Sorry for the rants. It is good that we can discuss without degenerating into personal attacks, too. ;-)

Doug
just to clarifygtx
Dec 5, 2003 1:50 PM
I'm not worried about the visability issues faced by SUV drivers (though my friend who has a RX-7 has been backed over TWICE by SUVs in parking lots who couldn't see hsi low car). I was trying to say that when I'm in my Volvo or Plymouth (both are medium to large sized cars) I can't see anything if I have a Suburban, etc. in front of me. 10-15 years ago a car driver had much better visability on the freeway. Now it's blocked by towering SUVs and minivans with tinted windows. I seriously think half the reason that people buy SUVs is the if-you-can't-beat-em-join-em thing.
That's easy, just back off like you're SUPPOSED to!MShaw
Dec 5, 2003 4:09 PM
If you follow at the 2 second distance like we were all taught in driver's ed, you don't have a problem.

I've noticed a definite trend towards riding bumpers here in San Diego. There usually isn't ONE length between cars, much less TWO SECONDS. Is it any wonder you can't see? Unless there's only one car in front of me, I'm usually pretty far back. ...and I'm driving an F150! (or my BMW R1150RT) If there's only one car in front of me, it means that I'm in the left lane, and "you" aren't going fast enough so get the heck out of my way.

Which brings me to another rant. WTF are people doing driving in the left lane? I was on the RT this afternoon trying to get from Oceanside to Mission Valley (40mi or so). I was doing 85-7 or so. Rolled up behind this bimbo in a Saab. Right beside here was an Audi A4. As I rolled up, she slowed down to match the Audi's speed. She just sat there. I shooed her on with my left hand and she got mad! I ended up going around both her and the Audi on the right and continuing on my merry way. What do I see in my rear view mirror? Said Saab bimbo hammering her little 4-banger for all its worth, waving her cell at me like she's going to call the cops. Weeeellll, I didn't want anything to do with that, so off I went. A couple of bike-sized holes in traffic later, I slowed back down to cruising speed.

No, you do not have a right to control other people's speed. No, you do not need to stay in the left lane if there are other lanes available.

I liked the signs I saw in Maine last time I was there: "keep right except to pass," and "slower traffic keep right." Too bad more people don't get it.

End of rant, you can go back to your regular reading now.

Mike
you didn't read my previous postgtx
Dec 5, 2003 4:32 PM
Follow the 2 second or whatever rule on most crowded freeways and you'll have another SUV swing into the slot right in front of you and toss on the brakes.

I agree about the left lane thing. I much prefer to drive in Italy, where this the slow traiff move right rule is strictly enforced by big Mercedes doing 180 kph.
more on the pickup truck thing...NatC
Dec 6, 2003 7:46 AM
Around here there is a lot of new construction going on. When you think of construction workers and pickups, you picture them carrying lumber, hauling roofing shingles, etc. right? I see the majority of pickups around our community in which the construction workers are hauling nothing. The trucks are polished and swanky, and look as if they've never hauled a thing in their life, other than maybe softball equipment. The company trucks do the real hauling work. It's the blue collar version of the SUV perhaps?
So, do you drive an Excursion or a Tahoe? (nm)Hood Rider
Dec 5, 2003 3:13 PM
Nice doug, you should be lawyer.huez
Dec 5, 2003 3:20 PM
Just kidding. I know you are one.

Well said. I agree. Bashing on SUVs has become a bandwagon thing. Its so stupid.

Based on the logic of the bashers, we should all drive the same size car, all cars should weigh the same, all cars should have an engine no bigger than a Yugo (thats plenty to go 55mph), we should not turn on the heaters in our house but we should bundle up, we should live as close as possible to our work, grocery store, etc, etc.

Jealousy is sometimes humorous.
Let's examine the "logic" of the SUV apologists:czardonic
Dec 5, 2003 4:53 PM
  • There are other vehicles that are equally as harmful as SUVs.
  • SUV "bashers" do not bash these other vehicles.
  • Complaints about SUVs must be invalid.

