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Monday, March 20, 2006

Save the Planet!

Posted by on March 20 at 8:30 AM

Give a Hummer driver the finger! From today’s New York Times:

For Janna Jensen, it was the dirty looks and nasty gestures from other drivers that finally persuaded her to give up the family’s $55,000 Hummer H2. Her husband, Michael, meanwhile, was tired of the $300 monthly gasoline cost and the quality problems that began soon after they bought it.

So the Jensens of Reno, Nev., dumped the sport utility vehicle this year for a more modest Honda Element, still an S.U.V. but one with better gasoline mileage and a lower profile than the H2. And they are not alone.

Luxury sport utilities are becoming decidedly less cool than just three years ago, when they were the hottest things on wheels and dealers had long waiting lists for the most popular models.

On top of the sales drop that has hurt all sport utilities, fewer than half the people who bought luxury S.U.V.’s are going back for another one.

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Anyone could see this coming a year or so back.

1.) Big SUVs are almost universally unreliable. If I recall, Consumer Reports rated the Lincoln Navigator the most unreliable vehicle last year.

2.) When gas was around $1 gallon, gas prices were all but irrelevant (if you can ignore the environmental consequences). I just paid $2.50 p/gal yesterday, and now 10 miles per gallon isn't looking so irrelevant any more.

3.) SUV sales plummeted when gas prices spiked a year ago, and have not recovered. That's why GM and Ford are closing plants left and right, and rumors of government bail outs are rampant.

Much as I despise "free market" rhetoric, doubling (or tripling) of gas prices could be the best thing for the environment. I'm all for $5 p/gal gas.

Pull up next to the wife, whether she's driving or the passenger. Look her dead in the eyes and shake your head disapprovingly. Feel free to add a thumbs down if does anything but make a horrified face. Don't look away until she does.


I was pleased by this article, mainly because I have been giving people who drive Hummers dirty looks and the finger for a couple of years now. Nice to know that it may be making a small difference.

I gave a Hummer the finger just yesterday, on Stone Way.

Expensive to operate, unreliable, and RIDICULOUSLY UNSAFE.

Everyone "knows" that giant SUVs are unsafe for other people, but they also "know" that they're safer to ride in, because they survive crashes so much better than small cars.

But it's not true. The most important factor in surviving crashes is NOT GETTING INTO CRASHES. And giant SUVs are much, much, much, much worse at avoiding crashes than small cars. Poor visibility, bad handling, hard steering, lousy brakes, stupid weight distribution, high center of gravity. So even though you will survive crashes at a higher RATE, you will get into enough more of them to negate the difference.

The most dangerous vehicle of all is the Ford F-100 pickup, followed by an endless list of other trucks and huge SUVs.

Which is a good thing, because the world needs MORE DEAD SUV DRIVERS.

I think I might be in favor of something even more radical in response to Hummers on the road. How about shooting out all four tires?

Now, really, do you think anyone so out of touch as to want to drive or be in a Hummer would care what anybody benignly thinks or does to them? Hell, it's even possible that those people feed on that shit.

Judging by the trendy douchebags who drive these shit-bricks-on-wheels, they care very much what other people think. My personal assessment of them is aptly summarized by my bumper sticker:

Nice Hummer!

Sorry about your penis.

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