Sunday, July 22, 2007

Prince Of The SUVs.

The SUV is a much-maligned vehicle in these days of environmental scare-mongering and angst about our so-called addiction to foreign oil. I prefer to blame large semis more than cars, pickups, or SUVs. You can check the data. (Here.) Gas efficiency for all consumer vehicles, including the much-scapegoated SUV, has improved over time. But big-rig trucks remain mired at about 5 miles per gallon. America's freight should not travel on highways, it should travel on the rails.

Anyway, to me the car-based SUV is the ideal vehicle. It's not a gigantic vehicle like many SUVs. Its station wagon-like design allows for flexibility in carrying passengers and cargo. But its design is much cooler than a station wagon's.

For SUV lovers like me, who want to use less gas and even pollute less, the Ford Escape Hybrid could be the perfect vehicle; SUV design and flexibility with economy car mileage. I traded in my old Subaru Forester the other day for the new Escape Hybrid. This is it outside my garage. Automatic transmission, moon roof, heated leather seats, satellite radio, all the amenities. The Escape hybrid drives like a regular SUV except when gliding along silently at city-street speeds in all electric mode. Instead of the 20-25 mpg I was getting with the Forester, I'm getting 32-35 mpg in the Escape. And its hybrid technology appeals to the techie in me.

As much as I like my new Escape hybrid, I'm looking forward to when the Venture One hits the road -- 100 mpg at 100 mph. (Here.) This is the European version in action.*
O yeah.

-tdr

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*Photo from flytheroad.com.

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Comments:
You make a good point. And man, that is one awesome looking vehicle in your picture at the bottom. That's the European Venture?
 
According to the Venture One website, flytheroad.com, the European version is called The Carver. And that's it in the picture.
 
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