By on July 23, 2016

elk (Oregon Department of Agriculture/Flickr)

Elk. Majestic creatures, and delicious, too. You can cut that meat with a fork. But colliding with 900 pounds of it in the smallest car on North American roads is no one’s idea of a picnic.

That’s exactly what happened last week, when a tiny, first-generation Smart Fortwo went head-to-head with a bull elk on a dark British Columbia highway. 

The crash happened outside of Comox, on B.C.’s Vancouver Island — an equally majestic land populated with mountains, abundant wildlife, ex-hippies, and perhaps, Sasquatch. Chris Markevich was behind the wheel of the Smart, and had momentarily turned off his high beams.

“I almost passed far enough where I could turn my high beams back on, and as I was going to turn them back on, it was elk – boom,” Markevich told CTV News.

After the impact, his car rolled four or five times in the grassy median, coming to rest upright. The Smart’s front end was destroyed and its windshield completely shattered. The elk exited the scene playing a harp. With both Smart and elk terminated, Markevich walked away with some minor scratches and seatbelt bruising.

Smart touted its “safety cage” technology when the diminutive vehicles dieseled onto the market a decade ago, and it’s those strong windshield pillars that Markevich can thank for avoiding a meal he couldn’t survive. Elk and moose are terrible things to encounter at highway speeds. A passenger car’s low front end will usually take out the animal’s legs, with the body impacting the windshield. The results aren’t pretty.

In this case, the vehicle’s small size and blunt front end, as well as the elk’s massive girth (it was winched onto a five-ton flatbed for removal) conspired to save the driver’s life.

“Because it doesn’t have a protruding bumper,” Markevich said, “the paramedics, police officer, and nurses and doctors at the hospital all told me if it were any other car, it would likely have hit it at the knees, and propelled it head-first into the windshield, impaling me.”

When your car saves your from impalement-by-animal, newfound affection for it is understandable. Marvevich said he plans to replace his totaled Smart with a new one, which is good news for the company whose Canadian sales numbers were in the three-figure range last year.

[Image: Oregon Department of Agriculture/Flickr]

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77 Comments on “Smart Fortwo vs. 900-Pound Bull Elk: Who Wins? Do Both Lose?...”


  • avatar
    JimZ

    Elk and moose are dangerous not only because of their weight, but because all of that weight is perched atop a few spindly legs. Your car takes out the legs, while you have this enormous @ss busting through your windshield and heading straight for your face.

  • avatar
    Joe Btfsplk

    In the video, the driver “Held on to the wheel for dear life”. I’ve been told that it is best to take your hands away from the wheel to avoid serious wrist injury. Which is correct in most circumstances?

    • 0 avatar
      bumpy ii

      Hands at your sides, assuming you actually have time to move them. The seat belt and airbags will hold you more or less in place.

      • 0 avatar
        mason

        In this situation I don’t think I would be taking my hands off the wheel. Even being in such a small car, your going to blow right through the elk and will need to be able to control the vehicle until you come to a stop. Letting go of the wheel while rolling could allow a limb to go outside of the vehicle while flipping. I’ve been inside a vehicle that rolled two and a half times and can tell you it’s a violent ride. I did the exact same thing as the guy in the video and held on for dear life.

    • 0 avatar
      MBella

      If you are holding the wheel correctly, with you arms just slightly bent, the airbag will not have a serious affect. It’s people who sit too close to the wheel and let their arms hang over the airbag that have issues.
      https://goo.gl/images/VQIGSN

    • 0 avatar
      Lack Thereof

      In any accident serious enough for it to matter, you won’t have time to move your arms anyway.

    • 0 avatar
      Piston Slap Yo Mama

      If a female companion had been in the passenger seat with her feet on the dash this story would’ve been very, very different.

  • avatar
    bumpy ii

    Commenting before the jump: the smart needs a new windshield and front body panels. The elk looks like it was hit with a howitzer at point blank range.

    After the jump: ha, called it. The elk held up pretty well, too, apart from that little death thing.

    • 0 avatar
      Kendahl

      I think the Smart needs more than a new windshield and front body panels. In the video, see the extreme positive camber of one of the rear wheels. The elk took out the front but the rolls killed the rest of the car.

