Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

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sean.mcgrath
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by sean.mcgrath » Sat Aug 01, 2020 7:21 am

simplextableau wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 9:59 pm
Everyone always forgets about a hitch and small trailer. Any car can tow 1000 pounds if you keep it slow and short distances. The trailer is cheap and tiny (48 inches long).
I was thinking of mentioning this. Living in the Netherlands, these little trailers are ubiquitous. It's a fantastic alternative. [Although, full disclosure: we actually have a mini-van, which imho is way better for comfort and storage than an SUV. :beer )

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22twain
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by 22twain » Sat Aug 01, 2020 7:35 am

JBTX wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 11:20 pm
So if "need"<> need, then what does "need" mean?
Are you referring to "need" or ""need""? :wink:
Help save endangered words! When you write "princiPLE", make sure you don't really mean "princiPAL"!

GmanJeff
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by GmanJeff » Sat Aug 01, 2020 7:38 am

The answer probably depends on how you use your vehicle. A SUV can be more convenient than a sedan if you load cargo such as golf bags and push carts or musical instrument speakers and amps, a wheelchair, or other heavy/awkward items which may not fit well in a sedan trunk or back seat. The extra height over a sedan appeals to some drivers who like the elevated view and sometimes makes it easier for taller people to get in and out of.

On the other hand, some frail people may find it more difficult to get in and out of a higher SUV than a sedan. SUVs often are less fuel-efficient compared to similarly sized sedans. Even a nominally mid-size SUV like a BMW X5 can be a tight fit in some garages and parking spaces.

As transportation for people alone, a SUV offers no particular advantage over a sedan unless you want to carry more than 5 people and are contemplating a 7-seat SUV, or you feel you need or want the added ride height as a trade-off for less agility (unless you're speaking of a BMW M, BG AMG, or the like). Both can be had with the latest safety technologies and with all-wheel-drive if desired.

tibbitts
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by tibbitts » Sat Aug 01, 2020 7:46 am

Chuck107 wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 6:49 am
Never owned or even drove an SUV, so one is not needed.
Never had a pickup truck either, only sedans or my current sportwagon.

Edit, anything needed from a store that can't fit into the car/wagon gets put into my 4x8 trailer which I have had for the past 27 yrs.
I don't think there's any difference between a "sportwagon" and SUV for the purposes of this conversation, so I'd say you've concluded that you either need or want an SUV. A big difference you have from a sedan is a longer, relatively flat roof for carrying.

Although it can be a good solution for some, many people don't have the room to store even a folding trailer.

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cheese_breath
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by cheese_breath » Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:06 am

Kookaburra wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 11:41 pm
If they did need an SUV, how did they survive before SUVs even existed?
As I responded before, station wagons.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

Swivelguy
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by Swivelguy » Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:11 am

Haha, wow. No, of course you don't need an SUV. My car is a hyundai "subcompact" hatchback. I've hauled bags of mulch with it. I've hauled 4x8 sheets of plywood with it. I hauled a 15' ladder with it. I hauled 4 people and 4 bicycles up the mountainside to crater lake. I slapped chains on and drove it the last couple miles to the Mt. St. Helens trailhead in some inches of fresh snow. My wife's car is a tiny 2-seater. We get by just fine.

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bottlecap
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by bottlecap » Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:13 am

Kennedy wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 11:04 pm

OP here. It's quite obvious from some responses that some failed to note my use of quotation marks around the word "need," indicating I'm using the word in a non-standard and not literal way. Sheesh.
There's three problems with the question. First, you said "SUV". That brings out the judgmental nature in certain folks. Second, you said "need" and "SUV" in the same sentence. Get ready for a judgment tsunami! Third, you asked a non-financial question only answerable to you, such as, "How often should I play squash versus ice hockey?"

Personally, I like having an SUV to haul sports equipment, but I could certainly get by without it. It's super convenient for shooting sports, too. Plus, you hardly feel VW's and Subaru's when you drive over them. I kid. But I imagine you'd hardly feel them.

JT

Dottie57
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by Dottie57 » Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:16 am

cheese_breath wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 10:00 pm
If we only bought what we needed most of our houses would be a lot smaller with half as many bedrooms.
+1. An SUV is usually a want. It is very nice to sit higher than a sedan.

Chuck107
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by Chuck107 » Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:19 am

tibbitts wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 7:46 am
Chuck107 wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 6:49 am
Never owned or even drove an SUV, so one is not needed.
Never had a pickup truck either, only sedans or my current sportwagon.

Edit, anything needed from a store that can't fit into the car/wagon gets put into my 4x8 trailer which I have had for the past 27 yrs.
I don't think there's any difference between a "sportwagon" and SUV for the purposes of this conversation, so I'd say you've concluded that you either need or want an SUV. A big difference you have from a sedan is a longer, relatively flat roof for carrying.

