By on March 22, 2013

Back in December, TTAC was invited to a very secret presentation somewhere in Michigan, where an assembled crowd of journalists was shown the 2014 Jeep Cherokee. At the time, the car didn’t even have a name. It was called the “KL”. TTAC was shown the base car (shown in the photos) and an upcoming variant that you’ll see next week. When the sheet was pulled back, the murmuring and and hushed chatter that permeated the room immediately ceased. Nobody knew what to make of this new crossover.

It turns out that the odd design, not to mention the proliferation of engineering mules wearing Alfa Romeo body work, has a reason behind it. According to the Wall Street Journal, the Cherokee was originally an Alfa Romeo CUV before it became a Jeep.

The 2014 Jeep Cherokee, which makes its debut Wednesday at the New York Auto Show, is based on a design first developed for Fiat’s Alfa Romeo—a sharing intended to spare Chrysler hundreds of millions of dollars in engineering costs and shorten the time it takes to get new vehicles to market.

Aside from the cost savings, the move makes sense from a marketing standpoint. The Jeep brand is strong all over the world, and a compact crossover like the Cherokee is a great way to expand the brand in markets where a traditional SUV would be a poor fit. In addition, Alfa’s move to sportier and more luxurious cars (not to mention its precarious future on the whole) meant that the KL project would have more success over at Jeep, not to mention help further focus Alfa’s product message.

Even though reaction has been mixed, I’m optimistic about the Cherokee. The Alfa DNA in the CUSW platform is evident in the Dodge Dart, and the compact crossover segment is so damn competitive than fielding anything less than an excellent product would be a fatal mistake for Chrysler. Based on the Dart, the Ram 1500 and the Grand Cherokee, it appears that Chrysler is cognizant of this.

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81 Comments on “WSJ Sheds Light On The Cherokee’s Italian Roots...”


  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Well that clears it up, its an Alfa in Jeep clothing.

  • avatar

    Well, well, well, being the Italian car fan that I am, maybe my mind’s eye saw something in it that made me like it from the start.

  • avatar
    threeer

    It can’t be any worse than the Patriot/Compass duo, though that may be damning it with faint praise…

  • avatar
    CJinSD

    Isn’t it accepted that the Dart is a mediocrity and doomed for failure by now? The Ram 1500 has little Fiatness to it, and the Mercedes-Benz derived JGC is a success, but the Dart provides little reason to suggest that reskinned Italian cars are going to be a boon to Chrysler.

    • 0 avatar

      It’s not a question of “Fiatness”, it’s a question of “don’t fuck it up”. The botched launch of the Dart is evidence of how poor planning can hurt a competitive car (I am driving a Dart 2.0 6AT now. It’s quite nice. I like it better than the Cruze and the Focus that everybody seems to venerate so highly).

      • 0 avatar
        danio3834

        Derek, I agree about the Dart. I compared it directly with the Focus, Cruze and Civic and felt it was definitely the best of the 4. It offered the most for the price and felt like a much more usable car.

        I think a lot of the chiding is resultant of some people’s secret desire to see the car fail. Meanwhile, it’s gaining traction and awareness in the marketplace. It really hasn’t even had 6 months of full production yet, so proclaiming it a failure is premature. There really isn’t anything to suggest it’s a failure yet anyway.

    • 0 avatar
      snakebit

      No, as Derek wrote, it’s not accepted that the Dart is mediocre. I will admit that the compact buying market is slow to embrace it, maybe because of the bad aftertaste from the Neon and PT Cruiser. But I’m gradually seeing more new Darts on the highway. Car buyers can be difficult to figure out. Take the new Focus and the 2011-2012 Civic. The press almost universally hated the automatic transmission on the new Focus, but it didn’t seem to affect sales. They panned the recent Civic as being a cheap-looking spectre of previous models. Honda was so hurt by the critisizm(sp) that mid-model run, they made a number of improvements to answer the complaints for 2013/2014. But the 2011-2012 Civic still sold in respectable numbers, despite gripes from the press. Maybe, ala Ford Fiesta, Chrysler should put maybe 50 loaners in the hands of their chosen demagraphic nationally to get more exposure for the Dart. Maybe, a little product placement on the CW network, or advertise on The Voice or XFactor. As Derek wrote, the Dart is a really nice compact that more buyers need to be aware of.

