Dec 162011
 

Some people are in the market to buy a vehicle to haul kids and soccer equipment. It’s common to judge people in this social segment – but children, exercise, and team sports are all things I believe in. Let’s look at 2 transportation options for these people:

Option #1 Option #2
Note: sliding back seat, console between back seats Note: TWO sunroofs, climate control/arm rests for each seat
Note: cupholders in the middle console Note: weird sketch
Note: sliding/tilting bench seats Sliding/tilting bucket seats, extra speaker, window space
Note: DVD screen, reading lights Note: screen plays 2 DVDs on split screens (folded up)
Stuff getting stored Stuff getting stored, 9th seat (on left side)

 

Now… be honest with yourself… are there ANY advantages to the vehicle in the left column? And be honest again – deep down, you KNEW the minivan is going to be better. The vehicles shown

  • Option #1 (left): Toyota Sequoia SUV- $58,000 MSRP, 13city/17 hwy
  • Option #2 (right): Toyota Sienna minivan – $41,000 MSRP,  17 city /25 hwy (with the 3500lb tow package)

Who would pay 30% more for 30% less features, AND 40% higher fuel costs?

Toyota knows who would do this. On Toyota’s website, there are 17 pictures of the outside of the SUV, and 12 of the interior. There are 18 of the interior of the minivan. Toyota knows that people buying the SUV HONESTLY care about what they look like, not their actual, personal enjoyment of the vehicle. In economic costs, people who buy the SUV are saying:

“I’ll pay $17,000 more on sticker price, 40% more on gas, avoid getting a 2nd sunroof, or a 2nd DVD player just to appear TOUGH. Looking tough is worth $20,000 to me.”

In fact, if you’re worried about off road performance and towing capacity, you could buy a fucking pick up truck AND the Sienna minivan for the price of the Sequoia SUV!!

How many people would make this mistake in judgement, and buy an SUV?

According to sales figures, 2011 sales of the Sienna minivan are 99,000, and the Sequoia SUV are…. 11,000.

Well, shit. That’s not proving my point that people are rampantly vain and silly because they are buying more SUV’s than minivans. Hmmm… how about a slightly different spin…

Of the top 30 vehicles sold in the US in 2011…SEVEN are SUVs. (Ford Escape-Explorer-Edge, Chevy Equinox, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Toyota RAV4, Honda Pilot). NONE are minivans. THAT supports my point.

Sales rank for Nov 2011 Model November sales % change 2011 sales Year to Date change miles per gallon
#4 Ford Escape 21,823 46.10% 228,719 32.70% 20/27
#8 Honda Civic 17,133 3.40% 200,690 -13.50% 28/39
#9 Honda CR-V 16,426 -10.10% 196,787 9.00% 23/31
#10 Toyota Corolla 16,115 -0.5% 215,550 -10.2% 26/34
#15 Jeep Grand Cherokee 13,545 23.30% 110,938 53.40% 17/23
#18 Ford Explorer 12,888 217% 121,832 141% 17/23
#22 Toyota RAV4 11,330 -7.90% 118,130 -23.00% 21/27
#25 Honda Pilot 10,487 38.10% 104,656 13.80% 17/24
#28 Ford Edge 9685 -3.40% 109,625 2.10% 18/25

(Are you fucking kidding? Sales of fuel efficient models(Civic, Corolla) are DOWN, and the Escape is up 32%??? People are idiots. I can’t take it. Fuel taxes should implemented to drive the cost of fuel up to $9.00/gallon.)

In summary: Join me in making fun of people who drive SUVs. Let’s celebrate the minivan drivers. Together, we can expose the SUV ignorance! People will be less likely to try to purchase toughness… with a car!

-Tony

 

Disclaimer: I do not own a minivan, I drive a 2006 Honda Civic sedan that gets 40mpg. I eagerly await the day that I can trick some woman into marriage, and subsequently having children with me. Then I can justify owning a minivan!

mpg of the car # people riding gallons of gas used per 100 miles $/gallon cost per 100 miles cost per person per 100 miles
40 1 2.5 $4 $10 $10
20 1 5 $4 $20 $20
40 2 2.5 $4 $10 $5
20 4 5 $4 $20 $5

Note: I wanted to do this post about Ford vehicles, as I’m impressed with Ford’s progress in quality over the last 10 years. They don’t make a minivan. Dammit!  If I can’t fool anyone into marriage, thereby not needing a minivan, my next car will be a Ford!

Here’s the split-screen DVD player, FYI: