Proportion of SUVs driven off-road

Like, ever.

Any statheads in.

I never understand why this winds people up so much.


Why do people care if you have an SUV which is driven off road or not.


If you want an SUV that goes off road but do not drive it off road – you crack on.


If you want a watch that tells the time well and is waterproof buy a Casio or a Rolex. It is up to you.


Buy ten SUVs if you want. It is your money.


Put it in a hot tub and sit on it for all I care.

My partner drove ours into a ditch once.

Does that count?

I have an suv, I have never driven it off road. I once drove a hire car off road in croatia but i blame the dodgy sat nav

cars get bigger and heavier every year, at great cost to the environment and the people and animals they kill and injure

imo it is fair enough for people to get wound up by so much death and destruction for no good reason


whether it is fair enough surely depends on their overall carbon footprints?  If said wound up person has been flying off for holidays once or twice a year for decades, I think they are throwing stones in the proverbial glass house

 I once drove a hire car off road in croatia but i blame the dodgy sat nav

I think it was PJ O'Rourke who suggested that the cars with the best off-road capabilities weren't 4 wheel drive but actually any front or rear wheel drive hire car. They can go anywhere.  You can't always get them back but whatever.

Agreed do what you like. Just make sure the externalities are priced in, which they aren't.  Those include greater chance of pedestrian death in a collision.

How else is a chap supposed to get to Verbier in February?

Half in jest, but as I went to the dump last week with wardrobe doors that just fit into my SUV, I did ask myself what I would do when conscience demanded I go electric.

Heffalump – but the people who get irked because “an SUV does not go off road” do not get irked by other big cars.


There seems to be a specific “not using it off road thing”.


I can’t understand why it bothers them so much.

Country lanes round here are basically off road between the pot holes and mounting verges to get past other vehicles and even worse if you add snow into the mix.

Do driveways count as off road? They do for insurances purposes for parking 

other big cars?  An estate is a bit heavier than a saloon but not much worse aerodynamically.  A 4x4 is a brick (aerodynamically speaking) and v heavy.   And if you hit a pedestrian the impact point isn't the knees so you roll across the bonnet - it's the chest, so you go down and die.

I'd be happy to see sentencing for those causing death/injury in urban settings in a 4x4 inflated by 30% to reflect the fact that they knowingly bought a more dangerous car because it looks "chunky and makes them feel safer"





What if I didn't buy it because it was chunky and safe but because an aged parent couldn't handle my saloon as he can no longer get himself up from a position where his arse is lower than his knees?  Have also had to buy higher armchairs so he doesn't get stuck.

Heff what are your views on sports or performance cars then? Your average Porsche or M3 or McClaren is not being raced (like the SUV it’s not being used for its “purpose”) but is likely to have just as high if not higher emissions. They never seem to get the same bad press though


I park off road and home and at work. My new house has an unadapted access road so it’s essentially now really. 

I seem to recall someone making the very rof argument that they needed a 4x4 in their suburb as it gave the best protection to their children when they drove them to school.

heff - I'm not in favour of banning very much, but am in favour of taxing to moderate behaviour. 

Driver taxes are pollution based, but if they were a mix of pollution / drag / mileage, and your road tax giving you a refund for next year if your MOT mileage is lower by 10/20/30% than the average then you help get people into the right place. You could also give each car given a A+ to F- rating which must be clearly identified when sold - so the environmental impact is an obvious part of the purchase decision, rather than an afterthought.

I'd ban performance cars too

agree with JM that heavy taxes are another good way forward

eg in Denmark/Sweden taxes on new vehicles are about an additional 100%

Most SUV's aren't even 4 wheel drive - they are just glorified cars

stop banning shit!


The problem with taxing is that it's not focussed on the impact of the trade (apart from the totally arbitrary £40k=luxury tax).  So you end up with quite good cars that are 10 years or so old, and could go on for another 10 years, but they tend to get crushed because they're now worth £3k but the taxes are too high for the people who might buy them, so they buy a cheaper to tax (and more environmentally friendly) new car, but without anyone factoring in that it's probably better overall to maintain a more polluting car than it is to scrap it and make a new, less polluting car.

Heff - what's your definition of an SUV or performance car, for the purposes of this ban ?

A Ford S-Max is a bit taller and less efficient than a Mondeo - would that be banned ? Or only a Kuga ? Does it matter if it's 2WD ?

Cars tend to have a drag coefficient (Cd) of 0.25 to 0.3,  SUVs tend to be 0.35 to 0.35

So road tax is currently your engine's carbon g/km rating


So keep the current g/km rating but multiply by Cd Value and by Mileage Band, where:

if Cd = lower than .26, the Cd Value is 0.9, if Cd is up to 0.3 the Cd Value is 1, if Cd is up to 0.35 the Cd Value is 1.1 etc.


And Mileage at MOT  - if it's below 5000, the Mileage Band Multiplier is 0.7,  rising on a sliding scale to 1.4 for anyone doing more than 40,000 miles a year.

I like the Jelly system as I'm low mileage so would save money.

doesn't everyone have the occasional need to park in a field?

Guy, just stick to the laybys and church carparks for the dogging and you'll be fine.

The comment about cars getting bigger and heavier every year reminded me that I passed a mid 70s Rover P6 on the road the other day. This had a 3.5 litre V8 engine. These were a massive deal back in the day. 

It was tiny. 

Indeed - if you ever see a modern ‘Mini’ parked near an original Mini you will be amazed.

Strutter is writing clickbait now. 

Rebecca deMornay is 61. You'll be amazed by how she looks now!

We need to introduce tax breaks for massive FO bling 4x4s.

4x4s, very much like BMWs and Audis, attract a certain type of person.

Basically an 80% chance that the driver is a complete throbber.  

I have a 4x4 and can confirm this to be true.

Obviously I fall into the other 20%. 

I've lived I places where the majority of roads were not paved and had very poor drainage after rain. SUVs were a 'must' if you needed to get around anytime in the few days immediately following a severe rain storm and conventional cars often had to be written off after they became flooded. Many of those SUVs technically did not go "off road" but they were very needed nonetheless. 

that argument is the "ooh but the lanes when it snows!!!" by another name?  Maybe you live in a jungle, but the number of times I hear people trying to justify a 4x4 because of how tricky their lane becomes when it snow is mind boggling.  It goes above 27c about 3 times a year in Scotland (about as often as the number of snow days in deepest Essex) but you don't see the Scots saying "ooch, aye, well ye need a convertible up here fer tha three hot days!".

Just agree with yourself that there are about 3 days a year you'll wfh and don't spend on a 4x4 that you actually need on fewer than 1% of days each year.

He did say the majority of the roads were not paved, so it doesn't sound like the heart of the home counties commuter belt.

Probably one of the situations that these vehicles are designed for. I do actually use mine for off road driving. Admittedly not much in the last three years because of kids and covid but it used to get given a proper seeing to several times a year and hopefully it will again soon.

But yes, currently it's major justification is being able to get the pram in the back without dismantling it.

I parked mine fully off the carriageway last night.