Chrysler Gives Badge Engineering a Bad Name

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago
chrysler gives badge engineering a bad name

Literally. Speaking at the unveiling of the new Jeep Renegade, Chrysler design chief Trevor Creed looked straight into the assembled journalists' thousand yard stare-filled eyes (the North American International Auto Show has taken its toll) and told them that you (i.e. him) can create unique exterior style with a "shared technology pool." Creed was setting the stage (literally) for Chrysler's ENVI hybrids. (Yes, ENVI.) So, three concept cars: one platform. The Jeep Renegade (complete with a brand incorrect Porsche speedster windscreen), the Dodge ZEO (muscle sedan with suicide Lambo doors) and the Chrysler EcoVoyager (the Escalade called; it wants its front end back). More interestingly, Chrysler's hot for high-speed WiMax for streaming videos and instant music downloads straight into (one presumes) their satellite TV-enabled minivans and suchlike. We'd like to see them build a competitive small car that didn't look like it was born in the shallow end of the technology pool.

Click here for more TTAC pictures of the Jeep Renegade

[Reported by Sajeev Mehta]

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4 of 6 comments
  • Jconli1 Jconli1 on Jan 14, 2008

    I brought this up on Jalop... but it amazes me how similar that "new Jeep concept" is to the 20 year old Pontiac Stinger concept. (pic)

  • Redbarchetta Redbarchetta on Jan 14, 2008

    That looks like a modernized Bug eyed Sprite with a little Jeep DNA added in. A little to weird and impractical for my taste. Is it a 2 seater or a 2+2. I could definitely see something pretty unique coming out of this in production trim if they push the seats forward a little to add some more storage in the back and take away some of the wacky looks. I like the proportions and stance, and with a great Jeep 4WD could be a new market of Urban Roadster/Buggy. Just don't super cheapen the look and put in a Solstice rag top.

  • Nick Nick on Jan 15, 2008

    An unfortunate union of a Geo Tracker with a Bugeye Sprite. I know concepts are frequently out there, but for God's sake Chrysler, what the hell does this have to do with anything?

  • Akitadog Akitadog on Jan 15, 2008

    Just curious, why is that Vette ZR-1 (production prototype) parked next to the Jeep (a concept) in the midst of the Chrysler display area?