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NOS2006

Chrysler to End Badge Engineering

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Auto industry watchers were surprised by Chrysler's swift move to kill-off five models late last year, but there are more product eliminations and dealer reorganization on the way, said Chrysler co-President Jim Press. Called "Project Genesis," a new strategy at Chrysler calls for the aelimination of so-called "badge-engineered" vehicles, plus the consolidation of many Chrysler, Dodge, and Jeep dealerships into single stores.

Press said Chrysler's new owner, Cerberus Capital Management, realizes the automaker has too many duplicate products, and several may have to be eliminated, according to Automotive News. He didn't say what vehicles those might be, but some obvious names come to mind. The Jeep Compass, for example, has experienced slow sales compared to the Dodge Caliber on which it is based. The Dodge Avenger and Chrysler Sebring are also very similar, as are the Jeep Liberty and Dodge Nitro. It's not known if any of those products are on the chopping block.

To deal with an excessive number of unprofitable dealerships, Cerberus plans to merge several Chrysler, Dodge, and Jeep outlets into "one-roof" stores. The plan will eventually affect nearly all dealers, though Cerberus is not currently planning to put a large amount pressure on dealers to consolidate. Rather, Cerberus hopes to guide them toward mergers that would ultimately increase profitability for everyone.

In late 2007, Cerberus famously axed the Dodge Magnum, Chrysler PT Cruiser Convertible, Chrysler Pacifica, and Chrysler Crossfire. However, discontinuing cars isn't the only component to the company's product strategy, Mr. Press said. The automaker will also focus on creating new vehicles for segments in which it currently does not compete.


http://www.leftlanenews.com/chrysler-to-en...ealerships.html
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The Jeep Compass, for example, has experienced slow sales compared to the Dodge Caliber on which it is based. The Dodge Avenger and Chrysler Sebring are also very similar, as are the Jeep Liberty and Dodge Nitro. It's not known if any of those products are on the chopping block.

while they are similar, I wouldn't exactly say they are badge engineered. The average buyer wouldn't know they are the same vehicle, unlike the Torrent/Equinoix

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while they are similar, I wouldn't exactly say they are badge engineered. The average buyer wouldn't know they are the same vehicle, unlike the Torrent/Equinoix

True...I would say Chrysler has no badge-engineered models currently (except for the Sprinter, though the MB it's BE-ed from isn't sold here, and maybe the minivans). It's not like the '90s when there was a Dodge and Plymouth Neon and the midsize models (Cirrus/Stratus/Breeze) had identical metal, with only different grilles/taillights...

The Aspen/Durango are about as differentiated as the Tahoe/Yukon...just enough to not be truly badge-engineered.

Edited by moltar
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It seems everyone in Detroit is having to do a lot of navel gazing these days. Still, there is hope: if the once mighty Plymouth can be gone, then perhaps one day we can wish for Toyopet being vanquished from these shores, too.

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It seems everyone in Detroit is having to do a lot of navel gazing these days. Still, there is hope: if the once mighty Plymouth can be gone, then perhaps one day we can wish for Toyopet being vanquished from these shores, too.

Not likely...Plymouth was in a state of decline for at least 25 years before they were axed..

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The Aspen/Durango are about as differentiated as the Tahoe/Yukon...just enough to not be truly badge-engineered.

Pretty damn close.. I'd still call it a badge job.

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Pretty damn close.. I'd still call it a badge job.

2008.chevrolet.tahoe.20125893-E.jpg

2008.gmc.yukon.20126287-E.jpg

2008.chevrolet.tahoe.20125888-E.jpg

2008.gmc.yukon.20126288-E.jpg

Edited by Dodgefan
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I really don't think "badge" engineering is a huge problem of theirs (the Durango/Aspen and Caravan/Town&Country are the only ones), the big problem is just too many vehicles that aren't even close to being competitive or are, somewhat, and just have terrible styling, refinement, materials, etc.

It's time to cut off dead weight like the Compass (why that one never was before...who knows, as it certainly doesn't sell at ALL), get rid of the Aspen, etc.

Even though it too didn't sell well lately, it's a shame the "last" of the eye pleasing, high quality (generally), refined, feature packed, etc. Pacifica had to die, because, in theory, if the rest of their vehicles had the combination of looks, interior quality, refinement, etc. it did, they'd be MUCH better off.

