By on August 15, 2013

Ford_Novo_EcoSport (1)
Derek’s recent article on the CUV “event horizon” seemed to have been misunderstood by some of the B&B. Derek’s fine analysis showed you how one type of car, the crossover, has left its usual stronghold of America and is now eclipsing other kinds of cars in other markets. His proof is the new Mercedes GLA which shows that now everybody wants in. I posit that the “event horizon” came somewhat earlier in the form of the Renault/Dacia Duster and that this phenomenon had been brewing for a while. My home country of Brazil is one place where crossovers have been steadily rising in popularity.


For those of you living in the USA, it’s easy to dismiss small crossovers. You are blessed with open spaces, cheap gas and a choice of automobiles with limits that will never come close to being tested. Your streets are, and have been, littered for decades with huge land yachts in various forms: cars, full-size pickupss, SUVs and finally CUVs. It used to be that different markets had different requirements. Not anymore. Now, with globalization the kind of car you can buy has less to do with what you want, but rather what others want, even if they’re an ocean or two away.

For Americans, the CUV can be a bit of a let down. Not as capable as the Body-on-Frame SUVs and pickups of yore, not as roomy as the completely misnamed minivans prevalent in the North of the Americas, the CUV nonetheless fits the bill and offers a tangible set of advantages for consumers in world. Stepping up from their small, simple, crudely finished compact hatches, the latest crop of  CUVs offer more powerful engines, better build quality, more room (specially for your head!) and more prestige. European, Latin American and Asian consumers can and will rationalize and their new toy as a big step up from their old Ford Ka, Renault Symbol or Fiat Siena.

In markets where the population can afford it, the most successful crossovers aren’t all that different to the ones sold in North America. As Derek mentioned in his original post, the 9 of the top 10 4x4s sold in France are all on offer in the United States. I went over to Matt Gasnier’s most excellent best selling car blog to check out how CUVs in general where doing. To my great surprise there are 3 crossovers in the French Top 10. Three!!!! In France. Can you understand the significance of this? France, the country where the only truck-like vehicle that had managed to break into the top 10 until very recently, in all the history of French car sales, was the Dacia Duster. Now there are three CUVs selling in the top 10. And growing.

I see the effects here in Brazil. Some commenters on Derek’s article mentioned they had seen their first Range Rover Evoque. Here, in poor Brazil, it has been a somewhat common sight for over a year. You just can’t go to a mall without seeing at least two parked. I see them at least every other day in traffic.

You can blame Ford for this turn of events, since their EcoSport started the whole thing. Back in the 90s, somebody in Ford Brazil had the genius of seeing that the Euro Fusion of the times wouldn’t cut it here. Based on the Fiesta, the Euro Fusion was a tall wagon thingy, with a minivan-esque design (not like the Fusion you all know in America). Ford Brazil decide to butch it up and turn it into a jipe (that is how Brazilians used to call anything 4×4-like). A sort of jipe. One that was not big, didn’t really have any aptitude to go off-road or pull anything, but looked the part. Better yet, they discovered that they could raise the price over the regular Fiesta more than 40 percent and people would still buy it. The EcoSport simply doubled Ford’s market slice and improved their profits significantly. Undeniably a home run, or in Brazilian terms: Golaço! This is the formula that nearly every manufacturer is following now. Take your basic car, turn it into a CUV, make lots of money on very little investment for the improvements (raised height, cladding etc).

Then came the Renault Duster which did basically the same thing on the original Logan. Another star, another hit. Better yet, the French had the gall to take it to Europe to do battle with more refined opponents. Armed with a spectacular low price and a ride that was in no way offending, sales took off and the horizon event was reached. Like in Brazil, everybody scrambled to get a piece of the only growing pie in the market. Suddenly newspapers in their business sections and car magazines on both sides of the Atlantic started posting pictures and news of CUVs that may or not happen. The only thing you read about is the upcoming mini-SUVs. Renault Captur! Honda something or other! The Chevy anti-EcoSport was spotted somewhere int the world! VW confirms the Taigun (smaller than Tiguan) for next year! BMW will build the X1 in its new Brazilian factory! New factories are needed to keep up with demand! Sales! Money! Margins!

What does all that mean? Death to the station wagon for one. VW’s small Parati, a perennial Brazilian favorite, is dead. Fiat’s Palio Weekend has no substitute planned. In Europe, no more Clio or 208 station wagon. The really mini minivans are going too. The Chevy/Opel Meriva has already died, the Fiat Idea will soon join it.