    • 0 avatar
      ect

      My wife and I test-drove the Dart when we were car-shopping a few mnoths ago. It’s a titch smaller than the other sedans we drove, but was well laid out, roomy, and drove very well. Certainly as well as the Fusion, and better than the Altima.

      It would benefit immensely from an engine with more “oomph”.

      We didn’t buy it – my wife is a real estate agent, and it doesn’t do as well in the “fit 2 adults comfortably in the back seat” category as some others did – but it’s a very good car.

      • 0 avatar
        Lorenzo

        You pointed out one of the two “features” that blunted early acceptance: the underpowered (for American drivers) engine choices. The other was the lack of automatic transmissions in the first models for sale. Enthusiasts may like a MT, but the American driving public prefers to step on the gas and steer, and no more (except for talking, texting, eating, shaving, etc.).

  • avatar

    Very interesting. I think almost all of today’s production cars are ugly, but at least at first glance, I kind of like that one. I can’t think of any current American (or Japanese, except for the FT86) that looks as nice.

  • avatar
    Firestorm 500

    This one ain’t your father’s Cherokee.

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      In my case, it was my Grandfather’s and that is a good thing. That ’92 Cherokee was cramped, thirsty, and about as refined as an oxcart. I bet they sell a zillion of these new ones. I don’t think it is pretty, but it is not out of the norm for its class either. People seem to like weird in their CUVs these days.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      It’s not my filthy beater plow truck Cherokee either.

  • avatar
    The Dark One

    To me the air dam at the bottom look like it was stolen from a Kia, and the headlight/signal light combination was inspired by a Juke or an Aztek.

  • avatar
    sitting@home

    Is the article title a typo ? Or is the implication the WSJ run by the mafia.

  • avatar
    sparhawk

    If the current JGC is based on a Mercedes-Benz platform, I don’t think it’s losing any American heritage by switching over to an Italian platform.

    The Fiat Panda 4×4 got some good reviews (given its intended use), so maybe Fiat knows something about 4×4 design =)

    • 0 avatar
      mr_muttonchops

      This is the Cherokee, not the Grand Cherokee. The Grand Chrokee is still based loosely off its Benz body, while this is an entirely new car on an entirely new platform.

      It’s a common mistake all of a sudden, it seems, but I’d like to think people on car sites would know a li’l better than to mix these two.

    • 0 avatar
      RobertRyan

      They sure do. The IVECO Daily 4 x4 is the basis of an Armoured car, extreme Off Road Pickup, 4 X4 Railway Maintenance vehicle and a whole heap of other uses.

      Armoured Car
      http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/d/d9/Alpini_on_patrol_in_Afghanistan_with_VTLM_01.jpg

      Expedition Vehicle
      http://i188.photobucket.com/albums/z241/expeditioncampers/Bimobil-Iveco-Daily.jpg

  • avatar
    NN

    I bet this will be a huge worldwide hit. In the US it may not top the charts, but it will certainly outsell the Liberty that came before it. In Europe, China, and South America, they’ll sell boatloads. Being a Fiat at heart means at least that it’s probably fuel efficient.

    Plus, the original Cherokee had a strong Renault DNA, didn’t it? Going back to a lighter, sportier, smaller Cherokee isn’t a bad thing, as long as it still works off road. I always thought the Patriot should have been called a Cherokee…it would have sold better (even better if the ugly Compass wasn’t sold alongside it).

    • 0 avatar
      ect

      I had a 1987 Cherokee, bought just before AMC went into Chrysler. It showed me that AMC didn’t make cars, it bought parts and assembled them. The engine was a GM design, mated to a Peugeot 5-speed MT. Chrysler bullt the 4WD system (actually, I think, a Chrysler-GM jv that was more Chrysler than GM). Electrics were Mitsubishi, IIRC. Glass came from Mexico. And on it went.

      At the time, we owned a boarding stable in rural Ontario. Gravel roads in a harsh climate (especially in the spring, when the frost comes out and the snow melts before that happens) are a special test for any vehicle. The Cherokee, to its credit, handled that well.

      Otherwise, though, it was a very rough vehicle. Handsome, but completely lacking in refinement.

    • 0 avatar

      I said pretty much the same thing a few weeks ago and I thinks this is dead on.

  • avatar

    I ike the design, but it doesn’t look like a jeep, it looks like an Alfa Romeo

  • avatar
    oldowl

    Paint the chrome “mouth” black, and it will look better.