They just need a massive clean house operation...basically. They could do a GM style turn around, but are so far below even bare minimums right now, and need so much to get it right...it's not a bright outlook.

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2008.chevrolet.tahoe.20125893-E.jpg

2008.gmc.yukon.20126287-E.jpg

2008.chevrolet.tahoe.20125888-E.jpg

2008.gmc.yukon.20126288-E.jpg

What's your point? The front ends are completely different. The Dodge and Chrysler have everything in the same place and similar shapes. Yukon's headlights are nothing like the Tahoe's. Grilles and bumpers are different too...not really the case with the ChryCo models since the grilles are the same shape and the bumpers are the same.

Going around to the rear, there really isn't much you can do to differentiate the rear of a truck/wagon/SUV, but even here GM does a pretty good job. Badge location is different and consistent with brand marketing (the smaller GMC in the corner looks more upscale than the large bowtie across the center), the GMC has a blacked out D-pillar, and the taillamps have a different light order, as well as the Yukon's being a brighter red than the Tahoe's, which look smoked to me.

Roof rails are also different.

Basically, Tahoe/Yukon have a very different presence to them, while the Chrysler and Dodge do not.

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As for Chrysler having too many similar models, therefore they need to be cancelled...I think this is just stupid. Chrysler is going to be bankrupt if they keep designing completely unique vehicles that have no commonality whatsoever.

Utilizing the same platform across different brands is SMART...the problem is Chrysler's execution. Dodge and Chrysler compete for the sae buyers. The Charger costs more than the 300 at comparable equipment levels. The Avenger/Sebring are the exact same vehicle.

What Chrysler needs to do is figure out what POSITION they want each brand to take to attack the market. Right now it's like watching a soccer team where everyone thinks they're goalie. Pick a mission for Dodge, pick a Mission for Chrysler, and pick a mission for Jeep. Develop product line accordingly. Avenger/Sebring should both stick around, but one should be decidedly uplevel from the other. My pick would be the Chrysler. That means it needs a nicer interior. Make the Dodge a little sportier, too. Give it a harder-tuned suspension. Add content to the Chrysler without taking content away from the Dodge in the process, and suddenly you'll have two vehicles that target completely different markets.

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The Yukon and Tahoe are about the same as the Aura and G6. They're not designed differently enough from each other, but I wouldn't call them as close to each other as the Durango and Aspen.

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You guys are splitting hairs: the Aspen/Durango is an obvious rebadge, as is the Tahoe/Yukon. It takes more than a new set of headlights and a grill to fool the public - that is something Detroit hasn't learned yet. The G6/Aura look nothing alike, I would agree; however, the Aura/Malibu's origins are showing. GM even contemptuously called the Suburban the same for GMC and Chevy for a while - gimme a break!

A lot of Detroit's woes can be traced back to their perennial contempt for the intelligence of the American public. Detroit has to get out of its ivory tower and wake up. Why can Ford build a great car in Europe (the Focus), yet deliver a near POS in America?

The entire reason Plymouth died was its irrelevance in the market place, only accelerated by the K-car fiasco. With the badge and grille swapping that ChryCo did in the '70s (Imperial/NewYorker/Newport/St. Regis debacle anyone?), it is a wonder that company is still in business.

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It takes more than a new set of headlights and a grill to fool the public - that is something Detroit hasn't learned yet.

It's not just Detroit...

Why can Ford build a great car in Europe (the Focus), yet deliver a near POS in America?

That's a damn good question.

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The new "badge engineering" spiel is just a ploy by the media to eliminate domestic divisions.

There are few, if any badge engineered detroit products now. And if there is; then we need to start talking about Toyota/Lexus models and Honda/Acura.

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ALL automakers badge engineer so much it isn't worth keeping track of anymore...

Too many duplicate vehicles in a market that can't absorb them HAS to be addressed, by EVERY automaker. small and midsize SUVs are packed on lots everywhere....

