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LibertyLiberty Sales Off to a Brisk Start, Durability Testing
Posted by mike on 2001/6/4 0:00:00 (2022) reads



Customer anticipation for the 2002 Jeep Liberty as led to some promising early sales numbers for latest member of the Jeep family...

``Dealers report the all-new Jeep® Liberty is going out of the showroom as fast as it is coming in,'' said Gary Dilts, Senior Vice President -- Sales. ``Liberty is bringing in additional traffic and it is a younger, more knowledgeable shopper.'' Dilts added that dealers have ordered more than 50,000 Jeep Liberty models.

Liberty production is ahead of schedule, said Dilts, currently at a rate of 700 units per day.

Here's a look at the sales number for all Jeep models for May, 2001:


                                     Month Sales   DR %    Sales CYTD     DR %
    Model                          Curr     Pr   Change   Curr      Pr  Change
                                    Yr      Yr             Yr       Yr
    
    Wrangler                       8372    9881   -15%   28942    38119  -24%
    Cherokee                       8752   13060   -33%   51979    60904  -15%
    Liberty                        1602       0     -     1602        -    -
    Grand Cherokee                15503   24926   -38%   90718   111434  -19%
    JEEP BRAND                    34229   47867   -28%  173241   210457  -18%
     

Also in Jeep Liberty news (is there any other kind of news these days?), DaimlerChrysler is reporting that the Liberty has logged over 2,000,000 miles during its testing. Here's a snippet from the press release:

By the time Liberty reaches dealerships early this summer, engineers will have logged more than 2,000,000 actual test miles. The Jeep Liberty will have passed durability, development and reliability testing more severe than its customers will ever put their vehicles through, even before the first Jeep Liberty leaves the showroom.

Beginning early in 1999, the first prototypes of Liberty's engines and transmissions were proven out in durability testing using dynomometers. Engines and transmissions were then put into Grand Cherokee bodies, called "mule vehicles," to begin in-vehicle testing. These tests included severe acceleration and deceleration exercises and trailer tow testing with maximum trailer and cargo loading, under both extreme heat and altitude conditions as well as tests on the famed Rubicon Trail in California. European-style testing focused on extended periods of high-speed driving. For those markets, trailer tow testing was done with lighter weight trailers at higher speeds, consistent with customer use in international markets.

"Liberty was tested using Jeep-specific durability cycles to ensure that it is rugged, tough and durable," said Jack Broomall, Director, Jeep Vehicle Development, DaimlerChrysler Corporation. "In addition, we have quite a number of market-specific tests that we run to ensure these vehicles meet the requirements of all of our customers around the world."

Taking it to the Extreme
Liberty's body and chassis also must pass the rigors of Jeep durability testing. Liberty vehicles underwent extreme body torsion and suspension articulation in tests such as "AK3." AK3 is derived from the original test used to qualify Jeep vehicles for military use at the Aberdeen, Maryland, Proving Grounds, and includes 15,000 off-highway miles. Durability cycles using gravel roads ensure body surfaces have been properly protected from stone impingement. To ensure Liberty has excellent corrosion resistance, vehicles were driven through salt-water troughs and then baked for extended periods of time.

Engineers also conducted a series of development tests to ensure that the vehicle is rugged enough for all environments. Engineers took Liberty to the extreme heat of Death Valley, the high altitude of Pikes Peak, the humidity of Corpus Christi, Texas, and the frigid cold and snow of Fairbanks, Alaska, to validate all components and systems. Jeep Liberty's hallmark off-road capability was proven on challenging off-highway trails including the Rubicon. High vented axles and waterproofed underbody connections were used to ensure Liberty passed Jeep's water fording tests, conducted through more than 20 inches of water. Car wash testing was done to ensure that water from the high-pressure wash did not intrude into the passenger compartment. Engineers even went out in the middle of the night, with Liberty's camouflage removed, to conduct lighting, water intrusion and wind noise testing under the cover of darkness.

"The rugged and durable qualities of the all-new Jeep Liberty benefit on-road customers, as well as our off-road enthusiasts, encountering daily obstacles such as pot-holes, flooded underpasses and inclement weather conditions," said Broomall. "The whole idea is to make sure that every component and system functions properly, and does so for the life of the vehicle."

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Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: CrazyJeep
Jerry, that is my point exactly. Your typical Sport-Ute buyer does want a cushy car-ute with the “rough and tough” looks! The automakers HAVE NO CHOICE but to make a vehicle that appeals to the “car buying populous”. If the automakers choose to ignore the general publics’ desires, then they fall. Its that simple.

Now, Jeep seems to have decided that they need to appeal to the masses. BUT, they “seem” to have done it BETTER than anyone else!!! Forged iron IFS components in a “cute-ute”??? Think you’ll find those in a Tracker,
V, or X-terra??

