According to normally reliable source oh2o, Jeep has produced a fairly wide mix of 2014 Cherokees so far at their Toledo plant. oh2o wrote that the company has made mostly Latitudes (nearly 9,000 of them), with over two thousand Sports, four thousand Limiteds, and nearly two thousand of the off-road-specialized Trailhawks.
The FWD vs 4×4 mix is unknown, but given its friendly road manners, Cherokee is likely to have a higher proportion of 4×2 sales than the original XJ Cherokee.
Though not a single Cherokee has been cleared for resale yet, due to ongoing software development, the factory returned to two shifts today. Reportedly, 17,000 Cherokees have been built but cannot be sold yet. The issue is, according to an Autoblog report, related to the dog clutches used in the axles and limited-slip differential; dog clutches have been used in past commercial vehicles but not “civilian” cars.
As far as we can tell, the company is still trying to work around issues with the clutches, which could involve timing, noise, and smoothness of engagement. Work done to make the system smoother and quieter has to be balanced by longevity, a serious issue given 100,000 mile powertrain warranties and an expectation that cars will last 200,000 miles before major issues. Dog clutch engagement is mechanical and will vary in time depending on where each clutch’s parts are, relative to each other, when they engage; while the nine-speed automatic’s timing can come down to nanoseconds. The system presumably already has safeguards to prevent one clutch from engagement if the other cannot, which could also lead to problems.
Overall, given the issues involves, software delays are not entirely surprising; Chrysler officials are apparently optimistic, since the factory is pumping out Cherokees full time again. Many consider the delay in resale to be a good sign — indicating Chrysler’s unwillingness to sell a car they know has a problem.
The 2015 Dodge Charger squad has been tested in police trim for the first time, but since it kept the five-speed automatic, it has turned in numbers similar to past years. While the eight-speed V6 Charger does 0-60 in 6.6 seconds, the five-speed was timed at 8.05 seconds by the Michigan State Police. The civilian 2015 Charger gained acceleration from the eight-speed, [...]
Months after unconfirmed reports made it to Allpar’s pages, the power of Automotive News, in the person of reporter Larry Vellequette, pried a key fact from Chrysler executives — that they cast and build “Ferrari” engines for Maserati. As our sister site pentastars.com reported, the engines are actually cast in Kokomo, and machined in the Trenton Engine plant, using a mixture of [...]
David Friedman, deputy director of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, sent a two-page letter to Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne expressing concerns about the Chrysler Group’s current efforts to repair 2002-2007 Jeep Libertys and 1993-1998 Jeep Grand Cherokees covered under a voluntary fuel-tank recall. In its most recent report to the agency Chrysler said it has remedied approximately [...]