Why Jeep Wranglers caught fire on the Indiana car carrier

A couple of days ago, photos from the Illinois Toll Road’s social media feed made a stir as a car carrier loaded mainly with new Jeeps was clearly on fire. Two Wranglers were most badly burned, and one of them was a 4xe, which could have stirred some anti-EV hate. An inquiry to Stellantis North America media relations yielded no answers. [Read more…]

33,500 buyout offers—how many lost jobs?

Brampton plant workers

Stellantis is asking over 33,500 employees in the US and Canada to take a buyout or early retirement, according to the Detroit News. The breakdown is 31,000 hourly workers and 2,500 salaried ones, though not all of those will be lost jobs: there are numerous workers on indefinite layoff at the moment, and the actual … Read more

4-26 is Hemi Day 2023

426 Hemi

Created solely for racing, the famed 426 Hemi was a cross between Chrysler’s first V8 engines, which had hemispherical heads, and the big Cross-Ram Wedge engines which were winning on the street but failing in NASCAR—the company’s second completely new V8 design. The engine people believed that the wedge engines would have an edge if they … Read more

Early retirements, buyouts for 3,500 FCA US people

Brampton - final Dodge Demon

A UAW local just announced that Stellantis is seeking 3,500 early departures from FCA US via buyouts and retirement offers, according to Automotive News. The company has around 40,500 hourly workers. (See update.) The news comes via a letter to members from UAW Local 1264, which reported that the cuts will be widespread (AutoNews posted … Read more

Meet the 2023 Dodge Journey

2023 Dodge Journey (Trumpchi) in Mexico

It’s the 2023 Dodge Journey, but you can’t buy it in the United States.

There is very little information available on Dodge’s web site. The Stellantis North America media site doesn’t mention it at all. But the 2023 Dodge Journey is on sale in Mexico, with over a thousand sales reported in March. There are three trim levels, SXT, Sport, and GT; the Sport raises the price to MX$667,900 and the GT to over MX$700,000. It’s not a new story, really—the ’23 follows a 2022 model. [Read more…]

Confirmed “for real:” new Ram pickup to be made in Brazil

According to Brazilian publication Autos Segredos, which posted this rendering, a medium-sized pickup dubbed Rampage is set to do battle with the Toyota Hilux (Tacoma) and other pickups. It will, they claim, share a unibody structure with the SUSW Jeep Renegade an Compass, and to have a conventional opening. The name “Rampage” has not been … Read more

Brampton is not “at risk,” according to insider, officials

Brampton - final Dodge Demon

According to a source inside Brampton, Stellantis officials recently visited the plant and told workers that Stellantis was happy with its work—and had big plans for its future. They confirmed that the plant would have a major transformation to make electric cars on a new, flexible platform.

Last year, Stellantis announced that it would be spending nearly US$3 billion to upgrade the Windsor and Brampton plants. A major battery factory, a joint venture with LG, is being placed in Windsor to support the Canadian factories, both of which are in Ontario. The company could not commit to the number of shifts, but previously announced that it expected to run three shifts. There was some concern expressed over wage growth and the need for competitive costs. [Read more…]

The Mopars getting big tax credits

4xe logo from Jeep Wrangler Rubicon

Three currently sold vehicles from Stellantis will get hefty tax credits under the Inflation Reduction Act, which also ends credits for a number of foreign and domestic cars. The full $7,500 credit goes to the Chrysler Pacifica PHEV, while a still considerable $3,750 goes to the Wrangler 4xe and Grand Cherokee 4xe. No Mopars are … Read more

Is Dodge using a Hurricane, or going all-BEV? (Analysis)

Dodge Charger Daytona Banshee BEV spoiler and engine bay

Analysis. Social media, forums, and comments sections have all seen complaints about Dodge’s future, which many claim will be “all BEV.” In point of fact, there’s never been any indication that this is Stellantis’ plan for Dodge—only for Chrysler.

What we know so far is that Chrysler-the-marque, as opposed to the no-longer-around Chrysler-the-company, is planning to go all-electric by 2030, and at last report was only working on STLA Large—but these are subject to change. FCA US, on the other hand, was looking at being just 50% electric in 2030. That means it’ll still be 50% not-electric.

The last credible installment from our sources claimed that an LB Challenger was indeed on the way, powered by a Hurricane twin-turbo straight six engine…
[Read more…]

New York Auto Show ending soon—This is some of what you may miss

camp jeep 2023

The New York Auto Show is closing soon; this is a quick overview of what you might miss if you’re not there, starting with the outdoors attractions—the Toyota Thrill Ride (professional drivers in a small paved area do make for some thrills) and Camp Jeep, also a thrill ride as you go up and down a steep, tall steel-surfaced roller coaster in your choice of Jeeps. [Read more…]

Dodge’s “gateway vehicle” is finally reaching dealers

2024 Dodge Hornet

The Dodge Hornet, after a long sea voyage, is finally reaching dealerships. 

Dodge called the Hornet a “gateway vehicle.” Some thought it would be a hybrid Challenger or Charger to bridge the gap between gas-powered models and EVs; but it was a gateway in different ways—

A gateway to Dodge for first-time buyers
A gateway between FCA and Stellantis—between SUSW and STLA Small
A gateway between gasoline and electric
A gateway between Dodge as “only big cars and trucks” and Dodge as a full line 

One could also call the Hornet a gateway between past and future; the original Hudson Hornet was a full sized car, sold in several body styles, that won NASCAR and AAA racing championships with its six-cylinder engine and either two-barrel carburetor or twin single-barrels (Twin-H Power). [Read more…]