    Has it ever occured to either of you that SUVs are singled out because they are the fastest growing segment of the large car market and responsible for a resurgance in the number of large, gas-guzzling cars on the road? Or that whatever the theoretical equivalency between SUV's and pick-ups, semis or even sports cars, this equivalency may not be born out in the real world?
  • Rationale for SUV bashingCoot72
    Dec 5, 2003 4:17 PM
    One way to look at SUV bashing is through a "political" lens. I agree with doug that arguments most people make about SUVs has not been based in consistent logic. Carefully constructed logical arguments, however, is not the point. If the objective is to make a political or social movement (see Governor Arnold), then one needs a poster child. The SUV is the poster child, because it symbolizes all that is wrong with large SUVs. The vehicles themselves of course are not bad or good. The reason why people by these vehicles like wanting to look powerful, looks or fashion, etc. are what makes SUVs "bad." Yes, other items are also wasteful like pickups, but the SUV is the poster child of what might be called by people in other countries ugly american consumerism. The SUV is the symbol, and it's a somewhat effective strategy for those who think differently about what kind of vehicles one should buy.

    Stay safe
    Coot!
    There is no Rationale for SUV bashing - its a fabricated issuejcpreuss
    Dec 5, 2003 6:09 PM
    Gee, an "effective strategy." Is that why the sales rate for SUVs has continued to rise unabated through the whole "debate?" On that point, I disagree. But the rest of your anaylsis hits the nail on the head as to what is going on -- the SUV is simply a means to an end. It's rooted deeply in the "anti-everything" movement and is propelled by a tiny minority of very organized individuals who can't stand the fact that people earn a decent living and spend it like they want to. How do I know this? I'm a GM employee in Washington DC who lives with this sh!t every day. Sierra Club, the Union of "Concerned" Scientits (what joke), and half a dozen other "concerned" groups painted this poster child in the wake of the Firestone debacal at Ford. They couldn't wait to jump on the media bandwagon and feed the frenzy. It was also helpful that a company called Fenton Communications -- the official PR machine of left-wing causes -- realized a profit bonanza awaited them and put the whole thing in motion. Of course, the lap-dog national press at the New York Times, the Washington Post, CNN, the WSJ and others lapped it up without question. And yet, month after month, year after year, Americans buy more and more SUVs. See a pattern?
    SUVs are popular. Therefore they are harmless.czardonic
    Dec 5, 2003 6:17 PM
    Now there is a rationale.
    Increased deaths rates, traffic congestion and pollution arepurplepaul
    Dec 5, 2003 6:56 PM
    fabricated?

    You must be joking.

    There's no question that some people jump on an issue purely for monetary considerations. But can you see no validity at all to ANY issues brought about by the popularity of heavy, gas guzzling and unnecessarily dangerous vehicles?
    FACTS help peoplejcpreuss
    Dec 7, 2003 5:14 AM
    The issue is not vehicles, its the fuel. When the national policy for fuel is to keep it a $1.50 a gallon -- which is about 1/3 the cost of fuel anywhere else on the planet -- people make a very easy and reasonable decision to buy more vehicle. To wit, you don't see Ford or GM or Toyota selling Escalades, Excursions and Sequoias in Tokyo or Paris. Since you claim they are "unnecessarily dangerous" tell me where you got that notion? Was it from the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration? No...it was from what you read in the paper. If you care to review the statitics on SUVs and light duty trucks, including issues of vehicle compatibility, you'll find that SUVs ARE SAFER in most every vehcile catagory measured. They are in fact lower in terms of death rates per mile driven, and NHTSA just finally completed it's weight based analysis of vehicle compatiblity safety and found that SUVS and light duty trucks are SAFER than most anything on the road. But hey, don't let the facts get in the way of a good debate. Congestion? Sorry, SUV's, particularly the most popular mid-size variety, occupy no more road space than a mid-size sedan in terms of vehicle length. Congestion is about the numbers of vehicles, not the size. Pollution?? Well, true, SUVs are working about five years behind cars on SUV emissions by law. However, more than half being sold are already meeting car emission levels now, and by 2007-2009, all must meet the stringent LEVII federal standards and ULEV Cal standards. Hmmm, what other issues should we discuss?
    FACTS help peoplepurplepaul
    Dec 7, 2003 9:41 AM
    I'll agree that fuel prices are too low and, thus, encourage people to buy wasteful vehicles. I said in a post above that if gas cost $10/gal. for vehicles that got poor mileage, I wouldn't have so much of a problem with them.

    But,

    I don't know where you got your statistics but mine are from insurance companies and the US government, via "High and Mighty: Suvs-The World's Most Dangerous Vehicles and How They Got That Way".

