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  • William Maley
    William Maley

    Jeep Is Still Interested In A Sub-Renegade Crossover

      An even smaller Jeep?!

    Jeep's boss Mike Manley told reporters at the Detroit Auto Show that the brand is looking 'very closely' at building a crossover smaller than the Renegade. The model would be targeted at markets like Europe where small cars are dominate. 

    If given the go-ahead, the new Jeep would be based on FCA’s Mini platform that underpins the Fiat 500 and Panda. Production could take place in Pomigliano, Italy. One issue that needs to be addressed before a decision is made is making sure the model is capable off-road like other Jeep models.

    According to supplier sources, FCA has been talking about possibly producing this model. However, the project has suffered many stop and starts.

    Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)



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    The Panda is approx. 20 inches shorter than a Renegade, with approx a 10 inch shorter wheelbase.  Smaller scale for tight European city streets.. 

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    Yea, time to rebuild and modernize the cities and roads, history in the books and stop trying to save every bloody road and building. Europe needs a massive revitalization as their cities stink, roads stink, the best place is Germany for Driving but even then crazy nut jobs want to still also save every freaking old building.

    Everything has a lifespan and needs to be replaced eventually. Moron nuts in Seattle are trying to get all these old late 1800's warehouse building put on the stupid preservation list to save and they just need to be torn down and built with new modern buildings as well as replace the sucky brick roads we still have in the sodo district. Talk about a nightmare equal to Detroit for pot holes and crappy auto rides.

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    19 minutes ago, dfelt said:

    we still have in the sodo district

    So this is a real place...? Got damn do I love South Park. 

    sodosopa.png

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    3 minutes ago, ccap41 said:

    So this is a real place...? Got damn do I love South Park. 

    sodosopa.png

    Yup, that episode was based on our SODO district here in Seattle. :P 

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    Good old gentrification....lots of it in Denver, often w/ acronym names like LoDo, RiNo, etc.   Pockets of it going on around Cleveland in various neighborhoods...Tremont, Ohio City, Detroit-Shoreway, Warehouse District, etc.   Some great restaurants, brewpubs, gastropubs, etc that have opened in those districts (that I'm working my way through).   In general, I like to see them preserve, modernize and repurpose old buildings rather than tear down and build new generic stuff.    

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    7 minutes ago, Cubical-aka-Moltar said:

     In general, I like to see them preserve, modernize and repurpose old buildings rather than tear down and build new generic stuff.  

    I agree. Older, brick buildings always tend to look classier to me. 

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    32 minutes ago, Cubical-aka-Moltar said:

    Good old gentrification....lots of it in Denver, often w/ acronym names like LoDo, RiNo, etc.   Pockets of it going on around Cleveland in various neighborhoods...Tremont, Ohio City, Detroit-Shoreway, Warehouse District, etc.   Some great restaurants, brewpubs, gastropubs, etc that have opened in those districts (that I'm working my way through).   In general, I like to see them preserve, modernize and repurpose old buildings rather than tear down and build new generic stuff.    

     

    24 minutes ago, ccap41 said:

    I agree. Older, brick buildings always tend to look classier to me. 

    I would agree with you guys in regards to buildings that have had old masters that did artwork with the brick, roof overhangs, etc. If a building has some real artistry to it and it can be modernized to be earthquake safe and repurpose, then yes.

    But in the SODO district we are talking old brick or old cement warehouses that were never used as an office building or has real historical importance other than it was built in the late 1800's to early 1900's and are falling apart.

    Those buildings, tear down and build new.

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    Some pics of gentrified areas in Cleveland...the Warehouse District (old warehouses that have been made into lofts w/ restaurants, etc on the ground floor).

    warehouse-district.jpg

    warehouse-district-in-cleveland-ohio-is-a-nightclub-destination-d86ca2.jpg

     

    Downtown and The West Bank of the Flats, from the Cuyahoga River.

     

    300px-From_the_Flats_west_bank-2.jpg

    And on the West Side, Ohio City...

     

    sidewalk-cafe-on-market-street-with-west-side-market-behind-ohio-city-CTP4M0.jpg

    1200px-OCstreet.jpg

     

    While not a Millennial that uses beard oil and purchases arteisanal toilet paper,  I do enjoy visiting such neighborhoods, cruising around in my Jeep and doing brunch, having a beer or two or some good wine.  Only about 15-20 minutes from my suburb.  Liking what I see so far, reminds me of areas of Denver I used to frequent, but with a Great Lake and river...

     

    Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar

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    @Cubical-aka-Moltar Those are nice buildings that do not look like warehouses.

    Here is one from the latest news as they debate how to rejuvenate the Sodo district. From the Seahawks football stadium to the south of the West Seattle freeway you can see is what is called the SODO district. Nothing but old warehouse space. 50% still in use, 50% empty sitting useless usually due to not being earthquake safe.

    SODO-District.jpg

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    Earthquake retrofitting seems like it would be very costly..I know San Francisco has spent a lot on that.  Not an issue here in NE Ohio.  

    It's been 10 years since I've visited Seattle, sure a lot has changed since then...was mostly a touristy long weekend..visited the Space Needle, Pike Place Market, Pioneer Square...visited friends in Ballard.  Definitely would like to visit again, been to Portland more often. 

    Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar

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    12 minutes ago, Cubical-aka-Moltar said:

    Earthquake retrofitting seems like it would be very costly..I know San Francisco has spent a lot on that.  Not an issue here in NE Ohio.  

    It's been 10 years since I've visited Seattle, sure a lot has changed since then...was mostly a touristy long weekend..visited the Space Needle, Pike Place Market, Pioneer Square...visited friends in Ballard.  Definitely would like to visit again, been to Portland more often. 