Yuppies?? OK, I’ll go along with that. I say yuppie=different. And lets think about one thing… the Willy’s Jeep help to win WW I. It truly was the vehicle of the future. BUT wouldn’t it have been nice to have our TJ back then?? Our cars have changed, our world has changed, our tastes have changed, WE have changed, why can’t Jeep change too?

Keep this in mind: We have a right to our own thoughts, feelings, and impressions. If I had my choice, the Liberty would be bigger, solid axle, and loaded with a V8 and a stick shift. I’m not the norm for the average Sport-Ute buyer. As long as I am the minority to the rest of the car buying public I am gonna have to make do with what I get! I believe in Jeep, I’ve taken the time to study their history. I am loyal, I would buy a Liberty if I needed it right now, because it’s a Jeep!!!



Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: CrazyJeep

I saw an interesting news report on TV a few nights ago. Basically it said that the consumers were no longer buying the full frame Sport Utilities in high volumes. Rather the Japanese automakers had won the Sport-Ute buyers over to the more “driver friendly” car based Cute-Utes! They believe that the full frame midsize Sport-Utes (Blazer, Explorer, Grand Cherokee, Discovery, etc) will fall to the roomier, more comfortable car based models. A representative from Ford was quoted as saying, “If you don’t already have one of these new ‘Cute-Utes’ in your lineup or at least on the drawing board, you are most likely too late to catch the rush!!” Funny thing about the news report they filmed a good portion of it in an interview with a Jeep salesman in front of a bright red Liberty!!!

I would not be at all surprised if the Libery ends up replacing the BOTH of the current model Cherokees. I just hope they put a V8 in it when they do! Looks like the car buying public may have spoken. Kudos to DC and Jeep for not waiting in the wings! I’d rather see people buying Jeeps than Nissans ANY DAY!!!



Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: d
from what i have heard, it will be the best chrylser has ever produced to date. it will better the pt's launch quality

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Carter
Babs and Tim is/still is a tool, both of you don't
get it. I'm not saying your stupid, but you are
amazingly deficient at understanding the
simplest concept. Babs, you in particular
scare the hell out of me because you seem to
have close ties to the auto industry and
perhaps even Jeep. Tim is/still is, I'm not
going to make any assumptions about what
kind of person you are,I'm just going to point
out the obvious; You're a Prick.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Tim Is Still A Tool
"Takes one to know one"... wow I'm devestated... and typos are a letter or two... say BMW... its spelt in its pronouncation

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Tim
Takes one to know one......... was a typo

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Tim
Say what you want yuppies, anytime you wanna take your little cute ute KJ wheelin, bring it on. Cut on the Cherokee all you want but the Cherokee is what saved Jeep and without it they would have died off, and I could care less what you say about the piece of shit mercedes, you wanna pay 90,000 dollars for that frigin Kraut mobile go ahead, Ill stick with my XJ. I could care less who builds what for the KJ, I will never own one, Ill keep driving and rebuilding used Jeeps and while you girls r trying to build up your pretty little wannabe trucks Ill be going everywhere you do stock! You go ahead and bash AMC all you want, you praise Slopar for being different, AMC was doing it twenty years before Chrysler ever thought about it. And by the way, I am a redneck and would never be caught in a mercedes fag mobile in the first place, unless it was an M5 of course, Mercedes builds nice cars but they have no place building trucks.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: babs
Tim,

Your `84 XJ was probably great, so too was my first 250cc motor bike, but that has nothing to do with the price of tea in China.... Jeep quality was so bad that the company (AMC) used service parts as it's only profit center...

You can say what you want, but consumet report magazine and JD power showed to the US auto industry that it was assembling junk. No question. Unless you want to disprove Deming, Taguchi and ALL the quality Guru's of the World. And by the way, don't give me red white and blue bull: It has nothing to do with it. The KJ is being assembled with the world best manufacturing and quality control methods.

I won't tell you what I do for a living, but I can tell you this: The G Klass CAN handle the Rubicon, and so does the stock Hummer. So does the KJ, only Petersen's off road magazine has sold it's soul (They wouldn't be the first - but that 's a different topic.)

XJ quality was at 200 things gone wrong/100 vehicles, all throughout the 90's. I love the XJ, I've owned a few, but let's face it, it's a rough rattle trap with a lot of idle boom.

1) Can you say articulation? Your XJ has no, read no rear suspension articulation. Those rear wheels in the air really help your cause.

2) Hydrolock: The air intake on XJ's is so low that any prolonged water fording will result in having a I6 lock...

3) Tires: The last years of XJ came with lame 225/75/15's Goodyear RTS's... More appropriate on Montero's... Even the Up-country had those. I know, I owned a '98 up country XJ for a while.



Listen, It's OK not to love the styling, and it's even OK to be afraid of change. But face it: The XJ is gone, gone forever. In ten years, you'll have a hard time finding one on the road, and your choice will limit itself to the KJ. By that time, 100 yahoos will be selling lift kits, including MOPAR.




Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Tim
Just like I said the Liberty is a turd, crap for motor and to much D.C. crap on it, any Liberty guys wanna go wheelin? I actually would like to see what that thing can do, If it can offroad then fine, but I sure as hell wont buy one, Im actually thinking of purchasing an AMC era Jeep, better quality, say what you will... Oh yeah Dillinger, I saw that Jeep cherokee/wrangler on I love jeeps.com, very nice work, sweet looking jeep, looks modern, and no IFS, thats the best part. I still say Jeep should have just put coils from the Grand on the back of the Cherokee, that would have been sweet.
Long Live "Real Jeeps"

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Dillinger
Liberty shortcomings....posted 3 months ago and still unanswered!

What you got...is a no go on the motor...as I predicted. Got it to the bottom of a steep hill (paved) and nailed it....Nothing.Nada...compared to my 10 year old 4.0L Inline 6.
And to beat all, in spite of the sensors in each cylinder bank...I definitely heard pinging!

They built this from the ground up? Why did I see the same old unsupported slip shaft..sticking out from the lone bearing a good 12-14" before it comes in contact with the driveshaft?! You know all that vibrations that accompanied Cherokees off of showroom floors in 97-2001 ? Well expect them to rear their ugly heads in this model as well...at just about the time the warranty ends, if not before.
And a rumored first recall...for tranny mishaps! One was seen on a towtruck already. Stuck in Park, and not ready to budge. The tranny is a direct transplant from the plagued WJ model that it spoiled. So DCX has had since 1998 to fix this...but it went into Liberties unchanged.

New unichassis design? Where? I think it looked about the same if not thinner than a 1998 unibody I investigated last week. Don't stick a jack directly under the uniframe...you'll dent the unichassis if you do.

Does the exaust double as a skidplate? I mean if it's going to dangle under the vehicle that low, this should have been the thinking.

The front "Dana 30" doesn't look like one I've ever seen. I bet it won't accomodate any locking devices out there until one is developed for it.

6" of clearance at each wheel? 7" at the differential support? My XJ clears 9" at the very lowest point under it's differential.

Aluminum halfshafts? On a 4200 lbs. vehicle with increased torque figures...running in 4-lo? Aluminum carrier inside of that aluminum casing?
Can you say WJ Dana Aluminum 44?

Breaking new quality control ground....I think not. It's dragging an awful lot of baggage from previous DCX blunders. And in order to be as great as they say it is, you think they'd have addressed the bigger components first.

It's all DCX "spin" and "hype". First year buyers will be duped out of some serious cash for this loser, if they don't investigate and avoid it like the plague. DCX is willing to bet that most buyers won't be concerned with these issues until it's to late and they've got their money.....
Kinda like offering a guarantee, and figuring half of the people won't bother with the postage to send the product back for a refund

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Tim
The Liberty is a turd, sorry thats how I feel, Ya got a liberty and ya took it through the mud, hmmm...... Ive seen Geo trackers n rav 4's go through the mud. Ive got an XJ, a real Jeep, solid axles,two speed transfer case, and nice n simple straight six, ya think that V-6 is gonna give you the durability the inline does? Doubt it, good luck working on it when the warranty runs out. As far offroading goes, Im sure the kj does fine down the two track and in the mud, any 4 wheel drive sport ute would, but I wouldnt recommend taking it down a rocky trail, that IFS will show its true colors then. If ya want carlike manners and rack n pinion steering, go buy a car!!!!!!!

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: CrazyJeep
Sorry I meant World War 2. Either I typed it wrong or Mike's server trimmed me. And yes, I have read A LOT about Jeep's history and heritage!!

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Malcom XJ
CrazyJeep,

1. Forged-iron IFS? Perfume on a pig.
2. Is this really a better cute-ute than the rest? Really? If you're comparing the Liberty to it's competition, check out the Subaru Forestor. On-road handling, trim levels vs. price, economy.
3. "...the Willy’s Jeep help to win WW I."
Huh? Dude, crack a book.

The Liberty hits it's target perfectly. I hope it does well, if nothing else there are a lot of people's jobs hanging on this. However, can we please stop pretending this is an enthusiast's vehicle? Any and all mods we're going to see for this tub are going to be cosmetic. It'd be like buying fog-lamps for your all-wheel-drive minivan. Nothing wrong that, and I've grown to accept that this is the future of Jeep.

I'm sad to see it, but maybe it was inevitable.






Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: OME 99 XJ
The word of emphasis to decribe the KJ in all press clippings is "rugged". OK, whatever.

The KJ is bigger than the XJ. Wrong. Different standards have been used to measure the KJ and the XJ. If you take just the "body" of each car, exclude the spare tire, big molding, etc, the XJ is longer, just as wide, but not as tall.

The KJ has more cargo space than the XJ. I dont think so. the XJ reported measurements have been altered for the 2001 XJ. The XJ has much more floor cargo space, the only way the KJ comes close is because of the extra space the height gives. The cargo space of the KJ will prove to be pathetic.

