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Date Posted: 17:29:22 03/02/07 Fri
Author: ben
Author Host/IP: netblock-72-25-103-119.dslextreme.com /
Subject: Re: SUV suck - but I have one!
In reply to: Robin 's message, "SUV suck - but I have one!" on 11:06:11 02/28/07 Wed

I can think of several reason why seats and cars in the USA are so big.

Over in europe there is the social reasons why things are smaller, historically cars were invented after cities were formed, so roads over there are smaller, hence cars are smaller. In the states there is more of a car centric culture, cities were designed for cars, there isn't much mass transportation, and people seem to equate big cars with being powerful and successful.

Then there is the financial reason car companies in the USA build big cars, as opposed to building high end well thought out cars. In the USA the big three look at their bottom line and think short term, most people in the USA are price sensitive and look mostly at the initial cost of a car, to design an SUV does not take that much, unibody box like structure that looks tough and big sells to the general public. Low price crap that appeals to the low cost wal mart mentality is what most of the American public wants, so that is what is produced by American car makers.

Over in Europe where people pay big $$$ or euros to get a license, a big car does not make sense because roads are smaller, and mostly people who drive over in europe have money to spend (after all it's lots more expensive to drive over there than it is in the USA), so people over in europe who drive have on average more means that an american car owner so they buy cars that have more engineering in them and have more fuel effienct motors in them cause gas prices are higher.

Now there is another reason baby seats are big, and this is because there are so many darn lawyers in the United States. For better or for worst, depending on your point of view the United States has a greater number of lawyers per capita with respect to europe. Now all they lawyers in the United States have big dreams of making big bucks, and on way they can do that is to sue the hell out of anyone they think can make some big bucks off of. So picture a car seat maker, not wanting their ass being sued, will make a big well padded car seat so in the off chance their seat is involved in an accident, some lawyer can't blame them for making an unsafe car seat. Also to cover their ass, car seat makers put all kind of warning labels on their products so that they hopefully won't be sued for not having proper instructions on how to use a product or potentally misuse a product... like for example ya might have heard about some idiot trying to hand hold a lawn mower to cut off the top of a hedge and gets hurt doing so, or the woman who spills hot coffee in her lap because the dumb shit put in between her legs while driving.... Think about over in germany when ya drive, people don't try and mult-task let along do dumb things.

IMHO tort reform is one thing I like about the republic party platform, and wish democratics would follow, but I know this won't happen because many personal injury lawyers give lots of political contributions to congress in the hopes they won't pass limits on awards given to someone doing the suing cause lawyers earn more money when their clients win bigger lawsuits.

There are some things I think are pretty dumb about live here in the united states, and the design of SUVs which for the most part have very little thought put into them from an efficent engineering design stand point and the the waste of resources of too many darn lawyers defending idiots who do dumb things, is one of the major downsides of life in the United States.

>I have an SUV. Yes, the shame. However, nobody ever
>seems to mention the fact about car seats in this
>country. I never thought I would buy an SUV, I hated
>them. I owned a Subaru Forester which I guess might
>be considered an SUV but it was the length of my Honda
>Civic and low to the ground. It was also manual
>transmission, so the gas mileage was pretty good.
>The problem came when we had our second child. The
>car seats my children were in are so big that my
>husband at 6'2" couldn't drive the car because the car
>seats pushed up the driver's seat and I was so pushed
>forward in the passenger seat that if we got in an
>accident, the air bag would have killed me. So, we
>searched for new cars and bought a Honda Pilot. We
>bought the Honda because of its low emissions and gas
>mileage but it is still an SUV. There is enough room
>for our car seats and my husband to drive comfortably
>but even though it is a great car, I hate how SUVs
>handle. I know the Pilot isn't a true SUV (on a car
>chasis) but it still feels high to me. Now that the
>kids are getting older, I can't wait to get a station
>wagon. In Norway we drove a Volvo which was small but
>we all seemed to fit without a problem.
>Why do car seats have to be so big in this country?
>We go to England a lot and always rent a small car and
>the car seats over there are much smaller. I don't
>think they are less safe. I am in no way against car
>seats or people wearing their seat belts (would never
>drive any other way) but it is so regulated that to
>comply you must have a big car.

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