Although it can be a good solution for some, many people don't have the room to store even a folding trailer.
Not so I neither want or need a SUV, My "Sportwagon" is a slightly longer version of a Golf VW , quite the smaller 'car'.
Sits low like a sedan, not a SUV.
It's actually smaller than my old 2004 Cavalier in length. aprox 14 ft.
But it will however put most SUV trunk storage to shame.
It does have roof racks, but I will never use them.

Normchad
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by Normchad » Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:21 am

You don’t need one. Most people don’t.

I have done significant amounts of home remodeling in the past just using my 88 Ford Mustang hatchback. This includes hauling away all debris from a bathroom gut job to the dump.

I don’t need an SUV either; but I’ve got it. It’s nice. It’s comfortable. It rides great on the highway, etc. it’s nice. If you like them, get them. If you hate them, you can certainly live your life without one.

I might even buy a 2nd SUV soon. This would be completely unjustified, as it would be our 3rd vehicle and there are only 2 people living here. But it’s nobody else’s business what I do, or what you do.

lazydavid
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by lazydavid » Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:29 am

Kennedy wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 9:48 pm
Do you make do without an SUV? If so, how? At what point for you would the scales be tipped with regard to "needing" an SUV: hauling larger items 3 times a year? Four times? Twice a year?
In a world where truck rentals are $19 at every big box store, the need to carry big stuff would have to be weekly in order to by itself justify the need for an SUV.

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Kenkat
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by Kenkat » Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:30 am

cheese_breath wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:06 am
Kookaburra wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 11:41 pm
If they did need an SUV, how did they survive before SUVs even existed?
As I responded before, station wagons.
And most SUVs function as and are used as glorified station wagons. Clever marketing by auto manufacturers convince people they are different and rugged and cool. But most SUVs are station wagons. They are made of station wagons!*

Exceptions exist of course but most people just need something to haul stuff with. We use our minivan which can haul more stuff than most pickups or SUVs but struggles to scale vertical cliffs or navigate remote sand dunes or swamps.








* if anyone caught my Soylent Green reference, I tip my hat to you
Last edited by Kenkat on Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:41 am, edited 1 time in total.

egrets
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by egrets » Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:36 am

I bring home bags of soil and mulch in my trunk. I can fit in five bags at a a time. If I wanted more for some reason, which I don't because spreading out five bags keeps me busy for some time, the big box stores deliver and will leave them where you ask them to.

I have never felt the need for a gas guzzling bad for the planet SUV. Certainly one big box delivery every two years or so is better than an SUV.

I bought a large sized trash bin and took it home in my back seat. A couple of weeks of groceries fit in the back seat and there's still room in the passengers side of the front seat.

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David Jay
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by David Jay » Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:45 am

Clever_Username wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 11:45 pm
David Jay wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 9:58 pm
Of course you don't need an SUV. A couple of bicycles work fine.
Look at Mr. Spendypants here. Everywhere is walking distance if you make the time!
That’s me. I once upgraded from a Toyota that was less than a dozen years old...

[edit] ...and only 182,000 miles
Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future - Niels Bohr | To get the "risk premium", you really do have to take the risk - nisiprius

tibbitts
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by tibbitts » Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:51 am

Chuck107 wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:19 am
tibbitts wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 7:46 am
Chuck107 wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 6:49 am
Never owned or even drove an SUV, so one is not needed.
Never had a pickup truck either, only sedans or my current sportwagon.

Edit, anything needed from a store that can't fit into the car/wagon gets put into my 4x8 trailer which I have had for the past 27 yrs.
I don't think there's any difference between a "sportwagon" and SUV for the purposes of this conversation, so I'd say you've concluded that you either need or want an SUV. A big difference you have from a sedan is a longer, relatively flat roof for carrying.

Although it can be a good solution for some, many people don't have the room to store even a folding trailer.
Not so I neither want or need a SUV, My "Sportwagon" is a slightly longer version of a Golf VW , quite the smaller 'car'.
Sits low like a sedan, not a SUV.
It's actually smaller than my old 2004 Cavalier in length. aprox 14 ft.
But it will however put most SUV trunk storage to shame.
It does have roof racks, but I will never use them.
Technically almost all of the posts here about SUVs are about CUVs, if you go with the truck frame SUV "requirement." But the SUV name has become generic. Many CUVs and "sportwagons" share platforms with sedans, so you can call your vehicle whatever you want. For me it's close enough to an SUV/CUV, especially with the AWD option.

