• Mar 10, 2008
The Jeep Grand Cherokee is already past due for a full redesign and if Chrysler can hang in their long enough, a new one should debut in time for the 2011 model year. The privately-owned automaker has announced its intention to put $281 million in new tooling into the Jefferson North assembly plant in Detroit that produces the Grand Cherokee and Commander. The perenially slow-selling Commander is expected to get the chop as the latest new Chrysler pares down its redundant model lineup. However, that doesn't mean that the Grand Cherokee, the sales of which once supported three production shifts at Jefferson, will be alone. One of the plants that Chrysler previously announced would be shuttered is the Newark Delaware facility that builds the Durango and Aspen. One or both (more likely one) of those models will likely end up using the same platform as the Grand Cherokee and be coming off the Detroit line. When production does start up, a Mercedes Benz diesel (as used today in the Jeep) and a two-mode hybrid (coming to the Durango/Aspen this fall) will likely both be available. The Jeep at least will probably be developed from the start in both right and left hand drive versions for export to other markets, as well.

[Source: The Car Connection]


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  • 24 Comments
      • 6 Years Ago
      "already past due for a full redesign"

      Excuse me?

      It is only 3 years old!!!

      Show me ANY mid-size SUV on the market with a life cycle that short...
      • 6 Years Ago
      Maybe they'll right a wrong and get rid of those damn smartbeam headlights. Nothing like catering to the laziness of drivers who can't be bothered to use their highbeams correctly ... and instead run them in auto all day (they are way brighter than normal daytime running lights).
      • 6 Years Ago
      This is basically Chrysler's whole problem. The Durango/Aspen and Grand Cherokee, while decent (at least the Grand Cherokee), kind of do not fall into a set market segment. The Durango/Aspen are too big to be considered mid-sizers and offer abysmal gas mileage, so they don't sell well. The current models should get a ground up redesign, they should be large crossovers, and compete with the Lambdas (Acadia and Co.) They should match the GMs for fit & finish (excellent btw), have the new Chrysler Phoenix V6 (if it is even still coming), and be able to haul a good amount of gear.

      If anyone has noticed, the Lambdas are really in a class of their own...and are selling very well sans incentives....

      The Grand should remain off-road capable, just with better fits/finishes (as need by many Chrysler products), and more interior room. A bit bigger would be fine, as the Commander will likely go away and the Liberty is relatively close in size to the Grand. The GC can afford to go bigger, it would help sales.
      • 6 Years Ago
      >>> I read somewhere recently, and I apologize for not remembering the source, whereby the new Jeep Grand Cherokee design will be more squared-off (or "boxy" if you prefer), like the current Commander and Liberty models.

      Apparently Chrysler wants to return the brand back to its military-like heritage, or to mirror designs similar to Land Rover.

      Things could get interesting in Jeep land.
      • 6 Years Ago
      The onus lies with the SENDER in communications to ensure their message is correct. Not with the receiver. Although, that is why interrogatories exist. So the sender can assess if the receiver correctly understood the message.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Ok, so we plan to cancel the PT (which sells well and helps Chrysler make CAFE for it's truck fleet) and can the Magnum (which is still the coolest looking LX/LY car by a longshot) but we're planning to keep the _Aspen_?

