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Old 20th August 2009, 14:57   #46
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shankar, as I posted before, google for 'tragedy of the commons' to find out what the problem with that line of thought is. There is an essay which describes the problem very elegantly

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Old 20th August 2009, 15:04   #47
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shankar, as I posted before, google for 'tragedy of the commons' to find out what the problem with that line of thought is
Well said, and many of us need to really understand this situation well for the sake of our futures.
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Old 20th August 2009, 15:12   #48
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thats correct- philosophically I am completely in tune with your rhetorical question.

However, from a practical point of view we are a country whose people have been starved of good things, starved of information, starved of even basic entertainment like good books, movies and music for an entire 2 generations of the protected economy owing to the short sightedness and petty thoughts of India's rather hypocritical erstwhile CEO's like Monsieur J. Nehru and Indira Gandhi etc.

Therefore, with this new found freedom, can you honestly expect people to subscribe to the "simple living and high thinking" philosophy?

Another point - while you and perhaps I may consider learning from and thus NOT repeating someone else's mistake, do you really think the large majority of our countrymen are going to do the same?

Even a child has to make a few mistakes and learn - despite elders telling him/her not to touch fire or something of the sort, at some time in his/her life he/she is going to do it just to see what happens - then he/she learns from experience!

I am NOT condoning rampant, unbridled consumerism - all I am saying is that our countrymen who have been starved for so long, are bound to enjoy themselves since they are now free of the hypocritical protectionist shackles. And moreover, when they are enjoying themselves now, after centuries of playing second fiddle, why should the Western World with their double standards try and act like the "thought police" for us?

You yourself may remember a time when you had to wait 2 years to get a simple telephone, where the International travel allowance was 100 USD (1960's) - and if one travelled international, one was bound to have the taxman come knocking at one's door some-time and when the only cars available were Ambys and Fiats and you had to wait close to a couple of years before acquiring one!

Thank god all that is behind us - todays kiddies dont even understand the tribulations that educated people living in the 1960's and 1970's went through.

cheers

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Here's the thing - over the last hundred or so years of such behaviour, those countries have paid a very high price as well, for their deeds. In every sphere, including the environment, health and personal values.
We are seeing the impacts of the "consume as much as you want, provided you pay for it" philosophy sow the seeds of a crisis here too, as evidenced by being the country with the fastest growing rates of obesity and type II diabetes, CHD and other killers. While remaining the country with the largest population of people that die from malnutrition because of poverty.
So do we want to go through the entire cycle that these countries have gone through, where there is now a greater awakening to non material growth and values, including Eastern philosophies of life, while we turn into a fully materialist and consumerist society, and insist on our obtaining our fair and rightful share of damaging the environment? Or is there any sense in learning from their experiences and incorporating their learnings on our journey?
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Old 20th August 2009, 15:24   #49
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Thank god all that is behind us - todays kiddies dont even understand the tribulations that educated people living in the 1960's and 1970's went through.

cheers
There is the fallacy in your argument. I grew up in the old economy so I know exactly what you mean, but the kiddies you refer to have not suffered at all! So how do you justify their materialist and consumerist behaviour, what have they suffered to earn that right, if indeed it can be called that?! And these kiddies are close to 50% of the population today! And what is going to teach them anything different if we claim the right to splurge to make up for our suffering?
Here too, let us be careful about the suffering and tribulations words. The suffering of not having more than one scooter model and one car model to choose from, and the suffering of living out your entire life in grinding poverty cannot be compared. While for some of us, the first has gone away, for the most of us Indians, the latter has worsened, because they see a few Indians having a blast, full throttle.
We certainly do not need the West to teach us this. But no else seems to be in the mood to.
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Old 20th August 2009, 15:49   #50
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your point about the kiddies not understanding the old days is fine - but with each successive generation, the parents would prefer that their children do not grow up lacking in any manner - as far as possible they would do their best to ensure the kid enjoys better things than they themselves had from nutrition, education, consumer goods, toys, gadgets etc. This is not wrong, because our own parents gave us better than they themselves received and so do we give our next gen better than what we ourselves received.

Yes, the kids will never know most of the time, the value of all this till they grow up.

Each generation has a set of values, some taught by the family and home environment and nowadays it has a lot to do with the peer group, POP culture, TV, Media etc.

I agree the large majority lives in poor conditions and sees the other bunch living like Kings - also fuelled by the mindless Media that we are subject to these days - page 3 and the like and they HATE it - which is probably one of the reasons for the rising crime in most of our urban catchments - resentment in the minds of the have-nots vs haves kind of thing.

