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I've shown that film to a number of friends and they all say it's sort of funny but also makes them cranky because of their need for family vehicles that don't get very good gas mileage. It's sad when you have a spouse and a number of kids and you need something that can fit them all PLUS everyone's luggage for a family trip, there's not really much choice on the vehicle market for anything over 20mpg...you HAVE to have a van, a truck, an SUV, or a wagon.
 

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I have no problem whatsoever with people driving SUV, Van, etc., with actual need.
What I get annoyed on the road is big trucks/SUVs that are obviously for fun and show. (I mean, would you buy a Hummer for your family?)
I guess we just need to make better choices in buying vehicles in any category and hope to push marketing direction of big car companies.
 

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who needs an SUV

I had a Sport Trac. Did I need a truck? Probably not, but I liked it. It was very comfortable for several freinds to go on road trips. How often do I road trip though, once a year, twice a year? I drive every day, mostly by myself. I also like my Pri. Many people out there do not "need" a Hummer or a lifted truck (making an already non-economical vehicle more of a gas guzzler). You can use a car like this for everyday and rent a larger vehicle for those special trips.
 

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I showed that video to a few people and the only ones who were cranky
were the Bush supporters.
 

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very very few people "need" SUVs, a lot of people want them
there is a difference

You don't need an SUV just 'cause you have kids. You might "need" a wagon or minivan to cart them around, but an SUV? NO

You need an SUV, usually to stroke your ego

I have two guy friends at work, both driving Yukons. Both are single guys in their mid to late 20's. They don't need the Yukon, they wanted them.

Spike
 

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I heard an interesting comment from a guy at work who just bought an expensive "luxury" sedan that uses premium gas and gets 18 MPG on a good day. He said:

"I can afford the gas."

It seems that driving a inefficient car has become somewhat of a status symbol, not unlike having a BMW or Mercedes.
 

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You might not say that if gas becomes hard to come by. He's using gas that you could be using more efficiently. He brings the prices up, because he raises demand more than you do.

So, yes, we have a good reason to criticize.

If there's 3 loaves left on the store shelf, and you need 2 to feed your family, but this guy buys 2 because he can but only needs one, thus the other loaf he bought will probably rot, would you not criticize?
 

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I don't know about anyone else's situation, but when I looked honestly at my need for an automobile - with a 7-year old, a 10-year old and husband (who does not drive) - I realized that the Prius does serve our transportation needs - at least 95% of the time.

It fits all four of us plus a hockey bag and/or a large suitcase - I realize that it is not the walk-in closet on wheels that our old Explorer was.
It rides comfortably enough-but it is not a living room on wheels that a minivan would have been. It provides the extra features (climate control, power everything, cruise etc.) that make longer car trips bearable - I realize that it does not offer a Shiatsu massage like a luxury car. :D
It provides side-curtain airbags, anti-skid control and other safety features that ease my mind about having the kids in the back seat of a car that is not built like the tank that a Hummer is.

About the only "need" I have any concern left over about is whether I'll find it difficult to get by without 4 wheel drive in Michigan winters.

What I got in return for the little I gave up, is a car that averaged 52 MPG on our nearly 500 mile roundtrip to Toronto this week - so that, even with $3.00 per gallon, we got there and back for less than $30 in gas.

I think more families should take a good look at the Prius - and consider what they actually use a car for most of the time. They might be surprised to find it is an excellent "family car".
 

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dgstan said:
I heard an interesting comment from a guy at work who just bought an expensive "luxury" sedan that uses premium gas and gets 18 MPG on a good day. He said:

"I can afford the gas."

It seems that driving a inefficient car has become somewhat of a status symbol, not unlike having a BMW or Mercedes.
I drive one of those cars that needs premium gas :) I'm waiting for my Prius to come in so that it can be my winter car for really bad snow days when I want my AWD.

Those cars are fun to drive when you can DRIVE. As a commute car, it doesn't make sense. As a commute car, you drive as fast as the car in front of you and that generally is no more than 5 miles an hour. Driving a $2000 car or a $30,000 car will get you to the same place just as fast.

Like I said, I'll keep my old car since it's paid off, fun to drive, and when I want to drive for fun, I'll bring it out.

I can't "afford the gas" anymore. Too many other things to spend it on that makes more sense.
 

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DanMan32 said:
You might not say that if gas becomes hard to come by. He's using gas that you could be using more efficiently. He brings the prices up, because he raises demand more than you do.

So, yes, we have a good reason to criticize.

If there's 3 loaves left on the store shelf, and you need 2 to feed your family, but this guy buys 2 because he can but only needs one, thus the other loaf he bought will probably rot, would you not criticize?
VERY well said.