      Sorry. The Aspen was a dealer-driven "Me-too!" attempting (and failing miserably, I might add) to grab Escalade sales. I don't think I've seen one driven by anyone who isn't a Chrysler or dealer employee.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Sure hope they announce that the cummins 4.2L V-6 will be made available to the Durango / Aspen. Then maybe even the charger & challenger. But most likely they will start with the ram 1500.
      I also hope the MB3.0Lcrd is available soon in more than the Grand Cherokee. Like maybe the dakota, wrangler rubicon, charger, challenger, 300C (or N)
      As for diesel electric, we the public would like to see them for sale, but would we buy a vehicle with a $8,000 to $15,000 mark up. If the diesel electric was only on the base model platform and a 4cyl. I can see it happening. Like a base model dodge caravan with a VW2.0Lcrd + 2 mode hybrid. But for some stupid reason the company always wants the hybrid to be placed on the top of the line models which are already $10,000+ above base model making the vehicle $20,000 over base model. So who is going to buy that?
      What makes a diesel motor expensive is exhaust system to meet regulations. Adding a 2 mode hybrid they think is just too spendy. But there is hope with the new V-6 phoenix gas motors. With cylinder deactivation tied with 2 mode hybrid trans, they should provide good fuel mileage. Allowing the V-6 to be in 3cyl mode longer or in some cases not running at all.
      It's too bad they didn't come out with a V-6 (for FWD & RWD) 4.0L MDS right after the Hemi 5.7L MDS was proven reliable. Then all the vehicles that use the 3.7L & 3.8L & 3.5L would now have been saving fuel with a 4.0L MDS and sales wouldn't be as they are now.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Not that I wouldn't want to see a unit-body Durango/Aspen, I'm just curious as to how it will size upwards from the size of the Grand... or would it downsize? And if it did come down, would it not just be more redundant products?
      • 6 Years Ago
      good but it's really due...i wanna get a grand cherokee but there's just better and safer models out there that will serve my purpose
      • 6 Years Ago
      Don't believe everything you read.

      Chryslerbus is definitely paring down and combining its dealership network in an effort to reduce operational redundancies. They are looking to produce only 15 models altogether in the entire Chrysler-Jeep-Dodge lineup. That equates to something along the line of:

      1. Microcar like "smart" car
      2. Subcompact car like "Toyota Yaris"
      3. Compact car, DODGE NEON returns?? Yes!!!
      4. Midsize car, DODGE AVENGER (major makeover and possible nameplate change required here to compete with "Toyota Camry")
      5. Full size car, DODGE CHARGER. I do wish Cerberus would hang onto the Dodge Magnum. It's an eye-popper and that's what attracts customers to the showroom.

      6. Small CUV, DODGE CALIBER
      7. Midsize CUV, DODGE JOURNEY (may be renamed Dodge Durango)

      8. Small SUV, JEEP LIBERTY
      9. Midsize SUV, JEEP GRAND CHEROKEE

      10. Minivan, DODGE CARAVAN
      11. Full size van, DODGE SPRINTER

      12. Small pickup, DODGE DAKOTA
      13. Full size pickup, DODGE RAM

      14. Sportscar like DODGE CHALLENGER. Dodge Viper may be scratched (boo-hoo! I hope not!)

      15. Hybrid car like "Toyota Prius"

      16. Luxury car, CHRYSLER 300. I would also like to see a slightly stretched version called the Chrysler Imperial, but that will probably never happen.

      So as you can see, the field has been completely narrowed down and there is little room to maneuver.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Reuben

        Yeah, you're absolutely right about that. I thought about that after the fact. Wrangler is a definite keeper, no doubt about it!
        • 6 Years Ago
        Oh, and if Chryslerbus decides to sell JEEP, Dodge would fill the SUV slots vacated by the Liberty and Grand Cherokee. One less brand to handle makes a lot of business sense, BUT not in the automotive business! That's what draws customers to the showroom in the first place. And JEEP is the iconic SUV brand recognized around the world. If they dump JEEP for a billion dollars or so, they would lose billions more in brand equity.
      • 6 Years Ago

      Just a few weeks back there was a story that Jeep might be sold to Indian company Mahindra. Now we hear that Chrysler's owners will invest $281 million in new tooling into the Jefferson North assembly plant in Detroit that produces the Grand Cherokee and Commander. So does this mean that they will not be selling off the Jeep brand after all?
        • 6 Years Ago
        Not really. Ford had invested into new models and green lighted a 12 year business plan just before they sold Jaguar and Land Rover to TATA. They can always work that investment into any deal to recoup the cash.

        So Jeep is still not safe and it depends what they're investing the money in at Jefferson. If they are making the factory more flexible then Jeep really isn't safe.
      • 6 Years Ago
      "I would like to see a two-mode Hybrid with the 3.0 diesel."

      Amen to that! The 3.0 L diesel is pretty disappointing if fuel economy is your reason for buying. Perhaps if they married the diesel with the 2-mode hybrid system, they would have something. But then they would shoot themselves in the foot again and only offer it as a 50 grand Overland package that only a few doctors could afford.
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