    • 0 avatar
      leonidas

      Agreed! It looks like an angry transformer robot yelling. I can’t believe at least one designer didn’t notice the frowning open mouth and try to hide it better.

  • avatar
    cargogh

    I expected something along the lines of the old one, which I guess was attempted with the Patriot, except for the one night stand with the HHR. The dip in the beltline at the front doors add some area to the windows, and the tail lights hitting the back window look different in a good way. Overall it appears light weight, but with purpose and durability. If it handles well, it should sell.

  • avatar
    Onus

    That explains the stupid jeep bars half on the hood.

    I don’t mind the headlight but fix the horrible hack job, half baked jeep bars. Other than that is looks great.

    I can see where the classic alfa grill would go with the hood crease.

  • avatar
    azmtbkr81

    I predict a flop. Once buyers realize that this vehicle retains none of the capability and durability of the old Cherokee they will run. Buyers have different expectations of Jeep vs Honda, Hyundai, or any of the other CUV manufacturers that they are competing against. No one wants to drive a poser Jeep, especially not posers.

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      You must be kidding. The people, mostly women, who buy this class of car could not possibly care less about how well it will handle the Rubicon Trail. They want a tall seating position, they think they need AWD, and that is about IT. Any actual off-road capability is purely an accessory. This isn’t a Wrangler, and pretty much no one who buys those new takes them further off road than a beach either.

      What would be a HUGE flop is if Chrysler somehow re-introduced the original XJ Cherokee. Nobody would put up with one of those oxcarts as a new vehicle for 10 seconds these days. My WJ Grand Cherokee, which is like a limo in comparison, is an unrefined tank by current standards.

      • 0 avatar
        corntrollio

        Agree, krhodes, but I don’t see the point in arguing with these folks any more. They say the same old indignant stuff on every thread, and it continues to be wrong.

        They always insist that if Jeep only had the infinite wisdom to re-release the XJ in some shape or form that they’d sell like hotcakes. Well, those XJs didn’t even sell as well as much more expensive Grand Cherokees in the last few years available. There’s a reason for that. Also, didn’t the XJ have heavy fleet purchases to some extent?

        It’s really a pointless argument made by an internet auto exec — i.e. yet another enthusiast who doesn’t buy new cars. We’ve been over all the reasons this new Cherokee will probably do well globally, and you’ve reiterated them — a large number of new car buyers in US and foreign markets want CUVs with less off-road capability but more of what most people want — as you said, higher seating position + AWD.

        These people absolutely won’t care about rock-crawling. Call it a badge fetish, call it an image fetish, call it whatever you want. But times have changed, and the SUV that these people want is different from the SUV of years past.

        • 0 avatar
          azmtbkr81

          No one is suggesting that the XJ should be brought back, that’s a silly statement.

          Technology is light years ahead of where it was when the XJ was canceled. Fiat has the capacity to build a modern, capable version of the Cherokee but instead has chosen to take the easy road to questionable short term profits at the expense of Jeep’s long term reputation.

          Since I’ve bought 4 new cars in the last 8 years hopefully views are relevant by your odd standards.

          • 0 avatar
            ect

            When we lived in Atlanta, people in the business told me that 80%+ of SUV sales across the South (including Jeeps, when I was looking at the Grand Cherokee) are 2WD. People who buy 2WD SUVS are definitely not buying them for their off-road capability, but for their image.

        • 0 avatar

          I think this line from a Jeep press release explains it all

          Meanwhile, the Compass beat its previous global sales record with 103,321 units rolling off of dealer lots. In the US, Jeep sold 62,010 Patriot units,

          The two least capable jeeps still out sold the liberty. And the compass by simply pasting a JGC front end on suddenly doubled its sales. I think this clearly shows that non wrangler jeeps are sold based on style combined with the jeep name offroad prowess has nothing to do with it.

          • 0 avatar
            azmtbkr81

            That may be true but the Liberty outsold the Compass and Patriot individually by a signification margin despite the fact that it hasn’t received a significant refresh in 12 years!

            Furthermore the Compass and Patriot make up 40% of Jeep’s models yet account for only 20% of Jeep sales.

            80% of Jeep buyers in 2012 chose models with respectable off-road ability despite the fact that all three drive less like cars and drink significantly more fuel.