    No study that I have ever heard of would support your claim that they are the safest vehicles. How could they? SUV's kill their occupants WAY more than any other vehicle due to rollovers. They kill other drivers WAY more because they are higher than cars and, instead of hitting a car's bumper, ride up and over the hood and decapitate the occupants. Newer SUV's are being built to reduce this, but there are still millions of SUV's that will be passed down to a younger generation that will do this.

    Congestion? If you can't see around an SUV, you'll give it more room. All SUV's are taller than sedans, so all SUV's require more space between vehicles. And Hummers in particular are huge. If SUV's were easier to see around and more fuel efficient no one would have a problem with them. But then we'd call them "cars."
    FACTS help peoplejcpreuss
    Dec 7, 2003 10:26 AM
    First, High and Mighty, written by Keith Bradshur was blown out of the water by almost every expert who reviewed the premise he presented. It's true that SUV occupants are two to three times more likely to be killed in a rollover, and that SUVs rollover more than cars. HOWEVER, you are considerably safer than in an SUV in front, side, rear, and multi-car accidents. Thus, SUVs net out with a better rate of safety when measured by NHTSA data. The fact that SUV critics site only rollover numbers and not the others goes directly to the misleading agenda they have.
    I disagree about "fabricated issue"- the point is more subtleCoot72
    Dec 5, 2003 8:10 PM
    Interesting comments. here are some more things to chew on. I stated that using the SUV is a somewhat effective strategy for groups trying to find a poster child against rapacious consumerism. This doesn't mean it is a campaign that is necessarily directed at sales volume. My sense is that is it more a rally cry for those who believe that large vehicles are dangerous and wasteful. Because sales of SUVs has increased is more of an indictment of the average american consumer than the effectiveness of the campaign. People are in general ignorant followers. They do what looks cool. How many people really care about the environment, the poor, or some sissy-legged cyclist who gets run over. (Human life just isn't worth that much. Look at the maintainance cut backs at Disneyland and the subsequent increase in accidents. Well the bean counters just realized that settling out of court once in a while still nets disneyland tens of millions of dollars. See LATimes last week or so.)

    People might think that because the U.S. is a "free" country we can do anything. But the SCIENTIFIC evidence is clear. SUVs are wasteful. Global warming IS happening. People are dying. I've seen the data, and it's not encouraging to say the least. But that's not the point. And it doesn't matter if SUVs are a significant cause of it or not. Political battles aren't won based on facts and figures. The average person is ignorant or too self-absorbed to care about anything except personal gratification. Thus they need the poster child symbols (SUV) to be able to refer to the issues.

    So is this a fabricated issue? Well it really doesn't matter. It's all about manipulating the lemmings. If they think it's an issue, then it IS an issue. That's why SUVs get bashed by certain groups -- it's an attempt to manipulate the lemmings. Although the things said by these groups may not be logical (and I know logic as I'm mathematician), it makes political sense, because these groups are fighting an ideological battle.

    Anyways, enjoy the weekend, ride safe, and ride lots.
    Cheers!
    Coot
    Blown out of proportionfiltersweep
    Dec 6, 2003 7:19 AM
    I think an SUV is more of an overgrown minivan- the vehicle they largely replaced. There really aren't THAT many full-sized SUVs on the road anyway- there are much more of the me-too RAV4 mini-SUVs that are based on compact car platforms. A Jeep Liberty isn't the end of the world.

    Look at those Durango ads where vehicle price as shown is something like $38,000. For a stinking Durango? You can buy a little Suzuki XR7 for half that... and most people actually do.

    Now the trend seems to be those sports wagon type vehicles, shaped like a Murano. SUVs will be passe, big and bulky.
    Clear Science?!!jcpreuss
    Dec 7, 2003 12:29 PM
    If you've got clear scientific information on the exact origins of climate change, than you have a breakthrough nobody else has seen. The earth is warming -- it's been doing it since the ice age -- that is a fact. The rate at which it is warming, the cause of the heating and the effects of the heating are wildly speculative. In fact, most of the models used to frame the Koyto Protocol and form the IPCC position on climate change have all been found flawed. That is not a statement that I think its all bunk, I'm simply saying that the cause and effect of climate change is not known, it's only speculated about and the speculation is growing, not getting clearer. Now, what are SUVs impact here? Well, since 97 percent of greenhouse gas is water vapor, and less than one percent is CO2, we must focus down on that less than one percent. Of that one percent, about half is attributed to man made sources, and about half of that can be traced to transportation. Now we can focus on the US, which is less than half of that amount, to which, SUVs are resposible for less than 1/3 that remains. Get the picture...it's kind of futile to hang all this on SUVs.