    If ya ever come out let me know and we can meet up and have a beer, wine or some other wonderful drink on me. :) 

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    2 minutes ago, ccap41 said:

    What does "SODO" even stand for? 

    Probably 'South of Downtown'?    Like 'LoDo' is Lower Downtown, 'RiNo' is 'River North'  (those two are in Denver).

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    47 minutes ago, ccap41 said:

    What does "SODO" even stand for? 

    Originally when Seattle had our KingDome, SODO stood for South of the Dome. Since the KingDome was destroyed and rebuilt for the Seahawks as Quest field, an open air stadium, SODO now stands for South of Downtown.

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    5 hours ago, Cubical-aka-Moltar said:

    The Panda is approx. 20 inches shorter than a Renegade, with approx a 10 inch shorter wheelbase.  Smaller scale for tight European city streets.. 

    A Porsche 911 is 10 inches longer than a 167" Renegade. Streets in Europe apparently have been shrinking for decades- now NOTHING can be driven in ANY cities there. What a shock / shame.

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    58 minutes ago, balthazar said:

    A Porsche 911 is 10 inches longer than a 167" Renegade. Streets in Europe apparently have been shrinking for decades- now NOTHING can be driven in ANY cities there. What a shock / shame.

    Certainly in the ancient parts of Rome and other cities in Italy the streets and roads are tight, which is why there are so many Fiat 500s and other tiny city cars like Smart cars and Ligiers.  Driving the Amalfi Coast south of Naples, I ended up on parts of the road where the Mercedes A-class I was driving felt wide.. Though when I was in Rome I saw a Tahoe parked near the Colosseum...and many Grand Cherokees and Wranglers.  All depends on the particular section of a town or city and the particular road or street.  The freeways there and in France were great, IMO. 

    Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar
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    Smart's European market share is 0.7%- not sure how that translates to "so many", but maybe in Rome for some buyers; OK.
    It's just my Hyperbole Meter bounces hard right when I read 'need a smaller model because all European roads & cities can't fit the current tiny cars being built over the last decade'.

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    1 minute ago, balthazar said:

    Smart's European market share is 0.7%- not sure how that translates to "so many", but maybe in Rome for some buyers; OK.
    It's just my Hyperbole Meter bounces hard right when I read 'need a smaller model because all European roads & cities can't fit the current tiny cars being built over the last decade'.

    Europeans in cities buy small, efficient cars.  CUVs are a growth niche there also.  They aren't going to be buying very many US sized SUVs and crossovers...it really is a different place.  

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    Not sure what 'American-sized' is supposed to mean exactly.  Like you have stated in the past, it's not 1960 anymore; every size class of vehicle is sold here, and none of the traditional attributes of US brands are really in effect; Buick hasn't offered a car "the size of a Buick" in decades. Encore is the same size as a Renegade (itself built in Italy).

    I feel that the sentiment is largely outmoded.

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    Hell, the whole Europeans only buy small auto's is BS. As long as they are socialist and take such a large chunk of a persons income to support the bulk of lazy gov and gov supported citizens, they are unable to buy larger more comfortable auto's.

    I have talked with many coworkers who complain about how much the gov takes in taxes and as such liimits their ability to buy more things or higher quality things. It really does suck in various ways.

    Europe has plenty of cool things to visit, but would not ever want to live there.

    One has to wonder also if their current system is not a reason why road size sucks, Humanity has always rebuilt and changes things, staying static is a fast path to death.

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    19 minutes ago, dfelt said:

    Hell, the whole Europeans only buy small auto's is BS.  

    Actually, that is reality. If you look at any European country, vehicle sales are dominated by small, efficient vehicles.   They don't have the large truck and SUV culture the US has.  Different markets, different conditions.   So back on topic, if FCA thinks there is a market for a Jeep smaller that the Renegade, it could work in certain markets.   Asian markets as well. 

    Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar

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    47 minutes ago, Cubical-aka-Moltar said:

    Actually, that is reality. If you look at any European country, vehicle sales are dominated by small, efficient vehicles.   They don't have the large truck and SUV culture the US has.  Different markets, different conditions.   So back on topic, if FCA thinks there is a market for a Jeep smaller that the Renegade, it could work in certain markets.   Asian markets as well. 

    I understand and get your point. Also I am not applying this next thought to you but just making an observation.

    The point I am making is that the culture also has affected this attitude due to the way the GOVs take so much of a person's income there. People who have grown up here and never been there do not understand that point compared to those that have lived abroad and had to deal with it in the past. Some love the all things small, socialist approach, but others do not. That is the point I was trying to make.

    Buy like you said, back on the FCA Topic, they see a need for a smaller footprint CUV in Europe and can sell it better for them. This is the one area I believe Ford and GM have both failed at in not realizing the need to build to their market, but trying to export American style  of Auto to Europe.

    I doubt they could sell that small auto here and make money on it, but it might just work in Europe and Asia where people are also much smaller.

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    Since this is not a politics or economics forum, it suffices to say the automotive market is different in different countries and regions.   Automakers will make product catered to the realities of each country/region, but obviously within the context of building globally sellable product.  

    Back on topic, the idea of a very tiny Jeep is not without precedent, look at the CJ--the original Jeeps were very tiny compared to the Wrangler and larger models. 

    Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar

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    While a sub-sub compact vehicle may well sell there, that's a different point to mine.
    Googling images of Rome traffic clearly show a very comparable mix of vehicles to the US: sedans, CUVs, minivans, cargo vans, and plenty of full-size city buses. I called out that the Italy-built Renegade is NOT too big for European streets in general, and it's definitely not.

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    10 minutes ago, balthazar said:

     I called out that the Italy-built Renegade is NOT too big for European streets in general, and it's definitely not.