  • avatar
    VoGo

    The meek shall inherit the earth.

    • 0 avatar
      2manycars

      “The meek shall inherit the earth.”

      Perhaps – when the strong are done with it and have moved on to greener pastures, the meek can pick over the scraps left behind.

      Looks like the car bounced off the moose. A better test would be a collision with a 5000 or 6000 pound SUV or pickup. Any volunteers?

      • 0 avatar
        Thinkin...

        Well there’s always the ol’ Jeep Grand Cherokee failing the moose test:

        http://jalopnik.com/5930933/jeep-grand-cherokee-fails-evasive-maneuver-test-again

        As many have said before, mass doesn’t always equal safety. Sometimes agility can be just as important.

        That said, I wouldn’t want to drive anything into a moose, unless I had engineered the A pillars myself.

      • 0 avatar
        cornellier

        You seem to think it’s a good idea. How about you?

      • 0 avatar
        Frownsworth

        I sort of did that with a Blazer vs. a full grown deer. The deer bounced off the front, taking out all the safety structures (bumper, rebar and radiator mount+radiator and lights) and ended up with a $7000+ repair. All that money could have gone to buy a new smart car.

    • 0 avatar
      strafer

      “Oh it’s the *Meek*…blessed are the Meek! That’s nice, I’m glad they’re getting something, ’cause they have a hell of a time.”

  • avatar
    red60r

    Swedish cars have heavy-duty windshield pillars for protection from collisions with the Scandanavian Elk — a tall beast that is somewhere between an American Elk and Moose. All three animals are tall enough to come over the front end of a car and join the passengers. Cattle are a little shorter and will get caught in the grille. Pigs may go under the bumper.

  • avatar
    Fred

    I’m looking forward to retireing in California and hunting elk and big mule deer. Sometimes I can’t fill my freezer with these tiny Texax white tails. I saw my first Smartcar in Lampass TX. Just didn’t seem right.

    • 0 avatar
      Drew8MR

      Eh, Muleys aren’t particularly good eating where I hunt in NoCal, maybe it’s the forage. And they only allocate 300ish Elk tags every year, so good luck with that.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    A smarter car would do better than 34/mpg city (1.0L gas I3/auto, manual is 2 mpg less). Honda Fit (1.5 gas I4/auto) can achieve 32 mpg city and Civic (2.0 gas I4/auto) 31 mpg city.

    In fairness there is now an EV version which achieves 122 city so it seems instead of addressing the ICE issue Daimler went all the way and made up for the poor mileage in another way (range is 68 miles).

    • 0 avatar
      Lack Thereof

      Smarts have never been about MPG’s… it’s all about parking and the minimal space required to store one. They’re intended primarily for short urban trips, where total miles traveled is so low that fuel costs are an insignificant portion of the ownership cost.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        I don’t disagree but in general I think a 1 litre three cylinder motor should be able to do better. Daimler seems to have leapfrogged itself so I suspect the target audience will simply choose the EV version in the future depending on the price premium. I suspect as range improves the gas version will simply be dropped.

  • avatar
    seth1065

    Hey I am impressed, guy walked away , who cares what happened to the car, he walked away, I can see why he would buy another.

  • avatar

    We have some elk here in Michigan, in the UP for sure, but collisions with deer are a much greater issue, with about 20,000 a year.

    I’m particularly wary of deer when driving at dawn or dusk. The private back road into the facility where my mom lives is fun to drive, but it’s right next to some undeveloped woods and wetlands that houses a small herd of whitetails. At dusk I drive it much less enthusiastically, scanning the tree line for movement.

  • avatar
    mtmmo

    If he would’ve been driving any other car the accident wouldn’t have happened. Any other car, including many go-karts, mopeds, and some electric skateboards, would have been much further down the road thus missing the elk. The elk was unnecessarily killed!

    • 0 avatar
      cornellier

      “If he would’ve been driving any other car the accident wouldn’t have happened. Any other car, including many go-karts, mopeds, and some electric skateboards, would have been much further down the road thus missing the elk. The elk was unnecessarily killed!”

      Everyone on this board just got 10% stupider.

