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You are here: MacNN Forums > Community > MacNN Lounge > Audi, BMW or Mercedes

View Poll Results: What do you own ?
Poll Options:
Audi 17 votes (32.69%)
BMW 20 votes (38.46%)
Mercedes 14 votes (26.92%)
None 11 votes (21.15%)
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 52. You may not vote on this poll
Audi, BMW or Mercedes (Page 2)
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imitchellg5
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Jan 24, 2010, 12:02 AM
 
Originally Posted by Hawkeye_a View Post

Audi A5 Sportsback.... general opinions ?
One of those stupid niche cars that the Germans are becoming obsessed with for some unfathomable reason (see BMW X6). It is rather pretty, but what's the point?
     
Shaddim
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Jan 24, 2010, 12:33 AM
 
Originally Posted by iMOTOR View Post
I can figure it out if I want to, that’s not my issue. I just don’t want a car that I feel is unnecessarily complicated or complex. Same reason I use a Mac.
It isn't too complicated.
"Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it."
- Thomas Paine
     
Buffy Summers
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Jan 24, 2010, 03:57 AM
 
Audi A5 Sportsback general opinions ?
One of those stupid niche cars that the Germans are becoming obsessed with for some unfathomable reason (see BMW X6). It is rather pretty, but what's the point?
The X6 and even the 5 GT look way better than the A5 'spottyback'.

The point you ask?, to differentiate themselves from competition and to make a statement of course, like every other car you people keep posting here.





But of course if all you're trying to do is to bring another Mercedes CLS wannabe to the market, you fail. Miserably. Like Audi.
the scapegoat
     
imitchellg5
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Jan 24, 2010, 01:17 PM
 
Yes but they're useless. The X6 is 1) Tall like an SUV 2) Is less comfortable in back than my Accord coupe 3) Seats only four 4) Can't offroad at all (See Top Gear) 5) Has less of everything than the X5 but is 6) More expensive. Who possibly thought this was a good idea?
     
Hawkeye_a  (op)
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Jan 24, 2010, 11:28 PM
 
Originally Posted by imitchellg5 View Post
One of those stupid niche cars that the Germans are becoming obsessed with for some unfathomable reason (see BMW X6). It is rather pretty, but what's the point?
Fair enough.

Now this is purely my opinion as a person who is not a mechanic/car-engineer....

Apart from the relatively small(arguably negligible) difference in performance/tuning between the cars made by these three manufacturers, isn't design a bigger differentiator to the end consumer ? it was for me, and i wonder if most people who buy these cars walk into a showroom with the same considerations ?
     
turtle777
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Jan 24, 2010, 11:34 PM
 
Originally Posted by imitchellg5 View Post
One of those stupid niche cars that the Germans are becoming obsessed with for some unfathomable reason (see BMW X6). It is rather pretty, but what's the point?
Yes, let's rather have stupid bestseller cars like GM and Chrysler

-t
     
Ado
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Jan 25, 2010, 05:20 AM
 
Italian, German and Japanese cars...Can't loose..

But i like this...
     
Sealobo
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Jan 25, 2010, 09:43 AM
 
The X6 is a stupid car. Jeremy Clarkson did a fantastic review on it lately.
     
mduell
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Jan 25, 2010, 12:47 PM
 
Originally Posted by mduell View Post
2003 BMW M3 (E46)

Going to a two day event at H2R this weekend.
CV joint demolished. This not be cheap.
     
downinflames68
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Jan 25, 2010, 12:55 PM
 
Originally Posted by ghporter View Post
I would have a BMW Z4 if I could afford the maintenance and tires. Not scheduled maintenance; they cover that with their latest warranty. It's the unexpected stuff, plus the tires, that would make the car unaffordable. It was bad enough buying tires for a Honda S2000; nearly $1500 for a Japanese brand I have only peripherally heard of. They're nice tires, but holy cow they're dear! (My Civic's new Michelins were about $900, so I really shouldn't complain too much...)
$1500 for tires is a rip off. Next time go to vulcantire.com, they have pretty good deals on performance tires.
     
downinflames68
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Jan 25, 2010, 01:12 PM
 
Well, first off, Mercedes is now the "buick" of the three brands. They produce heavy, bloated, luxo barge stuff. Yeah, some of it is fast, but that stuff is extremely rare and fairly unattainable. I like OLD AMGs, as well as the 60s/70s sedans (fantastic OG cars when they are dropped), but nothing they currently make is anything I'd consider owning.

BMW's styling is pretty bad, the only thing they have that looks remotely good is the 6 series. I much prefer the E30/E34 styling era, everything was serious, conservative, and very "tense". My dream car would be a BMW 850 CSi V12 6spd. After the E39 M5, BMWs were all fugly. Thank you Chris Bangle. Some of the new twin turbo engines are fantastic powerplants, but I just cannot get over the busy, bloated, "inflated" looking styling. The 1 series is a great performer, but for the size and price, a complete joke. I'd consider any M-car from the late 90s, but nothing after 2002.

Audi is really on top of their game at the moment. Their styling department is just dominating; their cars look fresh, clean, and timeless. They really innovated with LED headlamps, and the R8 is fantastic in every category. The performance is great, the styling is awesome, and it doesn't make you look like a total ********* like a Lamorghini would. Basically, I think the R8 is THE supercar to have at the moment, excluding the Veyron. However.... audi does lose some points for the horrible reliability of the mid 90s through mid 2000s products. Horrible ignition failures, electrical gremlins, and all sorts of crap that should have been sorted out before it was put on the market. Recent ones are PROBABLY better though. So with them, it's either anything post 2005, or the 1992-1996 S4/S6. Of course, I'm biased. A turbo 5 cylinder directly from Audi's rally program in the 80s, stiff suspension, factory heated recaros, and a stealthy exterior that nobody notices.

     
turtle777
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Jan 25, 2010, 02:38 PM
 
Originally Posted by downinflames68 View Post
My dream car would be a BMW 850 CSi V12 6spd.
A friend of mine just bought one, and is restoring it to it's old glory.

It's a great car

-t
     
imitchellg5
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Jan 25, 2010, 04:47 PM
 
Originally Posted by downinflames68 View Post
Well, first off, Mercedes is now the "buick" of the three brands. They produce heavy, bloated, luxo barge stuff. Yeah, some of it is fast, but that stuff is extremely rare and fairly unattainable. I like OLD AMGs, as well as the 60s/70s sedans (fantastic OG cars when they are dropped), but nothing they currently make is anything I'd consider owning.

