Monday Mishmash

In this post I asked, not for the first time, why a wealthy country like the US with a lot of empty-nester and single-person households seemingly buys nothing but SUVs and pickup trucks. For someone who has been told his entire life that he is intelligent I am embarrassed not to have ascertained the likely reason: AMERICANS ARE FAT!

This revelation came from someone with whom I have been friends since high school, Robert. We had a long (two hours) conversation on Friday and when this topic arose he simply pointed out that most Americans cannot fit comfortably in a Miata or even a Camaro. I had a DUH! moment almost like no other.

So, obesity kills directly (a CDC study estimated that 71 PERCENT of American adults are overweight) and it kills indirectly as the move to SUVs leads to more pedestrian deaths as noted in this post. Less important in the grand scheme of things, but very important to people like me, obesity is killing the car. Of course, another more prosaic reason is that SUVs and pickup trucks have a higher profit margin for vehicle manufacturers, so if the US and the rest of the world want to buy more of them, the companies will gladly oblige.


BMW 8 Series

From a picture of the new BMW 8-series coupe, which has begun to roll off the assembly line in Germany. The car is powered by a 4.4 liter twin-turbo V-8 that generates 523 HP and 553 LB-FT of torque. BMW claims a 0-60 time of 3.6 seconds. Oh, it has all-wheel drive and an automatic transmission. Repeat after me: manual transmissions are going extinct.


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Time and Effort

My time and my effort