But there's no reason to be proud of not using the roof for cargo.

squirm
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by squirm » Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:54 am

Is this one of those question similar to when you see the huge new 4x4 that's 10 feet tall has every option including the ridiculous brush guard and wonder if it will ever actually be taken off road? We all know what the real answer is.

Chuck107
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by Chuck107 » Sat Aug 01, 2020 9:05 am

tibbitts wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:51 am
Chuck107 wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:19 am
tibbitts wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 7:46 am
Chuck107 wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 6:49 am
Never owned or even drove an SUV, so one is not needed.
Never had a pickup truck either, only sedans or my current sportwagon.

Edit, anything needed from a store that can't fit into the car/wagon gets put into my 4x8 trailer which I have had for the past 27 yrs.
I don't think there's any difference between a "sportwagon" and SUV for the purposes of this conversation, so I'd say you've concluded that you either need or want an SUV. A big difference you have from a sedan is a longer, relatively flat roof for carrying.

Although it can be a good solution for some, many people don't have the room to store even a folding trailer.
Not so I neither want or need a SUV, My "Sportwagon" is a slightly longer version of a Golf VW , quite the smaller 'car'.
Sits low like a sedan, not a SUV.
It's actually smaller than my old 2004 Cavalier in length. aprox 14 ft.
But it will however put most SUV trunk storage to shame.
It does have roof racks, but I will never use them.
Technically almost all of the posts here about SUVs are about CUVs, if you go with the truck frame SUV "requirement." But the SUV name has become generic. Many CUVs and "sportwagons" share platforms with sedans, so you can call your vehicle whatever you want. For me it's close enough to an SUV/CUV, especially with the AWD option.

But there's no reason to be proud of not using the roof for cargo.
You apparently wish to make an argument, for what reason I don't know or care.
Until you actually see a VW sportwagon next to an SUV, you can carry on spewing your perceived uninformed opinions as some sort of fact.

I never said I was "Proud" not to use the roof racks, again you must like the looks of your 'thoughts' on a post.
Now just go away, I have no need of you.

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steadyeddy
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by steadyeddy » Sat Aug 01, 2020 9:16 am

I would pay you good money to post this topic on the Mr Money Mustache forum! :)

megabad
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by megabad » Sat Aug 01, 2020 9:31 am

I agree with many of the other posters:

1) If you are older and stiffer, I would get a small crossover for seat height.

2) If you plan on hauling children, I might get a crossover (or better yet a minivan) as the fatality rate is lower (at the cost of you being more deadly to everyone else).

3) If you tow something of any size, you need a real SUV (not a crossover) or truck.

4) I can’t think of any other reason other than cargo capacity and basically no one needs more than a trunk worth of cargo for two people. No SUV owner I have ever met “hauls” cargo that won’t fit in a sedan (on on a “bike rack” or roof rack) regularly. The ones that do have trucks.

5) Remember that a full size SUV is substantially more challenging to drive than a sedan or crossover so that would lean me toward recommending smaller vehicles. The 3/4 ton pickup I drive is not easily drivable by most of my friends and family. Most have never used side view mirrors to backup or had to know where vehicle corners are. And most don’t know how to adjust driving in weather. A rear wheel drive heavy vehicle is far more challenging to drive than a FWD sedan or crossover.

prairieman
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by prairieman » Sat Aug 01, 2020 9:50 am

We inherited a ‘15 Honda CRV. It mostly sits in the garage because we drive our Prius Prime most places. I had to buy a battery minder for the CRV to keep the battery from going dead. I want to sell the CRV, but my wife wants to keep it. We use it once a month at most.

RudyS
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by RudyS » Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:12 am

cheese_breath wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:06 am
Kookaburra wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 11:41 pm
If they did need an SUV, how did they survive before SUVs even existed?
As I responded before, station wagons.
Same for us. Until about 1998 when we got a Subaru Outback to replace an aging wagon. We delivered meals on wheels,, and the low, flat loading area is infinitely handier to load the coolers, etc., than a car trunk / back seat would have been.

02nz
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by 02nz » Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:23 am

sean.mcgrath wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 7:21 am
simplextableau wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 9:59 pm
Everyone always forgets about a hitch and small trailer. Any car can tow 1000 pounds if you keep it slow and short distances. The trailer is cheap and tiny (48 inches long).
I was thinking of mentioning this. Living in the Netherlands, these little trailers are ubiquitous. It's a fantastic alternative. [Although, full disclosure: we actually have a mini-van, which imho is way better for comfort and storage than an SUV. :beer )
Your "mini-van" is probably something like the Ford S-Max. They are quite a bit smaller than what passes for "minivan" these days in the U.S. and not generally sold here. Too bad, because cars like the S-Max (or the Mazda5 that used to be available here) are much more practical and drive better than most SUVs.

quantAndHold
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by quantAndHold » Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:24 am

Almost nobody actually “needs” a SUV. Depending on what you’re doing with the vehicle 99 percent of the time, there is almost always a different type of vehicle that’s better suited.

