Today on Car Talk Tom or Ray, I can never keep them straight, commented on the SUV commercials that are being run lately showing people barreling along through the snow at 40+MPH, ramming through snow drifts and such. Now as anyone who has ever been a professional driver or worked in an associated industry can tell you, when snow or especially ice hits the only thing 4 wheel drive does for you is make it easier to get out of the ditch. Plus, of course, it’s not speed that causes most rear end collisions, it’s speed differentials. Everyone else is driving a sensible 15 to 20 and here comes the bozo who watched the SUV commercial doing 40 and rear ends somebody. So, Click or Clack suggests that it would be a great thing to see the car company and the ad agency get sued by someone who buys one of these things and actually drives that way. Now, I think generally there are way too many “product liability” lawsuits and personally I think anyone driving an SUV ought to know enough to realize that 4-wheel drive isn’t a replacement for careful driving, but in this case I think they have a pretty good point. Anyone who suggests that throwing 4,000 lbs. of metal down the street at uncontrollable speeds is a good idea probably ought to expect a lawsuit, even in a rational tort system.
Which one is Click and which one is Clack, btw?