BMW's styling is pretty bad, the only thing they have that looks remotely good is the 6 series. I much prefer the E30/E34 styling era, everything was serious, conservative, and very "tense". My dream car would be a BMW 850 CSi V12 6spd. After the E39 M5, BMWs were all fugly. Thank you Chris Bangle. Some of the new twin turbo engines are fantastic powerplants, but I just cannot get over the busy, bloated, "inflated" looking styling. The 1 series is a great performer, but for the size and price, a complete joke. I'd consider any M-car from the late 90s, but nothing after 2002.

Audi is really on top of their game at the moment. Their styling department is just dominating; their cars look fresh, clean, and timeless. They really innovated with LED headlamps, and the R8 is fantastic in every category. The performance is great, the styling is awesome, and it doesn't make you look like a total ********* like a Lamorghini would. Basically, I think the R8 is THE supercar to have at the moment, excluding the Veyron. However.... audi does lose some points for the horrible reliability of the mid 90s through mid 2000s products. Horrible ignition failures, electrical gremlins, and all sorts of crap that should have been sorted out before it was put on the market. Recent ones are PROBABLY better though. So with them, it's either anything post 2005, or the 1992-1996 S4/S6. Of course, I'm biased. A turbo 5 cylinder directly from Audi's rally program in the 80s, stiff suspension, factory heated recaros, and a stealthy exterior that nobody notices.
I agree with everything you just said. My dream garage would be made of a '78 240D, a 2001 E55, a '96 850 CSi, a '96 M3 sedan, and an '86 M3. Such great cars.

It's really sad to see Mercedes get caught up in the retro mentality. I think that Mercedes have always had a timeless, but modern look, but now the new models (especially the E-class and GLK) look instantly dated whereas the A6 and Q5 are rather elegant but modern. I thought the last generation of the E-class was probably the best looking Benz, but then they facelifted it in 2007, squaring it off a bit which is when MB started to go downhill.

Recent Audis are definitely much more reliable than 90s and early 00 models. Starting with the last-gen A4, things really improved. Audi's biggest challenge is that they need to change the expensive-but-crap mentality that most buyers have. These days Audi is higher rated than brands like Nissan and Infiniti, and people love the G35/37.
     
Buffy Summers
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Jan 25, 2010, 05:46 PM
 
The X6 is
1) Tall like an SUV
Memorable blonde moment.

2) Is less comfortable in back than my Accord coupe
See below.

3) Seats only four
Seating four is making a luxury statement. But you have to get it right, cause to over-promise and under-deliver we have the Audi TT.

4) Can't offroad at all (See Top Gear)
Who cares?. Not really, who cares?. Do you know about a single guy that had refused to buy it cause it can't go offroad?.

5) Has less of everything than the X5 but is
Has got more style, and personality. The X5 is, styling wise, just another de facto boring SUV.

6) More expensive.
Even so, it manages to sell like hot cakes, so…

Who possibly thought this was a good idea?
so it was a good idea.

The X6 is a stupid car.
It might not be rather smart, which doesn't mean it is stupid per se.

Jeremy Clarkson did a fantastic review on it lately.
So what?. It is either Jeremy / Top Gear or nothing. It seems to me that you people like to forming an opinion on any random car based on that guy. Those know-it-all kind of guys are tools. All of us were one of them, a know-it-all, but heck, I was 10, I got over it. Why don't you?.

They really innovated with LED headlamps
Why did they forget about the taillights?. Cheap.

The 1 series is a great performer, but for the size and price, a complete joke.
Maybe I should sell the 135 to get the A3. Cause the A3 is a better value, huh?. Riiiight.

serious, conservative, and very "tense"
You hate Bangle but you speak like the guy.

The 1 coupé is a very classy design. Like a reborn 2002.
the scapegoat
     
downinflames68
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Jan 25, 2010, 06:07 PM
 
Who the **** are you?
     
downinflames68
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Jan 25, 2010, 06:08 PM
 
Originally Posted by imitchellg5 View Post
I agree with everything you just said. My dream garage would be made of a '78 240D, a 2001 E55, a '96 850 CSi, a '96 M3 sedan, and an '86 M3. Such great cars.
Awesome mix, but you need an UrS-car for winter.

PS: Props on picking hte M3 sedan. Way cooler than the coupe.
     
The Final Dakar
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Jan 25, 2010, 06:10 PM
 
Originally Posted by downinflames68 View Post
Who the **** are you?
lulz
     
Sealobo
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Jan 25, 2010, 06:29 PM
 
s/he probably has a X6.

the X6 is one of the most ridiculous car BMW has ever made.

and i am a BMW fan. chris bangle broke my heart many times.
     
imitchellg5
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Jan 25, 2010, 06:39 PM
 
Originally Posted by Buffy Summers View Post
Memorable blonde moment.
How so? I'm not blonde. And it is tall like an SUV but clearly it isn't one.

See below.
Okay


Seating four is making a luxury statement. But you have to get it right, cause to over-promise and under-deliver we have the Audi TT.
No it's not. Seating four, in the case of the X6, says, "I bought a big car to make myself look like I have friends, but the backseat is so useless that it's really about me." Having four seats, but only two of them being useful, says something about yourself. And not something good.

Who cares?. Not really, who cares?. Do you know about a single guy that had refused to buy it cause it can't go offroad?.
Well yes. I do. I wouldn't buy an SUV if it can't go offroad. Because then I might as well have bought a good estate.


Has got more style, and personality. The X5 is, styling wise, just another de facto boring SUV.
Your sentence implies that there is an SUV that isn't boring. Which is wrong. Don't bring up the X5M or the Porsche Cayenne. If those buyers had wanted something good to drive, they'd have bought the M5. You can still bring the family along.

Even so, it manages to sell like hot cakes, so…
I've only seen one on the road, and nearly everyone hear drives an SUV. I see tons of X5s, even diesels. But only one X6.


so it was a good idea.
No it wasn't.

It might not be rather smart, which doesn't mean it is stupid per se.
I am genuinely confused. If it's not smart, obviously it's daft.