    Which brings me back to the motives of those who hate the rampent consumerism, SUVs, or whatever. What if they decide that your bike is a problem? Say, aluminum takes much more energy to weld than steel, so we should only build steel bikes? Or how about the safety risks of bikes? Perhaps we should just ban them from the roads to save the bikers from themselves. It's stupid logic, but its the same logic behind the SUV haters. They don't want you to buy and drive what you want. They want to tell you what to drive and buy. Why? I DON'T KNOW! But I wish they'd go find something else to do with their time and energy.
    Amen Doug! Very well writtenthegarzacomplex
    Dec 5, 2003 12:26 PM
    Shame has its place...Alex-in-Evanston
    Dec 5, 2003 1:14 PM
    And selecting a very visible symbol of silly energy consumption doesn't make you a hypocrite. Sure there are other examples of poor environmental stewardship, but do you have to fight EVERY battle or NONE?

    Alex

    P.S. - nobody likes the amateur amateur psychoanalysis. "Jealous"? Oh brother.
    That is why....AaronL
    Dec 5, 2003 3:20 PM
    I hate everything and everyone. With my system of overall bitterness and hatred no one gets left out.

    On a serious note, I've found that jerks are jerks regardless of car, color or income.
    pickupsdotkaye
    Dec 5, 2003 3:29 PM
    I include pickups in the SUV category - when the pickup has leather seats, CD, and climate control, it's not a pickup anymore.. that is, not intended for useful work.

    For me it's nothing to do with envy or prejudice or PC, it's about reckless endangerment. And I'm not even going to get into the perverse tax incentives to buy SUVs..

    The Car Talk guys have a good page on the subject - read the 'Downsides to SUVs' for some of the perfectly good reasons to dislike SUVs.
    http://cartalk.cars.com/info/suv/
    Nearly got creamed by a predator drone on the Wednesday commute-djg
    Dec 5, 2003 12:48 PM
    too many darn military spin-offs in the suburbs these days, if you ask me.
    Next thing you know...funknuggets
    Dec 5, 2003 3:01 PM
    we will be getting picked off by rehash monkeys on armored Segways... the MUTs will never be the same...

    Chris
    We're working on that problem ...Humma Hah
    Dec 5, 2003 3:14 PM
    Our sister-company's pilot used to fly those. If they'd install our autopilot, they wouldn't MISS!

    Nearly, indeed! Shouldn't ever happen! ;-)
    The get your slow a$$ out of the wayjcpreuss
    Dec 5, 2003 5:44 PM
    The anti-suv stuff is getting old. Hummer ownership is called freedom of choice. The only thing that comes out of the zealotry is a gazillion tons of toxic emissions when the anit-SUV idiots torch vehciles and dealerships. I can assure you there are more SUV drivers annoyed with cyclcists who drive the lane as if they were a car (yielding no ground as they spin along at 18 mph blocking traffic), then there are enviro-geeks consumed with what other people drive.
    Might makes right!czardonic
    Dec 5, 2003 6:31 PM
    Get the hell out of my way! Don't you know that other people agree with me!
    Hypocritical Envious Bilgebayou06
    Dec 6, 2003 2:51 AM
    This is the type of crap that comes from people who don't say a word about the Turbo Mustang or Porsche that burn just a much gas as the Hummer. This bilge is just another fictious issue that the tree hugging liberal freaks have taken up. Plus, how could anyone riding a $5000 bike have anything to say about someone who purchase a "expensive" vehicle. Basically, both the cyclist and the Hummer driver like to ride quality nice things.
    My brother's 5.0 Mustang gets 30 MPGpurplepaul
    Dec 6, 2003 11:37 AM
    and show me the Porsche that gets 10 MPG.

    It has nothing to do with the expense of the vehicle. If anything, Hummers aren't expensive enough to cover their costs to society.

    If you're correct in your belief that anyone opposed to Hummers is just an envious hypocrite, then why don't we hear complaints about luxury vehicles that don't have such an impact?

    Could one answer be that there are legitimate reasons to criticize Hummers regardless of their price or image?