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Thread: What's with all these crossovers/SUVs?

  1. #31
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    I'll be buying a new set (4) of Cooper Discover snow tires in September. Fakey "all-seasons" are illegal for the winters here.
    Officially, that's October 01 to April 30, if I remember correctly. You get to pay the impound fee until you get real snows put on.
    Best mounted on extra rims for quick & easy change-overs.

    It's the confidence for that first drive of the day after an overnight snowfall. I sweep off the Burb with a 24" shop floor brush.
    Try to get rolling and push the 4x4 button for the engaging solenoid gears.
    For decades, I drove without 4x4 and got away with it. I'm old enough now not to want nor to need any hesitation for either power or traction.

    What kinds of loads are you hauling? What are the worst of your driving conditions? Trendy comes a distant third here.

  2. #32
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    Yeah, there's a difference between a true SUV (4WD) and a "crossover' (2WD with an SUV body style)

    Some of you have already pointed out the most obvious advantages; higher seat and view, more room, higher ground clearance, etc. However nobody's mentioned the other reason they're good for families with smaller children; the fact that they're just bigger and heavier and thus have better passenger survivability in crashes. As for me though, I tend to agree with the school of thought that if you want an SUV, get a real one. The crossovers are more about the fad (and marketing) than reality.

    Like some others here, I also like station wagons (estate cars) but truth be told, they're darned hard to find nowadays.
    Last edited by santaman2000; 31-07-2017 at 20:20. Reason: spelling and typos

  3. #33
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    Last edited by Janne; 20-08-2017 at 14:03.

  4. #34
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    The SUVs I looked at didn't seem to have any extra clearance than the base car. Could he wrong since the base car versions were buried right around the back of the car lot. Seems dealers are fanning the fad by promoting the fake SUVs.

    Ford focus about 1300kg, NCAP 5 star safety rating.

    Ford kuga about 1600kg, NCAP 5 star rating.

    By my calculation 13 % higher weight but in NCAP ratings there is not much difference in safety if any. I wonder how much of an advantage 300kg is for safety? I doubt it's any safer. NCAP testing is rigorous, however I understood it's comparative in that two cars with the same rating generally has a similar level if safety. It's not just about crashing neither, pedestrian safety is factored in too I believe.

    I also read on a newspaper a while back that 4x4s were popular because they're safer. Truth was some were, some were most definitely not. The news piece gave examples but I don't recall. I do think it's the same with SUVs. Perception is they're all safer but they're not in a lot of cases.

  5. #35
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    Last edited by Janne; 20-08-2017 at 14:03.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Janne View Post
    Physics.

    Hit a Kuga with a Defender, and the front parts of the chassis of the Defender will mash it up.
    True, a good "big un" should beat a good "little un" but as this test suggests there is a bit more to the physics of vehicle safety than mass and a rigid ladder chassis (and unless the Defender's chassis is galvanised and/or has been regularly Waxoyled, most are not as rigid as their owners would like!), and the reality is that in a collision at speed, the Kuga driver and passengers would be protected by a carefully thought out combination of rigid bits, crumple zones, air bags, tensioned seat belts etc. etc. designed to keep the passenger cell intact and its contents safe, by people with a knowledge of physics which Maurice Wilks or his 1980s successors could only have dreamed of when designing Land Rovers.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mLLanPwRgio

    A Discovery sits on an almost identical chassis to a Defender and although a Renault Espace is bigger than a Ford Kuga, in the decade and a half since the 5th Gear test, all modern cars have got safer and most Defenders just rustier. There is a very good reason why insurers are very reluctant to insure Defenders with 11 or 12 seats!

    PS FWIW, an unladen Defender 90 hardtop weighs in at around 1750kgs which is only about 40kgs heavier than the portliest Ford Kuga. I regularly drive a Defender but I know which I'd rather be driving in the event of a major accident!
    Last edited by Nomad64; 01-08-2017 at 13:54.

  7. #37
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    Last edited by Janne; 20-08-2017 at 14:02.

  8. #38
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    Just bought a Nissan Qashqai. Why did I buy it? Nice tall car for a tall driver, good to get out of with my back. Also gets 78mpg. May trade it in for an electric model 3 next year

  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Janne View Post
    I assume a vehicle in a good condition.
    If you watch the video, I think it's reasonable to assume that both the Land Rover and Renault were in good condition.

    The brutal reality is that in a serious collision between a modern vehicle with a high NCAP rating and one which dates from the 1940s (which has had no material passive safety upgrades since the padded dashtop in the 1970s on the Series III and softer steering wheels sometime in the 1990s), the occupants of the modern vehicle are more likely to walk away.