So what?. It is either Jeremy / Top Gear or nothing. It seems to me that you people like to forming an opinion on any random car based on that guy. Those know-it-all kind of guys are tools. All of us were one of them, a know-it-all, but heck, I was 10, I got over it. Why don't you?.
I hated the X6 way before it was on Top Gear.

Why did they forget about the taillights?. Cheap.
They didn't. Audi started having LED taillights since the last generation of A8.

Maybe I should sell the 135 to get the A3. Cause the A3 is a better value, huh?. Riiiight.
The A3 is a completely different class of vehicle, at least in the US. You could nearly buy two A3s for one 135i.

You hate Bangle but you speak like the guy.

The 1 coupé is a very classy design. Like a reborn 2002.
Classy? I wouldn't go nearly that far. The butt is too stubby, the wheelbase too short, and it looks like it's wearing some glasses.
     
Buffy Summers
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Jan 26, 2010, 02:48 AM
 
You're american and don't even know what a 'blonde moment' means???

the backseat is so useless that it's really about me." Having four seats, but only two of them being useful
You made a fool our of yourself there. Only two of them being useful?, ignorance speaking.

I wouldn't buy an SUV if it can't go offroad
So how many SUVs would you say can really go offroad?. It's not a priority. If you want or need go offroad get a Landy or the Mercedes-Benz G Class. Period.

But only one X6.
Most Popular 2010 Cars - 3. BMW X6 (tie) - Forbes.com

I am genuinely confused. If it's not smart, obviously it's daft.
If it is not black, it is white. 1-bit thinking is not going to carry you too far away.

No it wasn't.
So you hate it. Don't blame me then cause it was indeed a good idea.

I hated the X6 way before it was on Top Gear.
I see.

They didn't. Audi started having LED taillights since the last generation of A8.
They did. "Since last A8 gen" is not going to help you here hiding the ugly truth. Please everyone, have you ever seen an Audi with only front LEDs?. Honest.

The A3 is a completely different class of vehicle, at least in the US. You could nearly buy two A3s for one 135i.
Here we go again, black or white… if a similar amount of money can buy you an A3 or a 1 Coupé, and it does, then the 'completely different class of vehicle' doesn't matter at all. When I bought the 135, I well could have bought the A3 S3. Same thing for the entry models.

Classy? I wouldn't go nearly that far. The butt is too stubby, the wheelbase too short, and it looks like it's wearing some glasses.
Here you go, order your Audi glasses. You welcome.

the scapegoat
     
Doofy
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Jan 26, 2010, 08:10 AM
 
Originally Posted by Buffy Summers View Post
So how many SUVs would you say can really go offroad?. It's not a priority. If you want or need go offroad get a Landy or the Mercedes-Benz G Class. Period.
"Period"?

Clearly you should stick to slaying vampires and whining, since it appears that you know nothing about off-roading.
Been inclined to wander... off the beaten track.
That's where there's thunder... and the wind shouts back.
     
ghporter
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Jan 26, 2010, 09:13 AM
 
We owned a Honda CR-V for 8 years. It was a great "high ground clearance station wagon." We were well aware that it wasn't built for off-road work. But that ground clearance allowed us to go through a few spots that a lower, typical station wagon could not have. Off road? Not by typical definitions. Off "the" road? Certainly.

It's my impression that most vehicles sold today as "SUVs" are simply upholstered trucks with soft suspensions. For example, the Ford Escape (same size class as a CR-V) is a "car chasis" vehicle that's simply tall; its suspension is way too truck-like for a really car-class ride, but it's too wimpy for even big potholes. But it sells because it's a "small SUV." Apparently none of the buyers have ever looked under the thing to see what holds it up off the ground.

Glenn -----OTR/L, MOT, Tx
     
downinflames68
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Jan 26, 2010, 12:29 PM
 
Originally Posted by Buffy Summers View Post
So how many SUVs would you say can really go offroad?. It's not a priority. If you want or need go offroad get a Landy or the Mercedes-Benz G Class. Period.
If an SUV can't even go offroad, why does it have high ground clearance, massive wheel wells, and poor handling/braking/acceleration/response? It's like getting the worst of both worlds. On top of that, SUVs are complete death traps.


SUVS: How Detroit Fleeced the General Public
If you’ve been in America in the past 15 years, you’ve seen them. Sporty, youthful, and tough
looking, SUVs are some of the most popular vehicle choices at the moment. But why is that? Are they
really all they are cracked up to be? Are they really safer for their occupants? In the 1950s, the station
wagon was king. Essentially a large car with extra seats, the wagon provided room for the family, and at
the time, decent safety, handling, braking, and acceleration. Then in the early 1980s, Chrysler released
the minivan, which all but replaced the station wagon as the standard family vehicle. Eventually, the
stigma of the station wagon soon transferred to the minivan, labeling all minivan drivers as suburban
married folks, soccer moms, and generally boring. However, in the late 80s to early 90s there became
another choice. The SUV. It certainly looked more exciting than a minivan, with its high chassis, large,
knobby tires, rugged, aggressive bodywork, and outdoorsy image. Many SUVs offered larger engines,
which offered better acceleration than a minivan, and they were designed to travel offroad, and tow large
capacities, which is also exciting. Minivans can not offroad very well, nor can they tow large capacities,
so clearly the choice for an exciting customer was the SUV. It was also taller, bigger, and heavier,
which must mean it’s safer too, thought the public (For years, American automakers had been trying to
push back the fuel mileage regulations mandated by the government, claiming that making vehicles
meet the standards would make them less safe in an accident, which is simply untrue). But is this true?
Are SUVs safer than minivans or passenger cars? Or have you been fleeced by Detroit?

