April 18, 2018 14:02
The suv-hype remains an incomprehensible success story. Meanwhile, three-quarters of the cars I drive are suv or crossover-like. While the format does not touch either side or shore. The S and U stand for ‘sports’ and ‘utility’, or sportsmanship and usability. Then you can do it Best of two worlds expect. But it becomes really sporty design box never, even though Porsche and BMW come to an end, and employability has become secondary.
You do not buy the giants for the cargo space. Real off-road vehicles are rarely if they already have four-wheel drive. They are awkwardly high and wide. They never drive as well as a decent sedan or hatchback. The strongest argument, for the elderly, is the increased entry; yet people in their thirties also go for the ax.
Nut is a side issue for most buyers. They just want it. They fall for the looks, the big, high, thick. The draw weight is only a factor for a small minority of fish farmers and contractors.
How often does an earnings model rest on irrationality? The fashion yes. Only a pair of jeans from a hip brand does not cost you forty, seventy, or hundred and fifty thousand euros. But the family father who, with a Superb Combi of say 35 mille, has one of the largest and best stations on the market, buys a less spacious suv without being blinded or abandoned.
I mean: technology usually develops according to logical patterns. The evolution of consumer audio used to be logical. In my childhood had you have the three-in-one system, huge all-in-one stereo systems with turntable, radio and a cassette deck. Huge laps were it. You could lose them special one wall furniture with extendable shelves. Later you got the audio tower with stacked components. He later came in handy mini-versions that you could lose anywhere. The walkman came, the portable CD. Everything became smaller, better, more practical. And now we do not need stereo anymore thanks to Spotify. The sound quality can be disputed, but that will be fine and it works brilliantly.
What is doing the car industry meanwhile? That makes everything bigger and more awkward. Downsizing? Only engines gladly. Those who carry so much mass in these large carriages that their theoretical consumption benefit evaporates.
No, I’m not a grumpy old man. I have resigned myself to the existence of the suv. He is a fact of life. You might as well ask me what I think of the weather. I have nothing to find, it’s just there. In addition, I am just like the buyers: for the currants in the porridge I also fall. I find the Peugeot 3008 and 5008 extraordinarily successful designs, appreciate the Volvo XC40, become of a Macan or a Cayenne despite the principled aversion to the machismo of those bloated monsters yet again very happy. And a kingdom for a Range Rover. Who not? Nothing more human than a lover.
But I do not understand anything. All those cars are larger and heavier than necessary, less efficient than possible. Smaller manufacturers to make prefer a second-rate SUV then take their chances on the decisive difference on untrodden territory. With the Eclipse Cross, Mitsubishi builds a car that drives well, but in terms of design remains below par and does not protrude above ground level in any other way. Why did the brand not come up with a brilliant alternative, the car that nobody has? Why are brands unable to break this pattern of lemmings? The chroniclers of the future will look back with surprise. Madness.
Columnist / Writer
Bas van Putten is a writer and columnist for various newspapers and magazines. His roots lie in music, but his heart has been going to cars for years. read more