Hauling lots of stuff? A pickup truck will haul more stuff easier.

Hauling lots of people? A minivan does that more comfortably.

Hauling the usual stuff home from the store? A hatchback will do it more cheaply.

Going off road? There are vehicles that are better for that than the land yacht SUV’s that people currently drive around. Hint, few people actually need this functionality. A sedan with the right tires does just fine in nearly every situation you’re likely to encounter in real life.

Towing? Pickup trucks are generally better at that.

Commuting? Plenty of regular cars are more comfortable, cheaper, and get better gas mileage.

We “get by” without an SUV just fine. I have a hatchback. That handles 99% of what we need to “haul.” The one time every year or so that we have a *big* trip to Lowe’s or need to bring home a load of mulch, we borrow a friend’s pickup truck. If we didn’t have one to borrow, UHaul rents pickup trucks cheaply.

It seems like complete overkill to buy a vehicle that’s more expensive and suboptimal for what we use it for 364 days a year because of something we might want to do on the 365th day.

We raised 3 kids with a Toyota Corolla. Can’t say I recommend that. If we were doing it again, we’d get a minivan. But for just the two of us, a small hatchback is perfect.
Yes, I’m really that pedantic.

btenny
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by btenny » Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:37 am

Yes I need and use a SUV a lot. Right now I have 3 SUVs, a Jeep grand Cherokee, a Lincoln MKX and a Subaru Outback (really a station wagon). I haul my mid sized boat around every summer with my Jeep as it pulls 6200 pounds and my boat and trailer weigh 6300 pounds. The 4 wheel drive works well on moss covered boat ramps a lot better than a 2WD truck. We also use the Jeep to do some off road trail exploring every summer and deep snow driving every winter. So the Jeep gets used as a true 4X4 a lot. I use the Lincoln MKX to haul lots of stuff from my winter home to my summer home and back and drive long distances as it is quiet but still handles big snow and bad weather well. I used to use the Subaru for these long trips but my wife does not like the passenger seat so we upgraded and sold out last sedan.

Way back when I bought my first boat I had sedans. I towed that boat all over but had lots of issues on slick boat ramps and over heating on hot summer days and worn out suspension parts etc.. Sedans just do not work well to tow heavy stuff. So after a few years we upgraded the sedan to a big Ford F150 Econoline van. It worked a lot better and we hauled our stuff all over. Plus we could camp and sleep inside with my kids. We had that truck for 10 years until we upgraded to a newer Chevy model. We kept that van for 11 years until we bought a Jeep Grand Cherokee. We have had two Jeeps over the last 20 years.

So yes we use and need a SUV a lot.

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Abe
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by Abe » Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:38 am

I have a sedan (Toyota Camry) and a pickup truck. Just the wife and me. I might consider a SUV if I didn't have the truck.
Slow and steady wins the race.

HawkeyePierce
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by HawkeyePierce » Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:39 am

You can fit an awful lot of mulch in a Honda Fit. With the "magic seat" in the back that can fold all the way flat or fold up, I can fit just about anything, even a fully-assembled bike. If I'm carrying something long, the front seat folds all the way down with the headrest removed.

A few weeks ago I put a fully-assembled three-burner gas grill in the back, no problem.

I've taken mine down all sorts of dirt roads in Colorado and Utah. As long as the roads are dry, you take it slow and avoid true 4WD roads, it'll go a lot further than most think.

With proper tires, there's no trouble with weather. Every February I drive my Fit from Boulder to Pagosa Springs over Wolf Creek Pass, which crests at 11,000 feet with 7% grades on either side of the summit. With snow tires I've never felt unsafe taking that pass even in snow.

Hatchbacks are much better "utility" vehicles than SUVs at a fraction of the cost.

If I need to bring home something from Home Depot that won't fit, I'll pay for delivery or rent one of their pickups. Home Depot rents pickups for twenty bucks. Dramatically cheaper than owning an SUV.