    No one said it was too big.   And the mix of vehicles is different--US style full size trucks and full size SUVs are very, very rare in Europe.. trucks seem to be mostly for commercial use.  

     Google images won't give you the full picture, go spend a week in Rome or Milan like I did to see the reality in context.  Interesting places.  They still have station wagons, for instance, and lots of little MPVs (mini-minivans).  Trucks and vans tend to be white and diesel, and for commercial use.  

    Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar

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    We're still addressing 2 different points.

    I guess I interpreted that the Renegade was 'too big' from the O/P - it's so small as it is, it's hard to imagine anyone choosing to go even smaller.

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      Skid plates and front and rear tow hooks Wrangler Rubicon 4xe approach angle of 44 degrees, breakover angle of 22.5 degrees, departure angle of 35.6 degrees and ground clearance of 10.8 inches (27.4 cm) Aggressive, available, 17-inch, off-road wheels and 33-inch tires standard on Rubicon 4xe; 20-inch wheels standard on Wrangler 4xe and Sahara 4xe Up to 30 inches (76 cm) of water fording All 4xe models maintain Wrangler’s renowned ease of customization with a host of Jeep Performance Parts from Mopar, available when the vehicle arrives in showrooms.
      ‘Electric Blue’ Design Cues Mark Wrangler 4xe
      The 2021 Jeep Wrangler 4xe maintains a sculptural design aesthetic that’s bold and functional, with a wide stance and trapezoidal wheel flares.
      Exclusive content identifies the Jeep Wrangler 4xe as the most technologically advanced Wrangler ever. New Electric Blue coloring on the front and rear Rubicon tow hooks stands out against the black bumpers. The unique blue coloring also traces the Rubicon name on the hood, Jeep badge and the Trail Rated badge. Select Easter egg design cues also receive the Electric Blue shade. The black hood decal is outlined in the special color with “4xe” that lets the body color show through.
      Inside, the Wrangler 4xe Rubicon includes unique Electric Blue stitching on the seats and trim.
      The 2021 Jeep Wrangler 4xe is available in 10 exterior colors: Black, Bright White, Firecracker Red, Granite Crystal Metallic, Hella Yella, Hydro Blue (late availability), Sting-Gray, Snazzberry, Sarge and Billet Silver Metallic. Two Wrangler interior options are available in the 4xe version: Black with Heritage Tan cloth and Black with Dark Saddle leather.
      Jeep Renegade 4xe and Jeep Compass 4xe
      Presented globally in March 2019 at the Geneva Motor Show, the new Renegade 4xe and Compass 4xe are the first Jeep models with plug-in hybrid electric technology available in Europe. Their arrival was celebrated in January with the exclusive First Edition – a special launch edition made available for customer previews and pre-booking on a dedicated website for select European markets. Renegade 4xe and Compass 4xe began arriving in the European market this summer. Both Renegade 4xe and Compass 4xe models feature a no-compromise hybrid solution that integrates the unmatched technical layout of each Jeep SUV and takes their capability to the next level through some of the most advanced technology, which combines enhanced performance (up to 240 horsepower), improved safety (four-wheel drive is always available) and low environmental impact (less than 50 g/km of CO2 in the hybrid mode).
      The combination of a 1.3-liter turbocharged gasoline engine and the electric unit guarantees performance and extraordinary driving pleasure: acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h in less than 7.5 seconds and full electric top speed is 130 km/h, which reaches 200 km/h in the hybrid mode.
      With the new hybrid technology, Jeep Renegade 4xe and Compass 4xe further improve their benchmark off-road capability courtesy of the greater torque offered by the combination between the two power sources. Thanks to the new Jeep 4xe technology, traction to the rear axle is not provided by a prop shaft, but through the dedicated electric motor. This allows the two axles to be separated and control the torque independently in a more effective way than a mechanical system, giving instant electric boost to the rear wheels when needed.
      The new Jeep Renegade 4xe and Jeep Compass 4xe began arriving in Jeep dealerships across Europe this summer with a full lineup to include Limited, S and Trailhawk trims, all with four-wheel-drive configuration.
      Mopar and Jeep Performance Parts Supports Launch of Most Capable, Technically Advanced, Eco-friendly Jeep Wrangler Ever
      When the new 2021 Jeep Wrangler 4xe (pronounced 4byE) plug-in hybrid joins the Jeep brand’s global electric vehicle lineup later this year, Jeep Performance Parts and Mopar will offer a wide variety of factory-engineered, quality-tested performance parts and accessories for the most capable, technically advanced and eco-friendly SUV on the planet.
      The comprehensive portfolio of more than 300 Jeep Wrangler products will include exclusive Jeep Performance Parts (JPP) offerings, allowing customers the opportunity to expand upon the Wrangler’s fun-to-drive on- and off-road experiences. An industry-first, OEM-developed JPP 2-inch lift kit is specifically engineered and tuned for the Wrangler 4xe plug-in hybrid application. Additional products will include beadlock-capable wheels, off-road bumpers, LED off-road lights and rock rails, just to name a few. More detailed information will be available closer to launch.
      In addition, Jeep Performance Parts and Mopar will offer a 240-volt at-home electric vehicle (EV) wall charger on Amazon.com and quality installation services, giving customers a fast and convenient way to charge their vehicles at home.
      Unlike any other aftermarket offerings, Jeep Performance Parts and accessories are backed by a full factory warranty. The products are created in close conjunction with the Jeep brand, engineering and product design-office teams for development, testing and validation. Strict standards and factory-exclusive data — information not available to the aftermarket — are used to seamlessly integrate performance parts and accessories in order to deliver proper fit, finish and quality right down to the color, grain, and appearance of each product.

