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Old 7th October 2011, 15:57   #46
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Default Re: Do SUVs decrease driving fatigue? How?

I have driven SUV's - Toyota LC - Manual and Automatic, Ford Mountaineer on highways up to 700 kms in a day each trip. The same routes and trips I have done in Toyota Camry as well as Ford Grand Marquis.
My experience? Sedans and Saloons will win hands down on highways in terms of fatigue. All said and done, SUVs are diesels (the Mountaineer was a petrol guzzler though.). and the Noise and vibration factor contribute to fatigue on the long run, unless you have a truly premium SUV like Lexus LS-470 or of that class. After driving an hour or two, the noise really gets into your head and nerves in case of normal SUVs. On the other hand, Sedans and Saloons have much less noise ingress and vibration.
Secondly the suspension. The SUV's stiff off-roading kind of suspension is no way a comparison to the highly damped soft suspensions of Sedan or Saloon.
Note:I am not talking about our City Minis at all. These are not cars to be driven that long that you get fatigue.

Last edited by RajaTaurus : 7th October 2011 at 15:59.
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Old 7th October 2011, 16:10   #47
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Default Re: Do SUVs decrease driving fatigue? How?

I think an SUV increases driving fatigue except if driven exclusively on highways/expressways.

Here is what I have driven recently (in past 2 years) - Skoda Octy, Endy, Pajero, City, Zen.

In driving comfort I would rate them as Octy > Pajero > Endy > City > Zen. In fact the last time I drove around in a SUV (Pajero) for over 500 kms, it left me so tired that I swore never to prefer it to the Octy again. On a road with significant twists and turns a sedan is a much better option.
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Old 7th October 2011, 16:17   #48
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Default Re: Do SUVs decrease driving fatigue? How?

For night driving, I prefer SUVs. They cause less fatigue.
During day driving, the opposite. Sedans are more comfortable.

During nights, the blinding lights from opposite trucks are reduced to a certain extent in the SUVs due to high seating position. So even though in an SUV the vibrations are more, the fatigue caused by opposite traffic is much more. Also in an SUV, there is a peace of mind that even there is the one off tall speadbreakers, it will not hit the bottom.

But during day time, the sedans are more comfortable to drive in mainly because of the vibrations in SUV are much higher than their sedan counterparts.

Please note that For me SUV = Safari / Scorpio / Pajero
I am not considering BMW X1 and the likes as I have never been on long road trips in those vehicles. And also I have never been in a sedan or an SUV with Xenon headlights. So I am not sure how blinding the headlights from opposite traffic causes in such vehicles.
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Old 7th October 2011, 16:18   #49
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Default Re: Do SUVs decrease driving fatigue? How?

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Originally Posted by RajaTaurus View Post
Secondly the suspension. The SUV's stiff off-roading kind of suspension is no way a comparison to the highly damped soft suspensions of Sedan or Saloon.
SUV suspension is not necessarily stiff. My Jeep has the softest suspension among my vehicles, followed by my SUV and then the hatch. If SUVs had stiff suspensions, then they would have terrible ride comfort on bad roads.
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Old 7th October 2011, 17:56   #50
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Default Re: Do SUVs decrease driving fatigue? How?

Depends on the type of roads and time of driving.

Within city: a good hatchback or smallish sedan make driving easier.

Outside city:
* Straight highways or bad roads: powerful SUV
* Curvy roads e.g. extended hill driving where you need to drive fast: a good handling sedan or hatchback. Unless the roads are steep and you need the low RPM torque grunt.
* Night driving: SUV (visibility, reduced glare from oncoming traffic etc.)

Wherever visibility is reduced (night driving) or roads are bad/ can suddenly throw up surprises, SUV helps in more confident driving. In a sedan/hatch, you hit a bad pothole or bump, you can have serious trouble. You might not see it e.g. you are blinded by oncoming high beam headlights or if you are following another vehicle. Has happened to me a few times far away from home or cities.

For unknown roads at night or mile-crunching across India, give me a SUV anyday.

P.S.: frame of reference - roadtrips on Indica, SX4 and Fortuner.

Last edited by nilanjanray : 7th October 2011 at 18:01.
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Old 7th October 2011, 19:19   #51
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Default Re: Do SUVs decrease driving fatigue? How?

If you are comparing with D segment sedans and above, suv will be less comfortable and will have more fatigue. Specially if you have euro sedans which have better handling and ride compared to the jap, korean, americans you will find it better than suvs. Softroaders/crossover suvs come next. Worst fatigue inducing will be true off road suvs, due to their stiff suspension.
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Old 7th October 2011, 21:19   #52
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Default Re: Do SUVs decrease driving fatigue? How?

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Originally Posted by noopster View Post
Whenever I have driven SUV's: my friend's Toyota Fortuner recently, or his Scorpio before that, or even (if it qualifies) my BIL's Innova, my overall comfort is badly hindered by the fact that I need to concentrate extra hard to avoid hitting anything/anybody because I am riding around in such a big vehicle! Sorry but a powerful hatch or smallish sedan is much more comfortable for me personally.