          • 0 avatar

            For what it’s Worth, in Brazil I see Compasses from time to time as well as older JGC and Cherokees. It’s been 5 years or more since I saw a Wrangler.

        • 0 avatar
          RobertRyan

          Here in Australia they want a diesel that can tow a reasonably sized Caravan i.e 23-24ft Internal.

      • 0 avatar
        azmtbkr81

        People buy Jeeps because they want to project an image regardless of how often they actually go off road. If this were not the case Jeep would have sold more than 6 Patriots and Compaii last year as both are reasonably priced, competent vehicles in their own right.

        Shouldn’t the fact that Jeep can’t build enough Wranglers to keep up with demand be an indicator that buyers want the capability to go off-road even if they never do?

        The “Cherokee” will never be able to complete with the big boys in the CUV market and will only serve to further confuse potential customers as to what it is the the Jeep brand actually represents. Jeep might as well release a competitor to the Miata at this point.

        • 0 avatar
          cargogh

          azmtbkr81, you made me conjure up a Jeep Miata. That last iteration looked 1.5″ lifted anyway. Another 3″, skidplate, 4 hellas on the rollbar, and a Warn on the front. It could be done.

        • 0 avatar
          golden2husky

          I agree (mostly) with your point of view. A brand is supposed to set expectations and if the product does not meet that expectation, sales usually suffer. Take BMW. For years, driving dynamics were the hallmark of the brand. Even when they became Yuppie fodder, they still offered excellent dynamics. As time when on, they became softer, but still resonated with buyers, only less for being driver’s cars and more for the BMW image. Enough time has gone by to allow the focus of the product to change, and truthfully they still handle pretty well. Jeep, however, still implies a given level of off-road capability. Silly as it sounds, the fact that most don’t spend any time on the Rubicon is irrelevant. The brand is expected to deliver the ability, and the cute ute Jeeps that were incapable of being trail rated failed in part because the hardware underneath didn’t deliver what the name promises. Yes other factors hurt them as well, notably the Daimler interiors and the fact that anybody cross shopping a Compass with a CR-V was not going to buy a Compass. Other Jeep products that might have some shortcomings (perceived or otherwise) still sold because they could deliver what the name promised.

        • 0 avatar

          Considering the crappy press they get Jeep did sell more than 100k patriot and compass last year in the USA (close to 200k worldwide). And since the compass got it’s JGC facelift it’s sales numbers have been rapidly climbing.

        • 0 avatar
          ect

          Dead wrong, azmtbkr81. Apart from the Wrangler, 98%+ of Jeep buyers like the brand’s association with rugged, off-road travel, but don’t want to do any of it. They want a boulevardier.

          Jeep has a unique advantage, as every war movie that takes palce from WWII to Vietnam reminds the audience of Jeep’s rugged origins. The Wrangler’s existence, by itself, tells the market that this heritage is still current. Which sells a lot of Patriots, Compasses and Grand Cherokees. And will sell a lot of Cherokees.

          During the time we lived on gravel roads in rural Ontario, I owned 2 Jeeps – ’87 Cherokee and 94 Grand Cherokee. 4WD was not a luxury in those conditions. But I would never confuse my own preferences with those of the market generally.

          • 0 avatar
            azmtbkr81

            We’ll see. Jeep better have some amazing tricks up their sleeve because heritage alone isn’t going to be enough to attract CUV buyers away from Honda and Toyota especially given Jeep’s spotty quality and reliability. Buyers aren’t stupid and won’t be fooled into buying a vehicle that can’t deliver on the brand’s implied capability even if most buyers never put that capability to use.

            Why did you buy Jeeps instead of an all-wheel drive car like a Subaru? Certainly a Subaru would have been able to handle gravel roads and snow equally well all while been easier on you wallet. I have to imagine at least part of your decision was based on the reputation of the Cherokee and Grand Cherokee, not a Wrangler or WWII Jeep from 50 years past.

          • 0 avatar
            ect

            azmtbkr81, at the end of a Canadian winter, 2 things happen to gravel roads.

            First, the snow melts, but the ground is still frozen, so the melt has no place to go and turns the road into a quagmire.

            Then, the frost comes out of ground, and the resultant heaving turns the quagmire into something totally awful.

            This is the seaon that in southern Ontario we call mid-March to mid-May. 4WD or AWD is important, but so is ground clearance and a good skid plate.

