There was a time when the luxury sedan was considered ubiquitous. As a matter of fact, sedans were considered the premier status symbol as well as the most practical vehicles when it came to upscale and socially mobile South African urbanite – ‘were’ being the operative word here.
This is because sedans at this point in time are going through a reversal of fortune. Even world renowned sports car makers like Maserati are enthusiastically jumping on the sports utility vehicle or SUV bandwagon. Gone are the days when South Africans used to buy a sedan for commuting to work and back while keeping a rough and tough 4×4 jeep for a day out in the bushes. The SUV can effectively be used for both these tasks, thus effectively making both sedans and open 4×4 jeeps superfluous except for the true purist. Let us see why:
An SUV Typically Has Heaps of Space
Let’s face it. SUVs are a whole lot bigger than their sedan counterparts. And if you are the type of person who just simply loves to use his vehicle as an impromptu closet on a regular basis, then the SUV is the ‘go-to’ vehicle of choice for you. Thanks to the amount of room, it is possible to pack gear ranging from hunting rifles to camping gear. Unlike a sedan, the SUV will not blow a (metaphorical and literal) gasket while it transports you from and to the camping grounds, even in the wilderness.
Sedans, unlike hatchbacks, tend to come with a trunk that has been exclusively added to the vehicle for the express purpose of carrying luggage. However, the trunk is limited in space when it comes to carrying things for the whole family on a weekend outing.
The Many Benefits of Added Height
This has a two-fold advantage. Not only can the SUV handle water obstacles a whole lot better than a sedan, the added height gives you a commanding view of the road around you. Both of these qualities are particularly useful if you are caught in a ‘donderstorm’. Apart from that, you can also avoid the damage typically caused by potholes and stones and badly made speed breakers. These will generally mean dings and dents in the undercarriage of a sedan.
SUVs are a whole lot bigger than many, if not most sedans. That is why they can carry more people as well. The typical capacity of a sedan or a hatchback is around 4 people while the same for an SUV is around 6, effectively making it the ideal choice for larger family groups.
A More Stable Drive
The older generation of 4×4 vehicles was equipped with leaf springs that made for a really jarring ride. That is why people preferred the comparatively smoother drives of luxury sedans. But the current generation of SUVs are every bit as stable and comfortable as their sedan counterparts.
In light of the above, we can conclusively state that SUVs have won the race fair and square, at least as far as sedans are concerned.