    My 110 has a rollcage and significant amounts of ironmongery bolted onto the front and sides to boost protection in the event of contact with the scenery, wildlife or African minibus taxis but I'm not naive enough to believe that this compensates for the inherent weaknesses of the antiquated design in the event of a collision at significant speed.

  10. #40
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    Last edited by Janne; 20-08-2017 at 14:01.

  11. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul_B View Post
    The SUVs I looked at didn't seem to have any extra clearance than the base car. Could he wrong since the base car versions were buried right around the back of the car lot. Seems dealers are fanning the fad by promoting the fake SUVs.

    Ford focus about 1300kg, NCAP 5 star safety rating.

    Ford kuga about 1600kg, NCAP 5 star rating.

    By my calculation 13 % higher weight but in NCAP ratings there is not much difference in safety if any. I wonder how much of an advantage 300kg is for safety? I doubt it's any safer. NCAP testing is rigorous, however I understood it's comparative in that two cars with the same rating generally has a similar level if safety. It's not just about crashing neither, pedestrian safety is factored in too I believe.

    I also read on a newspaper a while back that 4x4s were popular because they're safer. Truth was some were, some were most definitely not. The news piece gave examples but I don't recall. I do think it's the same with SUVs. Perception is they're all safer but they're not in a lot of cases.
    I don't know if those ratings include pedestrian safety or not, but that would certainly explain the similar ratings. Tghat said, I don't think most of us are considering pedestrian safety when we choose a vehicle.

    Even without ratings or tests it's obvious that if a Semi (full sized lorry) collides with a Mini, the occupants of the Lorry are much safer than the occupants of the Mini. (I know that's an extreme comparison but the only thing that really changes if you scale it back is exactly that: scale (scale of size/mass difference and scale of relative safety) I imagine you're right though; 300 kilos probably isn't going to make a lot of difference.
    Last edited by santaman2000; 04-08-2017 at 16:41.

  12. #42
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    Just checked NCAP ratings. Not directly comparable because they take into account car class. The a car site I read actually gave a hint on this aspect of cars and their safety. They said taller cars generally come off better than lower cars. It's because a taller car will damage a shorter car more. I guess they reckoned height not weight but I.can't see why.

    So I've got a high roof mpv that's 4 star rated. That's higher than the 3 of the current fiesta and suv based on it. It's lower than the kuga and the focus. It's still safer than an NCAP 5 star from the 1990s though. The ratings have git harder to achieve as car safety design getting better.

  13. #43
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    xxxxxxxxxxxxxx.
    Last edited by Janne; 20-08-2017 at 14:01.

  14. #44
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    Years ago there was a story about airbags being dangerous for tall drivers. Something about them being above the target for airbags. The result was the risk of a snapped neck. Apparently the news bit said most tall drivers don't have the steering wheel/seat adjusted correctly which causes the risk. At the time I had a car without a steering wheel adjustment so it meant my seat was as low as it could go. Fortunately the car before that was so basic it didn't have an airbag or much adjustment. Doubt it was even NCAP tested. I survived though.

  15. #45
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    Duplicate post

  16. #46
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    Last edited by Janne; 20-08-2017 at 14:01.

  17. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul_B View Post
    Just checked NCAP ratings. Not directly comparable because they take into account car class. The a car site I read actually gave a hint on this aspect of cars and their safety. They said taller cars generally come off better than lower cars. It's because a taller car will damage a shorter car more. I guess they reckoned height not weight but I.can't see why......
    I can't cite any evidence to support it, but I suspect it's because the taller vehicle has a bumper that's also higher. The taller bumper (hard item) strikes the body (soft target) of the shorter car?

  18. #48
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    That'll explain the zero damage to a pickup I saw back up.net over an estate car. The car got a flattened bonnet.

  19. #49

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    We have a typical street based SUV with all wheel drive, a BMW X3, bought because the sports saloon we had was just too much of an issue at the Moot but we did not want to compromise road manners with a full 4x4. The advantages compared to what we had before are numerous and I will never go back to a conventional car again. The stability and grip in adverse weather at any speed is excellent, ever wondered why when its raining on the motorway you get big SUV's zooming down the outside lane? So much easier to get in and out of, especially with getting a child into a child seat. Better driving position giving excellent vision and considerately less headlight glare at night. Being a BMW it does handle more like a sports saloon then a SUV and did have a harsh ride before I fitted smaller wheels with tall All terrain tyres. It coped really well with the tracks at the Moot but I would not like to push it too far!
    A fool sees not the same tree that a wise man sees. - William Blake

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