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Jeep Planning Major Overhaul For Entire Lineup

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2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee

2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee

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Jeep’s entire lineup is in for a major overhaul, with the brand being transformed into a global player and injected with fresh new models and technology borrowed from new parent company, Fiat. We’ve already seen the first of Jeep’s new lineup in the form of the 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee, which goes on sale later this year.

It will be joined by a restyled Wrangler off-roader later this year as well, while the Compass and Patriot crossovers are given a minor facelift to keep them fresh until they are replaced by a single model around 2013. This new model will be based on Fiat's Compact Wide platform, which is available in two different lengths and is capable of accommodating a four-wheel drive system.

Some of the changes planned for the Wrangler include the addition of Chrysler’s 280 horsepower Pentastar 3.6-liter V-6 as an option, as well as new body-matched color hard tops.

The big news, however, is the addition of a new compact crossover also in 2013. Though Jeep is yet to officially confirm this model, previous reports have suggested the car will be based on the compact Fiat Panda Cross. The move is designed to help Jeep meet tough CAFE regulations set to roll in this decade.

Another model being replaced by a new Fiat-based vehicle is the Liberty, which was just given a minor update this year and will likely bow out in late 2012.

[Automotive News, sub req’d]

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Comments (4)
  1. As you know the new Grand Cherokee is all new and based on a platform developed by Jeep for Mercedes, and by every measure, a grand slam home run.
    I've seen renditions of a small Jeep based on the Panda and it will be a great entry level/ urban commuter vehicle for Jeep with AWD capability. It happens to be a cute car with clear Jeep styling cues. This will do very well in developing world markets.
    Next up on the Jeep line will be the new Patriot/ Compass twins. I see the Patriot being the more "macho" of the two with soft off road capabilty, larger wheels, yet maintaining the "old" Cherokee look. The Compass would be more like the Dodge Caliber and be a hatchback cross over and more urban in appearance, yet still be seen as a Jeep. Another vehicle(s) that will do well in developing markets.
    The Liberty is here to stay and will be a smaller version of the outstanding Grand Cherokee, still "Trail Rated", but not as capable as the Grand Cherokee (but what other SUV is?)
    I predict Jeep sales will double, perhaps triple, with this line-up.Expect more spin-offs of Wrangler in Fiats world-wide dealer network with Jeeps' brand identity driving the foreign and domestic market. Lets face it, there is no better domestic or globally recognized brand than Jeep.
     
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  2. Good to hear that the Compass and Patriot will be replaced by a single model in 2013. Selling two under-engineered, cheaply designed, shoddily assembled cars in the exact same segment was madness at its worst. The Liberty has also failed to wrap itself in quality glory, so the Fiat takeover can only help salvage this brand, especially as tougher CAFE regulations finally start to kick in.
     
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  3. AdamK, What Jeeps are you talking about? The Patriot has undergone big improvements and I've never heard negative feedback on the very popular Liberty. Where did you get these opinions? I'm truly confused, certianly not from first-hand experience.
    Save the brand! Are you joking? The Jeep brand is the most recognized and respected SUV in the world last time I checked.
     
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  4. The Patriot improvements have merely brought the car up to where it should have been had it not been launched by cash-starved Chrysler back then. I had a low mileage, pre-upgrade one as a rental, whose interior disassembled itself in a matter of days. As for the Liberty, a coworker had one and when it wasn't in the shop, it almost ended up on its roof on Washington's Beltway due to otherwise routine evasive measures. I agree that the new Grand Cherokee looks much more promising and believe Fiat is Jeep's best hope.
     
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