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cheese_breath
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by cheese_breath » Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:48 am

RudyS wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:12 am
cheese_breath wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:06 am
Kookaburra wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 11:41 pm
If they did need an SUV, how did they survive before SUVs even existed?
As I responded before, station wagons.
Same for us. Until about 1998 when we got a Subaru Outback to replace an aging wagon. We delivered meals on wheels,, and the low, flat loading area is infinitely handier to load the coolers, etc., than a car trunk / back seat would have been.
I had them from 1970 until 2000. Great for pulling my boat, transporting my St. Bernards and hauling materials. You could get a 4' x 8' plywood in and close the tailgate if you put the seat all the way up. And if you had something larger there was always the sturdy roof rack. If you had a three seater you could get seven people in which was good because between myself, DW and our five kids from two marriages everybody fit.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

megabad
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by megabad » Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:49 am

btenny wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:37 am
Way back when I bought my first boat I had sedans. I towed that boat all over but had lots of issues on slick boat ramps
Wow. You are brave. I guess maybe there are some row boats or canoes that are towable by sedans but anything bigger than that would get you pulled over here (and hopefully anywhere). Can’t imagine getting on a boat ramp.

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Marmot
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by Marmot » Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:50 am

We bought a Tesla Model X for its safety rating. With the number of people driving and texting these days. I don't want "Texting Tammi" to be my end.

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cheese_breath
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by cheese_breath » Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:52 am

megabad wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:49 am
btenny wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:37 am
Way back when I bought my first boat I had sedans. I towed that boat all over but had lots of issues on slick boat ramps
Wow. You are brave. I guess maybe there are some row boats or canoes that are towable by sedans but anything bigger than that would get you pulled over here (and hopefully anywhere). Can’t imagine getting on a boat ramp.
It wasn't so bad back in the days of real wheel drive.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

megabad
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by megabad » Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:56 am

cheese_breath wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:52 am
megabad wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:49 am
btenny wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:37 am
Way back when I bought my first boat I had sedans. I towed that boat all over but had lots of issues on slick boat ramps
Wow. You are brave. I guess maybe there are some row boats or canoes that are towable by sedans but anything bigger than that would get you pulled over here (and hopefully anywhere). Can’t imagine getting on a boat ramp.
It wasn't so bad back in the days of real wheel drive.
...I would bet that it was on a boat ramp...

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cheese_breath
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by cheese_breath » Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:59 am

megabad wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:56 am
cheese_breath wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:52 am
megabad wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:49 am
btenny wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:37 am
Way back when I bought my first boat I had sedans. I towed that boat all over but had lots of issues on slick boat ramps
Wow. You are brave. I guess maybe there are some row boats or canoes that are towable by sedans but anything bigger than that would get you pulled over here (and hopefully anywhere). Can’t imagine getting on a boat ramp.
It wasn't so bad back in the days of real wheel drive.
...I would bet that it was on a boat ramp...
I pulled my 18' bow rider I/O with station wagons (basically a sedan) and didn't have any trouble on ramps.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

sean.mcgrath
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by sean.mcgrath » Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:03 am

02nz wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:23 am
sean.mcgrath wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 7:21 am
simplextableau wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 9:59 pm
Everyone always forgets about a hitch and small trailer. Any car can tow 1000 pounds if you keep it slow and short distances. The trailer is cheap and tiny (48 inches long).
I was thinking of mentioning this. Living in the Netherlands, these little trailers are ubiquitous. It's a fantastic alternative. [Although, full disclosure: we actually have a mini-van, which imho is way better for comfort and storage than an SUV. :beer )
Your "mini-van" is probably something like the Ford S-Max. They are quite a bit smaller than what passes for "minivan" these days in the U.S. and not generally sold here. Too bad, because cars like the S-Max (or the Mazda5 that used to be available here) are much more practical and drive better than most SUVs.
No, my mini-van is a Peugeot 807: three rows of full height chairs, seats seven.

randomguy
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by randomguy » Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:03 am

RudyS wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:12 am
cheese_breath wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:06 am
Kookaburra wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 11:41 pm
If they did need an SUV, how did they survive before SUVs even existed?
As I responded before, station wagons.
Same for us. Until about 1998 when we got a Subaru Outback to replace an aging wagon. We delivered meals on wheels,, and the low, flat loading area is infinitely handier to load the coolers, etc., than a car trunk / back seat would have been.
Modern CUVs (i.e. the honda CRVs, Toyota Rav4,...) are station wagons with a 2" lift kits. People have been picking wagons over sedans since the dawn of time if they are practical people. Sedans are for people who care about looks over functionality.....

Seriously buy what you need and what looks good to you. Your need are unlikely to match anyone elses. Ask if an EV is any good and the person who drives 400miles/day chimes in saying the range isn't good enough. Suggest a civic and the guy who hauls 4x8s all day long says they don't fit. And so on down the list. Figure out the space you need, the performance you need, and what you find comfortable and go look at the models that fit YOUR needs.

