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Off-road romance  

Sport utility vehicles -- you either love 'em or you hate 'em. Check out any parking lot and a good half or more of the cars will be SUVs of recent vintage. On the one hand, they're the darling of yuppie dads in baseball hats and $150 work boots, and of soccer moms with designer sunglasses and cell phones. But the monster vehicles are the bane of environmentalists who loathe their miniscule miles to the gallon and the damage left in their wake when driven off-road.
click to enlarge Bob Smith  -  - Fiction writer -  - Downtown  -  -  - Do you have an SUV? I have a '64 Land Rover. -  - Do you have any qualms about taking it on off-road - adventures? Mine's not in any shape to do that, but - sure, I'd do it to get access to primitive areas. -  - Are SUVs patriotic or unpatriotic? The larger - ones are kind of stupid. Fossil fuels aren't going to last - forever. -  - Have you seen those commercials where the SUV - abandons the road to plow through rivers, scatter deer - and spectacularly summit mountains? The real - attraction of SUVs is as SAVs  Suburban Assault Vehicles. - They're designed to survive crashes that other cars won't - and make the driver feel untouchable. -  - What's the magic of the Hummer? If you have - the Hummer I, you have a whole lot of magic. It has - incredible power. It'll take on any terrain. But the - Hummer II, the one that's commercially sold, is a piece of - crap. It has a one-ton truck frame.
  • Bob Smith

    Fiction writer

    Downtown

    Do you have an SUV? I have a '64 Land Rover.

    Do you have any qualms about taking it on off-road adventures? Mine's not in any shape to do that, but sure, I'd do it to get access to primitive areas.

    Are SUVs patriotic or unpatriotic? The larger ones are kind of stupid. Fossil fuels aren't going to last forever.

    Have you seen those commercials where the SUV abandons the road to plow through rivers, scatter deer and spectacularly summit mountains? The real attraction of SUVs is as SAVs Suburban Assault Vehicles. They're designed to survive crashes that other cars won't and make the driver feel untouchable.

    What's the magic of the Hummer? If you have the Hummer I, you have a whole lot of magic. It has incredible power. It'll take on any terrain. But the Hummer II, the one that's commercially sold, is a piece of crap. It has a one-ton truck frame.

click to enlarge Rene Renard   -  - Teacher and house cleaner -  - Central   -  -  - Do you take your SUV off-road? Yes, when we go - camping. -  - Should Congress pass legislation regulating off- - road use? Most of the serious four-wheel drive - people I know respect the environment. Whenever we go - off-road, we take a baggy and all trash goes in that. -  - What about commercials that promote SUVs as - vehicles for forging rivers and plowing through terrain - where others can't? It's a nice visual concept that - depicts how a lot of people would like to see themselves, - but 90 percent of SUV owners have no interest in really - doing that. -  - What's the magic of a Hummer? My 11-year- - old son thinks they're unbelievably cool. I think they - appeal to 11-year-old mentalities.
  • Rene Renard

    Teacher and house cleaner

    Central

    Do you take your SUV off-road? Yes, when we go camping.

    Should Congress pass legislation regulating off- road use? Most of the serious four-wheel drive people I know respect the environment. Whenever we go off-road, we take a baggy and all trash goes in that.

    What about commercials that promote SUVs as vehicles for forging rivers and plowing through terrain where others can't? It's a nice visual concept that depicts how a lot of people would like to see themselves, but 90 percent of SUV owners have no interest in really doing that.

    What's the magic of a Hummer? My 11-year- old son thinks they're unbelievably cool. I think they appeal to 11-year-old mentalities.

click to enlarge Marshall Griffith  -  - Department of Human Services -  - Downtown  -  -  - Do you own an SUV? I'd own a truck, but never an - SUV because they tear up a lot of backcountry terrain. -  - Are SUVs patriotic? That's a meaningless - question. -  - Should their off-road use be regulated? - Definitely. A lot of SUV wheels are set too far apart for - the old mining roads and they tear up the road edges. -  - What about those commercials that depict SUVs - dashing across meadows, sprinting up mountains and - forging rivers? Anybody driving off-road like that in - real life would ruin their vehicle. -  - What's the mystique of the Hummer? Bush- - leaguers go for Hummers.
  • Marshall Griffith

    Department of Human Services

    Downtown

    Do you own an SUV? I'd own a truck, but never an SUV because they tear up a lot of backcountry terrain.

    Are SUVs patriotic? That's a meaningless question.

    Should their off-road use be regulated? Definitely. A lot of SUV wheels are set too far apart for the old mining roads and they tear up the road edges.

    What about those commercials that depict SUVs dashing across meadows, sprinting up mountains and forging rivers? Anybody driving off-road like that in real life would ruin their vehicle.

    What's the mystique of the Hummer? Bush- leaguers go for Hummers.

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