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The future of Wrangler

Discussion in 'Rumors and Speculation' started by CherokeeVision, Sep 21, 2017.

  1. CudaPete

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    Actually, no. The NYC metro area is among the largest markets for Wranglers. Although the Cross Bronx is very similar to the Rubicon trail, these Wranglers are not being purchased to go off road. Leave the Wrangler as is but develop a Chrysler derivative that would be an extremley capable cross-over. The Jeep Wrangler DNA is a strong selling point and the AWD would be an attractive option for this market.
     
  2. DarkSky

    DarkSky Moderator
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    Why is this even necessary though?

    People are buying the Wrangler because it’s a real Jeep - a status symbol. A Chrysler would have much less appeal. Plus it indirectly weakens the Wrangler name.
     
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  3. CudaPete

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    Yes, there are those people who would continue to buy the Wrangler but I think there is an untapped market of those who do not buy a Wrangler now because they realize it is designed as an off-road vehicle but would buy a very capable CUV. Rather than "urbanize" the Wrangler, have a variant under the Chrysler name to address this market. Maybe a new Town & Country with the power convertible roof that Norm hated the idea of on a Wrangler.
     
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  4. DarkSky

    DarkSky Moderator
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    That’s what the rest of the Jeep lineup is for. Specifically the Renegade with the MySky option or the panoramic roof on the Compass, Cherokee, and Grand Cherokee. Those are CUVs that have Jeep capability.

    The vehicle you’re describing already exists - it’s every vehicle in the Jeep lineup aside from the Wrangler.
     
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  5. Erik Latranyi

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    Exactly.

    We cannot have two minivans covering the low to high end of the market, but somehow we can have three CUVs all sharing the same showroom floor at similar price points.
     
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  6. CudaPete

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    Ahhh.....but the top only goes down on the Wrangler. Gives Chrysler the opportunity to offer the only true phaeton on the market. Keep in mind, the sheet metal....I mean plastic wood....would be distinctly different from the Wrangler.
     
    #66 CudaPete, Sep 23, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2017
  7. MSwenning

    MSwenning Active Member

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    The major problem I see with this is the chrysler version would eat into the wrangler and it's variants production, also the chrysler version would very likely be cheaper either by lower MSRP or incentives or a combination of both, and don't forget the cost to actually build this model that has unique sheetmetal, New AND system ect. They won't take away production from the wrangler to sell a similar vehicle with less margins. Even if there is a small market for it, it just doesn't make sense for the company right now.
     
  8. GasAxe

    GasAxe Well-Known Member

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    Gonna stir the pot some. Was or wasn't it a bad thing when the Chrysler brands started demanding their own versions of muscle cars?
     
  9. dmcdonald

    dmcdonald Active Member

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    Well said!

    Some small corrections though: It is only an AWD if it has no MECHANICAL 50/50 lock. What some are forgetting is that an AWD still can have the ability to be locked 50/50. Take the earlier video of the Commander and imagine that with the suspension articulation and clearances of the current Wrangler. Just because AWD has become synonymous with CUVs that are less than capable that doesn't mean AWD cannot be engineered to be highly capable.

    Also, Jeep's full-time 4WD systems go back to the original Quadra Trac which debuted in 1973 in the SJ Wagoneer and SJ Cherokee and was also used in the CJ7 for a few years starting in 1976.

    Reference have also been made in this thread about AWD's use of braking technology to control wheel spin. This is a tech already in use in the JK...even with its part-time 4WD system. Directly from the owners manual..."A feature of the TCS system, Brake Limited Differential (BLD), functions similar to a limited slip differential and controls the wheel spin across a driven axle."
    That said, Mike's hints at the new full-time 4WD system for the JL might just keep the traditionalist happy while expanding the reach of the JL! :)
     
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  10. CudaPete

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    I'm thinking that the Chrysler version of the Wrangler, with its emphasis on luxury, would start at a higher price point than the Jeep version. Exclusivity will help with the demographic it is targeted for. BOF construction makes this very doable. They would be two very different purpose built vehicles.
     
  11. Zagnut27

    Zagnut27 Jeepaholic
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    A Chrysler version of Wrangler...I feel like this has been discussed before. With the plant shuffle, there should be more capacity for more Wranglers to be produced, but I'm not sure that it could accommodate a Chrysler version of Wrangler. Is there a business case for this type of vehicle? Wrangler is a purpose-built machine that is very off-road oriented. Changing that to be a more on-road oriented vehicle could be cost-prohibitive because of the changes necessary. And since Jeep already has soft-road oriented vehicles...basically all the other Jeep models...would this even make sense? FCA seems very averse to having multiple versions of the same vehicle spread between the separate brands. For example, Dodge has Charger and Chrysler may be killing off 300. Chrysler has Pacifica, and Dodge will be discontinuing Caravan (granted not the same platform).

    I guess it never hurts to throw things out there and discuss, after all you'd never have new vehicles if you didn't at least think of the possibilities. I just don't see much of a possibility for a Chrysler Wrangler variant. Just my 2 cents though.
     
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  12. Mike V.

    Mike V. Mopar-nac The Moderator
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    There is zero possibility of Chrysler variant of the JL Wrangler

    Mike
     
  13. Zagnut27

    Zagnut27 Jeepaholic
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    Yes, I know. I was just trying to gently say so without crushing the thought. I'm practicing for when my kids get older. :)

    Edit: this comment does not mean that I'm referring to the poster comments above about a Chrysler Wrangler variant as being childish. Just want to be clear on that....
     