I think that the KJ is a fine 'car', and most certainly will appeal to many people, DC is doing an excellent job of touting this vehicle to appeal to all types of buyers. Rugged yet smooth, tough yet refined, blah blah.

I agree with Utahs statement--If Jeep wants to appeal to the Cute-Ute segment, most of the buyers could care less about the 'rugged off-road capabilities of the Libery'. I guess Image is everything. Buy a Jeep for image, but if you want the best in cute-ute cars, what consumers of that segment are looking for, buy an Escape. Better ride, better gas mileage, better cargo, better price. But if you actually want a rugged vehicle, there will be plenty of used XJ's to buy.



Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: scramblerken
I agree with many that the Dakar would have been the better choice, but based on sales, I think us old time Jeep fans are going to have to make room for the new crowd. take a look at the article in the Toledo Blade:

http://www.toledoblade.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?Site=TO&Date=20010704&Category=BUSINESS02&ArtNo=107040033&Ref=AR

If you read between the lines, you will notice that Wrangler sales are down. With the problems DC faces in trying to make the Wrangler meet safety rules, and since DC wants to close and demolish the old Toledo plant where the Cherokee and Wrangler are built, it might not be long before the end of the Wrangler in the Jeep line.

I hate to see this happen, but it looks like the off-road crowd is not buying Jeeps, or there are just not many off-road fans left. Sadly, most customers want the fancy station wagon with Leather seats and power sunroof instead of a real capable SUV. Well, at least it was a great ride for 60 years. It won't be long, and Jeeps will look just like the Dodge line.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: XJ ACTION
hey fellas, I don't wanna bust on anyones chops. I just picked up my kj today. I got it very muddy. (dissapointed in the factory tires) But it didn't get stuck where my XJ does. I tell ya what-- I orignally bought it for my wife... I thought that it was a good girly cute-ute. NEGATIVE! it is an awesome vehicle that has been born from fine off-road sciences, JEEP expirience, and serious modern engineering. No kidding.

Guys I hate to admit it. The KJ is a serious vehicle--on and off road. The reason there are no serious off road KJs is because there just simply hasn't been enough time for third parties to manufacter monster truck parts for it. Give it time.... every one is afraind of a little change at first.

I swear it'll grow on ya.



Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Optimist
I'm finally driving one ('02 KJ limited) and I love it! I used to have an '89 xj.... and the Liberty is everything that jeep says it is. I parked them side by side. The kj is much taller, longer, but not much wider. As for cargo room--- it's got more when the rear seats are down, but just a tiny bit less with the rear seats up. The relocation of the spare was a great idea. As for looks. The Liberty looks so much more imposing in person than pictures can show. I almost bought a new xj, and I'm so glad I went with the Liberty instead. Sure I probably won't drive it over the Rubicon, but how many XJ owners have done that? It'll get me where I want to go. Comparisons to cute-utes? Give me a break--- if you're comparing it to a RAV or anything else, you obviously havn't seen a liberty in person, driven it... or given it a chance.
Try it out, it may just surprise you. If not, don't buy one.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Matt
here is my comment Some of you guys really need a lesson in Jeep history. The only "comfort-and-civility-be-damned" model was always the CJ and later the Wrangler. What about the Willy's Station Wagon? The full size Cherokee and Wagoneer? The Wagoneer was the "luxo-ute" of it's day! And our beloved XJ? It was the yuppie wagon of the 80's. The Grand Cherokee, which was supposed to replace it was (and probably still is)the best on-road riding SUV on the market. So Jeep has ALWAYS tried to make comfortable riding trucks. It's just that by today's standard, the XJ is not very comfortable. I had a '95 for 206,000 miles, and my 2001 WJ that I traded it for simply blows it away! On road and off! Jeep sometimes invents a segment (the CJ or the Willys Wagon), and sometimes they perfect it (the S-10 Blazer came out a year before the Cherokee). The Liberty is the latter. In a market segment dominated by car-based utes with basically front-drive car platforms with an AWD option, Jeep has made a vehicle that blows them all away off-road. And for those skeptics who think only Jeep is singing it's praises, you should read what Jeep experts are saying. Mark Smith (founder of the Jeep Jamborees) took a Liberty up Cadillac Hill on the Rubicon, and said "This is a Jeep!" Moses Ludel says that the Liberty is "real and Rubicon tested", and that "Overall, expect that the agile highway behavior and off-road prowess of this evolved Jeep 4x4 chassis will keep diehard Jeep enthusiasts smiling." Rick Pewe (who actually drove a Liberty over the Rubicon) said "that the new IFS worked pretty darn well!" And speaking of the IFS and V6 he said "Jeep engineers have taken great strides to make sure these items work in a Jeep environment." Now, these three guys have probably forgotten more about Jeeps this week than the rest of us will ever know-they are real experts. In addition, they have actually DRIVEN A LIBERTY! So, if they are impressed, maybe the rest of us ought to give it a chance, and see what happens?

