Friday, May 19, 2006

Truck Suit? Chevrolet Snowball?

Do you know what this is?

I didn't either.

I saw one on the highway the day before yesterday, and I made a point to remember the logo off the tailgate, so that I could look it up when I got home.

It's a Chevy Tornado.

Cool. huh?

Do you want one? Well you can't have one.

They are manufactured in Brazil by General Motors, and only sold in Mexico and Brazil.

The list of features from the Premier Chevrolet Website (translated by Google) is absolutely priceless.

"General Motors have marked to the history of the Mexican automotive industry with load vehicles, conserving the smoothness of handling of the Chevrolet suspension. Returned Chevrolet is one of the great launchings for the 2006 and surely small leader in the Mexican market will become pick-up.

Returned Chevrolet is the new member of the more powerful group of pick-ups of the market.
He is ideal for people with work necessities that please of a design. Returned Chevrolet is a versatile and functional vehicle for those who looks for an economic car and of low maintenance, that also can be used for the business or the diversion.

The outer design of Returned Chevrolet presents/displays a robust and youthful, same line that makes from nobody pick-up of its category different.

Account with an innovating, sport and attractive appearance and presents/displays the following characteristics:

• Tinted Crystals
• Windshield shaded in the superior part
• Intermittent Windshield wiper with adjustable speed and system ejector of cleaning liquid
• Hooks of drag, forward and buttock
• Lateral Steps
• Lateral Hooks of subjection in the box

Returned Chevrolet account with an inner design of great amplitude, comfort, ergonomics and visibility, offering the following characteristics:

• Seats of bucket with adjustable heads and endorsements
• Folding Saddle horn of the side of the passenger
• Space Max Cab (Concept who offers interior of great space and comfort)
• Visors with mirror of vanity covered for conductor and passenger
• Flying of three arms
• Guantera illuminated with cover
• Analogous Instrument panel with cluster in black color and details in gray
• Multipurpose Compartments of storage in the instrument panel and the doors"

You show me an American vehicle that comes standard with "Lateral hooks of subjection in the box", "Seats of bucket with adjustable heads and endorsements", or "Flying of three arms"...

(I also love the line about 'Visors with mirror of vanity covered for conductor and passenger"...)

Now, don't get me wrong. This would not be my first choice of vehicle, but this thing (from the best translation of MPG to l/km that I could come up with), gets a little over thirty miles per gallon, and costs less than $10,000 American Dollars brand new.

It is big enough to haul my butt, my lunch box, and my cooler from Brooksville to Tampa every day, and when it wore out, I could throw it away and get another one.

Except that the Government of the United States will not let me buy one.

They are not sold in the U.S. because they are not safe (by U.S. Standards, no passenger side Airbag, no Antilock Brakes), and they do not meet U.S. Emissions restrictions.

The reason that they cost so little is because they are built in Brazil (No UAW workers to pay) and they are not required to meet U.S Government Safety and Emissions Standards.

VW has a version of this same vehicle that is even more efficient, and costs even less.

Now, you may never want a vehicle like this. But picture yourself as a young College Student or minimum wage Wal*Mart Door Greeter trying to take responsibility for your own Health Care Insurance, who needs a dependable, fuel efficient vehicle with a very low monthly payment with which you would be able to haul yard sale furniture, books, backpacks, groceries, Beer, Pizzas, and the occasional Girl (or Boy, as the case may be.)

This thing might actually be the ticket. I really believe that there is a market in America for these little trucks. (If we can all get past the fact that they look like the Early-Eighties Dodge Rampage or Subaru Brat...)

But the Government has regulated them out of your reach. Even if they decide to allow a U.S. version, it will cost $8,000 more than the Mexican version, putting it out of the financial reach of the transportation seeking American Poor.

So forget it. You can't have it. Just like the 5 gallon per flush Toilet, Analog Television Broadcasts, and R-12 Freon, it's just too dangerous for the Government to let you have, no matter how useful to you it would be.

At least it is good to know that our Government is looking out for our best interests...

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