And damn the enthusiasts. Or not. In America they talk and talk of the mythical brown, diesel, station wagon, but none buy them. In Brazil and other places outside the USA, all they want to see is that new shiny CUV in their garage. To them it’ll be a symbol of their success. The jacked up, ill-handling (comparing to a car), low capacity (comparing to a BOF SUV) will continue its sale rise.

How long? That’s anybody’s guess. I wouldn’t bet against the surging wave though. It is just gaining strength. If my wife and her friends (not to mention many of their husbands) have their way, the rise of the mini CUV will continue until there’s a least one in every family’s garage.

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56 Comments on “Dispatches Do Brasil: Small Crossovers, From A BRIC Perspective...”


  • avatar
    See 7 up

    I understand they may meet market needs, but man are they ill proportioned.

    • 0 avatar

      I think it’s more than that in that they “create” market needs. Akin to AWD in snow country, a competent driver with proper tires can pretty much handle anything, but the market is such that AWD is seen as almost indispensable for “safety”. I think we should keep this in mind when we talk of the aspirations these cars attend to.

      • 0 avatar
        See 7 up

        My family lives in a small 3rd world country. Their roads or lack thereof make small, slightly higher ground clearance vehicles very attractive.

        Yes, they have made do with used small Japanese cars (Sentra/Sunny, Civic, Corolla) for ages, but they scrape and they must go very slow over some parts of their commute, drive-ways, etc. Small CUV like this (essentially started by the 2nd Gen RAV4) make driving easier in these countries. Their FWD architecture tends to make them simple and frugal. Even better than a true SUV.

        So, I’d say the market was always there. Public attitudes about what a car should look like have changed and car manufacturers have provided models that people actually like.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    Are they ending this Fiat too?

    http://www.mad4wheels.com/webpics/hires/00010725%20-%202012%20Fiat%20Palio%20Weekend%20Trekking/2012_Fiat_Palio_Weekend_Trekking_007_0349.jpg

    Seems like it fits the bill perfectly, like an Outback!

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Nice article Marcelo, adds some perspective to the debate.

    The key takeaway is here:

    “Based on the Fiesta, the Euro Fusion was a tall wagon thingy, with a minivan-esque design… Ford Brazil decide to butch it up and turn it into a jipe… One that was not big, didn’t really have any aptitude to go off-road or pull anything, but looked the part… they could raise the price over the regular Fiesta more than 40 percent and people would still buy it.”

    A fool and his money are soon parted.

    • 0 avatar

      Ha! You just called half the world fools! I kinda, sorta agree with you, but…

      Sometimes I think this is like badge engineering done right. You take one platform, all the same basic mechanical systems, and repeat with a completely different sheetmetal and even a different interior. Most folks don’t care enough to notice the difference.

      We enthusiasts see it. To us the emperor has no clothes. But who are we to impinge our views on the majority?

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Indeed I did, and I’m probably right :)

        You could still do badge engineering with an actual wagon and still jack it up on stilts and I wouldn’t hate it as such. They’d have us believe they created a whole new miraculous automotive segment and we need to fork over 40% over the car its based on to have it, when in fact they poorly combined two other segments (wagon, SUV) leaving you with neither of the benefits of those segments.

        George Carlin about sums it up for me:

        watch?v=DFCMhSzeGuA

  • avatar
    LeMansteve

    “To them it’ll be a symbol of their success. The jacked up, ill-handling (comparing to a car), low capacity (comparing to a BOF SUV) will continue its sale rise.”

    You could have inserted this verbatim into a 1990s article about SUVs vs station wagons.

  • avatar
    slance66

    They make perfect sense. I’m an enthusiast like others. Many years ago, in the era of gas under $1, I could afford to be. Now driving isn’t a pleasurable experience of 95% of the population. It’s traffic, noise, it’s a hassle they must endure. So what do they seek? Electronic gizmos, great radios with ipod integration or satellite radio, heated/cooled seats…in other words, an escape from driving. CUVs do that job well, can handle well enough, go over potholes better than sedans, and AWD beats FWD or RWD, tires being equal. It is the perfect compromise for modern driving.