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Carter
Malcolm XJ is right. Jeep has sold out.
Period. EVERYONE that posts here knows
the Dakar should have been built. Jeep made
a choice. They could have continued in their
tradition--which is really a niche market. Or,
they could try to see where the market is going
and build a vehicle for that percieved market.
Jeep is not supposed to be a modern market
driven company that constantly changes with
the times. Jeep is an unapologetic
comfort-and-civility-be-damned American Icon.
And it looks like Daimler is prepared to throw
that icon status aside so that they can be like
everyone else.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Malcom XJ
Sorry to be a wet blanket, but...

"...today the
Liberty is far and away the best when it comes to on and off road ability"

I've seen anti-Liberty sloganeering (and taken part it in), and pro-Liberty sloganeering.

On-road ability can be measured quite effectively. How many G's (or, more accurately, how high a fraction of a G) can the Liberty pull on a skid pad test? What are it's braking numbers? How does it compare with the competition? While the thought of examining the on-road capability of a Jeep amuses me, let's be honest: there's no rationale for the claim of "best" when compared to car-based "cute-utes" like the Subaru Outbacks and BMW suv's of the world.

As for off-road ability, this is more subjective. The fact remains, however, that the Liberty has yet to prove itself anything other than another IFS-wannabe alongside the Explorer and Pathfinder. Articulation is something ANY IFS system this side of a Hummer is missing out on. This is an engineering fact (and yes... some of us posting here *are* mechanical engineers). I have no doubt that this machine made it through the Rubicon Trail. There are any number of ways through the route, and let there be no doubt: this is a PR ploy, pure and simple. The Liberty is *not* capable of rock-crawling in stock form, and is *not* capable of being modded into a rock-crawler.

The days of purpose-built Jeeps passing themselves off as family vehicles is long gone. However, I'm laughing at the advent of SoccerMomMobiles passing themselves off as rough-ready Jeeps.

While it's one of the great, simple thrills in life to buy a new Jeep and bathe in the glory of capability... beyond the hype and PR from DC this is a road machine and a road machine with some very capable competition (if road manners, economy, and utility are the benchmarks). There is very little in the way of lineage beyond some carryover driveline componentry and a seven-slot grill. As for the "Spirit of Jeep" being carried on, again I'd ask you to take a look at the designers and show me one from the AMC days (which, in my opinion, are the ones responsible for building the brand beyond the war image).

What do we have? No lineage, through design (like the solid-axle Grand) or otherwise. The Liberty is most definitely something new for Jeep, and is an attempt at massive profitibility (versus niche profitibility).

That's not necessarily a bad thing, but make no mistake: this isn't a Jeep made for the dirt... and it's silly to pretend.


Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Utah
Everyone seems to be making good points about the Liberty vrs other cute-utes. Maybe, as a "cute-ute" the Liberty will succeed, but I am still not convinced it has all the right stuff. I don't believe that superior off-road capabilities are what the cute-ute buyer is looking for. With high gas prices, mileage ratings are probably a more important factor in someone making a purchase, along with styling, price, and financing deals etc. Is the Liberty the best when looking at all those factors?

I have had some fun posting comments in the past here.....but in all seriousness....I really am more curious than anything when it comes to the Liberty's success. I have a Cherokee Sport with 40 more payments to go.....so I won't be making any purchases for a while.

I have read where D/C needs another "winner" like the PT Cruiser to return to profitability, and the Liberty is one of the vehicles they are depending on for future success. Well, I see un-sold PT Cruisers on lots everywhere here in Ontario, Canada. Just this week DC ran ads for the PT Cruiser which stated there were over 2000 PT's available in Ontario for immediate delivery.

I think the shine is off of the PT now. Will the Liberty take off strong and then fall as well? Time will tell.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Jerry C.
So CrazyJeep -you're saying that car-based "suv"s are becoming more popular than full frame sport utility vehicles. Uh, that's right. In other news, World War 2 is over , too. Look at the people who the carmakers are playing to--yuppies who don't need the substance(capable off-road/hauling,but want the look.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Optimist
I have owned an '89 xj for 5 years now and it has been an absolutely incredible vehicle for me. As it approaches the 200k mile mark, it starts requiring regular replacement parts and extra maintenence that become just plain impractical. The cherokee is a robust, rough riding off road vehicle with great looks. I understand why so many people love it. It's been around for 17 years without much change-- and it's been incredibly successful.
I pick up my new liberty tomorrow! I, for one, am ready for a change. The liberty drives like a dream-- no squeaks and rattles, no thumps from the front end. I'm going to give it a chance and see if can live up to the legacy that it follows. I like the looks, rugged and up to date, but with still some hints of the past. I think they did a great job with the styling. You can see hints of the cherokee as well as the wrangler. I don't particularly like the looks of the grand-- to mini van-ish.
Well-- only time will tell!