SUVs were really only offered by the big three (Chrysler, Ford, Chevy), due to a 25% markup on
all imported trucks and utility vehicles, called the “Chicken Tax”. This made European and Japanese
competition non-existent in the SUV segment. This lack of competition caused another problem later
on, which was caused by the American auto unions pressuring Washington into separating the safety and
emissions standards. Unions and company representatives pressured bureaucrats by telling them that
forcing Chevrolet, Ford, and Chrysler to meet these standards with not only their cars, but also their
trucks/SUVs would cause them to cut jobs. The last thing any Washington official wants is to be
responsible for lost jobs, because they will not be reelected. Thus, the safety and pollution standards
were soon “lax” for SUVs and trucks, while cars still had to adhere to them.
Again, this was another huge advantage for Detroit. They could use large, powerful engines that
were originally designed over 30 years ago, without consequence. These rather archaic designs
provided the public with impressive power, yet were not very efficient, barely passed emissions and
received rather horrid mpg (miles per gallon). To make matters worse, there was a loophole in the
CAFÉ (Corporate Average Fuel Economy) regulations that allowed the big three to build SUVs just
over 8,500lbs, and they would no longer be required to meet ANY safety or emissions standards (Café).
The Hummer H2 and Ford Excursion are a few that come to mind; neither were ever required to be
crash-tested and neither affect Ford or GM’s average MPG rating. For the record, the H2 receives 9
mpg in mixed city driving, worse than a 1968 Charger R/T (consumer reports). In summary, it’s quite
apparent that the entire legal system behind SUVs is pretty screwed up. Ignoring that, what about the
safety?
The majority of SUV drivers claim that they’re safer in an SUV, but unfortunately, they’re
completely and totally wrong. They are not safer. In fact, it’s generally the opposite. How could that
possibly be? The same features that make SUVs good at driving off the road are exactly what make
them so dangerous on the road. First, the SUV frame itself is usually very stiff, and heavily reinforced.
It’s designed like this not only to support the increased weight of the large vehicle, but also to withstand
the abuse of shocks, jolts, and stresses caused by driving off-road. This heavy-duty frame also lacks
crumple zones, or areas designed to deform and compress in an accident, dispersing vast amounts of
energy, and slowing down the occupants a bit more gradually. Instead, this stiff frame doesn’t crumple,
and the shocks and jolts of even a minor accident are transferred directly into the passenger
compartment. A car doesn’t do this. The average car is designed to sacrifice itself to save its occupants,
by crumpling as much as possible, excluding the passenger compartment. SUVs are not designed like
this; they’re designed to withstand impacts without crumpling. This makes them more hazardous than
cars.
A close friend of mine drives a luxury SUV, and was rear-ended by a Pontiac grand am traveling
about 10-15mph. The grand am was totaled, but the luxury SUV was barely damaged. However, all
was not so well for the occupants. The woman driving the grand am was shaken up, but healthy, while
my friend driving the SUV was not so lucky. The sharp jolt of energy during the impact gave him
severe whiplash, and he’s still doing physical therapy to this day because of neck pains. Had he been
driving a car, things would probably have turned out differently: both vehicles would have absorbed the
energy by crumpling, and both drivers would have been relatively unharmed.
“For example, if the driver of a 2002 Cadillac Escalade—one of the largest SUVs on the
market—crashed into an unyielding surface at thirty-five miles an hour, he would have a 16%
chance of sustaining a life-threatening head injury and a 20% chance of receiving a life-
threatening chest injury.71 That same driver in a Ford Windstar—a large minivan with a similar
seating capacity to the Escalade—would have only a 2% chance of a life-threatening head
injury, and only a 4% chance of a life-threatening chest injury.72 Thus, the driver of the
Escalade would be five to eight times more likely to die when hitting a fixed object at a
moderate speed than the driver of the minivan.”(Case, 9)
Rob4
Another way SUVs are inferior to cars are
general performance specifications. Generally,
SUVs are slower than the average car, and offer
inferior braking and handling (see Image 1). Some
of this is due to the increased mass of the SUV, but
it’s also the suspension design in general. Most auto
manufacturers try to convince the public that they
make the toughest, most capable vehicles off the
road. They do this, because if an editor claims that
the new Maybatsu Monstrosity is the most capable
off-road vehicle, the majority of the public will try
to buy that one. What is puzzling about this
phenomenon is that less than 5% of all SUVs ever
go off the road (suv.org), which means 95% of them
never leave the pavement.
Despite this, manufacturers often design SUVs that have suspensions with massive wheel travel,
and throw on knobby tires with tall sidewalls. Why? Because having a suspension that can climb over
anything, knobby tires for increased traction in loose surfaces, and tall sidewalls that protect the rim and
conform to rocks and ruts are all positive attributes while off-roading. Unfortunately, the very same
designs that excel off the road are detrimental on the road. The knobby tires, while good in sand, mud,
and dirt, reduce the contact patch of the vehicle on smooth, hard surfaces such as asphalt and concrete.
This means less traction, reduced braking, acceleration and handling abilities, and more road noise.
Large suspension travel and tall sidewalls equates to poor handling, response, braking and acceleration
due to massive weight transferring between sides and ends of the vehicle. This ultra compliant
suspension, along with a high center of gravity, also means SUVs are much more likely to roll over.
Image 1
Rob5
Rollovers are by far the biggest danger of driving an SUV (see Image 2). “In 2002, statistics
showed that nearly 11,000 people died in rollover accidents, with 61% of SUV rollovers accounting for
the fatalities. The number of people killed in SUV rollovers has increased by 14% in the last year”
(suvrollovernews.com). The primary reason that rollovers are so deadly is that almost all SUVs suffer
from very weak roofs.
“Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 216, Roof Crush
Resistance, establishes a minimum requirement for roof strength to "reduce deaths and
injuries due to the crushing of the roof into the occupant compartment in rollover
crashes." This is a quasi-static test in which a rigid plate is pushed into the roof at a slow
rate. The roof must be strong enough to prevent the plate from moving 5 inches when
pushed at a force equal to 1_ times the weight of the vehicle. The test went into effect in