    • 0 avatar
      Lie2me

      Not to mention easy loading and unloading. Easy egress of people, car seats and what have you. Better site of traffic and obstacles. Cargo capacity greater or equal to most sedans and wagons. At a cost of 40% more then what? My CUV cost about the same as a comparably equipped sedan, but it does the things I want better then a sedan. So this week the “purists” are all looking down their noses at CUVs… and the CUV owners are out doing all the things they like to do and really didn’t notice

      • 0 avatar

        Grant both of you all your points. However, my understanding is that the Escape/Kuga sit on the Focus platform. Doesn’t an Escape retail for more than a Focus? Not the SVT Focus, but the real one, in the low or mid trim. I don’t know and I’m too lazy to check the US site, but it seems to me the Escape is more than a Focus, as in Europe the Kuga is more than a Focus. Probably not 40% more, but more anyhow. More margins, more profits for Bill!

        • 0 avatar
          JKC

          Nice article, Marcelo.

          The Escape does sit on the Focus platform, and you wouldn’t be wrong to describe it as a jacked-up Focus wagon. Since the Focus wagon isn’t sold in the US, it’s a little hard to compare apples to apples, but it’s fair to say that the Escape fetches a lot more than a similarly spec’d Focus.

          I ended up buying an Escape for a couple reasons: one, I take occasional mid-week trips with my kids and the extra cargo space is nice. I also have the tow package with mine, and my small utility trailer does all the work a small truck would do without the expense of owning a second vehicle. (Hauling a bulk load of mulch or topsoil in my wife’s Town & Country would not endear me to her.)

          Less important, but still nice, I can sit in my sunroof-equipped Escape and not hit my head on the headliner. That was not the case in the new Focus.

          • 0 avatar

            Thanks for the kind words, JKC. Like you say, the Escape offers something that the Focus doesn’t and fits your needs well. In this article I’m not condemning the CUV. It’s here, it’s real and fulfills the needs or wants of a lot of folks better than a car or an SUV could. As you so rightly point out. Thanks for contributing to the discussion.

        • 0 avatar
          Lie2me

          It’s hard to compare a Focus to an Escape since you can’t equip them equally, but a AWD Escape Titanium and a AWD Fusion Titanium with the 2.0 Eco-boost with equal options price out within a couple of dollars of each other

          • 0 avatar
            nrcote

            Today, here in Ontario, Canada, a 2013 Focus Titanium hatchback with automatic transmission (no other options) is $25,459 before taxes, and a 2013 Escape Titanium AWD with automatic transmission (standard, not an option) is $35,292 before taxes. The Escape is AWD, sure, but it’s almost $10,000 more. Indeed, it’s hard to compare a Focus to an Escape!

          • 0 avatar
            JKC

            @nrcote: That price differential is the same here in the States.

            I liked the new Focus, and I had great luck with my old one. That said, the towing capacity is nice, and cheaper than buying a truck, and the extra cargo and headroom sealed the deal for me.

  • avatar
    SD

    Hi Marcelo

    Interesting article. But…

    Truth to be told, I felt like I was being hit by lightning.

    You opened my eyes.

    It was a real shock.

    I don’t live in Europe anymore.

    Because, if I did, how come I’d still be able to buy this ?

    So, as you can imagine, I had to find out where I lived.

    And I found out.

    I live in a zombie land, where dead cars are still sold:

    And now I’m afraid, very very afraid.

  • avatar
    SD

    OK

    I don’t know why but the links have vanished and I can’t edit.

    So, the first link is (insert it after “how come I’d still be able to buy this”) : http://www.renault.be/fr/gamme-renault/vehicules-particuliers/clio/clio-grandtour/

    The second one is : http://www.opel.be/fr/Showroom/Meriva/Default.aspx and is supposed to be after “where dead cars are still sold”

    • 0 avatar

      Hey SD!

      What I meant was that the Meriva was dead in Brazil and possibly dying in Europe. As to the Clio Estate I read somewhere that the number of markets where it’s sold has been cut down and that with the launch of the Captur, Renault is watching the Estate’s performance to see if it’s worth it. In Europe I believe the station wagon will go on, but in other parts of the world it’s dying.

      In Brazil, outside of the lux German trio, the only real SW in production is the SW. As noted, so far, there’s no work on a replacement, while Fiat’s mini-jipe is in the works. Ditto GM, Ford, VW and everybody else.

      I don’t necessarily agree with this state of affairs but that’s how it’s looking.

      • 0 avatar
        SD

        Hi

        Sorry I misunderstood your sentence. And you’re probably right about the Meriva dying in Europe (not that I’ll miss it).

