Make Room for More Suburbans

2015 Chevrolet Suburban

There could be 60,000 extra General Motors SUVs on American roads next year.

I want to say more, but first you should sit and let that marinate for a few seconds.

Sixty thousand additional Suburbans, Tahoes, Escalades, and more will choke our highways and suck down mad amounts of fuel, easily negating any environmental gains created by alternative-fuel cars.

This isn’t a tirade against fuel-thirsty SUVs—I happen to own one of the least efficient vehicles built in the last decade (a 2008 Audi Q7), which I need for family purposes. I’m just saying that 60,000 Suburbans is about 50 percent of the 119,000 electric cars sold in the U.S. in 2014. And those are just the *extra* SUVs GM plans to build.

Why is the American carmaker increasing production so much, and what does it mean?

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Pathfinder Follows Explorer’s Lead, Ditches Truck Frame… 4Runner Next?

The Nissan Pathfinder Concept, set to replace the current Pathfinder, might be better suited with a new name. I’m thinking something like the Nissan Paved-Road-Finder or Nissan Open-Road-Highway-Finder.

The current vehicle uses a truck frame and has earned its moniker as a path-finder, because it can easily traverse off road and discover untrodden paths to undiscovered locations. The concept follows the lead set by the new Ford Explorer and uses a unibody  frame for better fuel economy, which may only lead to drivers finding previously undiscovered Costco locations.

Is this an example of how the mighty have fallen, or just a natural evolution into a new future? We still have the Toyota 4Runner and Chevrolet Tahoe as truck-based SUVs, but how long before they succumb to the lure of the unibody?

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