The Car and Truck Fleet and Leasing Management Magazine

Americans Hold Divided Opinions on SUV Safety

July 7, 2003

According to an Associated Press (AP) poll published in the Detroit News on July 3, most Americans think SUVs are safer than other vehicles, at least for people riding in or driving them. For others, it is a different story. There is more agreement on fuel consumption rules. The majority in the AP poll felt that SUVs should have to meet the same mileage standards as cars. The poll was conducted for the AP by Communications Research of Media, PA. By a 42 percent to 35 percent margin, people think that SUVs are safer for their own occupants. By a somewhat smaller margin of 45 percent to 41 percent, they felt that SUVs are more dangerous for other motorists on the highway. The public’s perception of how dangerous SUVs are went up with their education level. They also differed by political party, Republicans being more likely to defend the safety of SUVs than Democrats. Just over half of those polled, 54 percent, said that fuel economy standards for SUVs should be the same as those for cars, while 33 percent said they should be allowed to get lower gas mileage.
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