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High and Mighty: SUVs: The World's Most Dangerous Vehicles and How They Got That Way

High and Mighty: SUVs: The World's Most Dangerous Vehicles and How They Got That Way Cover

 

Awards

Winner of the New York Public Library Bernstein Award for excellence in journalism (given annually to an outstanding journalist whose book has brought an important issue, event or policy to public attention)

Review-A-Day

"The former Detroit bureau chief of The New York Times, Bradsher writes with knowledge and confidence. His book is a masterpiece of its kind, splendidly combining reporting, analysis, and indignation. It belongs on the same shelf as Ralph Nader's Unsafe at Any Speed and Ida Tarbell's The History of Standard Oil, chronicles of the dangerous interaction of corporate perfidy and regulatory breakdown. High and Mighty tells us more than we may care to know about how government malfunctions, and about the more disturbing aspects of the American cult of driving." Gregg Easterbrook, The New Republic (read the entire New Republic review)

Synopses & Reviews

From Powells.com:

The auto industry in Detroit was panicking during the oil crisis of the early 1970s. Higher oil prices lead to congress-mandated fuel economy standards, and car manufacturers were forced into creating smaller, more fuel efficient automobiles, all the while suffering declining sales to high-quality Japanese imports. Auto manufacturers such as American Motors knew Americans loved their big cars and were determined to find a way to dominate the auto-market once more. Their decision to market their Jeep brand to everyday drivers and to lobby the EPA for a waiver to its newly introduced Clean Air Act — the EPA designated the Jeep a "light truck" as a result — led directly to the birth of the SUV. SUVs and light pickup trucks now make up at least half of all new vehicle sales in the US. This is despite the fact that they posses high-polluting engines, poor gas mileage, and careless and unsafe body-design, not to mention the risks they pose to other drivers who can't see past them or are blinded by their badly placed headlights (or, God forbid, are hit by them).

Keith Bradsher's High and Mighty is astonishing testimony to the cunning and cynical marketing conducted by the auto industry and the failure of Congress to put a stop to the arrogance that is the SUV. It is also investigative journalism at its finest, a riveting read, and a book that should shame — and worry — many. As Bradsher writes: "The manufacturers' market researchers have decided that millions of baby boomers want an adventurous image and care almost nothing about putting others at risk to achieve it, so they have told auto engineers to design vehicles accordingly." Bradsher has spent years tracing the development and eventual market domination of the SUV — he was the Detroit bureau chief of the New York Times from 1996 to 2001 — and he supports his claims with data from government reports, auto-industry documents and the comments of auto-industry insiders. Insiders are completely aware of the irony of the outdoors image marketed to SUV owners. Says J. C. Collins, a top Ford marketing executive: "The only time those SUVs are going to be off-road is when they miss the driveway at 3 a.m." Georgie, Powells.com

Review:

"[Bradsher] pulls no punches...[he] marshals an array of facts and anedotes to make the point [SUV's are] unsafe." Doron Levin, Bloomberg.com

Review:

"Certain to raise public awareness of the many societal problems exacerbated by the proliferation of SUVs... a fascinating book." Toronto Star

Review:

"superb for many reasons...fascinating historical material is presented with narrative panache...Every engaged citizen...ought to read this book." Newsday

Book News Annotation:

Bureau chief for The New York Times first in Detroit and now in Hong Kong, Bradsher offers a biography of the half-tanks that are clogging US streets. He relies mostly on quotes from within the automobile industry by the people who have designed, built, and marketed them despite reservations about their practicality and safety. Among his revelations is that insurance for the vehicles is subsidized by everyone else's premiums.
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Product Details

ISBN:
9781586481230
Subtitle:
Suvs-The World's Most Dangerous Vehicles and How They Got That Way
Author:
Bradsher, Keith
Publisher:
PublicAffairs
Location:
New York
Subject:
General
Subject:
Public Affairs & Administration
Subject:
Automotive - Buyer's Guides
Subject:
Automotive - Customizing
Subject:
Automobile industry and trade
Subject:
Consumer protection
Subject:
Sport utility vehicles
Edition Number:
1st ed.
Series Volume:
35 [1985 revision]
Publication Date:
September 2002
Binding:
Hardcover
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Yes
Pages:
464
Dimensions:
9.56x6.44x1.50 in. 1.91 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Transportation » Automotive » General
Transportation » Automotive » History and Biographies

High and Mighty: SUVs: The World's Most Dangerous Vehicles and How They Got That Way Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$9.95 In Stock
Product details 464 pages PublicAffairs - English 9781586481230 Reviews:
"Review A Day" by , "The former Detroit bureau chief of The New York Times, Bradsher writes with knowledge and confidence. His book is a masterpiece of its kind, splendidly combining reporting, analysis, and indignation. It belongs on the same shelf as Ralph Nader's Unsafe at Any Speed and Ida Tarbell's The History of Standard Oil, chronicles of the dangerous interaction of corporate perfidy and regulatory breakdown. High and Mighty tells us more than we may care to know about how government malfunctions, and about the more disturbing aspects of the American cult of driving." (read the entire New Republic review)
"Review" by , "[Bradsher] pulls no punches...[he] marshals an array of facts and anedotes to make the point [SUV's are] unsafe."
"Review" by , "Certain to raise public awareness of the many societal problems exacerbated by the proliferation of SUVs... a fascinating book."
"Review" by , "superb for many reasons...fascinating historical material is presented with narrative panache...Every engaged citizen...ought to read this book."
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