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SUVs use more than their fair share

Opinion by Shannon Stollenmaier, People & Places editor


As I cruise down the H-3 in my little Nissan (which I have lovingly nicknamed Mercedes), I am thankful that my ten-gallon tank can take me 247 miles, especially given today’s ratio of salary to gas price. Although compact, the backseats fold down doubling the trunk space. With a functioning stereo, power locks and windows, a clean interior, and air-conditioning, Mercedes gets me where I need to go.

Happy, happy, happy I travel down the highway. I look to the right and left observing Hawai‘i’s crisp, lush vegetation. I look in front me, and I can’t see a thing. It’s another SUV blocking my view of the road ahead. Becoming instantly blind (where I must trust in the driving skills of the SUV driver in front me) is a regular event as ,I and all the other drivers in America, are made instantly insignificant by the Godzilla-sized vehicles that are literally hogging more and more of our roads every day.

SUVs just take up space for no apparent reason.

Most of these seven-person capacity vehicles are occupied by only one person, the driver. The SUV is 1.4 times the size of a standard car, which can turn a casual drive into a battle for the survival of the biggest. SUVs reduce the space in parking lots and shrink the size of roadways. They increase traffic, cause congestion, and amplify irritation.

Practicality is another aspect that needs our attention, especially living in Hawai‘i. Ford’s Expedition was made to trek through the icy Alaskan terrain, to tackle the canyon-like dips in an off-road adventure, to transport materials by the ton to construction sites. Hawai‘i Expedition drivers must be oh-so glad they didn’t put scratches in their SUVs during their oh-so strenuous trips to the North Shore in this 80-degree Hawaiian winter.

The SUV lays claim to being the most rugged, four-wheel-drive vehicle of its time. The reality is that its off-road capabilities are hardly exercised in normal driving environments, including snow. In truth, only one percent of S

So SUVs are purchased for safety (which we know is false) or for adventure (which is for most a foolish fantasy). These are not practical cars for the average American.UVs purchased are actually used in off-road conditions. Consumers are foolishly emptying their pockets to purchase vehicles with a gamut of features they will never use.





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