1973 and remained essentially unchanged until a proposal to modify it in 2005”
(Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, Rollover and Roof Crush).
Unfortunately, that method of testing is extremely outdated, as during an actual rollover, it’s very
unlikely that the roof of a vehicle would receive a ‘slow and even’ impact. Most of the time, the vehicle
lands on a corner of the roof, which then collapses. Roof intrusion is the number one killer in SUVs, as
Image 2
Rob6
it intrudes directly into the passenger compartment in the most important area: The head and torso. The
Safety Analysis and Forensic Engineering (SAFE) group conducted a test in 2003 that dropped various
vehicles on their roofs to better simulate a real world rollover. The vehicles were suspended upside
down, and then lowered until one of their front A-pillars was in contact with the ground. The load was
then released, allowing the full weight of the vehicle to land on the roof, simulating a much more
realistic crash. While all vehicles had roofs that collapsed to some degree, the SUVs were by far the
worst. In the small 2-door hatchback group, the roof intruded about 17cm into the passenger
compartment. The roofs on the large and midsize SUVs intruded 20.3cm and 26.4cm respectively
(Inverted Drop Testing, 2).
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, passenger car deaths have risen 2%
since 1975, whereas SUV deaths have skyrocketed over 1000%. But wait, surely this can be explained
by the increased number of SUVs on the road since 1975, right? Wrong.
“In 1998, there were 130 million passenger cars registered in the USA, and 16
million SUVs. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were
119,000 car rollovers and 36,000 SUV rollovers that year. That means that for every 100,000
vehicles, 91 cars rolled over -- and 225 SUVs, a figure almost three times as high. When it
Image 3: Distribution of Side Impact Fatalities
(FARS 1980-96).
Rob7
comes to deaths, the disparity is even greater; for every 100,000 vehicles there are 3.4 deaths
in car rollovers, but 10.1 in SUV rollovers (a figure over three times as high). As to the rarity
of rollover accidents, once again we must look at NHTSA figures. For the 130 million cars,
there were 29,000 fatal accidents in 1998 -- a death rate of 22 per 100,000 vehicles. For the 16
million SUVs, there were 4,500 fatalities, which means a death rate of 28 per 100,000”
(Murray).
It is quite apparent from any data that SUVs are simply not as safe as the passenger cars they are
replacing. However, perhaps SUV owners are aware of all this information, and choose that having the
‘macho look’ of off-road ability is more important to them then their own safety. However, have these
owners considered the safety of the rest of the population? Federal information shows that although
light trucks and SUVs account for roughly one third of registered vehicles, they also account for the
majority of fatalities in vehicle to vehicle accidents. Of the 5,259 deaths caused when SUVs and light
trucks crashed into cars in 1996, 81% of the deaths were occupants in the car (see images 3 & 4). In
multiple vehicle crashes, the occupants of the car are four times more likely to be killed than the
occupants of the SUV. In a side impact collision with an SUV, car occupants are 27 times more likely
to die (SUV Safety Concerns). Another problem with most SUVs is the bumper height. During a crash
with a passenger car, the SUV’s tall bumper may ride up and over the bumper of a passenger vehicle,
negating the safety built into that of a car. While raising car bumpers would be an easy solution, the
problem is that cars are regulated to have bumpers at a certain height, but SUVs are allowed to have
them much higher. In a side-impact collision, the bumper of a large SUV can be so high that it will
completely miss the door of a passenger car, leaving only the side windows to protect the passenger
car’s occupants from the 4,000+ lb offroad vehicle about to crash into it. Also, pedestrian safety comes
to mind. The taller the bumper, the more likely a vehicle-pedestrian accident will result in pushing the
pedestrian down and under the vehicle, greatly reducing the chances of the pedestrian to survive.
Rob8
This safety concern is not only limited to crashes, but also to headlight levels. Large SUVs have
headlights mounted 36 to 39 inches above the ground - the same height as the side mirror on a small car.
The glare from SUVs' headlights can appear to other drivers as bright as high beams. Glare can be 10 to
20 times worse than recommended levels when headlights are at the height of a driver's eyes or side
mirror, according to a study by the Society of Automotive Engineers (Bradsher, NYT). Also, the large
size of most SUVs make them difficult to see around, and because of the height of the vehicles
themselves, the windshield and rear window are also very high. This creates a problem for drivers
behind the SUV, as unless you’re in an equally tall vehicle, you cannot see in front of them. Even if
most SUV owners are aware of the safety concerns to themselves, do they ever consider that they risk
the safety of others? The lack of forward visibility reduces the speed of drivers following behind them,
and increases the following distance. Both of these actions spurn a perpetual slowdown in every car
behind them, eventually causing the entire transit system to operate slower. If more vehicles could see
ahead of them, traffic could move faster, with less driver frustration.
Anywhere you look, it turns out that SUVs are not nearly as safe as passenger cars in accidents,
mostly because of the design of the SUV itself. However, there’s another factor to consider, the type of
Image 4: Distribution of Frontal-Frontal Impact Fatalities
Rob9
person who buys an SUV in the first place. According to research conducted by the nation’s leading
automakers, SUV buyers tend to be
“Insecure and vain. They are frequently nervous about their marriages and
uncomfortable about parenthood. They often lack confidence in their driving skills. Above all,
they are apt to be self-centered and self-absorbed, with little interest in their neighbors and
communities. They are more restless, more sybaritic, and less social than most Americans are.
They tend to like fine restaurants a lot more than off-road driving, seldom go to church and have
limited interest in doing volunteer work to help others”(Bradsher, 287).
Chrysler's market research director, David Bostwick notes something else, "If you have a sport
utility, you can have the smoked windows, put the children in the back and pretend you're still single"
(Bradsher, 362). Even more alarming, the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
researched aggressive driving and related fatalities on our roadways. What they found was that the top
twenty vehicles associated with road rage or aggressive driving fatalities were ALL SUVs or light trucks
(see image 5).
Image 5:
Aggressivity
Ranking: Top 15
Vehicles
     
