“I know some of these big guys, they’re all still driving their big SUVs. You know, they got their big monster trucks and everything. You’re one of them? Well, now, here’s my point. If you’re complaining about the price of gas and you’re only getting eight miles a gallon–(laughter)–you may have a big family, but it’s probably not that big. How many you have? Ten kids, you say? Ten kids? (Laughter.) Well, you definitely need a hybrid van then. “ — President Obama, speaking at a wind farm to a worker.
In what’s been called “a modern equivalent to ‘let them eat cake’,” the President instructed Americans with large families to buy a hybrid van during a speech yesterday.
Putting the political aspects — a foreign-owned wind farm employing 800 people at the same site which used to employ 8,000 with US Steel, the merits of having more than a single designer baby in one’s comfortable middle age, the idea that the President thinks there are a lot of 8mpg vehicles out there — it does make one wonder: Why doesn’t anybody make a hybrid van? Is there any reason that Toyota sells two entirely different Hybrid Synergy Drive systems in their Camry-based SUVs but doesn’t offer one in the Camry-based Sienna? What about Nissan? Hyundai? Could the Escape’s powertrain move a Flex?
And those are all so-called “mini” vans. Surely the Tahoe Hybrid’s two-mode system could also shove a Chevrolet Express Van down the road to church. Mercedes has been showing a diesel hybrid Sprinter for some time. Why not put hybrid drivetrains in the vehicles where they could do some of the most “good”? In the meantime, families approaching the five-passenger Prius limit may want to consider purchasing the most effective birth control method known to man: a “World Of Warcraft” subscription.