        There’s something quite funny about the Clio too: on some markets they seem to try to upscale it a bit, calling it a “shooting break” (which is nonsense at its best) while in France it’s still simply named “estate”. Maybe it’s part of an upscaling of Renault vs. Dacia which has taken some market shares over its mothership during the last years.

  • avatar
    Lorenzo

    More and more, I’m thinking the small crossovers are the Euro 4-door hatches redesigned for the rest of the world. That’s really what the crossovers are, aren’t they: 4-door hatches with simple, frugal, but more powerful drive trains and road clearance for non-euro roads? Adding more than bare-bones interiors and better exterior styling adds prestige, but raises prices so much as to exclude some customers who really need them. Let’s hope there are enough choices that competition can keep the prices reasonable.

  • avatar
    AlfaRomasochist

    I rented a Euro Ford Fusion once in Italy. The nice lady at the Turin Hertz said I could choose a Fiat Grande Punto or a Ford Fusion. Well I’m no idiot – give me the nice midsized Ford sedan! Imagine my surprise when the key fob opened a tiny little cube shaped crackerbox with a 1.4L diesel engine…

    • 0 avatar

      LMAO!

      I however would do the exact opposite. Landing in Moscow for example and given the choice of a Lada or a Cruze, I’d take the Lada. In Jakarta, I’d take the Avenza. In Japan, some interesting kei car, etc. To me it’d be part of the experience. I can understand though. Sometimes, out in Kenya somewhere, even the golden arches can be a welcoming sight after too much of the local stuff!

  • avatar
    tankinbeans

    I kind of see the point to these sorts of vehicles. Something sitting a bit higher off the ground, that doesn’t make you feel like an insect.
    Anything is better than stuffing a family onto a motorcycle.

    I have a 98 Blazer, not sure if considered an SUV or a CUV, that I don’t drive as a primary vehicle – it’s too thirsty. I do drive it on occasion for a change of scenery. My primary vehicle is a 2013 Focus, and it makes me feel like an insect swimming in a sea of landbarges. I love the car, but getting out of it and sitting up a little higher makes me feel better on occasion.

    If I could get a trucky thingy, with an honest 30ish mpg mixed (don’t even bother quoting city/hwy estimates because I’ve never gotten close, I pay attention to the mixed driving number since that is more easily quantifiable), I’d snap it up in a heartbeat.

    • 0 avatar

      Well if your Blazer is the same as the Brazilian one, then it’s based of the S10 so it’s the definition of a traditional SUV in that traditional SUVs are based off a BOF truck. Though the old boxy Cherokee wasn’t BOF, but was an SUV.

      Maddening definitions!

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    I think the CUV will be the utility vehicle of the future. Sort of a wagon, sort of a car, sort of a van, but with AWD.

    I do know the US started the 2WD SUV on a frame and 2WD CUV. It seems not all want the AWD or 4×4 ability. They are interested more in the versatility of the vehicle on a hard surface.

    As for the Duster, I saw many in France this year. They actually looked quite nice until you saw the grill. The Nissan version looks much better.

    They would sell in the US. Slightly smaller than a RAV4.

    • 0 avatar

      Hey Big Al!

      Thanks for reading. I guess of all the grills available on the Duster, Renault’s is the best IMO. What you probably saw in France was the Dacia grill. As to the Nissan grill, not my favorite.

      • 0 avatar
        SD

        Absolutely. You won’t see any Renault or Nissan Duster in France – they’re all Dacias.

        • 0 avatar
          Big Al from Oz

          @SD
          Yeah, my cousin didn’t realise the quantity of them until I pointed it out. He lives about 35km north of the centre of Paris.

          Most of the Dusters I saw were outside of the core of Paris. I saw a high percentage in the more rural areas of France as well.

          I can’t remember where, but the Nissan version I saw as a photo and it looked much nicer.

          I think the Duster is based on a stretched Clio platform, not to sure.

  • avatar
    azmtbkr81

    As an enthusiast I wouldn’t despise CUVs so much if it weren’t for the fact that they’ve sucked the lifeblood out of of other more interesting vehicle segments. The lack of variety these days, particularly in the US, is lamentable and leaves many buyers out in the cold.

    Car manufacturers wonder why they can’t generate interest among the younger generations…I don’t have the answer but continuing to churn out one lumpy, pudgy, same sausage different lengths soft-roader after another can’t be helping.