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      The Jeep Wrangler is going green with the introduction of the 4xe.
      This plug-in hybrid version of the Wrangler pairs a 2.0L turbo-four with a transmission-mounted electric motor. Total output is 375 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque, making this the powerful production Wrangler to date. A 17.0-kWh, liquid-cooled battery pack battery pack mounted under the rear-seat provides the electric juice and allows the 4xe to travel up 25 miles on electric power only. The transmission is an eight-speed automatic. Jeep hasn't revealed how long it takes to charge up the 4xe.
      Before you start thinking that going plug-in hybrid lessens the capability, Jeep says the 4xe models come with Dana 44 axles front and rear, and the various electronics have been waterproofed - allowing it to ford up to 30 inches of water. Base and Sahara models come with a two-speed transfer case with automatic four-wheel-drive mode and a 2.72:1 low-range. Rubicon models feature a transfer case with a 4:1 low-range, electronic locking front and rear axles with a 4.1:1 ratio, and an electronic sway bar disconnect.
      The 4xe does give up cargo space, with 27.7 cubic feet behind the rear seats (down four) and 67.4 with the rear seats folded (down five). It is also heavier with the base model coming at 5,000 pounds - about 800 pounds heavier than the gas model. 
      Jeep will begin selling the Wrangler 4xe early next year in the three trims mentioned above. You'll only be able to get it in the four-door version. Expecting pricing to be above $30,000 or so.
       
      Source: Jeep
      Press Release is on Page 2
      New Jeep® Wrangler 4xe Joins Renegade and Compass 4xe Models in Brand’s Global Electric Vehicle Lineup
      Advanced, Eco-friendly, Premium Technology Delivers Absolute and Quiet Open-air Freedom, an Even More Fun-to-drive On-road Experience and a New Level of Benchmark Jeep® Off-road Capability
      4xe electric vehicle technology is the natural evolution of nearly 80 years of Jeep® capability leadership Jeep 4xe vehicles provide new levels of efficiency, environmental responsibility, performance and capability, on and off the road Jeep Wrangler 4xe available in Europe, China and the United States by early 2021; Jeep Renegade 4xe and Compass 4xe models began arriving in Europe this summer Wrangler 4xe boasts 375 horsepower and delivers up to 25 miles of pure electric operation for daily commutes while providing nearly silent, zero-emission, open-air freedom without range anxiety Torque-on-demand electric power enhances Wrangler’s on-road performance, delivering crisp launches from a standing start and plenty of low-speed thrust Low-speed, peak torque-on-demand raises Wrangler’s legendary off-road benchmark to master off-road environments Wrangler 4xe is first and foremost a Jeep Wrangler with Trail Rated running gear: solid front and rear axles, full-time 4x4 two-speed transfer case, fully articulating suspension and 30 inches of water fording capability Wrangler 4xe’s advanced turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, two electric motors and robust TorqueFlite eight-speed automatic transmission combine to deliver an estimated 50 MPGe 400-volt, 17 kWh, 96-cell battery pack mounts beneath second-row seat to protect it from outside elements and to preserve the interior space Wrangler 4xe features exclusive exterior design cues to signify efficient, environmentally friendly, electrification technology Available for order in Europe, Jeep Renegade 4xe and Compass 4xe deliver up to 240 horsepower and approximately 50 kilometers (31 miles) of zero-emission pure electric range September 3, 2020 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - The Jeep® brand has introduced its new Wrangler 4xe, marking the arrival of the most capable, technically advanced and eco-friendly Wrangler ever. Jeep Wrangler 4xe models will be available in Europe, China and the United States by early 2021. The Jeep Renegade 4xe and Compass 4xe models – introduced last year in Geneva – began arriving in Europe this summer. The new Jeep 4xe models follow the introduction of the Jeep Grand Commander PHEV in China last year.
      The Wrangler 4xe’s plug-in hybrid powertrain is capable of up to 25 miles of nearly silent, zero-emission, electric-only propulsion, making it commuter friendly as an all-electric daily driver without range anxiety and the most capable and eco-friendly Jeep vehicle off-road – combined with the open-air freedom that only Jeep Wrangler offers.
      Jeep will offer electrification options on each nameplate in the next few years as it strives to become the leader in eco-friendly premium technology. Electrified Jeep vehicles will carry the 4xe badge. Jeep electric vehicles will be the most efficient and responsible Jeep vehicles ever, taking performance, 4x4 capability and driver confidence to the next level.
      “Our Jeep 4xe vehicles will be the most efficient, responsible and capable that the brand has ever created,” said Christian Meunier, Global President of Jeep Brand - FCA. “We are committed to make Jeep the greenest SUV brand. The electrification of the Jeep lineup will allow commuters to travel solely on electric power, delivering an efficient and fun on-road experience and offering an ability to enjoy even more Jeep capability off-road in nearly complete silence.”
      The Wrangler 4xe’s advanced powertrain provides a unique on- and off-road experience through the combination of two electric motors, a high-voltage battery pack, a high-tech 2.0-liter turbocharged I-4 engine and robust TorqueFlite eight-speed automatic transmission. The most advanced powertrain ever developed for a Jeep Wrangler maximizes efficiency with an estimated 50 miles per gallon equivalent (MPGe) while eliminating range anxiety, delivering pure-electric operation for most daily commutes.
      Torque from the electric motors in the Wrangler 4xe’s hybrid powertrain arrives instantly on demand from the driver. The powertrain also delivers fuel-saving, seamless, start-stop operation of the engine.
      Jeep has demonstrated 4x4 capability leadership for nearly 80 years. Jeep vehicles were the first to feature an automatic full-time four-wheel-drive system, first 4:1 transfer case and first electronic front sway-bar disconnect system. Merging electrification into the product lineup is a natural evolution.
      The Jeep Wrangler 4xe will be sold globally, with electric vehicle (EV) charge port plugs tailored to specific regions. It is assembled at FCA’s Toledo Assembly Complex in Toledo, Ohio.
      Wrangler 4xe Advanced Powertrain Combines Electric Motors, Turbo Engine
      The Jeep Wrangler 4xe powertrain integrates two electric motors and a 400-volt battery pack with a fuel-efficient, turbocharged, four-cylinder engine and TorqueFlite eight-speed automatic transmission. This configuration maximizes the efficiency of the hybrid propulsion components and mates them with the Wrangler’s world-renowned and proven driveline.
      Key elements of the Wrangler 4xe powertrain include 375 horsepower (280 kW), 470 lb.-ft. (637 N•m) of torque and an estimated 50 MPGe from the following components:
      2.0-liter turbocharged I-4 Engine-mounted motor generator unit Transmission-mounted motor generator unit integrated into eight-speed automatic transmission (ZF 8P75PH) 400-volt, 17-kWh, 96-cell lithium-ion, nickel manganese cobalt battery pack The 2.0-liter turbocharged I-4 engine is part of FCA’s Global Medium Engine family. The high-tech, direct-injection engine uses a twin-scroll, low-inertia turbocharger mounted directly to the cylinder head, along with a dedicated cooling circuit for the turbocharger, intake air and throttle body for exceptional responsiveness, performance and fuel efficiency.
      A high-voltage, liquid-cooled motor generator unit mounts at the front of the engine, replacing the conventional alternator. A robust belt connects the motor generator to the engine crankshaft pulley. The motor generator spins the engine for nearly seamless, fuel-saving, start-stop operation and generates electricity for the battery pack. The Wrangler 4xe does not use a conventional 12-volt starter motor. The Wrangler 4xe is equipped with a 12-volt battery to run accessories.
      The second high-voltage motor generator is mounted at the front of the transmission case, replacing the conventional torque converter of an automatic transmission.