  • avatar
    Moparmann

    “They’re intended primarily for short urban trips, where total miles traveled is so low that fuel costs are an insignificant portion of the ownership cost.”

    And yet, I see them all the time on the interstates, blowing past me at >70 mph!! :-)

    • 0 avatar
      Fighter835

      I once drove a first gen Smart from LA to Vegas at 75+ mph, not too bad of a drive considering the small wheelbase, but crosswinds and trucks needed your full, undivided attention.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    I don’t know why bull and roo bars aren’t common in the US as they are here, with decent driving lights that project 1km away.

    A decent bull bar will manage to keep a vehicle intact hitting a 220lb animal and not strand you on the roadside. Decent driving lights aimed correctly give you a decent view of what’s off the shoulders. My driving lights have saved me quite a few times.

    My current bull bar has at least a few dozen kangaroos/wallabies notched up already. Kangaroos are the dumbest animals around. They will sit on the roadside eating then see you coming and then jump into the vehicle.

    I don’t think a bull bar would of been much use on the Smart car. I can understand why he wants to buy another one.

    The worst animal to hit in Australia is an Emu. They are huge and their bodies are in line with the bonnet. Straight through the windscreen is the only place they will go, even with a bull bar in many instances.

    • 0 avatar
      mason

      Well, to begin with this didnt happen in the US.

      A few dozen kangaroos Al? As in 24+? How do you keep count of so many trophies? Notches on your super uber indestructible bull bar?

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        I did read many comments that are in relation to deer, moose and elk in the US in this article, hence my comment. Like I stated since the US has so many CUVs, SUVs and pickups, why not the use of bull bars?

        As for the number of road kill I generated, well every night shift I’d hit at a minimum one wallaby or kangaroo. There are instances where I would hit as many as 4 just driving home.

        My tally could even be above 50 or 60. I didn’t count them.

        The wallabies would congregate in groups of a couple hundred alongside the road. I have hit 3 consecutively within a space of 50 metres. It is that bad.

        Here is a link so when for when come Down Under for a visit; If you intend on driving anywhere outside of a major centre, then rent a vehicle with a roo bar.

        http://www.thelanddownunder.com.au/explore-tldu/driving-in-australia-tips

        Another huge problem is cattle, camels and donkeys. Bullbars on a light vehicle don’t really save the vehicle. I’ve seen twenty or so cattle all over the place after a road train has ploughed through them.

        http://www.thelanddownunder.com.au/explore-tldu/driving-in-australia-tips

        Here is a truck bar designed to hit cattle, camels and donkeys and keep on going. These trucks can’t stop on a dime, either.

        http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-mbFbWYyZOqM/UJhQH4KsM6I/AAAAAAAAPvE/HkUULWkN8Eg/s640/IMG_1237.jpg

        • 0 avatar
          mason

          Sounds like you have a real infestation down under. Time to expand hunting season maybe? Wild hogs have gotten so out of hand in Texas there is essentially open season on them. Especially on your land.

          Deer are common enough here to warrant the use of a Ranch Hand bumper on my trucks. They have both been used, but only on small doe. I’ve been fortunate enough to not hit anything of any real girth yet.

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            Mason,
            Here’s a Wikipedia link to hunting in Australia. I didn’t know guys here hunted with black powder! Wow.

            We have six species of deer, which surprised me.

            Were I worked in the Northern Territory half the guys hunted. But, hunting up there required some survival skills as much of this was true safari type work.

            I fish and I don’t find hunting attractive as fishing and 4×4’ing. This allows you sit there drinking beer, eating and fishing.

            I know that there is also helicopter hunting and fishing in the Top End as well.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hunting_in_Australia

            Many places you hunt will be on a station (cattle ranch) some a couple of a million acres, so they are big. So you will need permission.

            http://huntaust.com.au/game/cullhunting.html

            http://australianhunting.net.au/

            An interesting photo of a Mitsubishi Magna done up for hunting!

            http://resources0.news.com.au/images/2013/12/23/1226788/932480-paddock-bomb-rob-hulley.jpg

            Spotlighting, with a use for a bull bar;

            http://resources0.news.com.au/images/2011/05/12/1226054/975592-fox-hunt.jpg

    • 0 avatar
      brandloyalty

      Since bull bars are attached under the front end, an impact will result in leverage that will result in severe damage to whatever the bar is attached to. Is cosmetic front end damage better than bent frame ends? And what about the danger to pedestrians from bull bars?

