What on Earth is a Jeep Meridian? (Updated)

Jeep Meridian for India

Today, Stellantis announced renewed investment in India, with four Jeeps to be made there—the Wrangler, Compass, Grand Cherokee, and … Meridian. What on earth is a Jeep Meridian, you may ask? This is a Jeep Meridian. The Meridian is a seven-seat version of the Jeep Compass, complete with front wheel drive origins and similar front styling, …

Read more

STLA #2 in Europe again; Jeep drops by thousands

Peugeot 5008

Volkswagen sales might have dropped by 28% in April and 18% for the year to date, but they remain the kings of European sales with a 24% market share in 2022 so far (down from 27% in Jan-April 2021). Stellantis came in second with a 19% market share (down from 22%), with sales in April …

Read more

STLA’s new supply chain chief junks unpopular policy

Dodge Upgraded Driveline

Last week, Stellantis announced that Maxime Picat (prior head of STLA’s Enlarged Europe organization) had been promoted to head of global purchasing and supply chain management. The prior head of purchasing, Michelle Wen, had enforced a new policy which demanded that suppliers pass along any of their own cost savings on work done for Stellantis. …

Read more

Cuda news—or “What became of FCA’s Cuda trademark?”

1972 Cuda

Back in October 2020, FCA US applied for a trademark on the word Cuda, in the category of “Land vehicles, namely, passenger automobiles.” The trademark was published for opposition on February 23, 2021. It seems there wasn’t any. What happened? As far as we can tell, there was no opposition to FCA US (a division …

Read more

Bob Hubbach

bob hubbach

Bob Hubbach, Chrysler’s design manager from 1967 to 2001, passed away on the night of May 14 while in hospice. Hubbach was a co-designer of the highly successful Valiant Charger, Australia’s famed “Hemi Six” powered successor to the Valiant Pacer. This car set a long-standing Australian speed record with its 265 cubic inch inline six, …

Read more

The next phase of Launch Control

Launch Control 2017

When Dodge started selling rear wheel drive cars with 485 horsepower, then 707, then 840 horsepower, traction at the rear wheels became a major issue. One answer was Launch Control, which limited tire slip so you could get fairly consistent results every time—even if they weren’t quite what a professional driver could do. Launch Control …

Read more

Variable output alternators: The patent

T4 1.3 turbo GSE engine

Two days ago, a group of FCA US gained a patent on their fuel-saving alternator system. Some have wondered, while struggling for every last erg of power from their engine, if there was a way to automatically cut power-sucking devices just for those few seconds. Chrysler had already set up a clever system to cut …

Read more

STLA replacing supply chain chief, doubling down on battery recycling

circular economy (cradle to cradle)

Even as the Stellantis CEO argues against battery-electric vehicles in global media, Stellantis is doubling down on its plan to make money from recycling batteries and other car components by creating a new position: Senior Vice President of Circular Economy. The first SVP in this role will be Alison Jones, who is currently in charge …

Read more

Latest threat to Jeep Wrangler comes from—VW and Navistar (updated)

IH Scout

Volkswagen did not make many waves when it purchased Navistar, the truck and diesel engine maker created from the ashes of Harvester International. Then, though, Volkswagen watched Ford’s success in reviving two dead nameplates—Ranger and Bronco—making a sub-brand of the Bronco; and they watched Rivian introduce a new SUV, the R1S, which awed reviewers with its …

Read more

Wagoneer’s Hurricane power cuts gas guzzling

Mopar twin turbo inline six: Hurricane engine

The Jeep Wagoneer with rear wheel drive and the base 5.7 Hemi engine is rated at 16 mpg city, 22 highway.  Going to four wheel drive drops those numbers to 15 city, 20 highway—which, incidentally, is roughly the same as a 1990 Wagoneer with the four-liter six cylinder pushing out roughly half the power. Move …

Read more

Grand Wagoneer gets unusual unanimous vote at Wards 10 Best

2022 grand wagoneer seats

The 2022 Grand Wagoneer was unanimously voted a winner in the 2022 Wards 10 Best Interiors & UX awards. Editor Drew Winter wrote, “The sheer artistry of the Jeep® brand’s lavish new interiors is breathtaking. The Grand Wagoneer easily earns its way into the six-figure SUV club on the power of its interior design.” Editor Christie …

Read more

Cummins may power Ram’s hydrogen future

2020 Cummins logo

Last week, we posted a story on Stellantis’ hydrogen fuel-cell electric vehicles (FCEVs), which are mainly being developed in Europe; but reader RustyDodge reminded us that heavy duty Rams have another path they can follow. Cummins, maker of Ram heavy duty pickups’ acclaimed diesel engines, has for years been working on hydrogen, natural gas, and electric …

Read more