• Nov 4, 2009
2011 Jeep Phoenix Concept – Click above for high-res image gallery

It comes as little surprise that Jeep is looking beyond its current Patriot and Compass models, which have, to put it mildly, underperformed in the burgeoning compact CUV market. While the two concepts had lots of potential, the actual production ComPatriot twins were deemed uncompetitive with class leaders right when they were launched.

As such, the two models are both destined to meet their makers after the 2012 model, to be replaced by a single model sourced from Fiat. Can you say Panda (the image above is just a possible rendering, not a production car)? It's also worth noting that the iconic Wranger will get mild makeovers for both the 2010 and 2011 model years along with what seems likely to be a special 70th Anniversary Wranger for 2011.

Across the line, all Jeeps will reportedly come with an optional Trail Rated package, which means no more on-road only models like the Compass are likely to dilute the Jeep brand. That edict includes the new Grand Cherokee, and Jeep says the Trail Rated Grand Cherokee has already successfully tackled the legendary Rubicon Trail and Moab.




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  • 52 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      Yay, I can be James May!!!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Am I the only one who noticed that an 'L' belongs in the word 'wranger' in the post??????
      • 5 Years Ago
      And how is this better?
        • 5 Years Ago
        I rented a Fiat Panda while overseas. It was a great little car.

        No idea if it is better than the patriot, since I have never driven one.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I agree that the Panda is a capable and well designed little car but I'm not sure it will make the best compass/patriot replacement. Personally I actually kinda like the patriot, it probably has more off-road ability than a rav4 or escape. The compass must die either way.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Fiat better not mess with the wrangler... I hope they know what their getting into with that.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Fiat Panda...makes me think of orange flavored chicken (aka Panda Express). :p
        • 5 Years Ago
        This certainly would explain how they are cutting the Patriot's weight by 600 lbs (according to autobloggreen)

        http://green.autoblog.com/2009/11/04/chrysler-to-cut-weight-of-next-gen-jeep-liberty-by-600-pounds/
        • 5 Years Ago
        The Fiat probably is better, but will Americans warm up to a Jeep made by Fiat? The Jeep is an iconic brand that gets people waving flags.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Geo Tracker 2.0?
      • 5 Years Ago
      Yeah being replaced, but it's as my german friend says a vawncast situation, which is really just a tide of the economic situation, I suppose we shall see what's in store in the next few years..should be interesting.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I'd be down for a Panda-based entry-level Jeep. The 4x4 versions of these things look more than capable off-road if all of the videos of such antics on YouTube are a valid indication of prowess...

      And anyways, the likelihood of the Patriass twins being replaced by something even more mediocre is honestly unlikely...
        • 5 Years Ago
        I agree.

        Plus, it's not as though every Jeep they sell has to be as rugged as a Rubicon Wrangler. Not to mention that anyone who wants a very capable vehicle can opt for the Wrangler. That said, I think the Compass went a little too far towards the car side and really diluted the brand. I actually like the Patriot, but it could use some fine-tuning.

        I think Jeep should attempt to go after the Outback/WRX crowd with some sort of a vehicle. That's about as car-like as I want to see them get. But, I'm not too sure what they'd build such a vehicle off of out of their current lineup, but it would be interesting and still maintain its Jeep-ness.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Unfortunately, I'd be worried that Jeep might be hesitant to go after the Subaru (WRX) crowd again, because I'm pretty sure that the Compass was a (half-assed) attempt at doing just that. But you can't sell fur-covered turds to people used to buying labrador retrievers and expect it to go over well...

        I really liked the styling of the Patriot. Had Jeep used the same mechanicals as the Liberty, but wrapped in the neo-Cherokee styling of the Patriot for the original Liberty, i think they could have maintained the momentum that the Cherokee had, (which was, even in it's geriatric state, something worth preserving, imo).

        Oh well, hopefully Papa Mario has taken notes on these flubs... Time will tell.
      • 5 Years Ago
      [bang] Oh...God. [slump over dead]
      (Did anyone get the movie quote?)
      • 5 Years Ago
      The Panda, while a excellent off roader, will not be a replacement for the Patriot. It is a B class size car. Think Honda Fit 4x4. The Panda has been bang around muddy trails and creek beds in Europe since the '80's. They are well known for their ability. I think they will be a great "Addition" but they can't hold the bottom end of the line on their own. Fiat will need something Patriot sized also.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I think the rendering needs a little more work to better reflect American styling. The compass, while a bit boring, I find not as offensive as this rendering. Perhaps the new vehicle will mimic the Wrangler a bit, or even the GC.
        • 5 Years Ago
        This isn't just a rendering. I could go down to my Fiat dealer tomorrow and buy one of these, in orange if I like.

        If it came to the US it would get at least 105 hp, and possibly more. It is absolutely tiny by almost any standards, especially American ones, and cannot replace any Jeep product. So stop worrying.

        PS. It's a very capable little car if you live up an Alp or just somewhere hilly and remote, with narrow roads.
      • 5 Years Ago
      What about the Dacia Sandero?
      Derek
      • 5 Years Ago
      This might be slightly off topic but has anyone seen the new Jeep commercial? Quite possibly the worst marketing slogan I've ever heard of for the brand (I live. I ride. I am. Jeep.) And the commercial could have been for literally ANYTHING and it wasn't until the last second that a Wrangler showed up with the craptacular slogan. I love Jeep so much it really scared me that Chrysler might ruin that name as well.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Cowboys are now riding pandas...
      from Italy???


      LOL LOL LOL LOL
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