What if SUV Names Were Really True?

Photo:  Paul Sullivan/Flickr/CC
Photo: Paul Sullivan/Flickr/CC

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Ah, the SUV with the nature-y name. The “Tahoe” or the “Forrester” or the “Acadia.” Designed, in theory, to ford some pristine river.

The reality is not as glamorous. These $45,000 boats are sitting in a parking lots in front of big box stores in suburban Cleveland. Or stuck on the highway in Maryland carrying a single passenger, spewing toxins into the air.

It’s discouraging to see the auto market again headed so strongly toward SUVs — which sends pedestrian deaths soaring.

But the suggestion that an SUV is somehow “outdoorsy” is a big part of the appeal. So just for kicks, we asked our readers to come up with more — ahem — appropriate names for some of the best-selling full-size SUVs of 2019. Here’s what Streetsbloggers came up with:

Land Rover Range Rover

land rover

Land Rovers. For when you want a safari vehicle, but mainly just for commuting 35 miles on the interstate by yourself. This is one of the SUVs that, for whatever reason, seems to communicate a certain something about the driver. This version for 2020 starts at $42,000.

Best name: Mall Rover

Runner-up: Chelsea Tractor

Infinity QX80

infinity SUV

Look at this colossus. It’s so square. So macho! It gets just 14 miles per gallon in the city.

Best name: Infinity Gas

Runner-up: Hit-and-Runner

Toyota Sequoia
sequoia

It’s sad that a company coopted the name of a beautiful tree to sell this gas guzzler, which gets just 13 miles to the gallon in the city.

Best name: Toyota Rollover

Runner-up: Toyota Screentime

Nissan Armada

Nissan USA
Nissan USA

This boat gets just 14 miles to the gallon in the city and 19 on the highway. Good grief.

Best name: Nissan Asthmada

Runner-up: Nissan Compensator

Toyota’s FJ Cruiser

71oQ4tjZ1YL._UY560_

It’s like the lego version of a Hummer. This one has actually been — thankfully — discontinued. Sorry about that, cars aren’t really our thing around here.  Still …

Winner: FU Guzzler

Runner Up: Pedestrian Bruiser

Thanks to everyone who submitted names! You can check out the whole thread here.

Humor can make a difference. If more people realized that their vehicle choices were the butt of everyone else’s jokes — and car manufacturers put on the defensive — perhaps we wouldn’t be in the situation we are in right now. After all, one of you who suggested calling a mega-SUV the Chevy Glacier Melter — which is funny … because it’s true!

7 thoughts on What if SUV Names Were Really True?

  1. How do we get these trucks off the streets? I live in a small town with residential streets that are typically 9’ wide with no sidewalks or curbs. Drivers of these things barrel down them like they are on an interstate despite posted speed limits as slow as 5 mph. We are told by the state that the town can’t restrict them. Help!

  2. Yawn. I love to cycle. I wish people would make better choices when it comes to transportation. That said, this car hatred is ridiculous. It’s marketing and it’s effective. People want it. The message resonates. Our message doesn’t. Why would it? If this column is our message, I’m embarrassed. It’s not even sophomoric. It’s infantile.

  3. Sunburned Dude, a weak message with billions of dollars behind it will always “resonate” more than a great message that nobody ever hears.

  4. A friend once pointed out to me the the Chevy Suburban was the only SUV on the market with an honest name.

  5. I just spoonerize the names:

    The Ford Exploder, Exploitation, Excruciator
    The GM Denial
    The GM Puke On
    The Cadillac Escapade
    The Cheap Jerkey
    The Land Rover Recovery
    The Lincoln Agitator
    The Mitsubishi Outlandish
    The Toyota Land Bruiser
    etc.

  6. How about calling a truck or SUV with really terrible mileage the “TRAITOR?” We still buy too much oil, since it is sold on a world market, from Islamofascist terrorism financiers.To me, nothing says no brain or no shame better than an American flag on a big pickup truck or SUV.

  7. How about the Ford Extinction? (not my creation–coined by a local newspaper writer). I consider the very term “Sport Utility” to be inaccurate. The number of miles that could be described as “Sport driving” are a tiny fraction of those racked up in “Utility”–driving to work, running errands, taking children or other family members to appointments, etc. Some years ago, Consumer Reports did a review of a minivan, commenting, “Sorry, image-conscious parents. This minivan makes a lot more sense as a family vehicle than any SUV.”

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