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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by randomguy » Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:10 am

sean.mcgrath wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:03 am
02nz wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:23 am
sean.mcgrath wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 7:21 am
simplextableau wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 9:59 pm
Everyone always forgets about a hitch and small trailer. Any car can tow 1000 pounds if you keep it slow and short distances. The trailer is cheap and tiny (48 inches long).
I was thinking of mentioning this. Living in the Netherlands, these little trailers are ubiquitous. It's a fantastic alternative. [Although, full disclosure: we actually have a mini-van, which imho is way better for comfort and storage than an SUV. :beer )
Your "mini-van" is probably something like the Ford S-Max. They are quite a bit smaller than what passes for "minivan" these days in the U.S. and not generally sold here. Too bad, because cars like the S-Max (or the Mazda5 that used to be available here) are much more practical and drive better than most SUVs.
No, my mini-van is a Peugeot 807: three rows of full height chairs, seats seven.
Is your Peugeot 203" long like a Sienna or Oddyssey or is it short (~185") like a Mazda5 or Ford S-Max? The difference in size is very noticeable when trying to park. Y

JackoC
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by JackoC » Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:10 am

David Jay wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 9:58 pm
Of course you don't need an SUV. A couple of bicycles work fine.
I was deliberately being absurd, but at some level so is the question. These are not "need" questions, they are preferences.
Yeah and for us it's not even that absurd, urban empty nest couple. We really don't 'need' any motor vehicle, but have two. For awhile fairly recently we had a 2018 BMW M2 and the previous BMW, a 2015 328i. One of our grown kids had bought our 2005 Lexus GX SUV when we got the 328i. After awhile with those two fairly similar cars (in basic appearance and carrying capacity, though pretty different actually in driving feel and personality) we traded the 328i to him to get back the Lexus. It's not *that* often we got stuff that didn't easily fit in the 328i, but not that rare either, then we had to borrow it. It's usually not that treacherous on the long dirt driveway to another kid's rural house, but sometimes it is. And since the 2nd car is parked on urban street (top car is in a rented indoor space) the fact the GX is so good at digging itself out of snow piled on it by plows is a useful feature. In that real world test we found the convenience value of the SUV to be significant. Meanwhile he uses his car mainly for work meetings with clients, feels a newer car has positive bottom line impact in terms of client perception, and has it mainly parked indoors at work where employer pays part. It works much better all around. Anyway a replacement for the Lexus will surely be another SUV. If somehow this wasn't financially feasible, then we'd do without it, just like all kinds of other stuff we can easily afford that we'd do without if somehow we couldn't.

02nz
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by 02nz » Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:12 am

sean.mcgrath wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:03 am
02nz wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:23 am
sean.mcgrath wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 7:21 am
simplextableau wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 9:59 pm
Everyone always forgets about a hitch and small trailer. Any car can tow 1000 pounds if you keep it slow and short distances. The trailer is cheap and tiny (48 inches long).
I was thinking of mentioning this. Living in the Netherlands, these little trailers are ubiquitous. It's a fantastic alternative. [Although, full disclosure: we actually have a mini-van, which imho is way better for comfort and storage than an SUV. :beer )
Your "mini-van" is probably something like the Ford S-Max. They are quite a bit smaller than what passes for "minivan" these days in the U.S. and not generally sold here. Too bad, because cars like the S-Max (or the Mazda5 that used to be available here) are much more practical and drive better than most SUVs.
No, my mini-van is a Peugeot 807: three rows of full height chairs, seats seven.
That's about the same size as the S-Max, and shorter than typical U.S. minivans by around 40 cm.

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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by sean.mcgrath » Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:21 am

02nz wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:12 am
That's about the same size as the S-Max, and shorter than typical U.S. minivans by around 40 cm.
Interesting, thanks. It sure looks smaller in the picture!

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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by abuss368 » Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:23 am

We moved away from cars overs the years and will never go back. I don’t like the huge gas guzzlers either. We settled on a Nissan Rouge and Hyundai Tucson. Love them!
John C. Bogle: Two Fund Portfolio - Total Stock & Total Bond - “Simplicity is the master key to financial success."

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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by smitcat » Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:42 am

lazydavid wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:29 am
Kennedy wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 9:48 pm
Do you make do without an SUV? If so, how? At what point for you would the scales be tipped with regard to "needing" an SUV: hauling larger items 3 times a year? Four times? Twice a year?
In a world where truck rentals are $19 at every big box store, the need to carry big stuff would have to be weekly in order to by itself justify the need for an SUV.
With a few caveats:
- many truck rentals come with 'limiting' factors
- many truck rentals are more expensive than $19
- owning certain vehicles in a business offer potential benifits

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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by smitcat » Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:44 am

cheese_breath wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:59 am
megabad wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:56 am
cheese_breath wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:52 am
megabad wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:49 am
btenny wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:37 am
Way back when I bought my first boat I had sedans. I towed that boat all over but had lots of issues on slick boat ramps
Wow. You are brave. I guess maybe there are some row boats or canoes that are towable by sedans but anything bigger than that would get you pulled over here (and hopefully anywhere). Can’t imagine getting on a boat ramp.
It wasn't so bad back in the days of real wheel drive.
...I would bet that it was on a boat ramp...
I pulled my 18' bow rider I/O with station wagons (basically a sedan) and didn't have any trouble on ramps.
Boats vary , boat ramps vary even more, tow vehicles vary and the distance being towed are all variables.
So the answer is always - 'it depends'.