My Vento has seat height adjust, reach/rake adjust on steering, auto transmission and pure leather seats (that I've added). That makes my ride super comfy. Have driven nearly a thousand km in a day without getting unduly fatigued. I think it's a myth that SUVs cause less fatigue.
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Originally Posted by VW2010 View Post
The lower the body roll and jerkiness the better the ride comfort. Decide which one has lower body roll and jerkiness and you will realise a sedan does far better role of providing drivers as well as passenger comfort.

Fatigue due to seating posture and seating height is just a myth. If fact the lower i am seated the more snuggly i feel.

I will say SUV doesnt decrease fatigue but just gives that extra space and fov that makes you feel you are not fatigued.
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Originally Posted by mxx View Post
If you are comparing with D segment sedans and above, suv will be less comfortable and will have more fatigue. Specially if you have euro sedans which have better handling and ride compared to the jap, korean, americans you will find it better than suvs. Softroaders/crossover suvs come next. Worst fatigue inducing will be true off road suvs, due to their stiff suspension.
Good points above. I guess itís hard to generalize that SUVs cause less fatigue on long drive. I will say a Skoda Superb will offer fatigue-free experience on long drives in comparison to an SUV on a similar price point, say Ford Endy.
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Old 7th October 2011, 23:50   #53
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Default Re: Do SUVs decrease driving fatigue? How?

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Originally Posted by Guna View Post
I have always felt better in a MT car for highway driving but the minute you enter city limits and know that you would crawl there for next 2 hours, you wish your MT car could instantly be changed to an AT
Well said.
I completely agree with this fact.
This is where the AT with Paddle-Shifters or VW-Skoda DSG boxes come handy.

Good Aerodynamics, Great Ergonomics & Adequate power on tap are the factors which ensures Stress-free mile munching.
With so many members Onboard here in this thread, Can anyone still tell me a hatchback(except Palio) which can easily justify the purpose shown by this thread.
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Old 8th October 2011, 06:57   #54
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Default Re: Do SUVs decrease driving fatigue? How?

it is not true that SUV's cause less fatigue to the driver.
however one of the pluses is the high driving position which offers a commanding view around. this helps a bit.
but it is increasingly clear that and AT is the way to go in India - MT is torture in these mad traffic conditions and one's leg aches at the end of the journey.
basically driving is more of a necessity these days and any pleasure that might have been derived from the activity has been taken completely away by our lousy road surfaces, chaotic traffic, parking woes and crowds everywhere.
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Old 9th October 2011, 14:40   #55
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Default Re: Do SUVs decrease driving fatigue? How?

I switched over from a C segment Elantra and the older Honda City to a AWD Captiva about a year back. While the seating position is a huge advantage for easier driving, the ride in a SUV , even a softroader can bounce you around on not so good roads. For the passengers, especially the rear seated ones, sedans from B+ segment onwards is more comfortable than a SUV. The main reason why I enjoy my Captiva is the auto box. In city traffic, for a large car/SUV the autobox really takes the fatigue out of driving. Fatigue comes from constant gear changes, clutching/declutching and parking woes, in the cities.
On the highways, one needs to compare apples with apples.One cant compare a Scorpio/safari with a BMW sedan to decide which is better. The real comparison should be between a BMW X1/X3 with a 320 or a scorpio /safari with a Verna/manza/linea/Altis .
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Old 9th October 2011, 16:16   #56
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Default Re: Do SUVs decrease driving fatigue? How?

I believe SUVs definitely decrease driving fatigue. We own a Bolero and a Maruti 800. Except when I am in the mood for some spirited driving, I pick the Bolero over the 800 even in peak city traffic. My reasons:
  1. The Bolero has superb all-round visibility. The ORVMS and the RVM affectively give you a 360 degree view of things around you. Driving through traffic, especially when needing to change lanes, is extremely comfortable. There is no need to crane your neck to see over your shoulder.
  2. Since the point about a tall seating position aiding visibility has already been made, I shall not harp on it. The tall seating position also keeps your back straight, and during long drives this goes a long way in adding to over all comfort.
  3. The air-con in the Bolero is a chiller. It has kept me cool in the mid-summer heat of Bihar, and I do not even use sun film.
  4. Pot holes? What pot holes? Speed bumps? What are they? I do not have to worry about preventing the under body from scraping. Less worry = less stress.
  5. The city of Hyderabad was never designed for rains. A 5 min shower is all it takes to flood the road in front of the CMs house, a road I need to pass by everyday on my return from work. In a low GC car, I need to rev the engine while half-clutching to prevent water from getting into the silencer. I can smell the clutch burning at times. In the Bolero, I simply slot it in first gear and drive normally.
Out of the 43k km the Bolero has clocked in the last 2 years, 30k km have been crunched on the highway. I regularly do 780 km in 14 hours of driving on single carriageways. At the end of the 14 hours, I am still fresh. It is no slouch on dual carriageways, either. I did Bangalore-Hyderabad (airport to airport), a distance of 540km, in 5 hours and 50 minutes.