    I look forward to the day CUV desirability reaches critical mass and the subsequent downward slide into dorkiness. Hopefully this will force manufacturers to innovate once again…at least until the next fad takes hold.

    • 0 avatar
      el scotto

      Exactly how did CUVs suck the lifeblood out of other car segments? Do CUVs leave their parking spaces in the middle of the night and body slam sports cars to the pavement? Do they do unspeakable acts to European cars in the wee hours of the morning? Is it some vast automobile company conspiracy to spend an overwhelming amount of the companies budgets on CUVs? Most of the younger guys/gals at work are ass-deep in debt. An enthusiast’s car? They’d rather drive a Toyonda for 10 years and not have a car note. The CUV market will shrink at some time. Study mini-vans; there will be the same affect. Will CUVs ever go away? No, they’re too damn useful. I humbly suggest that you become a critical thinking or logic class enthusiast. Yes, I read and edit articles for publication on a daily basis.

      • 0 avatar
        Lie2me

        Yes, CUVs are wicked little creatures, reeking havoc on other segments while they sleep

        Bwah, ha, ha, ha!

      • 0 avatar
        azmtbkr81

        I’m not sure what reading and editing articles has to do with anything you’ve spouted off about but whatever.

        It’s plain as day to see and certainly no conspiracy: auto companies have re-allocated a large chunk of engineering dollars to CUV development at the expense of SUVs, small trucks, and even sport compact cars. Almost every day I read news of the a new CUV release but rarely anything else. So again as an enthusiast I have every right to gripe about the lack of interesting options. It is shortsighted for manufacturers to shoehorn all customers into a one size fits all vehicle and will leave the manufacturers scrambling when the CUV fad dies off.

        Oh and one other thought, as a editor you should know that snarky passive-aggressive insults don’t work nearly as well as a coherent arguments.

        • 0 avatar
          Lie2me

          Car companies make cars to sell at a profit. If they make a car that doesn’t sell well they don’t make money. If they don’t make money they have to go to their government for help. So, they’re kind of stuck making cars people want to buy.

          • 0 avatar
            azmtbkr81

            Car companies go to the govt. for help when they put all of their eggs in one basket ala GM with SUVs during the late ’90s and 2000s. Banking everything on the vehicle du jour is a proven recipe for disaster.

            I’m not a Toyota fan by any stretch but at this point Toyota is one of the few companies I respect for maintaining a full range of vehicles. Once again they seem to be taking the long view instead of chasing fads.

          • 0 avatar
            Lie2me

            That “basket” that the car companies had all their “eggs” in was inferior junk. People didn’t stop buying cars from certain makers because of lack of variety, it was the lack of quality that drove them away. Small trucks, and sport compact cars don’t sell well enough for the investment.

  • avatar
    ixim

    My last sedan was a 2002 Regal Abboud model. Terrific car – good looking, felt fast, great mpg, lotsa gadgets. Traded it for a 2004 Rendezvous, arguably the first “sorta does many things mediocre” CUV. Like my new FWD ‘Nox, it was not too big, had lots of space, was comfy for 5 adults, not bad mpg, high driver’s seat, just fine in snow that would have stopped the Regal, etc. ideal daily driver. Tha ‘Nox was heavily discounted; equivalent Malibus a little cheaper. The prices seem to be the result of competition, especially in the sedan area. Seeing 24mpg mixed driving; 33 in straight highway runs. What’s not to like?

  • avatar
    Athos Nobile

    Spot on Marcelo, I’d like to add:

    1) Not everyone needs or wants all the capability of a BOF SUV. Nor the truck-like handling. Nor the guzzler stigma (think of the children, CO2, etc…). The genius of the CUV is giving the customer the looks, high ride and utility of the conventional SUV without its main disadvantages. The fact that the thing still chews petrol like there’s no tomorrow doesn’t seem to be important, and for that issue Dr Diesel comes to the rescue.

    2) In developed economies population is aging. I see these things as friendlier to get in and out than a regular car. And after the kids leave the nest, there’s no apparent need to have a big car.

    3) I don’t think the wagon is going anywhere. Unless, that is, OEMs kill them to get people into the more profitable CUV, in which case they will become a niche vehicle. There’s still a market out there for car based Giardinettas.

    And Derek, that took some cojones. Well done.

    • 0 avatar

      Hola Athos!