downinflames68
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Jan 26, 2010, 12:32 PM
 
Finally, another concern about SUVs lies in the ecological impact they put on our planet. Often
getting about half the mpg of a comparable passenger car, they also have looser emissions standards,
allowing them to spew out a lot more harmful emissions. Comparing vehicles is easy, thanks to the
website provided by the government at Fuel Economy, and the stats for almost every vehicle
sold are available on this website. The most efficient cars sold today receive a fairly incredible 35-51
mpg, while the most efficient SUVs receive only 15-25mpg. In terms of the least efficient vehicles
available, for passenger cars it’s the Lamborghini Murcielago (9-14mpg) and for SUVs and light trucks
it is the Jeep Grand Cherokee 4wd, equipped with a V8 (12-15mpg). While the Lamborghini has a
lower mpg, it is also less of a problem. Ask yourself, how often do you see a Lamborghini Murcielago
on the street? Now do the same for the Jeep Grand Cherokee. The Lamborghini is extremely expensive,
in limited production, and rarely driven. It is in no way becoming a replacement for the ‘standard
family’ vehicle. The Jeep, however, is. Many people use Jeep Grand Cherokees as minivan/station
wagon replacements. How can a vehicle this wasteful become so popular? That’s a good question.
Blatant over-consumption also increases our dependency on foreign oil. Currently, more than
half the oil America uses is imported. This dependence on other countries will only rise, unless we start
doing a better job with conservation, and choosing vehicles that actually suite our lifestyles. With big
oil companies obviously not popular with the educated public, it is rather strange that some of the most
educated, most intelligent people in America are all driving vehicles that support the very same big oil
companies these people claim to be against. During the upcoming election season, one can be very
surprised as the number of SUVs driving around with bumper stickers supporting democratic or third
party candidates. Also worth noting, almost all of them will be spotted with only one person behind the
wheel, and the rest of the vehicle empty.
Clearly something has to be done. From every rational standpoint SUVs are inferior to the
average automobile; safety, performance, economy, environmental concerns, and crash compatibility are
Rob11
all compromised for nothing more than a styling statement. Even more frightening is the inevitable
period when these massive SUVs will depreciate to the point of being affordable to teenagers and people
with lower incomes. Lacking the money to properly maintain these vehicles, their braking and handling
performance will become even worse, yet they’ll still possess the same aspects that make them deadly to
everyone else on the road. When will auto-manufacturers change their product? Probably when the
general public smartens up, and becomes more aware of the problems created by choosing vehicles
designed for off-road use as daily transportation. As of right now, SUVs continue to be extremely
popular, with manufacturers unveiling newer models every quarter.
So what is the solution? Manufacturers only care about one thing: money. Regardless of public
safety, environmental effects, or the lives of its own customers, manufacturers will continue to produce
whatever keeps selling. Perhaps it would be possible to get Washington to regulate more standards on
the safety and emissions of SUVs, but this would limit the choices for people who actually needed such
vehicles. The best way to change what they produce is simply voting with your wallet. Once the
general public quits believing the lies that Detroit has trained them to believe, it is only then that we will
start to see real changes. The myths surrounding these vehicles are exactly that: myths. Myths
perpetuated by the advertising and marketing agencies that produce these vehicles. Myths meant to
make you believe some of the worst vehicles for the environment are something you should buy if you
actually care for it. Myths meant to make you feel safe while driving an SUV, even though statistics and
testing shows exactly the opposite. And most importantly, the myth that so many people need SUVs
considering almost none of them ever leave the pavement.
Rob12
Works Cited
Bradsher, Keith. High and Mighty. New York: PublicAffairs, 2002.
Bradsher, Keith. New York Times, "Larger Vehicles are Hampering Visibility," November 22,
1998
Café Overview <http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/Cars/rules/CAFE/overview.htm> November 21st, 2006
Case, Kevin. Tanks in the Streets: SUVs, Design Defects, and Ultrahazardous Strict Liability. TN:
Hampton Press, 2006.
Forrest, Stephen M. EVALUATING ‘REAL WORLD’ ROOF STRENGTH THROUGH INVERTED
DROP TESTING. <http://www.tulane.edu/~sbc2003/pdfdocs/0143.PDF>
GENERAL SUV ROLLOVER INFORMATION <http://suvrollovernews.com/html/general.html>
November 21st, 2006
Looking Back: 50 years of Auto Testing, Design and Performance
<http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/c...ng-403/design-
performance/index.htm
Mencimer, Stephanie. Sitting high and mighty
<http://www.newsreview.com/chico/Content?oid=oid%3A25060> November 21st, 2006
Murray, Iain. Armored Cars or Deathmobiles?
<http://web.archive.org/web/20041123085224/http://www.stats.org/record.jsp?type=oped&ID=43>
November 7, 2006
Q&A’s: Rollover and Roof Crush, <http://www.iihs.org/research/qanda/rollover.html> November
21st, 2006
SUV Environmental Concerns, <http://www.suv.org/environ.html> November 21st, 2006
SUV Safety Concerns < http://www.suv.org/safety.html> November 21st, 2006
Rob13
Images:
Image 1
SUVs Suck - Part 1
Image 2
http://www.suvrollovernews.com/images/figure4.gif
Images 3, 4, 5
http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/departm...08/980908.html
Videos:
YouTube - SUV Chase
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MUoz9_XtEI0
Rob14
     
imitchellg5
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Jan 26, 2010, 01:17 PM
 
Originally Posted by Buffy Summers View Post
You're american and don't even know what a 'blonde moment' means???
Of course I know what is. You don't understand that I'm not blonde.

You made a fool our of yourself there. Only two of them being useful?, ignorance speaking.
Well, having been in the X6, I can tell you that the back seats are useless. I can't fit well. And I'm sorry, but if I'm going to drop $60k on a huge ass SUV, I had better fit, otherwise it's a complete waste of space.


So how many SUVs would you say can really go offroad?. It's not a priority. If you want or need go offroad get a Landy or the Mercedes-Benz G Class. Period.
Or an Xterra, or a Wrangler, or a Grand Cherokee, or a 4Runner, or a Land Cruiser, etc.

Interesting. I don't understand how it's so popular when I've only ever seen one on the road, and I've been in many cities since the X6 has come out. Apparently there are a lot of stupid people out there. Who knew?

If it is not black, it is white. 1-bit thinking is not going to carry you too far away.
Okay.


So you hate it. Don't blame me then cause it was indeed a good idea.
How was it a good idea?

I see.
Oh yay.


They did. "Since last A8 gen" is not going to help you here hiding the ugly truth. Please everyone, have you ever seen an Audi with only front LEDs?. Honest.
I don't really understand what you mean. If you mean with only front LED headlights and no xenon, yes. The R8 V10. Also the next generation A8 will have LED headlights.

Here we go again, black or white… if a similar amount of money can buy you an A3 or a 1 Coupé, and it does, then the 'completely different class of vehicle' doesn't matter at all. When I bought the 135, I well could have bought the A3 S3. Same thing for the entry models.
I couldn't tell if you were in Europe or not. Here in America, we don't have the S3 and there is $10k-15k of difference between the A3 and 135i. That definitely puts them in completely different classes.

Here you go, order your Audi glasses. You welcome.
You think I'm saying that I hate BMW. I don't. I hate the X6 and all that it stands for. In a recession, a car like that makes no sense at all.
     
imitchellg5
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Jan 26, 2010, 01:21 PM
 
Originally Posted by ghporter View Post
We owned a Honda CR-V for 8 years. It was a great "high ground clearance station wagon." We were well aware that it wasn't built for off-road work. But that ground clearance allowed us to go through a few spots that a lower, typical station wagon could not have. Off road? Not by typical definitions. Off "the" road? Certainly.

