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WranglerChrysler CEO on Electric Vehicle Production
Posted by weaselox on 2008/12/17 11:15:46 (1630) reads

CNN posted an interesting article about the ramp-up of their electric vehicle production.

While General Motors is moving ahead with its Volt electric midsized car, Chrysler says it already has plans in place, not just for electric cars, but also for minivans and even off-road vehicles.

Chrysler's strategy hinges on keeping it cheap. The carmaker will dispense with flashy designs in exchange for low cost and flexibility. And it plans to pile on more electric-powered models quickly once the program launches in 2010.

"We aren't a one-electric-vehicle company," Lou Rhodes, Chrysler's vice president for advanced vehicle engineering, told CNNMoney in an exclusive interview.


Interesting stuff. If you think about the long production times of the CJ, YJ, and TJ then it would make sense that the JK will be around for sometime if they're rollling out a ENVI JK in 2010. That's after 3 years of production with the traditional platform.

The question we should be asking is, will the JK stick around in it's current format (body style) for until about 2015 before it's next redesign? That would be about the same period of time as the YJ and TJ.

The only other question that comes to mind is this: Are these Jeeps as wheelable as our current jeeps? I keep reading that they are, but something tells me there's going to be a heavy price to pay for breakage on these things.

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01TJ
Posted: 2008/12/18 11:52  Updated: 2008/12/18 11:52
Just can't stay away
Joined: 2006/8/25
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Posts: 109
 Re: Chrysler CEO on Electric Vehicle Production
Auto makers re-design vehicles WAY too often. Look at the Cherokee (XJ). It was around in the same basic form for nearly 20 years and likely made some big profit for Jeep. The big three actually asked for money from tax payers to re-tool for new vehicles. This would not be necessary if they kept vehicles around for 10+ years.

As far as wheelability of an electric vehicle who cares. Buy a used CJ, YJ, or TJ is you want to wheel. Let's face it not that many people actually take their Wranglers off-road anyway, if they do it is on terrain a car can drive on anyway.

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myhotwheels22981
Posted: 2008/12/18 15:02  Updated: 2008/12/18 15:02
Home away from home
Joined: 2002/3/22
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Posts: 247
 Re: Chrysler CEO on Electric Vehicle Production
Who Cares?

What is the point of having a Rubicon-Capable Off Road Vehicle if it isn't driven off road...?

What is the point of buying a worn, used, deteriorated Jeep that is questionable in reliability?

I drove my 97 TJ for 165,000 miles but only took it into snow and light off roading until the end of my ownership, when i did do some 'wheeling, but by then, it was unreliable and prone to breakage.

So I swore that wouldn't happen again, and when I get my next Wrangler, it's going straight off road...but my point is that if I'm paying for a product, I expect it to perform as advertised.

Now, Rubicon capability translated into durability in my case, as most cars don't make it 165,000 miles, but most Jeeps do.

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myhotwheels22981
Posted: 2008/12/18 11:31  Updated: 2008/12/18 11:31
Home away from home
Joined: 2002/3/22
From:
Posts: 247
 Re: Chrysler CEO on Electric Vehicle Production
If anyone has doubts as to the capability of an electric/hybrid, hub mounted motor JK, look no further than the RST-V military vehicle. (Reconnisiance, Survellience, Tactical)

It has the same setup as the proposed JK and has been under military evaluation for the past few years.

I would further call for the Engine to be replaced with the Reformer Fuel Cell, such as the one from NUVERA, where any combustible fuel is converted to Hydrogen (and CO2 and Water as a waste product), and subsequently to electricity...That way the battery pack could actually be smaller, replaced in part by a small Hydrogen tank, which is in effect, a battery for the Fuel cell.

The Military is moving to hub-mounted motors for the very reason that relying on a motor and a transmission is like puttin' all your eggs in one basket...If one electric motor fails, there are 3 left to get you out of harms way, or in our case, off the trail.

One last point, is the reduction of warranty liability...With an electric/hybrid JK, if there is a failure, it is simply plug and play component replacement of a broken part....The easiest to replace being the hub mounted motor, which could technically be replaced in the field, on the road, or on the trail.

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RUBICON
Posted: 2008/12/17 12:56  Updated: 2008/12/17 12:56
Home away from home
Joined: 2005/7/13
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Posts: 377
 Re: Chrysler CEO on Electric Vehicle Production
Possibly more expensive but less mechanical items to break. You no longer have the transmission, transfer case, and traditional axles -- things that could break and leave you stranded.

You move to four motors (one in each wheel). The likelyhood that all four motors would fail on the trail is slim, meaning you still have motors to power you back home -- something you won't have if you burn out your transmission.

Pluses and minuses to both systems I am sure...

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trevorj
Posted: 2008/12/17 17:32  Updated: 2008/12/17 17:32
Just can't stay away
Joined: 2006/6/30
From: Kelowna, BC
Posts: 124
 Re: Chrysler CEO on Electric Vehicle Production
Good point, dude.

We have a tendency to fear the unknown. I'm middle-class and white, therefore I fear change
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