More and more automakers are looking at exotic locales to produce their wares (us Canadians can consider Mexico exotic thanks to its ice-free beaches) as they expand their brands and explore in-roads to untapped markets.
For Jeep, that means investing in a shared money-printing press with an unlikely partner: Tata, the parent company of Land Rover. FCA will put $280 million USD into joint venture Fiat India Automobiles Private Limited which, since 2007, has solely produced Fiat models.
Jeep is looking at global growth upwards of 20 percent this year to 1.2 million units and that’s before the brand truly ramps up in China.
Could it be possible Jeep’s success is hiding what ails other brands at the newly-formed Fiat Chrysler Automobiles?
The next iteration of the Jeep Grand Cherokee has been delayed to 2018 or 2019 and, according to reports from The Detroit Bureau, it’s all Giulia’s fault.
Under the leadership of stellar executives Clyde Campbell and Veronica Johns, FCA Australia loaned out “hundreds” of vehicles, all of which the company would like returned.
That’s too bad as FCA doesn’t know exactly where they all are.
Changes are coming to FCA’s HEMI engine family, ranging from increased fuel economy, to higher horsepower.
FCA, looking a 4.1 million unit recall in the face thanks to defective Takata airbag inflators, will source replacements from a rival, ZF-owned TRW Automotive.
The Chrysler/Dodge/Jeep/Ram parent will be the first company to refuse to toe the line.
Per inside sources, the green flag has been given for the 2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk, with testing already underway.
Ladies and gentlemen, it is time to mourn the loss of the four-seat convertible. We have known for a while that its time was coming. First, they came for the Pontiac G6. Then, they came for the Toyota Solara. Then, they came for the Mitsubishi Eclipse. And when it was time to come for the Chrysler 200, nobody cared, because nobody buys these cars anymore.
But surely some people still buy them. I mean, there are still millions of people out there having midlife crises, looking for the last modicum of driving excitement before they start ranting about how mobile apps are tearing at the fabric of our society. But sadly, the fun is over: there are no reasonably priced four-seat convertibles left.
The 2015 Easter Jeep Safari “Chief” is an homage to the full-size Cherokees of the 1970s.
Jeep has this whole concept car thing figured out.
Whereas most manufacturers use concept cars as a glimpse into the near future (or not, See “NSX, Acura”), Jeep makes weird-ass, proof of bad-ass concepts like this Chief, a 2012 “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3” Wrangler turned surf-weirdo-baby blue-SUV that goes to show how much lead Jeep designer Mark Allen has nothing to do all day.
(Allen once told me his job with the Wrangler is done every year when nothing changes and that’s how it should be.)
Jeeping in Moab isn’t only a neologism — it’s also a tradition. Like most traditions (anniversaries, birthdays, etc.) it’s hard to pin when the rites began, why they started, or – most importantly – why they continue. For people who live in and around Moab, Jeeping is a mostly tolerable exercise that pours money into the small, southern Utah town that welcomes more its hikers, bikers and frequent hitchhikers to its two spectacular national parks than any rolling convoy of rock-crawling muscle.
I’m guessing very few people in the town can remember why the first person took a motorized vehicle up a beautiful geological formation and into the sand behind it.
Jeeping is also mildly entertaining for locals, up until the moment someone rolls up the hill in a car that looks like it has very little business being there. Then it becomes wonderfully fascinating for everyone.