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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by btenny » Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:48 am

For non boat people. In the early 1970s I owned a modest 20 foot boat that we used for skiing and day boat rides. It was light but had a big engine and jet drive. So it was fast and fun for a young stupid guy. All in boat weight was 3500 pounds with trailer and stuff. We towed it with a Pontiac GTO (my first purchased car) and later with a Olds 442. We used a anti sway load equalizing hitch to make the hitch weight work well for towing. Both cars had giant engines and special brakes so they towed and stopped well. But as I noted this tow work wore out the front suspensions after 3 years. But that 442 was sure fun. It was a canary yellow convertible that matched the boat color. Then my wife had a yellow bikini so it was really special. We thought we were totally cool. 8-) 8-) 8-)

Oh and back then gas was 25 cents a gallon.

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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by smitcat » Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:53 am

btenny wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:48 am
For non boat people. In the early 1970s I owned a modest 20 foot boat that we used for skiing and day boat rides. It was light but had a big engine and jet drive. So it was fast and fun for a young stupid guy. All in boat weight was 3500 pounds with trailer and stuff. We towed it with a Pontiac GTO (my first purchased car) and later with a Olds 442. We used a anti sway load equalizing hitch to make the hitch weight work well for towing. Both cars had giant engines and special brakes so they towed and stopped well. But as I noted this tow work wore out the front suspensions after 3 years. But that 442 was sure fun. It was a canary yellow convertible that matched the boat color. Then my wife had a yellow bikini so it was really special. We thought we were totally cool. 8-) 8-) 8-)

Oh and back then gas was 25 cents a gallon.
"We towed it with a Pontiac GTO (my first purchased car"
Fun memories - my first car was a 1967 GTO and later had a 1970 GTO as well. Gas was cheap but I also lived thru the 'odd and even' gas rationing which did not work well with big engines and small fuel tanks. I do not remember any special brakes on those cars - mostly just mediocre drums. But then again I do not remember most things from that far back.

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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by Boglegirl81 » Sat Aug 01, 2020 12:14 pm

No kids here. I love my Ford Escape, and I’d never buy anything but an SUV... but if I owned a sedan I liked, would I go trade that in just so I could drive an SUV? No, I’d just buy an SUV the next time I needed a new car. I’ve rented a pickup from Home Depot on occasion when even my small SUV couldn’t get the job done. If you live reasonably close to the airport, you could do a Uber XL for the couple of times a year you go to the airport and have a lot of luggage.

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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by cheese_breath » Sat Aug 01, 2020 12:21 pm

smitcat wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 11:44 am
cheese_breath wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:59 am
megabad wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:56 am
cheese_breath wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:52 am
megabad wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:49 am


Wow. You are brave. I guess maybe there are some row boats or canoes that are towable by sedans but anything bigger than that would get you pulled over here (and hopefully anywhere). Can’t imagine getting on a boat ramp.
It wasn't so bad back in the days of real wheel drive.
...I would bet that it was on a boat ramp...
I pulled my 18' bow rider I/O with station wagons (basically a sedan) and didn't have any trouble on ramps.
Boats vary , boat ramps vary even more, tow vehicles vary and the distance being towed are all variables.
So the answer is always - 'it depends'.
Good answer. I had no problems with my boat, but I wouldn't want to try towing a 23 foot cruiser with my wagons. I pulled a loaded 5' x 8' U-Haul cargo trailer from MI to TX with my FWD 2009 Impala, but I wouldn't want to try pulling it up a boat ramp with the Impala.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

CascadiaSoonish
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by CascadiaSoonish » Sat Aug 01, 2020 12:21 pm

It's not really a "need" but it's certainly nice to have on occasion and it does have some flexible and practical uses that our smaller car doesn't have. We can fit extra kids in for soccer practice carpool, we can pull a trailer, we can comfortably take a multi-day roadtrip without economizing on packing, we can carry skis inside the car while still carrying multiple people...and the SUV wasn't _that_ much more expensive to buy or operate than a sedan. I don't think it's really a big deal, honestly. People can buy and drive what they want.