    #73 Zagnut27, Sep 24, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2017
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  14. DarkSky

    DarkSky Moderator
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    Good. That would be like having a Jeep Challenger.
     
  15. valiant67

    valiant67 Rich Corinthian Leather
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    The people who think that other Jeeps are a substitute for a Wrangler in an urban environment are forgetting that the same tight turning radius, relatively narrow width, high visibility, etc. that make it great on trails also give it a big advantage in an urban setting too.

    I'd love it if there was a true AWD option on the Wrangler - but only as an option. The 4WD should be the standard system with AWD optional.
     
  16. aldo90731

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    When people disagree, we (yes, I do it too) tend to focus on the othe person instead of on the issues at hand. Unfortunately, psychoanalizing each other instead of focusing on the issues only contributes to the levels of toxicity on online forums.

    Years ago I was told the same: that I had no basis for stating that American consumers would deny Fiat re-entry to the US market unless it addressed its sordid past; that I was letting my personal biases color my statements. Fast-forward to today.

    Getting back to Wrangler, based on what we know right now, I don't see JL pushing the envelope sufficiently to accomplish the three big tasks FCA needs Wrangler to achieve:
    1. Grow JL sales volume and sustain those levels for the NEXT TEN YEARS
    2. Protect Wrangler's unique position in the market, and the enviable profits that come from it
    3. Support the brand-defining role Wrangler has to play, so that Jeep can continue its global expansion
    In its simplest terms, automakers have two basic tasks they need to manage:
    1. Volume - volume is king in automotive manufacturing given how capital intensive it is. But in marketing volume also serves a key purpose: helps consumers become familiar with a brand or nameplate, further giving them them room to establish a favorable opinion and build demand. The levers that help automakers drive volume are those that primarily address elements of cost and convenience. Examples are familiar/inoffensive styling, reliability, fuel efficiency, safety, low cost of operation, interior room and comfort (i.e., 4-doors vs 2 doors), and convenience features like remote start, heated seats, etc.
    2. Profits - we hear a lot about profits and margins from FCA these days. Profits are driven primarily by those elements that drive gratification. Examples are iconic and/or market leading styling (as opposed to odd or quirky), superior levels of refinement and luxury, innovative features and technologies, high-performance (i.e., highly capable) powertrains and suspensions, brand heritage, superior materials, fit and finish, etc.
    JK sustained profits and grew sales tremendously despite Wrangler's notorious shortcomings, which is no easy task. It achieved this by moving both levers: adding elements of convenience - 4 doors and longer wheelbase directly improved comfort and practicality; navigation, etc.; and by adding elements of gratification - standard lockers front and rear, Dana 44 axles, swaybar disconnect cemented Rubicon at the top of the ladder, helping Wrangler EXPAND its offroad cred, despite the majority of them going to the local mall.

    Whether we like it or not, Jeep's identity is closely tied to America's. But there were signs that JK sales in US plateaued around 2015. JL may --or may not-- address some of the issues like leaky roofs, smoothen the harsh ride, hush the wind noise and improve fuel economy. But relative to everything else out there, JL will likely remain a hard-riding truck, with high levels of wind noise, a steep step-in, a relatively cramped interior, and relatively poor fuel economy. The fact that people were willing to put up with all of this to get the image of owning a Jeep to drive to the mall speaks of the gratification they sought from owning a Jeep. Adding a diesel option and 8-speed automatic will no doubt make Wrangler easier to export to other markets. But again, based on what we know so far, I don't see indications of the real, unique market innovations that says JL will push the envelope sufficiently to deliver the elements of gratification it needs to sustain future profits --and overall Jeep brand sales-- in its home market --and beyond. And to plan on Wrangler to maintain its unique market position by expecting the competition to sit still is the worse kind of hubris.

    Adding 4 doors already gave Wrangler the biggest boost in volume it could hope to get; the next will need come from exports. Adding a truck bed doesn't offer near the same degree of market opportunity as adding 4 doors. Yes, adding AWD will likely expand appeal among the non-4x4 crowd; AWD is mostly an element of safety and of convenience. Also, impacting the elements of cost and convenience is much quicker than impacting the elements of gratification.

    Wrangler is on a 10-year cycle. Unless there's a last minute surprise revelation in the specs, I see Wrangler sales growing for the first 3-5 years after JL launches, thanks mostly to JT, the diesel options and 8-speed auto, motivating existing owners to replace their JKs and attracting new owners thanks to the added convenience those elements are likely to bring.

    But as volume grows, the need to protect those profits --and that volume-- also grows. Based on the incremental, evolutionary path FCA appears to have chosen, Wrangler sales in the US may start to decline halfway through JL's 10-year life cycle; exports will likely continue to hold sales for 2-3 years after that. We can argue that this is a case of the glass being half empty or half full. But Wrangler's other tasks, those of protecting profits and its ability to sustain sales of other Jeep models, will come under pressure much sooner than that.
     
    #76 aldo90731, Sep 24, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2017
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  17. CudaPete

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    You stole my idea for the Dodge version....:D
     
  18. CudaPete

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    No problem, I haven't decided what I want to be when I grow up yet:p
     
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  19. Mike V.

    Mike V. Mopar-nac The Moderator
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    Sounds like the optional full time four wheel drive will be right up your alley.

    Mike
     
  20. valiant67

    valiant67 Rich Corinthian Leather
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    Other than if it requires me to buy a Sahara. That's the only downside. I don't like the painted fenders on the Sahara - and the jump in price.
     

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