Chrysler Pacifica, Chevy Equinox or Cadillac SRX: The CUV

Discussion in 'Pacifica' started by Geoff, Jun 11, 2004.

  1. Geoff

    Geoff Guest

    Ever driven behind or next to a Chrysler Pacifica, Chevy Equinox or Cadillac
    SRX and wondered just what to call it?

    These vehicles combine some of the qualities of SUVs with those of cars and
    minivans, yet they're really none of these. Chevy terms the Equinox an
    SUV. Chrysler has variously deemed the Pacifica a 'segment buster', or a
    "luxury car, SUV and minivan all in one," while Car & Driver recently
    decided for comparison purposes that it was an SUV. Cadillac is calling the
    SRX a 'Performance SUV', whatever that means.

    Most folks driving one of these vehicles bristle at the term 'station
    wagon'. Apparently that term receives much of the same negative cachet
    normally reserved for 'minivan'. This is probably a fair assesment. All
    station wagons are cars. These are really not cars. Most are far too tall
    to be compared alongside, say, a Dodge Intrepid or a Chevy Malibu. And
    station wagons are derived from sedans, while these vehicles clearly stand
    alone in their manufacturer's product lineups.

    A comparison of these vehicles with SUVs leaves them decidedly lacking in
    some respects. Although they typically are offered with AWD, they don't
    offer the low range or ground clearance required for any serious off-road
    duty. Many SUVs are truck-based, capable of towing substantial loads of
    5,000lbs or more. Although towing capacity is certainly available with
    these vehicles, a serious camper or boater would probably look elsewhere.

    Minivans have been marketed as SUV lookalikes by GM for some years now,
    beginning with the Pontiac Montana. This concept is about to be extended
    across their line with the forthcoming models in 2005. Yet minivans
    typically have far more interior space than a Pacifica or SRX does. Most,
    if not all minivans are equipped with sliding doors, while none of these
    vehicles are.

    The most logical conclusion is that a new segment has truly been born. For
    the purposes of discussion, these should be termed Car-like Utility
    Vehicles, or CUVs* for short.

    In order to clarify the distinction between CUVs and other vehicle segments,
    I offer the following questions and answers:

    When is a vehicle a CUV and not an SUV?
    o When its design emphasizes passenger comfort, interior space and
    touring utility over off-road ability and towing capacity
    o When it is only offered with AWD or 2WD, as opposed to a traditional
    4-wheel-drive system with low range
    o When its styling suggests a tall car or high-sided station wagon,
    rather than a highly-suspended station wagon

    When is a vehicle a 'car-based' SUV and not a CUV?
    o When its interior space more closely resembles that of a compact car,
    rather than a large car (CUVs emphasize passenger comfort.)
    o When its styling suggests a small, highly-suspended station wagon
    rather than a high-sided wagon or tall car

    When is a vehicle a CUV and not a station wagon?
    o When it shares no sheetmetal with a direct sedan counterpart offered
    elsewhere in the manufacturer's lineup
    o When its vertical dimension is larger than any 'car' offered by the
    same manufacturer

    When is a vehicle a station wagon and not a CUV or SUV?
    o When it shares a large proportion of its sheetmetal and/or exterior
    styling with a sedan or coupe in the same manufacturer's lineup
    o When its height and width are similar to those of a traditional car

    When is a vehicle a minivan and not a CUV?
    o When it offers one or more sliding doors
    o When it is primarily sold as a front wheel drive vehicle.
    o When its interior capacity enables the user to carry 4-foot wide
    sheet goods laying flat in the cargo area

    When is a vehicle a car, rather than a CUV or SUV?
    o When its design emphasizes passenger comfort and space in a
    reasonably compact package
    o When its design only lends itself to occasional use for cargo hauling
    o When its styling suggests use for commuting, touring, or racing

    *It is noted that the name 'CUV' is tentatively to be applied to a
    forthcoming product in 2006 by DaimlerChrysler's Smart brand. Their
    definition of the term is 'Crossover Utility Vehicle', which I maintain is
    very similar to Car-like Utility Vehicle. Regardless, one manufacturer
    deciding to give a product a name that is more rightly descriptive of a
    segment than a particular vehicle does not invalidate the use of the term to
    describe the segment as a whole.

