• Dec 27, 2010
Does a Sport Utility Vehicle belong in the city? Environmental officials in Paris certainly don't think so and they've taken the first steps toward an outright ban of the SUV. While not strictly aimed at SUV owners, the Parisian officials are looking to implement restrictions on gas-guzzling vehicles.

It's not clear yet what types of restrictions will be set in place for SUVs (and older diesel-powered cars as well), but officials hint at limitations on vehicle type by neighborhood and time of day. Penalties for breaking these restrictions have yet to be established.

Paris is not alone in moving to implement these changes either as Lyon, Grenoble, Aix-en-Provence and a handful of other French cities are joining in this movement. Elsewhere in Europe, London and Berlin already have such restrictions in place in the form of Low Emission Zones with varying levels of success. However, the biggest question is: How do you define an SUV?

[Source: Detroit Free Press]


I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 68 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      Freedom of choice is still the most important aspect of a democracy and last I checked, France prided itself on freedom and tolerance. That includes people being allowed to drive what they want. I would understand if they would tax a Paris resident for owning an SUV (barring possible exemptions that I'm sure will be included) or add higher tolls for out of towners driving in with large SUVs but an outright ban is wrong whether you like SUVs or not. If someone from the country side drives in with a Toyota Prado are the cops gonna greet him with armed roadblocks? Exotic sports cars are just as useless and burn more gas but I don't hear about them being included. If someone buys a vehicle that isn't convenient for a particular place then it's their headache to deal with and not the government's place to tell him not to buy it.
        • 4 Years Ago
        You know, America prides itself on Freedom but America has restricted my freedom to kill and rape. America has restricted my freedom to drink alcohol and drive my car. America has restricted my freedom to inject other people's children full of heroine for the fun of it.

        Absolute freedom, as in, no State is going to prevent you from acting however you chose is anarchy and as a society, we've said that we're going to restrict some freedoms in order to protect very important freedoms like "unalienable rights."

        France has decided that health and well-maintained infrastructure are unalienable rights, or more unalienable than the right for people to drive vehicles they likely don't need in some parts of Paris in some parts of the day. They've chosen to put the quality of the air, which SUVs impact moreso than cars, if only because of their consumption of fuel, and the public infrastructure (the old roads aren't too good at handling cars with 3000 lb axel weights) above the rights of the people to drive some cars in some places at some parts of the day.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Wow airchompers, do you really go through life with that twisted logic or do you save it all for when you're on the Internet?
        • 4 Years Ago
        No need to be a smartass, you're not proving anything. And if old roads can handle buses other large vehicles then I think a Land Rover will be fine.
      • 4 Years Ago
      @Mazdadrive.....

      Sure we can also ban Mazda's ..as they have SUV'S !!! And they make a good profit on them..so Mazda will fail in the U.S and Canada !!!

      We should ban small cars as they are unsafe !!

      We should also ban busses,trains,bicycles !! And people walking because it is all a hazzard !!! Why not just ban people !!! The Sun should be banned as it causes skin cancer !!! Your left wing ideology is going to make everybody go back to the stone age !!!

      Why are you against trucks and suv's ? I like them both !! Freedom is great !! If you want a car or suv buy one if you dont...nobody will care !!!

      Scared people and people who cant drive are usually the ones who are against trucks and suv's..I know I am right !!!

      Funny,when I drive my truck I have cars tailgating me...then they try to pass and they always almost cause an accident because they then realise I was not the one slowing trafficdown..cars in front of me...

      Furthermore,we dont need people like you that are so misinformed/uneducated and just ignorant !!!
      • 4 Years Ago
      A lot of people think SUVs take too much space on the road, however, most SUVs take about the same amount of space as a regular car. They just have a taller roof.

      I currently own a Chevrolet Suburban (the king of SUVs), and it takes no more space than the Cadillac that I owned before it.
      • 4 Years Ago
      What's with all these restrictions? SUV's can be defined as practical, it all depends on your viewpoint. While I agree that SUV's don't really belong on the narrow streets of Paris, the decision should really be up to the people.
        • 4 Years Ago
        It has been. And the people of Paris, through their duly elected officials, have decided that they want less comparatively high-pollutant vehicles in their city center. Or do you feel that Paris is somehow still governed by a dictator? Nobody's banning the vehicles to own, they're simply discussing prohibiting some motors from some parts of the city.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I think they should have some sort of tax breaks for subcompact/city cars, and higher taxes for SUVs and cars over $100,000.
      Then of course, you have to define exactly what an SUV is. If I drive around a Hilux Serf/ Land Rover Defender that I use for offroading, should they be banned? Most of the SUVs that I see in Paris are VW Tiguan sized vehicles fitted with diesels, like the Ford Kuga/Renault Koleos, should they be banned? A lot of automakers have small MPVs that look like crossovers, or vice versa, like the Peugeot 5008/Nissan Quasqai/Dodge Journey. Should they be banned? Could lower mpg hatches that look like SUVs like the Dodge Caliber be banned? Should micro SUVs like the Fiat Panda Cross/Skoda Yrti be banned?Should they ban supercars? They usually get single digit city mpg figures. Should they be banned? Many big SUVs, like the Discovery, are fitted with diesels that can easily gat the same mileage as fullsize cars. Should they be banned?