I also agree we dont need the West to teach us the follies of consumerism and what it can do to the environment, health, peace of mind and whatnot -No one here in India at the moment wants to because we are apparently (as a mass of people) enjoying ourselves so much that no one wants to stop, smell the flowers and think a bit. Consider that these were some of the reasons for the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire (and other civilizations) if I may be allowed to draw such a parallel.

Im only saying that we as microcosmic elements cannot stop this, unless we are united by some large enough common cause - the last time we United was in the War for Independence from Imperialism, Colonization etc. Now it s a different kind of war for Independence - from Consumerism it seems, but the trouble is that it has just begun - therefore people havent yet had time to get sick of it! And again I will say, let people enjoy for a bit - its like giving a kid too many sweets - quite soon he/she will get sick of sweets and turn to something else. Its a crude parallel but serves to illustrate.

Funnily, even as we speak here and argue,the world is coming full circle - we Easterners (Indians and Chinese) are embracing the western consumerist culture more and more and they in turn are turning to eastern philosophies for comfort and solace in a world gone mad!

We need a new age Gandhiji I think - we've paid too many years of lip service to that great man. Maybe it is time to start practising what he taught, in our own small way.

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Originally Posted by Sawyer View Post
There is the fallacy in your argument. I grew up in the old economy so I know exactly what you mean, but the kiddies you refer to have not suffered at all! So how do you justify their materialist and consumerist behaviour, what have they suffered to earn that right, if indeed it can be called that?! And these kiddies are close to 50% of the population today! And what is going to teach them anything different if we claim the right to splurge to make up for our suffering?
Here too, let us be careful about the suffering and tribulations words. The suffering of not having more than one scooter model and one car model to choose from, and the suffering of living out your entire life in grinding poverty cannot be compared. While for some of us, the first has gone away, for the most of us Indians, the latter has worsened, because they see a few Indians having a blast, full throttle.
We certainly do not need the West to teach us this. But no else seems to be in the mood to.

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Old 20th August 2009, 16:24   #51
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good articles greenhorn - thanks for sharing them.
interesting how a once loved toy becomes an object of hate - over the space of a relatively short time frame
scientific concerns and other things apart, it also serves as a sort of illustration of the fickle-ness of the mind AND the fact that pretty much anything can be proven or disproven by statistics. it s no longer what one says but how one says it.


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Old 20th August 2009, 17:21   #52
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Originally Posted by n.devdath View Post
Recently a pair of Ford Ikons completed an all India drive of around 29000.00kms on all sorts of roads.
People have been to places like Leh in their cars.
SUVs are eagerly sought after as means of safe all road travel, yet cars seem to do all roading pretty efficiently.

What does Team BHP Think?
4 words- Top Gear Safari Special
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Old 20th August 2009, 17:49   #53
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sankar, agreed that statistics can be spun either way to prove a point. But thats probably because they are neutral facts.

Can you think of a better substitute to conclusively prove a point? I dont think personal opinions and anecdotes help much
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Old 20th August 2009, 17:52   #54
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Can this thread be merged with http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/indian...than-cars.html (Highway Travel:Are SUVs Faster than Cars??)
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Old 20th August 2009, 17:53   #55
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correct.
thats why most companies rely heavily on research and numbers - because numbers never lie!
however, just for interest, in the area of consumer behaviour you might want to read an interesting book called Buy-o-logy by Martin Lindstrom - it will turn a lot of our "taken-for-granted" ideas on their respective heads!

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sankar, agreed that statistics can be spun either way to prove a point. But thats probably because they are neutral facts.

Can you think of a better substitute to conclusively prove a point? I dont think personal opinions and anecdotes help much
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Old 21st August 2009, 09:01   #56
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4 words- Top Gear Safari Special
Sorry, but I didnt get it
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Old 21st August 2009, 13:29   #57
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SUV owners now have a hard time dealing with vocal and other disapproval from the communities in which they live.
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More and more, the only people that buy these cars are those that need the 4x4 capability for their farms and are very apologetic about driving these cars on other roads.
I find this anti-SUV outcry hilarious at best. Here's why:

1. To each his own. I firmly believe in this statement. We live in a free market and anyone is free to buy whatever they want / need, while manufacturers will sell whatever...sells! Freedom in thought & action is a fundamental right to each citizen in any sane country (as long as its within legal limits).