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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by tibbitts » Sat Aug 01, 2020 12:32 pm

megabad wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:49 am
btenny wrote:
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:37 am
Way back when I bought my first boat I had sedans. I towed that boat all over but had lots of issues on slick boat ramps
Wow. You are brave. I guess maybe there are some row boats or canoes that are towable by sedans but anything bigger than that would get you pulled over here (and hopefully anywhere). Can’t imagine getting on a boat ramp.
If you mean traction due to RWD on the boat ramp, it should be the same as a RWD pickup or other vehicle, although I would certainly say 4x4 would have been more confidence-inspiring. I never had traction issues with RWD on many different boat ramps with about a 2000lb boat and trailer combo, but I'm sure there could be exceptions. I did always try to look first to see if there was a dropoff or other concern, athough I don't think even 4x4 would get you out of a situation of running off the end of the ramp if there was a significant drop. Oddly I would have expected them to be slippery, but many had metal grate surfaces so maybe that helped.

I recall sedan towing capacity ranging from about 5,000 to 6,000 lbs depending on brand and model. As with trucks you were limited by GVWR of course, but also as with trucks and large SUVs today, many people went over on GVWR. The majority of tralierable boats are vastly easier to tow than a box-shaped trailer, due to the far super aerodynamics, although obviously weight still is a consideration.
Last edited by tibbitts on Sat Aug 01, 2020 12:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

btenny
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by btenny » Sat Aug 01, 2020 12:40 pm

Smitcat. My 1968 GTO was a factory "hardhat" car with disk front brakes and a "Hurst" dual gate automatic and some special engine stuff. It also had one spark plug that got fouled every 5K miles and required a engine mount removal to change. So it was a real PIA. We only had it three years as my wife totaled it in a big freeway crash. Then we bought the 442 and it also had disk front brakes. But both cars were terrible gas hogs. I think they got about 6-8 mpg.

We had upgraded to the 1975 E150 van by the gas crisis. We did mostly OK during that mess as my wife's office had a fuel contract for all the office stuff so she filled our cars as needed. It also helped as we installed a extra 20 gallon tank on the van so it carried 40 gallons and then had a 400 mile range.

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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by btenny » Sat Aug 01, 2020 12:59 pm

Tibbitts. I used 2wd cars and vans to tow my old boat for years all over the southwest. That boat was light so towing out of steep ramps was mostly OK if they were paved or cement. I dropped the trailer wheels off the ramps ends many times but always had enough power to pull out with some tires spinning. I also launched a few times on sandy shores and never got stuck. I was lucky but many friends had issues.

When I retired in 1999 I sold my old boat and bought a bigger boat in 2004. It is a lot bigger and heavier. Towing it out is hard and the ramp has water and moss and plants from other boats. I already had the Jeep GC and it is 4WD. So it just grunts and pulls the boat out with no tire spinning or issues. I have fun watching many tourists spin the wheels on their big trucks and and big boats not move an inch due to rear WD on the slick ramp.

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CardinalRule
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Re: Does a couple really "need" an SUV?

Post by CardinalRule » Sat Aug 01, 2020 1:01 pm

DW and I have driven compact AWD SUVs for years and will continue to do so, I'm sure. No kids, but we appreciate the ease of entry and like the "high ride" as a matter of preference. We do seem to haul something at least once a month, whether it's getting things from Lowe's, picking up a piece of furniture, or packing up for a road trip to a neighboring state. The other thing we like is the ability to deal better with difficult weather conditions.

We are fairly frugal in general, but we generally do drive a fairly late model SUV. And so we also like the new technology that we see in each new SUV that we buy.

Our other vehicle is a two-seat, RWD sports car, and so that probably makes us value the SUV's capabilities even more. :happy
Kennedy wrote:
Fri Jul 31, 2020 9:48 pm
I understand all situations are different. However, I'm wondering how often the average suburban couple (no kids at home) actually "needs" an SUV. I am looking for personal experiences from similarly situated people and how inconvenient not having one would be.

I'm imagining the SUV would be used rarely for hauling bags of yard mulch, taking large suitcases/family to the airport and the like. In this scenario, there is no reason to replace (upgrade, actually) an existing car with an SUV but for the rare case when the SUV would be more convenient, and the couple doesn't feel comfortable borrowing one from a neighbor. I'm hesitant to add this information since I don't want to derail the responses, but I'm sure the question will be raised: In this scenario there is disagreement between the spouses as to if the money for the purchase of a newer model SUV would be better used for other purposes. There has been a family SUV up to now, but it will be going off to college with a child and the parents will not be swapping cars with this child.

Do you make do without an SUV? If so, how? At what point for you would the scales be tipped with regard to "needing" an SUV: hauling larger items 3 times a year? Four times? Twice a year?

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