      Two clutches work to manage power and torque from the e-motor and engine. A binary clutch (on/off) is mounted between the engine and the motor. When this clutch is open there is no mechanical linkage between the engine and the e-motor, which enables it to propel the Wrangler 4xe in electric-only mode.
      When the binary clutch is closed, torque from the 2.0-liter engine and the e-motor flow combine through the automatic transmission. A variable clutch mounted behind the e-motor manages engagement with the transmission to improve drivability and efficiency.
      Battery Pack Preserves Interior Room
      The Jeep Wrangler 4xe’s 400-volt, 17-kWh, 96-cell lithium-ion battery pack uses nickel manganese cobalt (NMC) graphite chemistry. The pack and controls mount underneath the second-row seat, where it is protected from outside elements. The Wrangler 4xe’s second-row seat is redesigned, allowing the bottom cushion to flip forward for access to the battery.
      Encased in an aluminum housing, the pack is fitted with a dedicated heating and cooling circuit to keep the battery at its optimum temperature for best performance. The temperature control circuit includes a dedicated heater unit and a chiller that uses the Wrangler air-conditioning refrigerant to reduce coolant temperature when needed.
      The Wrangler 4xe hybrid system includes an Integrated Dual Charging Module (ICDM), which combines a battery charger and a DC/DC converter in a single unit that is more compact than two separate components, and a next-generation Power Inverter Module (PIM) that is reduced in size. These components are housed and protected from damage in a steel structure mounted below the battery pack.
      All high-voltage electronics, including the wiring between the battery pack and the electric motors, are sealed and waterproof. Like all Trail Rated Jeep Wranglers, the Wrangler 4xe is capable of water fording up to 30 inches (76 cm).
      The electric charge port features a push-open/push-close cover and is located on the left front cowl of the Wrangler 4xe for convenient nose-in parking at charging locations. The charge port includes LED indicators of charging status. An LED battery level monitor is mounted on top of the instrument panel, making it easy to check battery state of charge at a glance during charging.
      Wrangler 4xe E Selec Modes
      The Jeep Wrangler 4xe driver can tailor the hybrid powertrain to best suit each trip, whether it is filling the needs of most daily commuters in pure-electric operation, a night on the town or quietly exploring nature off-road.
      The Wrangler 4xe hybrid powertrain has three modes of operation, known as E Selec. The driver can select the desired powertrain mode via buttons mounted on the instrument panel, to the left of the steering wheel. Regardless of the mode selected, the Wrangler 4xe operates as hybrid once the battery nears its minimum state of charge.
      Hybrid: The default mode blends torque from the 2.0-liter engine and electric motor. In this mode, the powertrain will use battery power first, then add in propulsion from the 2.0-liter turbocharged I-4 when the battery reaches minimum state of charge Electric: The powertrain operates on zero-emission electric power only until the battery reaches the minimum charge or the driver requests more torque (such as wide-open throttle), which engages the 2.0-liter engine eSave: Prioritizes propulsion from the 2.0-liter engine, saving the battery charge for later use, such as EV off-roading or urban areas where internal combustion propulsion is restricted. The driver can also choose between Battery Save and Battery Charge during eSave via the Hybrid Electric Pages in the Uconnect monitor To help optimize the benefit of the E Selec modes, the Wrangler 4xe driver information display and the Uconnect touchscreen feature Eco Coaching Pages. The Eco Coaching Pages let owners monitor power flow and see the impact of regenerative braking, schedule charging times to take advantage of lower electric rates, and view their driving history with a detail of electric and gasoline usage.
      Regenerative braking is a key part of the Wrangler 4xe eco-friendly equation. When the driver steps on the brake pedal, the powertrain control engages the maximum available regenerative braking, up to 0.25 g, from the electric motors to slow the vehicle, augmented with the Wrangler’s traditional friction brakes. The regenerative braking feature also extends the replacement period for brake pads.
      With 4x4 engaged, all four wheels feed torque for regenerative braking, maximizing the energy recovery. Electricity due to regenerative braking is fed to the battery pack to maintain or increase the state of charge.
      The Wrangler 4xe also features the ability to maximize regenerative energy production via a driver-selectable Max Regen feature.
      When Max Regen is engaged, a more assertive regenerative braking calibration occurs when the vehicle sees zero throttle input from the driver (coasting). Max Regen can slow the Wrangler 4xe faster than standard regenerative braking and generate more electricity for the battery pack. Once selected, the Max Regen feature remains engaged until driver deselects it.
      Off-road Legend
      Jeep Wrangler’s heritage is defined by its legendary off-road capability. All Wrangler 4xe power modes are available when the drivetrain is shifted to 4Lo. The seamless integration of electric power into the 4x4 drivetrain elevates the Wrangler 4xe to new levels of off-road performance.
      Enthusiasts will find that the instant availability of torque from the Wrangler 4xe’s electric motor delivers a more precise and controlled driving experience for climbing and crawling – there’s no need to build up engine rpm to get the tires to move, minimizing driveline shock loading and maximizing control and speed.
      In EV mode, the Wrangler 4xe treads lightly and silently, conserving fuel and allowing occupants to focus solely on the sights and full sounds of nature.