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        brandloyalty,
        Bull bars mount straight onto your front chassis horn. Here they must be airbag and pedestrian compliant. There was a movement by the city dweller in Australia to ban bull bars as a pedestrian hazard and some even considered people who had a bull bar fitted to a vehicle made them more aggressive drivers.

        This got knocked on the head rather fast and regulations were put in place to improve their pedestrian safety.

        I do know my bull bar had to be modified with a shear point on the lower mounting bolt to allow the bar to go beneath the vehicle in an accident and maintain it’s airbag compliance. It initially had a telescopic mount that allowed several inches of compression. I think after several accidents they found the bar going up and over the hood and not down.

        Don’t forget that cars still have bumper bars fitted. These are located behind the pedestrian “safe” plastic front ends and are mounted to the frame of a vehicle. So, if a bull bar hits something hard enough, the vehicles bumper bar would also hit the same object.

        Here are some links from insurance and automobile associations. I don’t know what you call them in the US, here we use them for roadside assist.

        These might be useful;

        https://www.racv.com.au/wps/wcm/connect/racv/internet/primary/my+car/car+safety/bull+bars/bull-bars+-+think+before+fitting

        This article was written during the time when the good doers in our society wanted bull bars banned.

        http://www.mynrma.com.au/blog/2011/02/18/bullbars-dangerous-or-essential-requirement/

        • 0 avatar
          brandloyalty

          Thank you for the links. Though they puzzle me since you appear to be a bull bar advocate, while the sites listed, especially the racv site, seem to confirm and expand on the dangers I cited.

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            brandloyalty,
            I’ve had a bull bar on all of my vehicles except a few. Kia wouldn’t allow a bar as they considered the bull bars would affect the operation of the airbags system.

            All of my bull bars have hit animals. I’ve only had one bull bar destroy a vehicle. I was driving a pickup and an unusual, but common animal the Volvo made an illegal turn through a red light and I tee boned him. My pickup front end shortened by a foot or so. But all four headlights, grille all remained intact. It was really odd to look at.

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            One reason to scroll past BAFO’s legendary-in-his-own-shower commentary is his tendency to post links that fail to prove the point that he is trying to make. What’s even better is that those links often don’t say what he thinks that they say.

            The poor bugger is lacking in basic literacy skills. It seems that BAFO has enough reading skills to locate some keywords in an article, but he doesn’t have enough to understand what is being said.

            He’s a blowhard with a massive inferiority complex but not much else. Not worth the bother.

          • 0 avatar
            krhodes1

            PCH – given this is coming from you, it might well be the funniest thing you have ever posted on here.

            Bull bars are obviously a blessing and a curse. Save your car from kangaroos, much more likely to kill a pedestrian. Personally, my humble opinion is that if you are too dumb to not walk out in front of a 4000lb moving object, you are too dumb to be concerned about.

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            Our friend “brand loyalty” noted that BAFO posted a link in order to prove a point, when the link actually contradicted BAFO’s point. That’s par for the course for BAFO. (I didn’t read BAFO’s post because I never do, but I’ll take the other guy’s word for it.)

            Then there are others who think that if they keep making an assertion that is based upon their gut and (apparently brilliant) observations (that are naturally free of selection bias **cough cough**) that it must be true. You tend to fall into that camp.

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            Pch101,
            Read all my comments, ie, the push to have bars banned due to pedestrian and other vehicle impacts.

            Also, look at the dates of the links I have placed and then do some research into the the movement to abolish bull bars in Australia.

            The banning of bull bars was on the news each week back. There were supporters to have the bars banned. Insurance companies lead the push for the ban. I suppose. I’d say the biggest reason was the damage caused to other vehicles.

            Like the US, 75% of pickup owners in Australia have them as a Falcon/Commodore replacement for the large family hack.

            Maybe you should come back and visit after your 2 decades absence. You will not recognise much.

            Oh, the push to ban bull bars have made them much safer and better ………… and more costly.

