On your point about fashion 4x4s I actually agree - I have no respect for people who buy 4x4s only as a fashion statement, and who don't use them to carry lots of people/weight, or to go offroad - you may as well just buy a saloon. Thereagain, I still believe they have the right to use them however they wish.
On the LPG front; speaking purely from experience, the 4x4s that are most often converted are old Range Rovers (like mine) or Jeeps. The people that I know that have converted to LPG tend to have only a 4x4 (of which they need all its abilities), and no access to other cars. Therefore, since this car has to do long commutes and go offroad, it makes sense to convert to LPG. Firstly, it's a lot cheaper, and secondly, it's more environmentally sound (as it's a waste product of crude oil production). Obviously it produces CO2 emissions, but it's still a lot better than running on petrol? I'm saving up to get my car converted for both financial and environmental reasons.
On the hire vehicle point - If I had to hire a vehicle everytime I needed to transport a load, I'd never get anything done (and I know this is the case for many 4x4 owners). Hiring a van is really not an option in my case.
The use of the 4x4 may be changing - but the cars which as bought as fashion statements will be sold off, and will eventually be in reach of the enthusiast. They will continue to maintain them and use them as Land Rover (or whichever make), intended, and I have no doubts that they will still be running in 30 years' time.
I too object to people who own 4x4s as a fashion statement; who only use them to commute into work and carry one person - there is, as you say, no need. However, if you banned them as some people have suggested, you would severely affect everybody else who does have a legitimate use for them (and trust me, a large majority of owners do), and for whom there is no alternative. Trust me, i'd like to see all the Range Rovers driven solely around London banned, but, practically, how could that be implemented. Even so, if you did ban fashion 4x4s, then many companies would go bust overnight - leaving legitimate users in a difficult situation.
Next time you see a New Range Rover on the road, please remember that over 50% of them are used offroad (according to Land Rover surveys of customers), thus making the amount of 'Chelsea Tractors' the minority.
I agree that in many places a 4x4's offroad ability is not needed, but when you live in the countryside, they do become particularly useful on snow and muddy tracks (on which they do handle better due to the 4 wheel drive nature and AT tyres). However, most people who use them offroad do so as a hobby, and I think it'd be rather unfair to ban somebody's hobby. I was speaking to a disabled friend recently who owns a Land Rover, and we got onto the subject of Defra trying to close BOATS (unpaved roads on which you can legally drive), to 4x4 drivers. He said that, if it wasn't for his 4x4, then he'd never get to see any of the countryside that the able-bodies take for granted. Now, a minor arguement this may be, but i thought I'd highlight it, so that perhaps you'll change you perspective on the 4x4 driver, and realise that it's the minority who give the majority the bad name.
From tomorrow I shall be away for a week in the Isle of Wright, so I apologise if I don't respond straight away to your follow up comments.
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- 17-08-2005 23:21
(Original post by bs.uk)
- 18-08-2005 01:51
Personally i believe 4x4's should be banned from the uk roads (especially city centres). Why do people need a 4x4 if they live in the middle of london and never go off road...
1. The MPG
2. Take up the roads
3. Purely about status and nothing else