Contrary to popular perception, I believe SUVs hold an upper hand over small hatches in the city. Not an SUV like a Fortuner or an Endeavor, may be. But smaller ones like Bolero (strictly speaking, a Bolero is not a true blue SUV but the short-wheelbase version is not a true blue MUV either) are fantastic. The turning circle is not much larger than a hatch, they take a little more space for parking (not an issue for me since I only park at paid parking or other proper parking places even if it means I have to walk a bit). But points 1-5 above more than make up for the shortcomings.

Last edited by lucifer1881 : 9th October 2011 at 16:24.
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Old 9th October 2011, 16:46   #57
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Default Re: Do SUVs decrease driving fatigue? How?

For the drivers who are more than 5 feet 8 or 9 inches, definitely SUV gives upper hand as seating position in sedans are not good for person having bigger height.

I drive Safari in Bangalore traffic and I feel very comfortable in it, even in city due to

1. Torque it gives, it result in less number of gear change
2. My butter smooth clutch in Safari.
3. All round visibility.

I take my Safari to all small lanes, bylanes of Bangalore and feel very comfortable in it.

On highway also it gulps all kind of roads easily and not transferring shock inside cabin. That is very big point and adds to conserve you energy level for few more kilometers.
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Old 9th October 2011, 21:56   #58
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Default Re: Do SUVs decrease driving fatigue? How?

I have driven many long drives in Sedan and a few times in SUV. I found Sedans more comfortable and less tiring, so much so that I exchanged my rented SUV with a rented Sedan once. Note that my comparison is between a sedan and a SUV in the same price bracket. There is NO POINT in comparing an Alto with a Honda CRV or a Mercedes Benz S class with a Scorpio. Reasons why I prefer a Sedan:

-Easy to maneuver.
-Lower NVH in a Sedan.
-More stable than a SUV for given speed.
-Lesser body roll

All these translate to lesser effort and lesser fatigue. Though the road visibility offered by Sedans are significantly poorer than SUV, the other advantages of Sedan over weigh this disadvantage, especially in a long drive. Probably the only time I'd prefer a SUV over a Sedan is when the roads are very bad. I have not driven a cross over like Honda CRV. Maybe it offers the best of both worlds ?


Quote:
Originally Posted by anujmishra View Post
For the drivers who are more than 5 feet 8 or 9 inches, definitely SUV gives upper hand as seating position in sedans are not good for person having bigger height.
I am 6ft+ - I still prefer a Sedan.

Last edited by idofsuresh : 9th October 2011 at 22:14.
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Old 10th October 2011, 01:06   #59
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Default Re: Do SUVs decrease driving fatigue? How?

Well I have used several cars till date. Most of them being budget hatchbacks, C+ segment sedans but I have been most comfortable in my Aria on long drives. I dont know about other SUVs or cars of the same price segment but I found Aria's front and middle seats to be very comfortable and contrary to the general views I have come out refreshed after a 500 Kms of travel in my Aria and I am really not exaggerating.

I have mentioned it even in my ownership thread that I feel refreshed after stepping out of my Aria. Maybe it is because I have been used to travelling in all sorts of cars that the extra space inside my Aria is suiting me. I get plenty of room to stretch in it.

It got a comfortable suspension set up no doubt but is a good handler as well. Have done a fair bit of cornering while driving it

Plus it also gets down to the type of tires used in a Car.

This isnt my view but my dad has traveled in Xylo and Scorpio few times and he has come out really very tired after a long drive, I have myself never gone on long drives in either of the 2 cars so I will reserve my judgement.
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Old 10th October 2011, 18:19   #60
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Default Re: Do SUVs decrease driving fatigue? How?

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Well I have used several cars till date. Most of them being budget hatchbacks, C+ segment sedans but I have been most comfortable in my Aria on long drives. I dont know about other SUVs or cars of the same price segment but I found Aria's front and middle seats to be very comfortable and contrary to the general views I have come out refreshed after a 500 Kms of travel in my Aria and I am really not exaggerating.

I have mentioned it even in my ownership thread that I feel refreshed after stepping out of my Aria. Maybe it is because I have been used to travelling in all sorts of cars that the extra space inside my Aria is suiting me. I get plenty of room to stretch in it.

It got a comfortable suspension set up no doubt but is a good handler as well. Have done a fair bit of cornering while driving it

Plus it also gets down to the type of tires used in a Car.

This isnt my view but my dad has traveled in Xylo and Scorpio few times and he has come out really very tired after a long drive, I have myself never gone on long drives in either of the 2 cars so I will reserve my judgement.
Never been in an Aria, but agreed Scorpio is not too comfortable in long drives specially for the middle and more so for the third seat passengers. Innova and Xylo fare better in that front, but those are not really SUV's.

Pajero and Fortuner are the other SUV's (apart from Jeep's and Bolero's) which definately are better than our desi ones in terms of comfort.
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