            Oh, here’s a Commodore with a plastic bar, I read here on TTAC the other day that EcoThirst Mustang could of used one of these.

            I’ve seen HSV’s with plastic bars. They appartently work better than steel/alloy according to some.

            The plastic bars would sell in the US where the deer and antelope roam.

            http://forums.justcommodores.com.au/attachments/vz-holden-commodore-2004-2006/170252d1393417687-bullbar-2005-vz-lx6-adventra-mystery-pic-_20.jpg

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      @Big Al from Oz – moose or elk will just flop over the “bull or roo bars”. Ever have someone sweep your legs out from under you? Same idea when you hit a moose.

      Driving lights would not have helped this guy. He said he had just passed someone and was going to reactivate his high beams.

      This is where a full sized pickup is a benefit. They sit tall enough that a most of the impact will get absorbed by the front of the truck.

      A lowered sports car in some instances has an advantage when clipping a moose because the moose will roll over the roof and not catch the windshield.

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        Lou_BC,
        Thank you for you input.

        As for the driving lights, you might be correct. I don’t recollect anywhere I mentioned that driving lights are the be all and end all or for that matter a bull bar. But they do and will save you considerable expenses overall.

        As for your F-150, put a bull bar on it. The probability of hitting a smaller animal is higher than hitting a moose. I do think a moose would be slower and don’t just jump in front of a vehicle as a roo or deer, we do have a deer problem here as well in some areas. I’d say probability indicates that you will be better off with one, with driving lights.

        Here’s a F-250 with a bar, it gives you an idea.

        http://bullbarsaustralia.com.au/wp-content/uploads/Image_Ford-F250-874×324.jpg

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          @BigAlfromOz – I had a “push bar” aka Roo bar on my 1st 2 trucks. It was more to protect the radiator from snags, sticks and rocks.
          Driving lights do help but only in low traffic. I had 3 KC Daylighters on the top of my bar. They were rated at 385,000 candlepower each. I had one aimed straight ahead and the left and right ones aimed into the ditches. They saved me multiple times.

          As far as which animals to worry about, it all depends on the region of BC you are heading. If I head south and West you get into ranchland and deer are the biggest issue. Their eyes glow brightly like a reflector in the light so tend to be fairly easy to spot.
          North and East you have to worry about moose. Moose eyes are more dull and don’t shine very bright. Add to that the dark brown/black coats and they are hard to spot. If one heads closer to the Rockies than Elk are a bigger concern. You go far enough north then Cariboo are an issue.

          Bears are different. They are huge but low to the ground. They tend to either roll under your vehicle and cause a roll over or bounce off with you going the opposite way.
          Foxes, coyotes, hares and other small game aren’t usually an issue.

    • 0 avatar
      cornellier

      “My current bull bar has at least a few dozen kangaroos/wallabies notched up already.”

      That’s bragging about killing animals.

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        cornellier,
        Sad but true. This is what occurs in the “wilds” with motor vehicles.

        The other problem is during the dry, the soil along the shoulders of the roads tend to hold grasses better. I think this is due to road drainage and rain water being diverted there. This attracts lots of animals.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          “Wildlife vehicle collisions represent a serious threat to the motoring public as they cause serious human injuries and fatalities. Over 9,800 wildlife vehicle collisions occur every year in BC, resulting in approximately 380 personal injuries and 4 fatalities. Between 1988 and 2009, 47 people were killed in BC due to wildlife vehicle collisions. ”

          “Approximately 80% of wildlife vehicle collisions involve deer. Moose, elk, bears, coyotes and other wildlife make up the remaining 20%. Collisions with smaller wildlife species are extremely common, but as they cause less damage to private property or human life, they rarely appear in official statistics.”
          http://www.wildlifecollisions.ca/thefacts.htm

  • avatar
    bricoler1946

    That stretch of the island highway between Qualicum Beach and Courtenay has a speed limit of 120 kmh but many people travel at 20 kmh over that. of course there are lotsof “beware elk crossing”signs there too. It’s not the first time that I’ve read of moose/elk/vehicle collisions along there. Great that the chap wasn’t seriously hurt, elk burger anyone!

  • avatar
    brandloyalty

    Local coverage showed the car had extensive damage and was a writeoff. As the story said, it did roll.