      I think they should ban only vehicles larger than the Discovery with petrol engines fitted.
      • 4 Years Ago
      It's easy to define.

      A vehicle that allows for five or more people to fit in with a covered tailgate reminiscent of a station wagon or minivan and where the driver rides higher up than the hub of the wheels. Interestingly enough this also covers most modern trucks.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I'm totally anti-SUV, but I think they should be limited to those who actually need them for offroading; families can use minivans/station wagons. They shouldn't be BANNED
        • 4 Years Ago
        why not have gas mileage stipulations instead? My mom's Rav4 gets better mileage than my honda accord.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Wait, what? Autoblog, don't let these kinds of posts out of the gate anymore, please.

        "While not strictly aimed at SUV owners, the Parisian officials are looking to implement restrictions on gas-guzzling vehicles." Okay, so it's based on fuel economy figures then, right?

        "However, the biggest question is: How do you define an SUV?" Huh? No it isn't, because you just said that the legislation wasn't targeting SUVs specifically. The biggest question would be "how many miles per gallon do you get," regardless of the vehicle in question.

        Page-view-bait at its finest. You can (and usually do) do much better, AB.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Let's face it, most of SUVs (pseudo or real ones) never venture off the tarmac. In Britain, you can even buy a spray-on mud (no kidding) for your Chelsea tracktor. How pathetic is that.

        Most of SUVs are totally usuless off road anyway which renders them totally pointless as a means of transport. They make absolutely no sense in city environment. Ban them or tax them with ridiculously high taxes that would make even Chelsea residents think.
        • 4 Years Ago
        There are way too many people in this country who think they have the right to tell others what to do. Now, I don't own an SUV. But if I did, I'd probably trade it in immediately; and then snap up a Dodge Ram SRT10 4x4 with skid plates and the full off road package.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I can understand in Paris, though. There's little to no use for one there. The roads are narrow and the other cars are generally smaller.

        There's not much purpose they'd serve in Paris.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I've been to Aix-en-Provence and saw a few H2s there, smaller French cities are simply not designed to accommodate large SUVs, this is not just a environmental issue, but also an infrastructure issue.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I could understand an argument made from a different point of view. If you go to Paris, the traffic moves fast because of small nimble vehicles, mainly city cars and scooters. When you add an overly large vehicle in the mix, traffic gets clogged up. The column of traffic simply cannot flow as fast with large SUV's blocking it's arteries. It causes a lot of other drivers frustration as they have to endure a traffic jam just because someone wanted to "buy big".
        • 4 Years Ago
        There aren't even that many SUVs in Paris...in fact I can't remember seeing a single one while I was there so mostly this will just keep SUVs out more than really booting any SUVs from the City. It's not like people roll around Paris in Hummers all the time lol.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I think I know where you're coming from. What if a family that normally lives in the rural area wants to visit Paris in their SUV? They'd have to rent a minivan for the trip.

        I think people should drive sensible cars according to their needs, but there should be a better way to implement this. If they must restrict large vehicles, provide convenient parking on the city outskirts and economical rental car options.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Next comes the ban on all cars over 100 horsepower. The speed limits can be easily attained by a 100 hp or less car, its better on gas and inherently safer because it can't go fast right? So no need for anything over a Citroen 2CV.

      I've seen just as many stupid drivers in WRX's, Camry's, and pretty much any BMW (many are highly aggressive) as in SUV's or trucks. The vehicle doesn't make the driver stupid, they already were long before they bought their vehicle.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Why the hell is the Parisian government doing something as ridiculous as this? Perhaps maybe one of their citizens decides to buy some table or tree that cannot fit into a car so they must use an SUV to transport it... or maybe a family wants to take a trip somewhere with their dog, but not being allowed to have an SUV in the city limits would prevent them from this. Geez... this is just another reason why we need government in all its forms to stay away from micro-managing people's lives and let people be free!
      • 4 Years Ago
      Alright, lets skip the Detroit free press and go back to the source and see what the proposal is all about. And then we'll see that the politicians in Ile-de-France want to look at ways of restricting polluting vehicles from traffic in Paris.

      There, now that wasnt so hard was it? There's also been suggestions from the mayors office that the parisians could be compensated with free public transport, like in Brussels.

      The fact that SUV's tend to be more polluting and fill no purpuse in Paris is just a side note.
        • 4 Years Ago
        There's no point, my dear Swede. Americans go in to blind rage mode whenever someone dares even to think differently! Never mind that the news is distorted, the keywords being "restrictions" on freedoms they imagine they should have.

        The irony is of course that they don't even have the freedoms they imagine.

        Home of the brave? Sure. The land of the free? No, I think the Patriot Act, DMCA, CIA, FBI, NSA, Homeland Security and so on does all the arguing for me. Most Americans don't even understand their own constitution or that it is not unique.
      • 4 Years Ago
      When do all the leftists who want to tell me how to live my life get banned?
      • 4 Years Ago
      It is times like this that I am happy and proud to live in America where our freedoms prevent the government from just outright banning a entire vehicle class just because of some environmentalists!

      *starts singing the Star Spangled Banner...*
        • 4 Years Ago
        Absolutely agree.

        But unfortunately, I feel the US is going down that same PC road. From San Francisco trying to ban toys in McDonald's happy meals to New York restricting salt in meals, its just a matter of time before some blue state congressman tries to ban SUVs.

    • Load More Comments