While U.S. domestic vehicle manufacturers use the term “SUV” nowadays about as often as responsible dentists recommend that their young patients eat as many chocolate bunnies as they can, other companies seem to be less reticent. For example, Lexus has recently introduced its second-generation GX, the GX 460. And, yes, it is being called an “SUV.”
And listen to Dr. Joachim Schmidt, Head of Marketing and Sales for Mercedes-Benz Cars, at the New York International Auto Show earlier this week: “Thanks to our successful model offensive, we are able to offer a uniquely wide range of tailor-made products designed to meet the needs of a demanding customer base A significant proportion of this success is down to the innovative vehicle concepts with which Mercedes-Benz has repeatedly established and opened up new market segments. These include the R-Class, the original SUV tourer, which we have now extensively redesigned and upgraded.”
Yes, an “SUV tourer,” with “tourer” being “wagon” in U.S. parlance.
Rather than saying they have developed, say, a new crossover, or CUV, the SUV stays in the vocabulary.
Of course, it’s not like there are a whole lot of these vehicles being moved. According to Autodata, they’ve moved just 445 R Classes in the first quarter.