Very well said. :D
 

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But what if there were a thousand loaves and the baker was depending on selling them all to get money to feed his family. Which customer would he welcome?
The optimist says, there will always be a thousand loafs,
The Pessimist says "there will always be three"
It works out to do you really have the right to criticize your neighbor just because you own a specific kind of car?
My neighbors, workmates and friends are all great people and as far as I know, not one has spoken a negative remark about my present choice of "wheels."
 

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Many people are simply misinformed about SUVs. My boss at job #2, for instance, told me she drove an SUV because she needed the safest possible car for carting around lots of kids. (She runs a school.) This is a myth - insurance industry mortality figures show that SUVs as a whole are not particularly safe, and as a whole they're FAR less safe than minivans. Though minivans are not significantly more maneuverable than SUVs, they have a sedan's modular frame, which is much safer than the truck/SUV's rigid frame.

Of course, vehicle mortality figures are strongly influenced by their owners' characters. For instance, the highest mortality rates are for American sub-compacts and sports cars. Sub-compacts make sense, because they're crushed in a collision with anything (though it should be a source of national shame that mortality rates are only exceptionally high for the American product, not European or Japanese). Sports cars makes less sense, because, being the most maneuverable cars on the road, they should have the fewest accidents. But people who drive sports cars tend to be, um, sports car drivers.

Minivan drivers are a major reason minivans are the safest class of automobile (despite the fact that, on average, they have the most passengers). Nobody drives a minivan because it's cool or makes them feel macho.
 

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Since we are using the bread as an analogy, the baker will sell all thousand loaves. The question is to whom, the waster, or the one who actually needs what he purchases, and is denied what he needs because of the waster?
Oil is a seller's market people.
 

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OK skip the bread, but since there is no shortage of, or projected shortage of oil for the next couple hundred years and your neighbor wants to drive his SUV instead of a compact car and he can afford it, why in the world would you critisize him for doing same. He probably personally feels as though the SUV is the safest car on the highway to drive and would be uncomfortable in any type of a compact. Whether he is statistcally right or not, if those are his feelings we are not going to change them.
I bought my car because it is a hybrid and I was curious. My questions have all been answered. Some bought them to save on fuel bills and others account they were scarce and different. Others because of the environment and then immediately attempted to bypass one of the environmental systems, namely the bladder in the tank by any number of strange ways of filling their gas tanks from slowly, to a couple gallons at a time, to belching and what not, to squeeze every possible ounce into the tank while bypassing the environamental system. (Put gas in until pump shuts off automatically and stop pumping) If you want to protect the environment make one extra fuel stop in the month.
 

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I don't get why the sudden need for an SUV or a Minivan just because you have kids.

I was one of three kids and my parents owned neither an SUV or a Minivan. They had cars. I remember a Ford and a Dodge. Yes, they were bigger than a Prius but they weren't as big as a Cadillac Sedan de Ville. To me they were just cars. Both front and back were bench seats and we all fit just fine. Anything we needed went in the trunk. My parents sat in the front and we three kids sat in the back.

My sister only has two kids and they have a van. I don't see why. They don't go camping and they have nothing to haul in a trailer, so at least they've never owned an SUV.

I think there is a lot of 'want' and not so much 'need' when it comes to SUVs. I'm heartened to hear that sales of SUVs are down and sales of cars are up.

BTW last week I was driving by Pearson Ford's used car lot and what should I see? A Hummer! BTW first it was parked up front next to the sidewalk. Then a few days later, as the price of gas went up I noticed it was missing. It had been moved to the second row, behind the first. Today I notice it's not even there, moved even further back. With gas at $3 a gallon I guess they knew they were fighting a losing battle there. I might go park on the street and take a picture. I think it's a hoot!
 

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Godiva, even with the price of gas in California I'll bet you your sister would not even consider trading you her van for your Prius.
Until you have owned one you will never know how much easier family life can be.
What the heck is the "sin" here? I'll bet Toyota has not cut back on their mni-van production. These gas prices may get them to put the snyergy system in one model. I'm sure folks would sacrifice performance for a little better gas milage, but whether customers could afford one would be the next question.
Chrysler sold an awfull lot of under powered four cylinder mini-vans when they started the market back in 1982.
 

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Fitting 3 kids in a car now is different than 20 years ago. With cars seat laws kids can't sit up front until 12. They are also by law required to stay in car seats or boosters until they are 60 lbs. Three kids in car seats don't really fit well in most mid sized cars (Camry, Accord etc) and small SUV's (4-Runner) are not much better. They can squeeze, but you don't really have good access to the seatbelts. Then factor in trying to take 3 kids + strollers and an SUV makes life easier. Right or wrong, there is a trade off of convenience & comfort vs gas consumption.
 
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