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: I Am
I was going to buy a Grand Cherokee, but now am going to buy a Liberty because of the lower price. I'm using the savings to buy a Ducati. Now tell, which would YOU prefer? The Grand is not that much bigger anyway. It's all about value is this economy. I really wanted a wrangler, but its asking price is simply not justifiable. It's about the most basic transportation you can buy today and it's $20K. WTF?

I believe the real reason consumers are not buying full size utes is more because of cost than their car-like competition. The liberty would be an ideal vehicle for me if it had a solid axle. Period. The cherokee was not an option because its styling is arhcaic. It's an ugly vehicle, plain and simple.


Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Matt
here is my comment I disagree that the Liberty will take a lot of sales away from the Grand Cherokee, it is simply too small. I just replaced my 95 Cherokee with a 2001 Grand Cherokee. I was planning on waiting until the Liberty was out, and buying one of them. But after seeing the size of it at the auto show, I decided on the Grand Cherokee. Unlike some people, I actually use my Jeep for outdoor sports-hunting, fishing, camping, off-roading, like it was intended for. And with two children, I need cargo space, lots of it. I would buy a full size, if Jeep made one. But I'm a loyal Jeeper, and wouldn't buy anything else. So, maybe some people will buy a Liberty, instead of a Grand, but I doubt it. It's a great "stepping stone" vehicle. A single guy buys a Wrangler... he gets married, and when baby number one is on the way, he buys a Liberty... when the family grows, he gets a Grand Cherokee. Anyway, I have seen the Liberty in person, and it small. More people room than the Cherokee, but less cargo room. I think it will do well for Jeep. Unfortunetly, the 4X4 world is changing. I think Jeep had to go to an IFS to really compete in this segment of the "small SUV". All the other models, except the X-terra are all car based cute-utes that handle like cars. The X-terra is based on the frontier pickup with leaf springs in the back. Jeep made a vehicle that will ride and steer like a car, but with the best off-road performance of the bunch. I still love my solid axle Grand, and I hope it stays that way. But I think if you look at the reviews in the 4X4 magazines, you will see that Jeep has come up with an IFS that really works. It has a lot of wheel travel, and yes, it DID cross the Rubicon. See, I believe Jan, Feb, or March Four Wheeler, Petersons 4 Wheel Drive, Motor Trend, and Auto Week. The reporters drove over the Rubicon with the Jeep engineers, they did not get second hand info. And they all had high praise for Liberty. Just as a side note---I know that a lot of guys say that "Real Jeeps are built, not bought". I disagree. The only mod I made to my 95 XJ was 30 inch tires. I think that stock performance is the real test of a 4X4. And if Liberty can do the Rubicon stock, what is everyone complaining about? If you take an XJ, add a Rubicon express 4 inch lift, a super low transfer case, a Ford 9-inch rear and swap in a Chevy small block, what do you have? A great performing 4X4. But is it still a Jeep?

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: ScramblerKen
In looking at the sales numbers, isn't anyone at DC concerned about the number of Grand Cherokee sales? I expect to see a drop in sales for the Cherokee, but the numbers for the Grand look very disturbing.
When I talked to our local Jeep dealer, his comment was that many consumers that would have purchased the Grand Cherokee are opting to buy the lower cost Liberty. Both the Grand and the Liberty have similar styling, and it looks like many customers might choose to save a few bucks and buy the cheaper vehicle.
DC might have created a replacement for the Grand Cherokee, and not the Cherokee. Time will tell.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: David Hasselhoff
Being the 100% manly man that I am, I'd never
drive a Jeep Liberty.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Sean
I am curious why DC has decided to blow so much smoke up the American public's posterior orifice? They make it seem like no other vehicle ever produced ever went through testing like the Liberty has. I guess this means that there aren't going to be ANY recalls or problems with the Liberty considering it has been tested so much... NOT!!!

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: steve
here is my comment; If the Liberty is so cool, how come it can not ford water any deeper than 20 inches? My 22 Wrangler fords 30 inches and has gone thru mud almost that deep! (yes I did need the strap to get out again!) How come the rocks on the Rubicon were stacked, so that the IFS would not get bent, and the vehicle could negotiate the trail? Could it be that the IFS is FRAGILE!!! Give me a SOLID axle setup and we will find out if the vehicle can withstand the hammers and the desert of the mojave!! (my STOCK yj has!) my 2c's

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: believable
Let me get this straight... you actually took the time to whine about the whiners. LOL

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: unbelievable
Whoah. There are a whole lot of guys crying into their beer here. You guys are whining more than the PGA since the Supreme Court allowed the use of golf carts. I'm not kidding. Grumpy old men the lot of you. "Back in my day.... we didn't have IFS. We had solid axles and no seats. We had to sit on sticks... and we liked it!"

I don't mean to stomp on your opinions. You are entitled and I respect that. But come on. IT'S NOT THE END OF THE WORLD.... (yet).

