Reader Question: Lost in the Shuffle?

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Here’s the latest reader question, along with my reply! 

Rich asks: Recently you recommended a couple of used SUVs but as I wasn’t in the market, I didn’t pay attention. But after driving my wife’s ML320 for the first time in a year, I see she seriously does need a replacement. I have tried to find that post with no luck. Is there any chance that it could be forwarded to me? Whether it can or can’t, I want to thank you for your great work to promote libertarian perspectives. I’m in my 70s and while you’re more sophisticated, you do have the same appealing irreverence of my former favorite auto writer, Brock Yates. Keep it up!

My reply: I tried to find it, too! The problem is we’ve got 16 years of articles in here . . . somewhere. And I am terrible with paperwork. My ex was great with paperwork but she’s gone now, so . . .

However, I can offer up some suggestions.

I love the current as well as recent Toyota LandCruiser and Sequoia as both are largely free of the things which are ruining new vehicles, such as over-the-top saaaaaaaaafety tech and driver “assistance” systems. They also have more conservative drivetrains (e.g., engines that are not turbocharged or direct-injected). They are durable, reliable, blue chip SUVs that are also very capable and pleasant.

For something smaller but with the luxury status of the Lexus brand, you might have a look at the RX; very hard to go wrong with that one. It’s a crossover SUV, which means it’s not based on a truck-type chassis. But if you don’t need 4WD Low range gearing or the ability to pull more than 3,500 lbs. it could suit.

Another nice little crossover- and much less expensive – is the VW Tiguan. I’m a big fanof the Tiggy – and I’m betting you’d like it as well!

. . .

Got a question about cars, Libertarian politics – or anything else? Click on the “ask Eric” link and send ’em in!

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  1. Get a 92 or 93 K 20 Blazer with a Turbo Diesel and 4 speed auto. Install a larger sway bar in front and install a good aftermarket sway bar in the rear. Use manually operated electric diff’s front and rear and use some electronic shocks. Install a RanchHand cowcatcher on the front so you can move the less capable out of your way without needing to get out. Change the wheels to 8″ wide and the tires to 265/75/16 load range E so you never have a flat. She won’t believe all the room inside plus the off-idle torque will make her smile every time she needs a bit of power.
    There is no computer on this vehicle. Install a cover over the rear cargo area and bolt in a gun safe. She should be ready to go at least 300,000 trouble free miles and get close to 20 mpg doing so.

    You might get a bit more power and mpg with an inch larger exhaust pipe and a Heath manual waste gate along with a larger and more reliable lift pump. She should be bullet-proof at this point.


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