2. Does every Porsche 911 owner cruise down the freeway at 300 kph? No. Less than 1% of Ferrari owners are drivers good enough to exploit even 70% of their car's handling capability. Then why are all SUV owners *expected* to use their 4x4?

3. SUV = Gas guzzler? Sure. How come there isn't similar criticism of a Mercedes E350, S500 or BMW 7 series? Worse still, the AMG & M variants. These luxury sedans are just as gas guzzling as a Ford Explorer is. Heck, lower down the food chain, a Ford Mustang V8 guzzles just as much fuel as a supposed gas guzzler SUV does. In the local scenario, an Accord V6 automatic gives about the same fuel efficiency as a petrol Outlander does.

I'm going to go a step further and outline the reasons why an SUV makes a lot of sense in India:

- The condition of roads in India! Get out on a highway, the supposed tarmac stretches are broken with potholes, the size of which can shame a Ford Expedition, foreign unwanted objects bang in the middle of your lane, 1 foot tall speed breakers and rough road. I don't like bottoming out at speeds of 20kph in my Honda City Vtec. And you really have to see the number of times that my Benz' front bumper has been painted (bottom end scrapes). Some of the roads that we encounter on a daily basis are just the kind of terrain that an SUV was engineered for!

2. On undivided highways, an SUV's high-perched driving position offers a massive advantage. The better visibility can lead to safer driving.

3. Most SUVs can take abuse & extreme conditions far better than C segment sedans.

4. Indian families typically have more members(we are 6 in the immediate family). And we like travelling in groups. Plus, Indians haven't really understood the concept of travelling light, have they?

5. Most SUVs sold in India = Diesel. With an average kpl of 8 - 9 in the city and 12ish on highways, they can be rather efficient.
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Old 21st August 2009, 13:50   #58
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well written

the mantra appears to be;

"i like an suv. i can afford it. i will certainly indulge myself."

thus while i empathise with Sawyer's overall concern for society etc as per his earlier posts;while the concern is valid, the larger mass of consumers who have suddenly been empowered recently with money and the power of choice are certainly going to "go to town" for a bit.

to the average person, an SUV is, amongst other things, also a clear and visible advertisement to the world at large that one has "arrived" - a certain amount of the SUV's appeal could stem from this and whether it has 4WD and Ski Racks and blah blah really has nothing to do with it.

"Being seen to be" appears generally more important than "being".

(This is also probably why the 2WD SUV's sell in such huge numbers!)

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
I find this anti-SUV outcry hilarious at best. Here's why:

1. To each his own. I firmly believe in this statement. We live in a free market and anyone is free to buy whatever they want / need, while manufacturers will sell whatever...sells! Freedom in thought & action is a fundamental right to each citizen in any sane country (as long as its within legal limits).

2. Does every Porsche 911 owner cruise down the freeway at 300 kph? No. Less than 1% of Ferrari owners are drivers good enough to exploit even 70% of their car's handling capability. Then why are all SUV owners *expected* to use their 4x4?

3. SUV = Gas guzzler? Sure. How come there isn't similar criticism of a Mercedes E350, S500 or BMW 7 series? Worse still, the AMG & M variants. These luxury sedans are just as gas guzzling as a Ford Explorer is. Heck, lower down the food chain, a Ford Mustang V8 guzzles just as much fuel as a supposed gas guzzler SUV does. In the local scenario, an Accord V6 automatic gives about the same fuel efficiency as a petrol Outlander does.

I'm going to go a step further and outline the reasons why an SUV makes a lot of sense in India:

- The condition of roads in India! Get out on a highway, the supposed tarmac stretches are broken with potholes, the size of which can shame a Ford Expedition, foreign unwanted objects bang in the middle of your lane, 1 foot tall speed breakers and rough road. I don't like bottoming out at speeds of 20kph in my Honda City Vtec. And you really have to see the number of times that my Benz' front bumper has been painted (bottom end scrapes). Some of the roads that we encounter on a daily basis are just the kind of terrain that an SUV was engineered for!

2. On undivided highways, an SUV's high-perched driving position offers a massive advantage. The better visibility can lead to safer driving.

3. Most SUVs can take abuse & extreme conditions far better than C segment sedans.

4. Indian families typically have more members(we are 6 in the immediate family). And we like travelling in groups. Plus, Indians haven't really understood the concept of travelling light, have they?