    Local coverage also said that because the Smart is so narrow, the windshield pillars were too close together to allow the elk to go between them and through the windshield. A smaller animal such as a deer might have gone inside the car with awful results.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      brandloyalty – If I was in that Smart car my next vehicle would be a brodozer. LOL

      • 0 avatar
        brandloyalty

        In the context of that accident, not me. I’m not convinced an elk’s body would not come over the hood of a pickup, and it would be far more likely to fit through the pickup’s windshield. In addition, the pickup probably would end up in a rollover in such an incident, and I’d rather be in a rolling Smart than a rolling pickup.

        And then there’s the matter of other environmental impacts resulting from operating unnecessarily large personal vehicles. Impacts that are already costing every one of us.

        • 0 avatar
          cornellier

          Good point. The world would be a better place if more of those commenting here cared about “environmental impacts resulting from operating unnecessarily large personal vehicles.”

          Reply if you agree.

        • 0 avatar
          mason

          Let me know when a Smart is available that can haul 20+ bails of hay or a wagon, or both at the same time, or drive through a muddy field or get out of my drive and down to the main road in a foot of snow. I’ll be all over it. Until then, I’ll just drive my truck where I need to go in between my chores, since buying another vehicle and paying for registration, insurance, and maintenance just to go to the store is even more damaging to the environment as well as my wallet than just driving my dam truck where I need to go.

          • 0 avatar
            brandloyalty

            Mason, responses like yours come up every time someone advocates any vehicle other than pickup trucks. Implicit in your response is that those suggesting more efficient vehicles are too stupid to realize pickups can carry more cargo and drive on rougher roads than typical cars. Do you actually believe they are that dumb?

            If not, then why do you say this? If so, then maybe you’re disclosing who’s actually the stupid one.

            Can you agree that many choose to drive pickups, not because they genuinely need the capacity or capability, but because of other factors that boil down to personality issues? And can you agree that driving vehicles larger than necessary is wasteful?

          • 0 avatar
            mason

            “Can you agree that many choose to drive pickups, not because they genuinely need the capacity or capability, but because of other factors that boil down to personality issues?”

            Your assumptions of other people’s needs or lifestyles is rather over reaching. I can honestly say I don’t know one single person who bought a truck because they didnt have a need or use for one. How many do you know? Or do you just assume because you see an empty truck rolling down the road that must be how it’s always used? Of course most people don’t literally NEED a truck for survival, most buy one to support their lifestyle. Whether it’s hauling a boat, camper, horse trailer, car trailer, etc. Those are lifestyle choices, not personality issues. You know, kind of like the guy that buys a $70k sports car just to leave it sit for weeks or months on end. Does he have personality issues as well?

          • 0 avatar
            krhodes1

            @Mason

            You use your truck as a truck, good for you! But for every you, there are ~75 urban cowboys hauling air around the suburbs.

            A $70K sportscar sitting around isn’t wasting resources and endangering others much.

            I have a couple of gas-sucking Land Rovers, but I don’t commute in them.

            Ultimately, I could not care less if you commute in a Peterbilt, just accept that you are using a disproportionate share of resources. The cost of which is subsidized by everyone.

          • 0 avatar
            mason

            “A $70K sportscar sitting around isn’t wasting resources and endangering others much.”

            Except for all the resources used to manufacture that vehicle. And the resources required to maintain said vehicle over its lifetime, which is substantial compared to the number of miles a truck gets driven around “empty”.

          • 0 avatar
            krhodes1

            Sportscar/truck, seems about the same to me. I have a sportscar that sits 99% of the time, I assure you it uses about nothing for resources. $35/yr registration, $100/yr insurance, and a few bucks for maintenance. But when I use it, it gets 35mpg and if I hit somebody they probably wouldn’t even feel it.

            Obviously, you don’t live in the suburbs if you don’t think most trucks get used as commutermobiles. If you live in fly-over farm country, I can see how you would be under this illusion that most trucks are working vehicles. There just aren’t enough farmers/ranchers/sportsmen in this country to support 1 million plus new pickup truck sales a year.