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Durango/Aspen appears to have different bumpers, lights, fenders, hoods, rear doors, wheels, interiors and rear quarter panels. The only shared exterior sheetmetal appears to be the front doors, hatchgate and roof. Tahoe/Yukon share much more sheetmetal and nearly the entire interiors. I prefer the looks of the GMT900s of course, but I'm just saying...
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The Yukon and Tahoe are about the same as the Aura and G6. They're not designed differently enough from each other, but I wouldn't call them as close to each other as the Durango and Aspen.

Not quite..the Aura and G6 share no sheetmetal or interiors; the differences between the Yukon and Tahoe are quite trivial.

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The Tahoe and Yukon have the following parts totally different from one another:

  • Front fascia assembly.
  • Headlights.
  • Hood.
  • Front quarter panels (I can't believe you guys don't notice this).
  • Rub strips.
  • Taillights.
The Durango and Aspen have the following parts totally different from one another:
  • Front fascia assembly.
  • Headlights.
  • Hood.
  • Front quarter panels.
  • Rub strips.
  • Rear-quarter panels.
  • Taillights.
  • Rear bumper fascia assembly.
So, yes, more was changed on the Durango/Aspen than on the 900s. However, you would think that with all of the money that Chrysler Corp. spent in trying to differentiate the Durango (MCE) from the Aspen, and vice versa, they would have made the changes more significant and apparent. The styling is so similar overall, you'd never really notice the differences until you looked really, really close. The 900s actually have lesser changes made to them, and yet you can't really say they look like blatant re-badges and also can't say they look totally different from each other. Edited by YellowJacket894
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The Tahoe and Yukon have the following parts totally different from one another:
  • Front fascia assembly.
  • Headlights.
  • Hood.
  • Front quarter panels (I can't believe you guys don't notice this).

You mean the front fenders? Yes, they are different.

  • Rub strips.
  • Taillights.
  • The Durango and Aspen have the following parts totally different from one another:
    • Front fascia assembly.
    • Headlights.
    • Hood.
    • Front quarter panels.
    • Rub strips.
    • Taillights.
    • Rear bumper fascia assembly.

    The Durango and Aspen also have different rear quarter panels..

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    You mean the front fenders? Yes, they are different.

    No one really seems to notice that there's a Colorado/Canyon-esque character line running a few inches down from the top of the headlight and stopping a few inches away from the door, though (the Escalade also has it, as well, but it stops at the fender vent). You ask someone to name all of the differences, and they over look it.

    The Durango and Aspen also have different rear quarter panels..

    Thought I typed this. Oh, well. Error fixed. :)

    Edited by YellowJacket894
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    No one really seems to notice that there's a character line running a few inches down from the top of the headlight, though. You ask them to name all of the differences, and they omit it.

    Yeah, but that's a trivial thing...the greenhouse and doors and the same, as are the rear quarters and hatch...that's where the GMC and Chevy look much the same..

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    Yeah, but that's a trivial thing...the greenhouse and doors and the same, as are the rear quarters and hatch...that's where the GMC and Chevy look much the same..

    The doors, greenhouse, and hatch are also the same on the Durango/Aspen and that's also the main area where they look the same, as well, just like the 900s. The rear quarter panels are the only thing that's actually been significantly changed on the Aspen, compared with the 900s, which have no changes in this area.

    The changes done to differentiate the Durango/Aspen are just as trivial as the ones on the 900s, when you look at the big picture. They don't add up to much.

    Edited by YellowJacket894
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    Not that it makes much more of a difference, but shouldnt we be comparing the Escalade and the Tahoe instead of the Yukon? The Aspen doesn't really compete with the Yukon...

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    Not that it makes much more of a difference, but shouldnt we be comparing the Escalade and the Tahoe instead of the Yukon? The Aspen doesn't really compete with the Yukon...

    Sure it does..it doesn't compete with the Escalade. The Escalade really only has one competitor--the Navigator.

    Edited by moltar
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    The doors, greenhouse, and hatch are also the same on the Durango/Aspen and that's also the main area where they look the same, as well, just like the 900s. The rear quarter panels are the only thing that's actually been significantly changed on the Aspen, compared with the 900s, which have no changes in this area.

    The changes done to differentiate the Durango/Aspen are just as trivial as the ones on the 900s, when you look at the big picture. They don't add up to much.

    Technically, the rear doors on the Aspen are different. The flares are smoothed on the Aspen versus creased on the Durango.

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