It's my impression that most vehicles sold today as "SUVs" are simply upholstered trucks with soft suspensions. For example, the Ford Escape (same size class as a CR-V) is a "car chasis" vehicle that's simply tall; its suspension is way too truck-like for a really car-class ride, but it's too wimpy for even big potholes. But it sells because it's a "small SUV." Apparently none of the buyers have ever looked under the thing to see what holds it up off the ground.
The CR-V is one of the few SUVs that I like. It's roomy, decently powerful, great in the snow, and efficient. Plus, it's relatively affordable. That's why they sell well: because you get a lot of vehicle for a good price. When automakers stray from that, especially in a tough economy, people shouldn't buy these things. But for some reason, they do. That's why I think it's insane that people buy the X6. It's less car than the X5 (or a lot of good SUVs) for a lot more money.

The thing about the X6 is that it probably costs BMW less to make than the X5, but yet they are making a killing off of it. If it were to start in the upper $30k or lower $40k range, then it would perhaps be at least a bit more acceptable. Then it could provide competition to the ZDX, MDX, GLK, etc. But it's just sort of... out there. Doing nothing.
     
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Jan 26, 2010, 01:26 PM
 
^ Can someone kill Rob before he starts making a complete malechicken of himself again please?
Been inclined to wander... off the beaten track.
That's where there's thunder... and the wind shouts back.
     
imitchellg5
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Jan 26, 2010, 01:28 PM
 
Originally Posted by Doofy View Post
^ Can someone kill Rob before he starts making a complete malechicken of himself again please?
He just copy and pasted a report that he wrote. And it makes sense if you read it.
     
The Final Dakar
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Jan 26, 2010, 01:29 PM
 
Originally Posted by Doofy View Post
^ Can someone kill Rob before he starts making a complete malechicken of himself again please?
I'm sorry, can you restate that in 3000 words, spread over two posts? Be sure to include citations.
     
Laminar
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Jan 26, 2010, 01:30 PM
 
Vote for ban.
     
turtle777
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Jan 26, 2010, 01:33 PM
 
Originally Posted by imitchellg5 View Post
He just copy and pasted a report that he wrote. And it makes sense if you read it.
It does. He brings up good points.

If course, you can't agree with that, because hating SUVs means hating Amaraca

-t
     
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Jan 26, 2010, 01:37 PM
 
Originally Posted by imitchellg5 View Post
And it makes sense if you read it.
No it doesn't. In one part he's banging on about how unsafe SUVs are for the occupants then in another he's mentioning how in most car vs SUV RTAs the car passengers come out mangled while the SUV passengers are left wondering if they've hit a squirrel or something.

Plus, no mention of the fact that the Jeep Wrangler is the most environmentally-friendly car you can buy.

Plus, no mention of the fact that 90% of SUV drivers have wives, job and homes.
OK, so I made that last one up. But I likez it, so I'm treating it as fact.
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turtle777
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Jan 26, 2010, 01:42 PM
 
Originally Posted by Doofy View Post
Plus, no mention of the fact that 90% of SUV drivers have wives, job and homes.
Awesome

So you are saying 90% of the SUV drivers are married idiots with underwater mortgages ?

-t
     
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Jan 26, 2010, 01:44 PM
 
Originally Posted by turtle777 View Post
It does. He brings up good points.
No he doesn't. It's all Amerika-centric bollocks.

My #2 Jeep gets the same mileage as my Ford Focus. All SUVs outside Amerika have to pass the same emissions tests as regular cars, since there's no separate "large SUV" category. All SUVs outside Amerika have to pass the same pedestrian safety legislation that regular cars do, since there's no separate "large SUV" category. Which means that most of the SUVs inside Amerika have to pass them too, since global corporations tend to like to produce global product instead of one for each market.

Yes, that's right - both my Grand Cherokee and Cherokee have passed all the same legal tests that his Audi has. I wouldn't be able to drive them on the road otherwise.
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turtle777
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Jan 26, 2010, 01:48 PM
 
Originally Posted by Doofy View Post
Yes, that's right - both my Grand Cherokee and Cherokee have passed all the same legal tests that his Audi has. I wouldn't be able to drive them on the road otherwise.
That's a stock US-built Jeep w/o modifications for EU market ?

-t
     
sek929
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Originally Posted by Doofy View Post
"Period"?

Clearly you should stick to slaying vampires and whining, since it appears that you know nothing about off-roading.
Seriously, I'd rather have a Suzuki Sidekick with 32" tires than a stupid G-class if I were serious about going off-road. If I was REALLY serious I'd get a Unimog. I imagine he has never heard of Jeeps, either.
     
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Originally Posted by turtle777 View Post
That's a stock US-built Jeep w/o modifications for EU market ?
Grand: Totally stock, US-built. Only thing about it not available in Amerika is the colour of the paint.

Cherokee: Totally US-stock when bought except for engine (which is Italian). Not so stock now, since I did the suspension on it, chipped it and shoved some Pirellis on it.
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imitchellg5
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Jan 26, 2010, 05:04 PM
 
Originally Posted by Doofy View Post
No he doesn't. It's all Amerika-centric bollocks.

My #2 Jeep gets the same mileage as my Ford Focus. All SUVs outside Amerika have to pass the same emissions tests as regular cars, since there's no separate "large SUV" category. All SUVs outside Amerika have to pass the same pedestrian safety legislation that regular cars do, since there's no separate "large SUV" category. Which means that most of the SUVs inside Amerika have to pass them too, since global corporations tend to like to produce global product instead of one for each market.

Yes, that's right - both my Grand Cherokee and Cherokee have passed all the same legal tests that his Audi has. I wouldn't be able to drive them on the road otherwise.
It's America-centric because SUVs are now pretty much all the rage in America. Sure, they're popular in some parts of Europe, but not as widespread as in the US. In Europe it seems like a lot of SUV owners actually use them for what they're built for: off-road, or work. In the US, you see a 20 year old single girl driving a brand-new Land Cruiser when she has no use for anything bigger than a Fit.
     