          • 0 avatar
            mason

            What do you suppose the carbon footprint is on your sports car from beginning to end of life, including manufacturing? Less than a pickup truck that maybe gets used as intended once or twice a month and driven as a commuter the rest of its days? Or possibly more? Keep in mind the typical sports car owner has multiple vehicles vs the average truck owner using his vehicle as a multi purpose vehicle. That’s two sets of tires, two oil changes, two, two, two of everything. I’m not condemning your decision in any way as I think it’s great we as a country have the option to buy what suits our tastes. I take issue with the people that make the same choices you have while simultaneously sneering at mine and questioning my intelligence simply for what I own.

          • 0 avatar
            krhodes1

            I’m not condemning your choices, you actually use the thing for that which it is intended. I would just prefer that the externalities be accounted for. A gas price that makes it not a realistic proposition to commute solo in a 5000lb vehicle would suit me just fine. Need a truck, fine, but you need to be able to pay for it.

            As for the lifetime impact of my sports car, when you have the same truck for 44 years we can talk. Or even the 20 that I have owned the thing. Never mind that it has barely 1/3 the materials used, consumes 1/2 the gas when driven and is far less likely to kill someone else in an accident.

          • 0 avatar
            Drzhivago138

            It’s *bales of hay. “Bails” are those little stick thingies used in cricket. I’m surprised how often I come across this error.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          brandloyalty – 1/2 ton 4×2 are low enough to not save you. A 4×4 1/2 ton is 50/50. HD 4×4’s tend to sit high enough with big high grills so they tend to be less likely to have a large ungulate end up in the passenger compartment.

          Any passenger car with a long snout is bad news because that is more likely to put the critter into the window. That may seem counterintuitive but with a moose or elk strike you tend to fair better if it clears the roof. A short snout means it is more likely to fan on the roof as opposed to before the roof.

          The “Smart” was most likely saved due to the short snout and the elk falling onto the roof and going over or he may have just clipped a set of legs and not go it in the middle.

        • 0 avatar
          krhodes1

          Having seen the results of a fair number of moose-truck collisions here in Maine, I think I would rather be in the Smart car. Semi-truck drivers have been killed here by moose, a pickup won’t necessarily do you a bit of good.

  • avatar
    jimbob457

    I once got entangled with a herd of elk in New Mexico at night. In a Smart it would have been the end. As it was, I bumped a few and out ran the rest. It was unnerving to say the least.

  • avatar
    Pch101

    I doubt that being in any particular brand of car saved him. The guy just got lucky.

    That being said, I once saw a crash scene investigation photo of a car traveling at 55 mph that hit a horse. The horse slid along the hood, then took out the windshield and went into the cabin. Essentially turned the driver and passenger into hamburger; not a pretty sight.

  • avatar
    jjster6

    Once saw a 2nd gen CRX that hit a moose. Front bumper damage and crushed rear end. Took the legs out and it went over the car landing on the back. Windshield fully intact. Driver walked away.

    And the driver’s seat was ruined.

  • avatar

    Wouldn’t Your Really Rather Have a Buck?

  • avatar
    namstrap

    bricolor1946:
    That Qualicum to Comox highway is right in my back yard. One good thing they did was to install elk fences with one-way doors along the highway. I’m sure it cuts down on accidents with animals.

  • avatar
    dukeisduke

    When I saw the name “Smart”, I assumed it would be a reasonably good outcome. They may be small, but they’re pretty stout, thanks to the “Tridion” safety cell.

    I remember a picture going around via email several years ago, of a car smashed between a couple of dump trucks, ending up only a couple of feet long. People forwarding the email pronounced it as a Smart, but the five-lug, five-spoke alloy wheel visible revealed it to be a Chevy HHR. Not that the Smart would have fared much better, but that people were either predisposed to believe it was a Smart, or were intentionally mislabeling it as one out of hatred for Smart cars, or small cars in general.

    Here’s the pic (scroll down), in this blog post from 2009:
    http://astuteblogger.blogspot.com/2009/08/do-you-still-want-smart-car.html

    • 0 avatar
      Pch101

      Rolling a car is a very bad outcome. The odds that a rollover crash will produce a fatality are more than ten times higher than they are for a regular crash.

      The guy was lucky that the rollover didn’t kill him. That’s worse than the impact with the animal.

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