            My decision was not based at all on the Wrangler or WWII Jeep, but on a comparison of what was available at each time. The second Jeep buy followed the experience of a ’91 Explorer, which is something I had in common with 2 work colleagues and was pretty bloody awful (to put it mildly).

            But that was me. Today, we live in downtown Toronto, so our vehicle priorities are very different. Nonetheless, we have neighbours who drive SUVs large and small, and who would never venture off a paved road.

            Similarly, when we moved from rural Ontario to suburban Atlanta, we saw SUVs (Jeeps and others)galore, being driven by people who clearly had no intention of using them for anything other than a daily drive. Which was confirmed by the leasing company my employer of the day worked with.

            When I was in the beer business, it was an accepted truth that most customers “buy the label, not the liquid”. Such is the power of branding, and such is the lack of discernment of the typical consumer.

        • 0 avatar
          ect

          When we lived in Atlanta, people in the business told me that 80%+ of SUV sales across the South (including Jeeps, when I was looking at the Grand Cherokee) are 2WD. People who buy 2WD SUVS are definitely not buying them for their off-road capability, but for their image.

  • avatar
    CelticPete

    Is it as good looking as the Mercedes GL – JCG. No. But its looks better then Rav4, CRV, Escape and as good looking as the new Santa Fe. Not sure what Chevy has in this segement..but this should be competitive.

    As for rock crossing and such – even independent suspension vehicles can sport special hardware to make them perform better in that regard. It’s not a deal breaker. Jeep can offer an off-road package with more ground clearance and skid plates and it will do well enough off-road for the ‘medium’ difficulty trails..

    It should do better then the Dart which came with crap engine options. 1.4 liters even with a turbo is not enough for a 3300lb car especially with a power sapping slush box..

  • avatar
    2012JKU

    I predict most Jeep buyers in North America dont want a rebadged Fiat. The ugly front mug makes this thing an even tougher sell than it already would have been. This thing probably will struggle in Europe where car sales are in the toilet. Fiat better hope they can make up for sales in the BRIC market but I find that very doubtful.

    • 0 avatar
      Onus

      Nah it wont sell in BRIC.

      Well at least the Russian part. Most regular people do not buy suv’s in Russia. They cost way too much and they are taxed by horsepower so it a lose lose. Now rich people. Maybe there are SUV’s in Russia but its a small market.

      On top of that this will have to deal with the insane imported vehicle recycling tax and 20% import tariff iirc.

  • avatar
    wmba

    The average twit who buys one of these things has no clue how to to drive offroad in the first place. Ninety percent of the Wrangler buyers don’t have a clue, either. Our bookkeeper is one such.

    I have a tip for the marketers and admen selling this thing: just say it will even if it won’t. There, a brand new approach unknown to hucksters the world over. Oh wait ..

    This accomplishes two things:

    1. The average buyer will be delighted.

    2. Wrangler owners who actually drive off road can fly into apoplectic rages about dilution of the brand, write “I am outraged” letters to the editor of publications explaining in boring minutiae why this isn’t a real Jeep. And nobody will care.

  • avatar
    Skink

    To put a Jeep grille on a car that’s otherwise interchangeable with an Escape, RAV-4, or CX-5 is akin to putting the front end of the 20th Century Limited locomotive on such a car. It’s anachronistic and out of place for this new era of automotive design.

    On the other hand, the design as it is – is growing on me. It’s a trippy, totally goofy insect tiki god thing that could have been produced by Gene Winfield or George Barris or Hunter Thompson. Fiat will sell dozens of them. I’d be tempted to buy one merely for its transgressiveness. It’s the Matador of our time.

  • avatar
    chicagoland

    This new Jeep will sell to people who live in today’s world, not constantly going on about how great cars were in their teen years.

    I couldn’t care less that it’s not a copy of old Cherokee or even the 1960′s Wagoneer. It’s the darn 2010′s and car makers have to appeal to actual paying customers, and not nostolgic ‘dream cars’.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    I would think if Chrysler had input it would have been a different vehicle and costs would have eaten into profits.

    Also, don’t forget Sergio wants to utilise his European resources more as well.

    I do think Fiat is doing wonders for Chrysler and this is further proof.

    The US “centric” people complaining about the US market and what they construde what vehicles should reprsent, should stop and think about building them for export. You sure do need extra cash at the moment.

    There will be enough demand for this vehicle in the US.