    Copyright (C) 2004 by Geoff Gariepy
    Geoff, Jun 11, 2004
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  2. Geoff

    Mike Romain Guest

    Where do all these cross posting spam assholes come from?

    <BS snipped>
    Mike Romain, Jun 11, 2004
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  3. Well, in the case of the Chevy Equinox, you can call it "an engine failure
    waiting to happen". The 3.4 litre V6 is a crap design that sucked eggs
    when it was made in North America. Now it's made in *China*.

    In the case of the SRX, you don't really have to call it anything; you can
    just laugh and roll your eyes.

    In the case of the Pacifica, you can puff up your face and hold your hands
    out as if to indicate "fat".
    We already have one idiotic clunker of a vehicular referent ("sport
    utility vehicle") out there. Your four-word mess isn't needed.
    Then you should sue for royalties or something.
    And you plan on enforcing

    Daniel J. Stern, Jun 11, 2004
  4. No, I know just what to call it. ;-)

    The Lindbergh Baby, Jun 11, 2004
  5. Geoff

    TT Guest

    Nope. They're all POS.
    TT, Jun 11, 2004
  6. Geoff

    Geoff Guest

    You're clearly on to my motivation, whether you realize it or not. See
    below. This ain't boosterism at work.
    In a world where everything is either a 'car' or a 'truck' I'd agree. It
    isn't so. And the objective is the abbreviation, not the three- or
    four-word term it stands for.
    Actually, I'll be happy if all these stupid things, properly grouped
    together with a name, are swept off the market as a failure en masse. As in
    "those CUVs, they were such a joke. Why didn't they learn their lesson
    after seeing the Aztec?!?"

    I'd like to think that somebody, namely me, coining a term such as this one,
    helps to hasten their departure from the market. It's asking a lot, I know.
    But we'll see.

    As to the copyright -- it's designed to keep the mental midgets at the car
    magazines from stealing it wholesale. Otherwise, it's in the public domain,
    and rightly so, since it wasn't done for profit.

    Geoff, Jun 11, 2004
  7. Geoff

    Mike Romain Guest

    We will see how long you last in the public domain by spamming all these
    groups with your cross post.

    Some groups do have a Charter you know and most ISP's really frown on
    folks like you violating them by cross posting your off topic crap to

    I doubt HP will like all the complaints

    Mike Romain, Jun 11, 2004
  8. Geoff

    Matt Whiting Guest

    What do you expect from a guy who can't even spell "Jeff" correctly? :)

    Matt Whiting, Jun 12, 2004
  9. From self inflicted blindness:

    Secondary to: excess self molestation!

    Refinish King
    Refinish King, Jun 12, 2004
  10. Me really thinks:

    He needs his Prozac and Haldol now!

    Refinish King
    Refinish King, Jun 12, 2004
  11. Weren't you kidnapped and killed over 50 years ago?

    Refinish King
    Refinish King, Jun 12, 2004
  12. I escaped.


    The Lindbergh Baby, Jun 12, 2004
  13. My father has a vehicle like these many years ago. It was called a
    station wagon.
    Peter A. Stavrakoglou, Jun 13, 2004
  14. LOFL!

    You have a good sense of humor, not like a lot of other stick up the ass
    types in here!

    Nice to meet you.

    Refinish King
    Refinish King, Jun 13, 2004
  15. Geoff

    Sting Ray Guest

    Good point Mike! I just sent a message to Hewlett at both and
    . I think I'll call them on Monday as a followup at
    1-800-524-7638. Anyone in the Palo Alto area of California can call the
    local H.P. Abuse Dept. at
    Sting Ray, Jun 13, 2004
  16. How disappointing. I wish I could say I was surprised, but I rather
    just find the whole thing a bit depressing. I sincerely hope that the
    two individuals who've posted above find some peace in their lives,
    and that they seek out the things, people, or places that enable them
    to gain some compassion and tolerance. Best wishes to the two of you.

    I maintain that the original post was not "spam", or an attack on
    anyone or anything. Nor was it an official representation of the
    position of HP on any topic whatsoever. Be that as it may, I
    apologize and withdraw the post.

    I doubt my apology will have much impact to the folks who would
    seriously consider doing so, but I sincerely hope that those of you
    intending to call the numbers above, or send email please reconsider.

    This shall be my last post on the subject.

    <falls on sword>
    Geoff Gariepy, Jun 14, 2004
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