      The new Jeep Wrangler 4xe is available in three models: 4xe, Sahara 4xe and Rubicon 4xe. Wrangler 4xe and Wrangler Sahara 4xe models are equipped with full-time 4x4 systems, front and rear next-generation Dana 44 axles and are fitted with the Selec-Trac two-speed transfer case with a 2.72:1 low-range gear ratio. The intuitive system allows the driver to set it and forget it in any environment.
      An available Trac-Lok limited-slip rear differential provides extra grip and capability in low-traction situations, such as driving over sand, gravel, snow or ice.
      Wrangler Rubicon 4xe models carry the Rock-Trac 4x4 system that includes a two-speed transfer case with a 4:1 low-range gear ratio, full-time 4x4, front and rear next-generation Dana 44 axles, Tru-Lok electric front- and rear-axle lockers. The Wrangler Rubicon 4xe has an impressive crawl ratio of 77.2:1, which makes scaling any obstacle easy. Wrangler Rubicon models also offer improved articulation and total suspension travel with help from a front axle, electronic sway-bar disconnect. Together, these components contribute to the maximum off-road prowess Wrangler Rubicon is known for.
      The Wrangler 4xe includes Selec-Speed Control with Hill-ascent and Hill-descent Control. This allows drivers to control vehicle speed up and down steep, rugged grades with the transmission shift lever.
      Like every Jeep Wrangler, the Jeep Wrangler 4xe models wear a Trail Rated badge that signifies legendary 4x4 capability with equipment that includes:
      Skid plates and front and rear tow hooks Wrangler Rubicon 4xe approach angle of 44 degrees, breakover angle of 22.5 degrees, departure angle of 35.6 degrees and ground clearance of 10.8 inches (27.4 cm) Aggressive, available, 17-inch, off-road wheels and 33-inch tires standard on Rubicon 4xe; 20-inch wheels standard on Wrangler 4xe and Sahara 4xe Up to 30 inches (76 cm) of water fording All 4xe models maintain Wrangler’s renowned ease of customization with a host of Jeep Performance Parts from Mopar, available when the vehicle arrives in showrooms.
      ‘Electric Blue’ Design Cues Mark Wrangler 4xe
      The 2021 Jeep Wrangler 4xe maintains a sculptural design aesthetic that’s bold and functional, with a wide stance and trapezoidal wheel flares.
      Exclusive content identifies the Jeep Wrangler 4xe as the most technologically advanced Wrangler ever. New Electric Blue coloring on the front and rear Rubicon tow hooks stands out against the black bumpers. The unique blue coloring also traces the Rubicon name on the hood, Jeep badge and the Trail Rated badge. Select Easter egg design cues also receive the Electric Blue shade. The black hood decal is outlined in the special color with “4xe” that lets the body color show through.
      Inside, the Wrangler 4xe Rubicon includes unique Electric Blue stitching on the seats and trim.
      The 2021 Jeep Wrangler 4xe is available in 10 exterior colors: Black, Bright White, Firecracker Red, Granite Crystal Metallic, Hella Yella, Hydro Blue (late availability), Sting-Gray, Snazzberry, Sarge and Billet Silver Metallic. Two Wrangler interior options are available in the 4xe version: Black with Heritage Tan cloth and Black with Dark Saddle leather.
      Jeep Renegade 4xe and Jeep Compass 4xe
      Presented globally in March 2019 at the Geneva Motor Show, the new Renegade 4xe and Compass 4xe are the first Jeep models with plug-in hybrid electric technology available in Europe. Their arrival was celebrated in January with the exclusive First Edition – a special launch edition made available for customer previews and pre-booking on a dedicated website for select European markets. Renegade 4xe and Compass 4xe began arriving in the European market this summer. Both Renegade 4xe and Compass 4xe models feature a no-compromise hybrid solution that integrates the unmatched technical layout of each Jeep SUV and takes their capability to the next level through some of the most advanced technology, which combines enhanced performance (up to 240 horsepower), improved safety (four-wheel drive is always available) and low environmental impact (less than 50 g/km of CO2 in the hybrid mode).
      The combination of a 1.3-liter turbocharged gasoline engine and the electric unit guarantees performance and extraordinary driving pleasure: acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h in less than 7.5 seconds and full electric top speed is 130 km/h, which reaches 200 km/h in the hybrid mode.
      With the new hybrid technology, Jeep Renegade 4xe and Compass 4xe further improve their benchmark off-road capability courtesy of the greater torque offered by the combination between the two power sources. Thanks to the new Jeep 4xe technology, traction to the rear axle is not provided by a prop shaft, but through the dedicated electric motor. This allows the two axles to be separated and control the torque independently in a more effective way than a mechanical system, giving instant electric boost to the rear wheels when needed.
      The new Jeep Renegade 4xe and Jeep Compass 4xe began arriving in Jeep dealerships across Europe this summer with a full lineup to include Limited, S and Trailhawk trims, all with four-wheel-drive configuration.
      Mopar and Jeep Performance Parts Supports Launch of Most Capable, Technically Advanced, Eco-friendly Jeep Wrangler Ever
      When the new 2021 Jeep Wrangler 4xe (pronounced 4byE) plug-in hybrid joins the Jeep brand’s global electric vehicle lineup later this year, Jeep Performance Parts and Mopar will offer a wide variety of factory-engineered, quality-tested performance parts and accessories for the most capable, technically advanced and eco-friendly SUV on the planet.
      The comprehensive portfolio of more than 300 Jeep Wrangler products will include exclusive Jeep Performance Parts (JPP) offerings, allowing customers the opportunity to expand upon the Wrangler’s fun-to-drive on- and off-road experiences. An industry-first, OEM-developed JPP 2-inch lift kit is specifically engineered and tuned for the Wrangler 4xe plug-in hybrid application. Additional products will include beadlock-capable wheels, off-road bumpers, LED off-road lights and rock rails, just to name a few. More detailed information will be available closer to launch.