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Jerry C.
XJ Ken - I agree with you completely , totally and 100 percent. That sums up perfectly the points I've been trying to get across and I couldn't have said it bettter myself.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: XJKen
The XJ was a classic design, it had to be to remain in production for 18 years.
I believe it had the staying power because when it was introduced it was years
ahead of its time. Think back to 1984 and its competition, which at the time
you could probably count on one hand. The Liberty faces a much different
playing field than the Cherokee did back in 1984. Overall I think the Jeep
engineers did a fine job when it came to remembering the Jeep heritage and
the brands off road ability. I do not feel that because this Jeep does not
have a solid front axle they have whored the Jeep brand. Progress dictates
that the next model be more modern and refined and safer than the model it
replaces. The M38 was more modern, refined and safer than the MB it replaced.
The same can be said for the CJ5 that replaced the CJ3A, the CJ7 that followed
the CJ5 and the XJ that followed the full size Jeeps. The way I look at it the
entire SUV market has grown and been driver by every other manufacturer desire to build a better Jeep. When Ford designed their Explorer their target
was the Cherokee, when Nissan designed the X-terra their target was the
Cherokee, when Lexus designed the RX300 their target was the Grand Cherokee
so on and so on. If you look at the small SUV market (cute-utes) today the
Liberty is far and away the best when it comes to on and off road ability. While
some may have a little more room than the Liberty none can touch its off road
ability, even with the IFS. The Liberty is simply the next more modern, refined
and safer Jeep. Will the Liberty last 18 years, I doubt it. The market is growing and changing to fast now a days, and if Jeep is to prosper they will
have to keep up. In a way I hate to say it because it replaces the Cherokee
but I think the KJ is a good design and yes a real Jeep. Let me get my body
armor on before the attacks begin.......................... OK I'am ready. By the
way I'am still keeping my Cherokee Sport.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Tim Is A Tool
Quick lesson Tim... an M5 is a BMW, and the G wagon and M Class are not the same. G wagon have only be available abroad and through an exclusive distributor in New Mexico, until next year.
P.S. The stop whining like a girl

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: WHAT
Tim, you are a true moron if you doubt the Mercedes G Wagon.... or just a good ol boy redneck

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: babs
Tim,

Your `84 XJ was probably great, so too was my first 250cc motor bike, but that has nothing to do with the price of tea in China.... Jeep quality was so bad that the company (AMC) used service parts as it's only profit center...

You can say what you want, but consumet report magazine and JD power showed to the US auto industry that it was assembling junk. No question. Unless you want to disprove Deming, Taguchi and ALL the quality Guru's of the World. And by the way, don't give me red white and blue bull: It has nothing to do with it. The KJ is being assembled with the world best manufacturing and quality control methods.

I won't tell you what I do for a living, but I can tell you this: The G Klass CAN handle the Rubicon, and so does the stock Hummer. So does the KJ, only Petersen's off road magazine has sold it's soul (They wouldn't be the first - but that 's a different topic.)

XJ quality was at 200 things gone wrong/100 vehicles, all throughout the 90's. I love the XJ, I've owned a few, but let's face it, it's a rough rattle trap with a lot of idle boom.

1) Can you say articulation? Your XJ has no, read no rear suspension articulation. Those rear wheels in the air really help your cause.

2) Hydrolock: The air intake on XJ's is so low that any prolonged water fording will result in having a I6 lock...

3) Tires: The last years of XJ came with lame 225/75/15's Goodyear RTS's... More appropriate on Montero's... Even the Up-country had those. I know, I owned a '98 up country XJ for a while.



Listen, It's OK not to love the styling, and it's even OK to be afraid of change. But face it: The XJ is gone, gone forever. In ten years, you'll have a hard time finding one on the road, and your choice will limit itself to the KJ. By that time, 100 yahoos will be selling lift kits, including MOPAR.




Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Tim
Im sorry, babs is it, there aint a mercedes made that can handle the rubicon, and either can your liberty............can you say rock stacking???!!!!!!! I am talking bone stock rides, cherokees,wranglers, grands, check around a little, you will find that the jeep engineers had to do a little rock stacking to help the kj along the rubicon, and ok you are right, any 4by4 with lockers and a lift can probably handle the rubicon, but IFS with a lift and lockers, good luck with durability on that one, oh yeah and a bone stock hummer without a locker will not handle the rubicon, so your wrong again, I have been driving jeep cherokees since I was sixteen, worked on them, rebuilt the engines and taken them through more extreme conditions than you have probably ever seen, if you want to listen the those A##@$%^s at consumer reports go ahead, thats your choice. My cherokees have been more reliable than any other vehicle that anybody I know has, granted my 84' 2.5 was more reliable than my 96' 4.0 is but I believe that has to do with Chrysler. The reason I bought my 96' with the 4.0 is because that motor was not desinged by Chrysler. So when you get 200,000 miles or more out of that piece of s@#&% 3.7 litre slopar then I will listen to your crap about quality, until then stick to what you know wich obviously aint Jeeps!!