    To the Jeep people, remember Jeep is like Harley Davidson or Coca Cola, its just a brand name to market.

    If you determine what vehicle to buy for off roading by brand name, then don’t off road. I bet you wear designer label jocks as well?

    • 0 avatar
      Skink

      I’m guessing you’re from Australia, but since you mentioned Coca Cola, let’s remember what messing with the product can do to a brand. I’m talking about New Coke. Coca Cola corp decided to reformulate Coke, and customers rejected it. They brought back the previous Coke recipe, and New Coke disappeared. Coca Cola got a black eye over that debacle, but they’ve since recovered, and haven’t messed with Coke since.

      Then again, they’ve expanded the Coke lineup with Diet Coke, Diet Coke without caffeine, Cherry Diet Coke, Cherry Coke, etc.

      • 0 avatar

        You can hardly compare cars with food. You go to that restaurant because you want to eat the same food as before. You may even try the new food but eventually you end up with 3 or 4 plates that you repeat. The Coke thing was a mess, the mistake was eliminating old Coke. If they had introduced the new Coke alongside the old one, I bet they would still be on offer.

        Cars,as much as it pains me to say is more in line with white goods. You hardly want to buy that same refrigerator from the 80s, if nothing else, even though it may have been more durable, it used a lot of energy and cost more than the new. Enthusiasts repeat sometimes, and some of us like a car enough to have 2 of the same in the garage at the same time. I have had 2 Fiat Unos in the garage at the smae time as well as a Renault Logan and Sandero, which are basically the same except one’s a sedan the other a hatch. I think the number of people who do that is very small. It must drive car execs and marketers crazy, but the number of households with (to use a US example) a Ford and a Chevy is surely greater then the number of mono brand households.

        • 0 avatar
          Skink

          Big Al and I just did, to the extent that a soft drink is a food. It’s about branding, an how Coke messed up its brand by screwing with the product. Didn’t mention restaurants, which play more to fickle fashion than soft drinks. Coke vs. Pepsi loyalty.

          As far as white goods, people aren’t in their refrigerators and driving them around in public. People identify with their cars. They use their cars to describe themselves. That’s the reason for the outcry over what the new Cherokee looks like.

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        @Skink and Marcelo de Vasconcellos
        I’m sorry, I wasn’t trying to relate a specific product. I was talking about the power of brand names.

        How many Porche purist like the Cayene? But the Porche name has done wonders for this product.

        Jeep is quite a strong name for Fiat. I represents affordable, tough and reliable (sometimes, I owned a CJ 4.0 Cherokee Sports, what a piece of junk) transportation.

        Its about image and Fiat wants this vehicle to convey the Jeep image to sell its product. It also fits into the outdoorsy type of person, which is what Jeep also trys to promote itself as.

    • 0 avatar
      JD23

      I keep reading about how this is the vehicle Jeep needs to appeal to the European market. Europe is a rapidly contracting market in which Jeep sold a massive 1,800 vehicles during February. With worldwide sales of over 700,000, Jeep relies on Europe for 3% of its total volume. On the other hand, if this bug-eyed freak becomes a hit in China, I will change my opinion.

      • 0 avatar

        Europe would be a prime target but its hardly the only one. Read ROW of the world (including Europe) where you read Europe and you’ll understand what they want to do with Jeep

      • 0 avatar
        cargogh

        I think Nissan has done surprisingly well with the Qashqai in Europe. Cherokee has the potential for being a viable competitor. The existing Fiat dealerships are a plus. Since Qashqai has been on the market there for 5 years, the timing could be right for replacement shoppers.

        • 0 avatar
          Onus

          I’m a huge fan of the Qashqai. Russian’s love those things. You can’t turn your head without seeing one.

          Much better looking too than its platform mate the rogue. I’m wondering when Nissan will give the rogue an update.

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        @JD23
        In Australia we sell 1.2 million vehicles a year and SUV/CUVs and pickups are bigger here than in the US.

        You also have more affluent developing economies, where the Jeep name would benefit.

        I think 78 million vehicles are to be sold globally this year and the US/Eurozone will represent well under half of the market.

        There is much potential for manufacturers in the future if the can get their product lineup correct.

        The ones that do, will be the manufacturers for the next 50 years plus. The automotive manufacturing industry is at a crucial pivotal point.