      In addition, Jeep Performance Parts and Mopar will offer a 240-volt at-home electric vehicle (EV) wall charger on Amazon.com and quality installation services, giving customers a fast and convenient way to charge their vehicles at home.
      Unlike any other aftermarket offerings, Jeep Performance Parts and accessories are backed by a full factory warranty. The products are created in close conjunction with the Jeep brand, engineering and product design-office teams for development, testing and validation. Strict standards and factory-exclusive data — information not available to the aftermarket — are used to seamlessly integrate performance parts and accessories in order to deliver proper fit, finish and quality right down to the color, grain, and appearance of each product.
    • By William Maley
      It has been some time since we last reported on PSA Group's plan to re-enter the U.S. When we last checked in, Peugeot was chosen as the brand to be entering the U.S. by 2023 and rumors were swirling about a possible merger between PSA Group and FCA. A lot has changed since then as the two automakers begin to finalize plans for a merger, and the COVID-19 pandemic has no end in sight in the U.S. What does that mean for Peugeot's return to the U.S.?
      "My role is to grow the PSA business in North America, growing our mobility capability and preparing for the launch of Peugeot." said Larry Dominique, CEO of PSA North America to Automotive News.
      "From our standpoint, we're planning as if [the merger] doesn't exist. We're marching forward as if PSA was going to be there by themselves."
      Dominique is right now focused on the present with the top priority being building out a dealer network for both U.S. and Canada before the launch. He explained that the company is planning a two-prong approach, having franchised dealers and online retailing.
      "The future success for OEMs is the reduction of distribution costs while ensuring both retail and OEM margin sustainability. This has to be done through strong pricing power, not volume turnover," he said.
      Part of this is due to COVID-19 pandemic which has many automakers rethinking how they sell vehicles, something Dominique admits is a big challenge.
      "All my competitors are going to be focusing on digital, which means we have to step up our game and deliver an even stronger customer experience when we launch Peugeot in North America. We need to get out of an environment where the retailers are dependent upon just F&I and service to pay their bills."
      Another challenge facing Dominique, what models to sell in the U.S. The market has changed a lot since PSA Group announced its intentions to re-enter the U.S. Consumers now are focused on trucks and crossovers.
      "I don't have a full-sized truck,. But the C and D segments are what's relevant to us. The C and D segments are high volume and important to North America. That's where we're going to focus initially,"
      To us, this hints at the 3008 and 5008 crossovers being some of the first models to be available.
      Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      It has been some time since we last reported on PSA Group's plan to re-enter the U.S. When we last checked in, Peugeot was chosen as the brand to be entering the U.S. by 2023 and rumors were swirling about a possible merger between PSA Group and FCA. A lot has changed since then as the two automakers begin to finalize plans for a merger, and the COVID-19 pandemic has no end in sight in the U.S. What does that mean for Peugeot's return to the U.S.?
      "My role is to grow the PSA business in North America, growing our mobility capability and preparing for the launch of Peugeot." said Larry Dominique, CEO of PSA North America to Automotive News.
      "From our standpoint, we're planning as if [the merger] doesn't exist. We're marching forward as if PSA was going to be there by themselves."
      Dominique is right now focused on the present with the top priority being building out a dealer network for both U.S. and Canada before the launch. He explained that the company is planning a two-prong approach, having franchised dealers and online retailing.
      "The future success for OEMs is the reduction of distribution costs while ensuring both retail and OEM margin sustainability. This has to be done through strong pricing power, not volume turnover," he said.
      Part of this is due to COVID-19 pandemic which has many automakers rethinking how they sell vehicles, something Dominique admits is a big challenge.
      "All my competitors are going to be focusing on digital, which means we have to step up our game and deliver an even stronger customer experience when we launch Peugeot in North America. We need to get out of an environment where the retailers are dependent upon just F&I and service to pay their bills."
      Another challenge facing Dominique, what models to sell in the U.S. The market has changed a lot since PSA Group announced its intentions to re-enter the U.S. Consumers now are focused on trucks and crossovers.
      "I don't have a full-sized truck,. But the C and D segments are what's relevant to us. The C and D segments are high volume and important to North America. That's where we're going to focus initially,"
      To us, this hints at the 3008 and 5008 crossovers being some of the first models to be available.
      Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
    • By William Maley
      Nearly two years ago, I drove the then all-new Hyundai Kona crossover at a press event. It was a unique looking vehicle that was entering the growing subcompact crossover class. Out of the three Hyundai vehicles I drove, the Kona impressed me most with its performance and value for money. But if there is something I have learned over eight years with reviewing vehicles, is that I can’t take first impressions as final. It has been a long wait, but I finally got my hands on a 2020 Kona Ultimate AWD. Let’s see if my first impression can still hold up.