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: babs
I have a great idea:

If you are in the market for a new SUV that can handle the Rubicon, here are your choices:

Mercedes G-Klass: $80,000
Hummer Wagon: $90,000
Range Rover: $50,000
WJ with the up country: $35,000

or, the KJ... $25,000
or the TJ: $20,000 (it's more a toy)

Pick your poison

Oh, yeah, and by the way, ANY VEHICLE WITH LOCKERS, MUDDERS and 4" of lift can handle anything.

Jeep factories assemble Jeeps. Your garages assemble abortions that have nothing to do with the WWII inspired vehicles.

The proof is that no stock Toyota can handle the Rubicon, and that you can find 20+ sites of modifed Toyota and Nissan rides.

Don't buy a KJ. - That's OK, 1200 of them are assembled everyday - and are all getting delivered to happy customers who are reading awsome press reviews.

I drive one, and it's great.


Finally, open the consumer report on light truck and examine the XJ's spotty quality report... How and why are you people fanatics about this vehicle? Move on!

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Dillinger
From the era when technical issues ruled the day and flamers who knew nothing were ignored.

1) How is the 8 inches of suspension travel (with the additional unrefuted other handicaps of IFS design) going to translate into the capability already afforded with 10-11 inches of travel on the Cherokee? Did the other vehicles run with swaybars disconnected to allow their axles to flex freely without transferring sway to the body, or were they hobbled? WHY would Jeep engineers staunchly defend the clear advantages of solid front axle designs in prior years, even going so far as re-designing new versions for subsequent models, then suddenly claim in 2001 that IFS designs were of equivalent capability?


2) Why should a IFS Dana 30 front end with 4.5x5 bolt wheels and narrow-spaced wheel bearings be considered adequate by the engineers for a 4,115 pound 4WD vehicle (Ulrich figures), when the 1974 Wagoneer of the same curb weight was fitted with a solid axle open knuckle Dana 44 with 6x5.5 spindles to correct customer complaints of front axle and spindle failure on stock vehicles? Why is the KJ front end the smallest IFS diff in its size/weight class in the industry (especially given its 4WD mission and Jeep reputation), except to save money?

3) Have the Chrysler engineers corrected the unsupported output shaft, slipyoke and vibration complaints that affected late-model Cherokees, and if not, why not?

4) Have the Chrysler engineers addressed complaints of fuel pump failure by redesigning the '97 & up Cherokee design, or has this been passed on without alteration or improvement?

5) Given the current J. D. Powers quality control survey rankings of Jeep (March 2001), how does Chrysler plan to improve quality control and dealer service with the KJ? Are quality improvements limited to instrument panel fascia and appearance, or do they go more than skin deep? Why should customers buy a first-year model intro of a new Jeep model at all, especially with new features and a new engine with 'fabricated tubular camshafts' and 'composite' intake manifolds, given past experiences with the first-year models?

6) Why is no turbodiesel available to U.S. customers RIGHT NOW, given Chrysler's obvious and proven ability to sell commercially viable diesels that meet current and forseeable emissions standards in its U.S. HD pickup truck market? Why is the Dana 44 unavailable to U.S. customers? Why is Chrysler abandoning the lucrative international market, both individual and fleet sales (one in three Cherokees sold in 1997) by both discontinuing the XJ and introducing a replacement with such little evident production or licensing appeal?

7) What is engine component access like on the KJ, can parts be easily accessed or changed on the trail, and if not, why not, given its forseen uses?

8) How well did the rear axle articulate? Has Jeep changed their axle supplier or quality inspection procedures from the prior supplier, given reports of rear axle assembly failures in late-model Cherokees and Grand Cherokees?



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Anyone want to take legitamate stabs at these? and remain above board and Flame-free?




Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: XJKen
I do not in my own mind believe the Liberty is going to be as good off road as
the XJ it replaces or the Grand and certainly not the TJ. It should be obvious to
most as it is to myself that the Liberty is aimed at the cute-ute market and not
the rock crawling market. If you look back through the history of Jeep there
have been other models that were not built for the rock crawling crowd, the FC,
Jeepsters and Wagoners come to mind. I simply feel that when compared
with the competition in its market segment the Liberty will come out on top. The buyers that want the most room will pick something else. The buyers who
want the best mileage will pick something else. The buyers who want the most
capable off road ute will pick the Liberty. It is true that I am making these
assumptions on the early reports that I have read in the automotive press. My
opinions my change when I see what these guys do with some production
models. While I sincerely admire the Jeepers who build and take their Jeeps
to the limit I do wonder why some of them feel every Jeep should be built for them and only them. I am sure there are plenty of soccer moms out there
who never take their Jeeps off road, but are just as enthusiastic about the Jeep
brand as the rock crawlers and the purist.
.
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