The Final Dakar
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Jan 26, 2010, 05:05 PM
 
Originally Posted by imitchellg5 View Post
It's America-centric because SUVs are now pretty much all the rage in America.
By now, you mean since the early 90s (roughly)?
     
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Jan 26, 2010, 05:19 PM
 
Well, having been in the X6, I can tell you that the back seats are useless. I can't fit well.
You're either >6,3 or XXXL size.

Clearly you should stick to slaying vampires and whining, since it appears that you know nothing about off-roading.
I guess a quick sprint across an open field or jumping through some ruts is what most of you understand as being off-road capable.

Ladies shouldn't be messed with.

the scapegoat
     
Doofy
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Jan 26, 2010, 05:28 PM
 
Originally Posted by imitchellg5 View Post
In the US, you see a 20 year old single girl driving a brand-new Land Cruiser when she has no use for anything bigger than a Fit.
And you know this because you've stalked her for a month, right? How do you know she doesn't live along a rough farm track, or loads it up and goes camping every weekend?

Why has your car got two seats in the back? Do you always have three or four passengers? If not, then shouldn't someone with a lesser car be whining at you for having more seats than you have a use for?

It comes back to the old saying... ...unless you've walked a mile (or driven a year) in a man's shoes (or car), STFU*.
* That's not directed at you personally Mitch, that's just the saying.

And last time I looked, Land Cruisers pass all car emissions and pedestrian safety legislation in Europe. So unless you get different Land Cruisers over there, it's safe to say they're as legit as Rob's Audi.

Thus, his argument is a Hummer-load of fail.
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imitchellg5
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Jan 26, 2010, 05:30 PM
 
Originally Posted by Buffy Summers View Post
You're either >6,3 or XXXL size.



I guess a quick sprint across an open field or jumping through some ruts is what most of you understand as being off-road capable.

Ladies shouldn't be messed with.

I am 6'4". But I can fit in the back of my Accord coupe just fine. Why can't I fit in the back of a X6 that is much, much larger?
     
Doofy
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Jan 26, 2010, 05:31 PM
 
Originally Posted by Buffy Summers View Post
I guess a quick sprint across an open field or jumping through some ruts is what most of you understand as being off-road capable.
You guess wrong.

Originally Posted by Buffy Summers View Post
Ladies shouldn't be messed with.
Well, not the stroppy ones who assume they know things. Not unless you can get them to stop talking shite first, anyways.
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Shaddim
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Jan 26, 2010, 05:32 PM
 
X6? For off-road?
"Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it."
- Thomas Paine
     
imitchellg5
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Jan 26, 2010, 05:33 PM
 
Originally Posted by Doofy View Post
And you know this because you've stalked her for a month, right? How do you know she doesn't live along a rough farm track, or loads it up and goes camping every weekend?

Why has your car got two seats in the back? Do you always have three or four passengers? If not, then shouldn't someone with a lesser car be whining at you for having more seats than you have a use for?

It comes back to the old saying... ...unless you've walked a mile (or driven a year) in a man's shoes (or car), STFU*.
* That's not directed at you personally Mitch, that's just the saying.

And last time I looked, Land Cruisers pass all car emissions and pedestrian safety legislation in Europe. So unless you get different Land Cruisers over there, it's safe to say they're as legit as Rob's Audi.

Thus, his argument is a Hummer-load of fail.
I know because I live across the street from her. My car has five seats, and I carry children quite a bit... they aren't big enough to sit in the front.

Land Cruisers in the US are different than in Europe, annoyingly.
     
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Originally Posted by imitchellg5 View Post
I know because I live across the street from her. My car has five seats, and I carry children quite a bit... they aren't big enough to sit in the front.
And you don't own anything at all that you have no valid use for?

Originally Posted by imitchellg5 View Post
Land Cruisers in the US are different than in Europe, annoyingly.
Really? How? Different V8?
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imitchellg5
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Jan 26, 2010, 05:51 PM
 
Originally Posted by Doofy View Post
And you don't own anything at all that you have no valid use for?
Really? How? Different V8?
Yes. But it isn't something as expensive as a car. My main point that I'm trying to make here is that it doesn't make sense to spend more money to get less.

They have different bodies, powertrains, etc.
     
downinflames68
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Jan 26, 2010, 05:53 PM
 
Originally Posted by Doofy View Post
No it doesn't. In one part he's banging on about how unsafe SUVs are for the occupants then in another he's mentioning how in most car vs SUV RTAs the car passengers come out mangled while the SUV passengers are left wondering if they've hit a squirrel or something.
Yeah, you need the ability to think instead of boiling things down.

SUVs are unsafe in ANY accident where there is a large force involved, such as hitting a tree, or something of equal or larger mass. They also have poor response, handling, and braking, which makes an accident more likely since it's harder to avoid them. If you do get into an accident, and you slide off the road, it is VERY likely that the SUV will roll. Since roof strength standards haven't increased for SUVs/Trucks since 1972, it is likely the roof will collapse and someone will be injured or killed. This is why the deathrate of SUVs is so much higher than passenger cars.

If you hit another car with an SUV, since SUVs do not have the same bumper height, they can intrude into the passenger compartment of SMALL, LOW cars. This is absolutely horrible, because you can be responsible for KILLING people that would otherwise be alive/fine if you had been driving a regular car.


Plus, no mention of the fact that 90% of SUV drivers have wives, job and homes.
OK, so I made that last one up. But I likez it, so I'm treating it as fact.
SUVs are basically for self-centered assholes that just think "bigger= safer", watch NFL, and drink shitty beer, while living in their beige house in the suburbs, having sexual fantasies about their wife's friends, and driving around in their SUV pretending they're single. It's pretty sad. Just admit you need a minivan, or be an actual COOL dad and buy a high performance wagon or something.
     
downinflames68
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Jan 26, 2010, 05:53 PM
 
Originally Posted by Buffy Summers View Post
You're either >6,3 or XXXL size.



I guess a quick sprint across an open field or jumping through some ruts is what most of you understand as being off-road capable.

Ladies shouldn't be messed with.

Go make me a sandwich.
     
imitchellg5
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Jan 26, 2010, 05:57 PM
 
Originally Posted by downinflames68 View Post
Just admit you need a minivan, or be an actual COOL dad and buy a high performance wagon or something.
If I have a gaggle of children (and money) one day, I'm buying an E63 estate.
     
 
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