SUV, You're Fired!

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I’ve never watched one of these Survivor shows, but as I understand it, people get voted off the island. They seem to have come up with almost every conceivable variation on this theme—or so they think! But I’ve got a new one. Instead of voting people off, what if the U.S. consumer voted particular types of cars, trucks, and SUVs off our U.S. "island"?

What would win? By what rationale? Popularity? Fuel efficiency? Style and color? Safety? Morality? These considerations are not mutually exclusive, of course. But which would dominate?

With the recent spike in gas prices, more people seem to be voting for fuel-efficient vehicles like hybrids. For the first four months of the year, sales of the Toyota Prius were up 80 percent from 2003.

At the same time sales of behemoths like the Hummer have taken a nosedive, according to The New York Times. "G.M. has resorted to rebates and financing deals, which have become standard for every Detroit brand but Hummer. Inventories [have] piled up…and G.M. is also now using leases, which are less lucrative than sales, to move a quarter of its volume…." So it’s safe to say that the Hummer would have been voted off the island on our show.

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Sojourners Magazine September 2004
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