5. Most SUVs sold in India = Diesel. With an average kpl of 8 - 9 in the city and 12ish on highways, they can be rather efficient.
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Old 21st August 2009, 14:19   #59
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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
I find this anti-SUV outcry hilarious at best. Here's why:
1. To each his own. I firmly believe in this statement. We live in a free market and anyone is free to buy whatever they want / need, while manufacturers will sell whatever...sells! Freedom in thought & action is a fundamental right to each citizen in any sane country (as long as its within legal limits).
Re: That is exactly the belief behind being socially responsible and understanding the fact than using more than one's due share of anything, ultimately leads to rat race and spoils the entire lot. Countries like the US have had enough of this "Free Market" stuff and have faced the consequences as well.

2. Does every Porsche 911 owner cruise down the freeway at 300 kph? No. Less than 1% of Ferrari owners are drivers good enough to exploit even 70% of their car's handling capability. Then why are all SUV owners *expected* to use their 4x4?

3. SUV = Gas guzzler? Sure. How come there isn't similar criticism of a Mercedes E350, S500 or BMW 7 series? Worse still, the AMG & M variants. These luxury sedans are just as gas guzzling as a Ford Explorer is. Heck, lower down the food chain, a Ford Mustang V8 guzzles just as much fuel as a supposed gas guzzler SUV does. In the local scenario, an Accord V6 automatic gives about the same fuel efficiency as a petrol Outlander does.

RE:SUV=Gas Guzzler, wrong but SUV=more often than not- Unwanted Gas Guzzler, right.
How many people do usually ferry around? SUVs with a single driver and his/her laptop in the rear seat is a common scene across all metros in the country.
Coming to your Accord/Mustang/Merc/BMW part; The focus is on more afforable SUVs which are replacing sedans in cities, in the B(read entry mid level) and B+ The entry executive segment as they cost a little over the sedans there. Compare the fuel efficiency of a Scorpio to a similar costing car, a Fiesta for example.


I'm going to go a step further and outline the reasons why an SUV makes a lot of sense in India:

- The condition of roads in India! Get out on a highway, the supposed tarmac stretches are broken with potholes, the size of which can shame a Ford Expedition, foreign unwanted objects bang in the middle of your lane, 1 foot tall speed breakers and rough road. I don't like bottoming out at speeds of 20kph in my Honda City Vtec. And you really have to see the number of times that my Benz' front bumper has been painted (bottom end scrapes). Some of the roads that we encounter on a daily basis are just the kind of terrain that an SUV was engineered for!

RE: Havent puny looking Marutis withstood the same and probably worse roads all these decades and come out unscathed? A few scratches, yes but dependablity-100%. All of us know it.

2. On undivided highways, an SUV's high-perched driving position offers a massive advantage. The better visibility can lead to safer driving.

RE: To a certain extent, yes but what about rollovers, slippery roads and most of all, the safety of the other vehicle (if it a pedestrian a 2 wheeler or a smaller car) that you bang into?

3. Most SUVs can take abuse & extreme conditions far better than C segment sedans.

RE: Completely agreed, buy an SUV and use it at a town where the roads are bad, there isnt much traffic and yes, where you will end up abusing it. Havent our current trend of sedans kept up with our roads and owners, in cities?

4. Indian families typically have more members(we are 6 in the immediate family). And we like travelling in groups. Plus, Indians haven't really understood the concept of travelling light, have they?

RE: Since we do not want to travel light(though we need to change), we buy a bigger car, wow, see, that is the same tune coming again like the Americans. We want it, we will buy it.

5. Most SUVs sold in India = Diesel. With an average kpl of 8 - 9 in the city and 12ish on highways, they can be rather efficient.
RE: This is the only valid point in my opinion.
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Old 21st August 2009, 15:00   #60
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Purpose of an SUV and Sedan are definitely different and also as many commented are personal choices. I agree to GTO on to the need of the SUV, it makes a lot of sense for a close 5-6 member family on the roads we have in India. Probably it differs for a bachelor, a husband , a parent .. so on . For a traveller an SUV would be better as he generally tends to drive consistent and get used to the right speed with enough grip.

Specific on safety, it depends , I own a Palio and Swift and i have always felt safer in a Palio on the high way.

if you have driven a bus on our roads you would know the kind of confidence you get due to the visibility and how it helps you to drive well... Coming down ... SUV is a right bet ... a fair compromise.. Wish if we had good roads like the express high way.

Over all i would say if you are a traveller who likes to take your parents and friends along with for long drives - day/ night , it makes more sense on an SUV . Else spending the money and managing the mass in a city without unleashing the potential might not be worth, sedan would be better..
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