13/04/2024

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Save the Environment – Buy a 4×4

5 min read
Save the Environment – Buy a 4×4

The time has come to start thinking about changing my car. When weighing up the various options, I have narrowed it down to a basic desire to own a 4×4. This decision though is fraught with doubts, none of these doubts though have come from myself. As is becoming the norm in this country of paranoia, the media, the do-gooders are ruining it for the rest of us with their campaigns on how we should all think.

The two main arguments put forward by the ‘know nothings’ are that the 4×4 is a dangerous car to drive, and that you are single handily driving through the ozone layer, both of which are to a degree totally false.

Now, the front of most trains is as flat as washboard, get hit by one of them at full speed and you will be sore for quite a while. Because we all know this, very few of us step out in front of them. Whenever someone does, nobody in their right mind blames the train or its driver. So why must we have cars designed around how they react to hitting someone? Unless a car mounts the pavement, it will always be the fault of the person who steps out in front of it. My 6 year old son knows not to run into the road, to look both ways before crossing. Outside of his school, their are two men dressed in bright yellow, brandishing huge lollipops. If a parent or child decides to not use them, again, it is their own fault. Cars should not be designed or feared by the effect they will have on the stupid. Stand in the middle of the canal for long enough and you might get hit in the face by a boat, it would not however be the barge owners fault. The track is where the train drives, the canal, the barge, the road, the car, nothing complicated there.

One of the reasons that I fancy a 4×4 is the extra room in the boot. Driving a 4 door saloon, I am constantly restricted to things that I can buy, as I have no real way of getting it home. A trip around IKEA is tiring enough without spending the next 2 hours tying stuff onto your roof. A holiday is there for us all to relax. There is nothing relaxing though about trying to squeeze a family and their suitcases into a car with only room for one case in the boot. Now there are other options available to cure the above complaints. I could have shops deliver my furniture, my bags of gravel, my mirror. I could get a taxi to and from the airport. The main problem with these options though is that they aren’t exactly environmentally friendly. One trip to a shop and back is better for our carbon footprint than making the same trip, then needing a huge truck to follow you home, turn around and drive back to the shop again. That’s 4 journeys on the road instead of 2. Same with the airport run. Unless you are loaded, or have a very friendly taxi driver, it is unlikely that he will wait for you at the airport until you fly home. Instead, he will drive to the airport, then back to his rank, only to have to make the same 2 journeys again to bring you home.

The latest world killer to flash on the radar of the do-gooders is the carrier bag. When asking for one in a shop now, we are made to feel like we shot a Panda. We are told that instead we should all buy bags made of a higher quality to enable them to last longer. I may be proven wrong, but I doubt that many smart cars or Gee whizzes bought today would still be around in 20 years time. They will have gone bang a long time before that. Compare that to a new 4×4. Take a look on the roads, the majority of cars that you see driving around on a daily basis that are over 15 or 20 years old will be 4×4’s. They are, by their very nature, built to a higher standard, they are built to survive the most extreme conditions that the earth can throw at them. They are The Big Green Bag of cars. Whilst it is great to recycle, to be able to melt a car down and build it again, it is even better to the environment to not have to replace it at all.

The 4×4 driver will also be confronted with the argument that you don’t need an off-road car to drive on the road. Now I am not a jogger, the idea of it bores me, but I still own a pair of trainers and some tracksuit bottoms. I have never played baseball, but have worn a baseball cap. Despite seeing endless people walking around in football shirts, I have yet to bump into Steven Gerrard in Tesco’s. Jeans were originally worn by cowboys. the rivets on them were there to add extra strength to hold them together. With modern technology, these rivets serve no purpose, yet they remain on 99% of jeans, jeans that are still popular despite the west no longer being wild.

The most justifiable argument for not getting one is that if you have an accident involving another car that you could cause a lot of damage. Fair enough point, but a lot of the people who will tell you this will want you to get on a bus every time you step outside, and if I had the choice of being hit by a bus or a 4×4, I’d take on the latter any day. If I am going to be hit by a truck on the motorway driven by an over tired trucker, I would rather have my family inside a 4×4 than Fiat 500.

So if you want to own a car that will not need to be replaced every time it drives through a puddle, will cut down on unnecessary journeys, that will be wholly practical and keep you and your family safe inside, then buy a 4×4.

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