      Glad to see you here. Agree on all your points, except maybe the 3rd is already happening. It’s not a conspiracy in that the SWs were more expensive than the hatches. A small difference from the CUV. It’d seem that most, nowadays, and specially in Brazil, don’t mind putting in that little extra cash and get the CUV instead of the wagon.

      Finally, I agree. Derek is a courageous guy!

  • avatar
    Onus

    Thanks again Marcelo. Good article.

    I have spent some time in the BRICs. Russia specifically.

    I had the pleasure of taking a ride in a Skoda Yeti after a 450km train ride from Moscow.

    Loved it. Enough room for my meager luggage in the back, but tons of headroom for my 6’2″ / 1.8 meter / 188 cm self. Works good on the crappy, unplowed and compacted snow filled roads, of Russia in the winter.

    The trip changed my opinion of small cars. Small hatches / crossovers have wonderful headroom and i could sit in the back for hours with no complaints.

    Anyone want a lada granta review? I was invited to drive one the next time i go.

    • 0 avatar

      Hey Onus! Would love to see a review of a Lada from an American that likes Russian things. I’m sure it’d be a great read.

      You know, you touch on a point that I hadn’t considered, but people are getting taller. So these taller cars do accommodate better the larger folks of today. Another positive for the CUv then.

      • 0 avatar
        Lorenzo

        That’s a great point about taller people, especially Onus’ point about being able to sit in the back seat. Conversely, that could be a criticism of coupe-like sloping roof lines on sedans. Perps in the back of a police Dodge Charger may not be entitled to head room, but to buyers who routinely carry adults in the rear seats, that’s a sticking point. I’ve personally gotten some animated feedback while driving adults a mere 40 miles in a rented Chrysler 200.

      • 0 avatar
        Onus

        I was thinking it was a good idea seeing as the site is trying to get more user submitted articles. I figure i should try it atleast. I figure people want to see stuff they don’t get to see everyday.

        I have a unbaised opinion of russian cars too. So we will see how it goes.

        I do love the things like the Niva, and the Uaz hunter.

        Good to see there people are getting taller there. They are getting shorter here as time goes on. I’m quite the outlier when it comes to height.

  • avatar
    Beerboy12

    Great article, as always.
    I am inclined to think that these CUV’s are not as bad as one might think. Firstly, there are people, my self included, that are enthusiastic about true 4X4 vehicles that are neither sporty, fast or even luxurious. By this I mean a car does not have to be sporty to attract enthusiasm.
    Second, These CUV’s seem to be all things to many people. This is not actually a bad thing, is it?
    Finally, as someone who enjoys the 2 box hatchback shape, it’s the wheels in each corner and truncated rear I like. I don’t find these things ugly. Some are actually pretty well designed, inside and out.

    • 0 avatar

      Hey Beerboy!

      Thanks for the kind words!

      You know, when CUVs started out, I couldn’t wrap my head around them. A part of me (how big depends on the day) still thinks they’re like ducks, who can do it all, but are not the most efficient at any of the tings they do. However, reading the discussions about them here and elsewhere, talking to people, trying to empathize, I can now readily admit there’s a place for them. Seems like more and more people are falling in love for their “ducks”. Who am I to say that a different bird would suit them better?

      Fact is, as of right now, the CUV is where the action is at. It’ll be interesting to see just how big this segment will get.

      • 0 avatar
        Beerboy12

        A second thought I had. When SUV’s went from off road vehicles to soft roaders they lost ability and are essentially pretenders. CUV’s, to me, are based on humble hatchbacks and as such, are gaining ability, height, space etc with out loosing the increasingly critical gas mileage.
        I am more enthusiastic about hatchbacks, than sedans because they gain a practical advantage, see where I am going?

      • 0 avatar
        Lie2me

        That’s interesting because I had them my head long before they arrived. A half-million miles behind the wheel of three Grand Cherokees gave me a lot of time to think about how I would take the features I liked best about the Jeep and somehow combine them with a car… and, well, you know the rest

  • avatar
    doug-g

    What is a “BRIC”?

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      ‘Bama, Rhode Island, Iowa & Colorado

      j/k

      Brazil, Russia, India & China (the fastest emerging economic markets/powers).

      Although, I’d argue their rate of growth is already declining massively, compared to their average of the past 10 years, and that China & Brazil are facing problems of such a serious nature that there is the possibility that they may see some economic contraction, rather than growth, in real and not nominal terms.


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