If there was any confusion about Chrysler’s plans to build a pickup variant of the Wrangler, something for which Jeep fans and car enthusiasts in general have clamored, Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne cleared it up at a press conference at the 2016 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
Marchionne unequivocally stated the automaker will be making a Jeep with a bed, probably by early 2018.
After 69 months in a row of sales growth in the United States and achieving the top position in market share in Canada, Marchionne was effusive in his praise of FCA’s North American employees.
“I’m proud what the kids have done. I think they have done a phenomenal job,” he said.
He was particularly complimentary about FCA’s Toledo UAW members.
“I haven’t even asked them, and they’ve offered,” using that as an example of the state of labor relations in the United States.
Toledo is home of the Wrangler. The Jeep assembly plant there is an important part of that region’s economy. Jerry Anderson of WTOL asked him about new vehicles to replace Cherokee production that is slated to moved out of Toledo, and specifically about a Wrangler pickup truck.
Marchionne made it clear that vehicle will indeed be made.
I’ll confirm it for you. We will build a Wrangler pickup, shortly after the launch of the Wrangler, of the new Wrangler which should be operational sometime by the end of next year. And just broadly, the car is done, the car is designed and it’s been engineered. So we just need to get off our butts and start producing it.
Ronnie Schreiber edits Cars In Depth, a realistic perspective on cars & car culture and the original 3D car site. If you found this post worthwhile, you can get a parallax view at Cars In Depth. If the 3D thing freaks you out, don’t worry, all the photo and video players in use at the site have mono options. Thanks for reading – RJS