    • 0 avatar
      iNeon

      “I do think Fiat is doing wonders for Chrysler and this is further proof.”

      What FIAT are doing with Chrysler are discontinuing Chrysler brands, one new FIAT-derived product introduction at a time.

      Think about the press for each passing ‘Chrysler’ introduction for a moment– The ‘Dodge’ Dart’s press advertises Alfa (Guiletta) and FIAT (1.4l engine) just as much as it advertises ‘Dodge’s’ new car, and this one is no different. Future 200 being handled completely by Lancia is further proof FIAT are only interested in Chrysler brands/products for self-serving reasons.

      LUDDITE WILL NOT BE FOOLED :P

      • 0 avatar
        Athos Nobile

        “What FIAT are doing with Chrysler are discontinuing Chrysler brands, one new FIAT-derived product introduction at a time.”

        I said this was going to happen when they were handed the keys. Time will not prove me wrong.

        They always do that.

  • avatar
    Bootheeljeff

    with a $50k sticker for a Summit model it is far from either the Liberty it is suppose to replace or the old Cherokees.

    • 0 avatar
      CelticPete

      I think your thinking of the Jeep Grand Cherokee..thats an entirely different beast built on a different platform and it competes very well with the X5s and the like now with the 8 speed tranny and diesel engines and such.

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        @CelticPete
        I don’t what country you are in, but the Grand Cherokee doesn’t compete with the BMW or any other prestige 4×4 wagon.

        It might compete against a Toyota Prado, Mitsubishi Pajero etc.

        The Grand Cherokee has lots of bells and whistles, but it doesn’t make it a prestige vehicle.

        Our Kia Sorento has a far better fit and finish than the Grand Cherokee.

        In Australia it’s a cheap way into a 4×4 wagon.

        But, when is all said and done, it does represent relatively good value. If they are reliable, here Jeeps have had a checkered past.

        • 0 avatar

          Here in the US they do, the owner of my company a man with a car collection of well over 20 exotic and rare cars (mostly antiques and race cars from the 20- 40s) daily driver is a new Grand Cherokee.Another coworker with a higher income than mine also bought one after cross shopping the LR3 Range rover and Lincoln MKX. If you take a drive thru the wealthy suburbs of Connecticut you will find that the Typical BMW houses still have the beamer (or audi) out front but also a Jeep Grand cherokee, much in the way the same houses had suburbans out front, back in the late 90s

  • avatar
    Lampredi

    What the Wall Street Journal is alluding to is probably just the fact that the Cherokee is based on a revised version of the Alfa Romeo Giulietta’s *underpinnings*. But some reporter probably misinterpreted this to mean that the Cherokee at some point in its design phase was supposed to wear the Alfa scudetto, which I highly doubt has ever been the case, as the Cherokee obviously looks nothing like an Alfa Romeo.

  • avatar
    Flybrian

    I’m glad its a Jeep. It’ll have at least a chance at succeeding.

    As an aside, I don’t get the whole “OMGZ ALFA!” thing. What’s with this obsessive and brainless lust for anything from this half-dead vestige of a nameplate known as Alfa? Maybe I’m the only one, but I could care less if Fiat sold one, one million, or ZERO Alfa-Romeos stateside.

    Maybe its because my last experience’s with Alfa have been the (dis)pleasure of driving two woeful ones – a GTV-6 and a Spyder Veloce. I get the deal about a driver’s car, but I’ve driven plenty of driver’s cars that don’t require critical-care levels of supervision by the owner.

    The fanaticism almost reaches SAAB levels, which is evolving into some sort of sick pseudo-deification of a car brand.

  • avatar
    Junebug

    The Wrangler Forum is all up in arms over this, 99% hate it, but if you poke them with a sharp enough stick they admit:
    Most never go off raod
    They (wranglers) are Not good on gas, handle well, and God help you if you ever have the death wobble
    But – they have the highest resale of anything on 4 wheels – go figure!
    And if I had more money, i’d buy a 4 door Wrangler in a second.

  • avatar

    Any rant I’d like to apply to this has already been applied to the Compass.

    My hope is just that it’s actually good and sells well so as to keep Jeep well funded and semi-relevant.

    BTW, for everyone who wants an old Cherokee, it’s called the Wrangler unlimited now. Spec-for-spec they’re pretty much equivalent. Also, they made like 500 million XJs, you can find them anywhere for $2500.


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