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    • By William Maley
      Last week, we brought forth the rumor the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles canceled plans for the upcoming Jeep Grand Wagoneer. The issue dealt with the Grand Cherokee/Durango's unibody platform could not be stretched out to accommodate the size of the vehicle.
      Many of us here at Cheers & Gears along with some other outlets smelled something fishy with rumor. Wouldn't FCA think to consider whether or not the Grand Cherokee/Durango's unibody platform actually work for a larger model?
      Automotive News has done some investigating into this rumor and has learned from supplier sources that the Grand Wagoneer has been put on hold. No reason was given by the sources as to why, but Automotive News has a theory and it comes down to money.
      Fiat Chrysler Automobiles doesn't have enough to work on this project. At the moment, the company is trying to relaunch the Alfa Romeo brand in the U.S., finish work on the redesigned Jeep Wrangler and Ram 1500, and launch a Jeep Wrangler pickup. There is also the retooling of FCA's Sterling Heights, MI and Toledo, OH plants to get them ready to build more SUVs and pickups. 
      FCA could build the Grand Wagoneer at their Jefferson North plant — home to the Grand Cherokee and Durango production. But the plant isn't setup to build a long-wheelbase model, which means more money has to be spent. Money that FCA doesn't have.
      Like our story from last week, Automotive News floats the idea of the Grand Wagoneer possibly using the Ram 1500's platform
      We'll end this piece with the last lines of Automotive News' story as it sums up the choice FCA has to make.
      "If covering FCA for a decade has taught me anything, it is that the company has its own internal Occam’s razor: If there are two choices, and one is cheaper and easier, that’s the choice FCA will make.
      Let’s see if that’s the case with the Jeep Grand Wagoneer."
      Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)

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    • By William Maley
      Last week, we brought forth the rumor the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles canceled plans for the upcoming Jeep Grand Wagoneer. The issue dealt with the Grand Cherokee/Durango's unibody platform could not be stretched out to accommodate the size of the vehicle.
      Many of us here at Cheers & Gears along with some other outlets smelled something fishy with rumor. Wouldn't FCA think to consider whether or not the Grand Cherokee/Durango's unibody platform actually work for a larger model?
      Automotive News has done some investigating into this rumor and has learned from supplier sources that the Grand Wagoneer has been put on hold. No reason was given by the sources as to why, but Automotive News has a theory and it comes down to money.
      Fiat Chrysler Automobiles doesn't have enough to work on this project. At the moment, the company is trying to relaunch the Alfa Romeo brand in the U.S., finish work on the redesigned Jeep Wrangler and Ram 1500, and launch a Jeep Wrangler pickup. There is also the retooling of FCA's Sterling Heights, MI and Toledo, OH plants to get them ready to build more SUVs and pickups. 
      FCA could build the Grand Wagoneer at their Jefferson North plant — home to the Grand Cherokee and Durango production. But the plant isn't setup to build a long-wheelbase model, which means more money has to be spent. Money that FCA doesn't have.
      Like our story from last week, Automotive News floats the idea of the Grand Wagoneer possibly using the Ram 1500's platform
      We'll end this piece with the last lines of Automotive News' story as it sums up the choice FCA has to make.
      "If covering FCA for a decade has taught me anything, it is that the company has its own internal Occam’s razor: If there are two choices, and one is cheaper and easier, that’s the choice FCA will make.
      Let’s see if that’s the case with the Jeep Grand Wagoneer."
      Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
    • By William Maley
      As more consumers head over to crossovers and SUVs, automakers find themselves making changes to their lineup. Case in point is Ford which is considering dropping some of their nameplates because of the change in demand.
      “Over time, there should be some pruning of the portfolio to support growth in other areas. Clearly we’re going to invest in growing the SUV portfolio. We certainly intend to have a strong car base as well; we don’t know where the market’s going to go. But there will be some pruning over time as there should be in a nameplate and portfolio,” said Joe Hinrichs, Ford president of the Americas.
      Ford's car sales are down 14 percent through November with sedans being the big losers.
      Fiesta: Down 26 percent year-to-date Focus: Down 17 percent YTD Taurus: Down 11 percent YTD Fusion: Down 10 percent YTD Hinrichs didn't say which nameplates could be cut, but mentioned that former popular vehicles such as the Ranger were dropped after demand fell.
      “If you look at our past, there’s been some nameplates that have dropped off and other nameplates have been added. Given where the market is going, the demands for capital investment and the regulatory changes coming at us, we’ll continue to always look at the total portfolio and see where’s segmentation going and where should we be phasing out,” said Hinrichs.
      We think the Taurus is one of the vehicles on the chopping block since sales of it have been falling for the past couple of years.
      Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)

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