First Cherokees to be FWD?

With work on the 2014 Jeep Cherokee’s innovative and complex 4×4 system still reportedly ongoing, one observer now expects the first Cherokees to be front wheel drive (FWD) models. While perhaps a dent to the car’s credibility in off-road circles, starting with the simpler FWD configuration would simplify production and provide more time to put the 4×4 through its paces.

Jeep has taken pride on the durability of its cars in off-road use, and problems which may not surface during normal “snow, ice, sand, and dirt” running, but could be a problem in more severe tests, are being taken seriously. There have been some reports that engineers are still squashing the last durability issues from pre-production cars — not issues that would be encountered by “ordinary” customers, but items that could affect serious Jeepers. Running FWD cars first would help fill the pipeline and get Cherokee out to customers, while working out bugs in the manufacturing process, in preparation for ramping up with the 4×4 models — just as Dart started out with the 1.4 engines and manual transmissions. The alternative could be pushing back the start of production, which might happen regardless if nine-speed production is slowed.

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Challenger GT (AWD) hits the EPA

We may not know much about the upcoming all-wheel-drive Dodge Challenger GT, but we do know this: it will get 18 mpg city, 27 highway. The car is now listed in the database.

Those economy figures indicate that the AWD Challenger GT will have the Pentastar V6, since they’re the same on the V6 Charger. All wheel drive cuts about 1 mpg off city mileage and,

Read the full story: Challenger GT (AWD) hits the EPA  »

Behind the rumors of “22 minute diesels”

German newspaper Bild am Sonntag claimed back in May that the German transport department, KBA, had discovered FCA was shutting off their diesel emissions controls after 22 minutes. That accusation was reportedly widely in worldwide media, but was never confirmed.

FCA’s chief technical officer, Harald Wester repeatedly denied the  “22 minute” charge in statements to the EU Committee of Inquiry into Emission Measurements in the Automotive Sector (EMIS):

Contrary to allegations,

Read the full story: Behind the rumors of “22 minute diesels”  »

Warren has been bronzed


The Warren truck plant has been awarded bronze status in World Class Manufacturing (WCM), the 20th North American facility to reach that milestone. Ironically, the plant is to be repurposed as mainstream Ram production moves to Sterling Heights, a short drive down the street.

The 78-year-old plant in the suburbs of Detroit, near the GM technical center, has long been devoted to making trucks. WCM was first used by Fiat in 2006,

Read the full story: Warren has been bronzed  »

How will Wrangler keep its tops “free”?

Jeep Wrangler roof slider system cloth

Even as the 2018 Jeep Wrangler grows ever-closer, sources are divided as to how the roof will be handled — though we are starting get some clarity.

The JT pickup, due in 2019, will almost certainly have a fixed roof with removable panels. As for the Wrangler, some believe it will have the setup shown in the  scale model below (whose front styling was rejected):

The model above has the same removable panels as the pickup,

Read the full story: How will Wrangler keep its tops “free”?  »

Here are the SEMA-car sneak peeks

With the 2016 Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show is drawing near, Mopar has started to show their usual teaser sketches of concepts to be displayed at the Las Vegas Convention Center on November 1-4.

Including Mopar-modified vehicles created especially for SEMA, fourteen FCA US vehicles will spread out over the 15,345-square-foot Mopar exhibit.

The annual Mopar press event will take place at its usual 4:26 p.m.

Read the full story: Here are the SEMA-car sneak peeks  »

Challenger GT (AWD) hits the EPA

Behind the rumors of “22 minute diesels”
Warren has been bronzed
Jeep Wrangler roof slider system cloth
How will Wrangler keep its tops “free”?

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