      The Outer Limits (of Exterior Design)
      You may be forgiven for thinking that the Kona has just arrived in a UFO from Planet Nine due to its shape. But Hyundai knew they needed to make a splash in what is becoming a very competitive class. Designers took some influence from the Jeep Cherokee with a rounded front end and the front lights being separated into daytime lights and headlights. Another design trait is the slit that sits between the grille and hood cutline. Finishing off the look is body cladding running along the lower edge and a bright green paint color only available on the turbo engine models. It may seem like an odd mashup of ideas, but it works surprisingly well.
      A Conventional Interior
      Some will be disappointed that Hyundai didn’t continue the wacky design for the Kona’s interior. But having an interior that is user friendly will always pull ahead of interesting design. That isn’t to say Hyundai hasn’t added some special touches such as vent surrounds and seat stitching matching the exterior color. Hard plastics are used throughout, but they don’t feel hollow or cheap when you run your hand across.
      There is a fair amount of space for those sitting upfront. Comfort is ok for short trips, but I found myself wanting more thigh support on longer trips. In the back, there is a large amount of headroom for most passengers. Legroom is a different story as tall people will find their knees pressed against the front seats. Cargo space is another area where the Kona is lacking. With the rear seats up, the Kona’s cargo area measures 19.2 cubic feet - about 0.1 cubic feet more than the Toyota C-HR. Fold them down and space increases to 45.8. This trails the likes of the Chevrolet Trax, Nissan Kicks, and Honda HR-V.
      The One To Still Be Beaten (Infotainment-wise)
      The Kona Ultimate comes equipped with an eight-inch touchscreen featuring Hyundai’s infotainment system. This system has consistently been one of my favorites as Hyundai nails the basics - simple interface, blazing-fast performance, and having features such as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. My only complaint is that the design is starting to look dated when compared to other automakers and their updated infotainment. 
      Turbo Power!
      Two powertrains are available in the Kona. SE, SEL, and SEL Plus use the 2.0L four-cylinder offering 147 horsepower and 132 pound-feet of torque. It’s paired with a six-speed automatic. Limited and Ultimate come with the turbocharged 1.6L four producing 175 horsepower and 195 pound-feet. This is paired with a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission. Front or all-wheel drive is available for either engine.
      Zippy is the word to describe the performance of the turbo engine. The Kona easily accelerates away from a stop and has no issue with passing a slower vehicle. The dual-clutch transmission seems to stumble when leaving a stop, but does get itself together at higher speeds. I also found the transmission is slow to react when your floor the throttle, taking a few milliseconds to downshift.
      EPA fuel economy figures for the 1.6T with AWD are 26 City/29 Highway/27 Combined. My average for the week landed around 26.7 mpg, mostly due to cold weather during the week I had the Kona.
      Woah, This Crossover Handles
      If you wanted a subcompact crossover that handled decently, your choices were either the Mazda CX-3 or Toyota C-HR. The Kona enters the ring as the third choice, and possibly the best. On the backroads, the Kona feels quite agile and has almost no body roll. If I was to nitpick, the steering doesn’t have as much feel as you’ll find in the CX-3. But it feels noticeably better than the C-HR. Ride quality is impressive with most bumps being isolated from passengers sitting inside. Not too much wind and road noise come inside.
      Possibly the Best Subcompact Crossover At the Moment
      Hyundai has a very compelling package in the Kona. There is an excellent performance from the turbocharged engine, impressive driving dynamics, easy to use infotainment system, and a long list of standard equipment. There are some drawbacks with the small cargo area and rear legroom topping the list. If you need the space, a Honda HR-V would be my first pick. The dual-clutch transmission still needs a bit more work to iron out the hesitation issues I experienced. 
      That first impression I had still stands and moves the Kona not only being the best in the class at the moment, but also onto a very rarefied list; a vehicle I would considering buying.
      How I Would Configure A Kona: The only reason I see buying the Ultimate is for the adaptive cruise control as most of the other safety equipment such as blind spot monitoring, parking sensors, and forward collision avoidance are available on other models. So if I wanted the Turbo engine, then I would step down to the Limited at $26,100. For those who think that is a tad expensive still should consider the SEL Plus as it comes very well equipped for $23,950. You do sacrifice the turbo engine for the 2.0L four-cylinder which is fine if your planning to drive mostly around town. Add an additional $1,400 for all-wheel drive.
      Disclaimer: Hyundai Provided the Kona, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2020
      Make: Hyundai
      Model: Kona
      Trim: Ultimate
      Engine: 1.6L Turbocharged DOHC 16-Valve GDI Four-Cylinder
      Driveline: Seven-Speed Dual-Clutch, All-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 175 @ 5,500
      Torque @ RPM: 195 @ 1,500 - 4,500
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 26/29/27
      Curb Weight: 3,276 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Ulsan, South Korea
      Base Price: $29,150
      As Tested Price: $ 30,380 (Includes $1,095.00 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Carpeted Floor Mats - $135.00

      View full article
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