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SUV Owners Group Responds to New NRDC Commercials

May 8, 2003

Responding to rising attacks against sport utility vehicles (SUVs) and their owners, Sport Utility Vehicle Owners of America (SUVOA) has unveiled both a survey of Americans' attitudes on vehicle choice and its revamped website -- www.suvoa.com -- with new features the group hopes will help make its organization the "go to" source for SUV issues, ownership, services and "what's new" in the market and aftermarket."It is fitting that we are re-launching SUVOA's primary communications outlet and a Wirthlin Worldwide survey on a day that a small, but well-funded group of anti-SUV activists are once again stepping up their assault on SUVs and SUV owners," said Jason H. Vines, SUVOA president.Responding to the National Resource Defense Council's (NRDC's) announcement of a new advertising campaign challenging Detroit and Washington to "deliver fuel efficient cars and SUVs that meet our transportation needs without sacrificing our safety, freedom or prosperity," Vines challenged the NRDC to "show me the money.""SUV owners, like all automobile consumers, would love better fuel economy and we see that in every survey. But they don't want the tradeoffs that study after study conclude come in the areas of reduced safety, utility, cost and performance," said Vines. "All we see today from the NRDC and their support groups is a cleverly engineered commercial. As consumers, we want cleverly engineered vehicles that meet the needs of our families and our businesses. It is interesting that no auto company from Detroit, Germany or Japan -- in one of the most brutally competitive industries in the world -- has been able to deliver the supposed vehicle that the NRDC decided not to unveil in their latest commercial. Did the NRDC decide to keep the vehicle 'under wraps' because it only exists in a Hollywood studio?"SUVOA today also released the results of a nationwide survey conducted as part of the weekly Wirthlin Worldwide Quorum of 1,000 Americans. Religious leaders should be focused on steering our lives, not our choice of vehicles," said Father Robert A. Sirico, president of the Acton Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty. "The SUV and its minivan cousin are mainly used by families. Is it right that religious leaders should urge all families to stuff themselves into tiny, more fuel efficient cars that limit the number of passengers and have a safety record much worse than SUVs, minivans and larger cars? This kind of politicking leads people to believe religious bodies have nothing better to do and then we wonder why the culture doesn't take religion as seriously as it once did."SUVOA was formed to give voice to the 24 million SUV owners whose rights are being trampled by special interest and activist groups, as well as to provide consumers with practical information about their SUVs. Founded in 1999, the group says it actively defends the rights of SUV owners and rebuts false charges regarding the safety and environmental record of SUVs.The revamped SUVOA website provides many new exclusive features for members of SUVOA, as well as information for members and non-members. Non- members will be allowed to view all features on the site, including the members only sections, during the first two weeks of the site's re-launch, May 7-21. SUVOA also announced an addition to its Board of Directors. Linda Profaizer, president, National Association of RV Parks & Campgrounds, has joined the SUVOA Board effective immediately. Profaizer is joined on the Board by Derrick Crandall, president, American Recreation Coalition; David Humphreys, president, Recreational Vehicle Industry Association; Larry Innis, Washington Representative, Marine Retailers Association of America; and Vines. Also active with SUVOA is founder Bill Brouse."Americans' love affair of the great outdoors, often times getting their families and friends there safely and conveniently in an SUV, makes it a natural that Linda Profaizer and her fine organization be a vital part of SUVOA's leadership," said Vines.Fact sheets addressing key safety and environmental issues are available at www.suvoa.com. Interviews with Vines are available by calling toll-free 1.877.44.SUVOA (877.447.8862).
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