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LibertyPoor Liberty Crash Results, Grand Wagoneer in 2005?
Posted by mike on 2001/12/20 0:00:00 (756) reads



From The Toledo Blade:

DaimlerChrysler AG's Jeep Liberty and Ford Motor Co.'s 2002 Explorer sport- utilities were rated "poor" in bumper crash tests by an insurer- funded group, each sustaining more than an average $1,300 in damage.

The Toledo-built Jeep Liberty, introduced in April and one of Chrysler's best-selling vehicles this year, averaged $1,417 in damage in the four 5 miles-per-hour tests, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety said yesterday. The Explorer, the best-selling sport-utility and subject of lawsuits over fatal accidents involving Firestone tires, averaged $1,358 in its tests.

The tests are designed to imitate the kind of impact that often occurs in commuter traffic and parking lots.

In a statement, Ford said it designs its bumper systems to meet government standards, company requirements and customer expectations, not the tests of the institute.

DaimlerChrysler spokeswoman Angela Spencer Ford said the Liberty met all federal requirements for safety including bumper tests.

The worst result of four tests on the Liberty - causing more than $1,700 in damage - occurred when it backed into a flat barrier, shattering the rear window and damaging the rear windshield wiper motor and tailgate.

Adrian Lund, the institute's chief operating officer, said the Liberty performed so poorly because of its spare tire mounted on the back. The spare extends beyond the bumper, so the bumper doesn't absorb any of the impact.
As for a all-new Grand Wagoneer, Jerry Flint wrote in Forbes.com that we'll see an all-new Grand Cherokee and "long overdue Grand Wagoneer" (with 3 rows of seats) in 2005. Jerry also talked about upcoming models from all the major auto makers - here's a snippet:

For 2004, GM looks strong again: a new Chevy Malibu, Pontiac Grand Prix and Buick Century. The new Chevrolet Warrior will be half Trailblazer, half pickup. Chevrolet also gets a modern SUV; Cadillac, a "crossover," or car-platform-based SUV.

Ford will have a new Mustang, which won't have to compete with the Camaro and Firebird, which GM is dropping--at least for now.

Chrysler has lots of new stuff, Merrill says, but it looks like too much to me. Expect a Neon-sized car built on a Mitsubishi platform and new rear-wheel-drive designs for the larger Chrysler and Dodge sedans. A Chrysler CS crossover is coming, and the Durango SUV gets a badly needed redesign. Two halo vehicles seem likely: a pickup with a daring futuristic design, plus a European-built coupe, the Chrysler Crossfire, built with Mercedes parts. As I said, this plan seems ambitious.

For 2005 GM has big product launches: Chevrolet Cavalier, Impala and Monte Carlo, Pontiac Grand Am, Cadillac Seville and Buick Bengal roadster. That is a lot of cars.

In 2005 Ford is to get a new Taurus, a Taurus-based crossover, and some new small Focus models, possibly a new Lincoln sedan and new Ranger pickup.

Chrysler gets a new Grand Cherokee in 2005 and a long overdue Grand Wagoneer (a larger Jeep with three rows of seats).

Keep in mind that plans as far ahead as 2005 are subject to change. Ford will surely try to push up some vehicles. The Taurus and the Ranger are candidates, but there are some reports that Ford may push back products, like the Mustang, to save money. GM may slow down, as new product boss Robert Lutz makes changes to improve the breed. It's going to be exciting for those with the right stuff.

Check out the entire article, there's lots of juicy info...
 

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Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Jeepers Creepers
D/C is recalling another 4600 Liberty's because a piece of inner trim panel can come loose and strike the driver while driving. These recalled vehicles were produced between July and late Sept 2001.

So far on the Liberty we have a) poor bumper test results b) defective airbags c) rollover in speed tests d) loose inner trim panels.

I guess there are some bugs and design flaws to work out in D/C's new and improved Jeep.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Gary with an XJ
I think the Rubicon TJ is a great idea too. It saves us big bucks by equiping it the right way from the factory (see current issue of Four Wheeler for details). But, as others have said, why not do the same for the other models in the Jeep lineup? Also, for many of us, the TJ is just too small, that's why we own an XJ, KJ, MJ or whatever, so why not also offer a stretched TJ with the Rubican package. Also, I'd love to see the Turbo Diesel option offered in the US! My XJ now has 200,000 miles on it and I'd like to replace it, but Jeep makes nothing I'd want to own, so maybe I'll just keep it and buy a car.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Tj girl
Stock Jeeps can & do go over the rubicon trail I should know I am an Engineer At DC.
we are also comming out with a Wrangler model called the Rubicon, that will be by fair be the best offroad SUV. You can buy in the U.S.A & can easily handle The Rubicon trail.
You will be able to see it at the Detroit Auto Show this Jan. 2002
JEEPS RULE !!!!!!!!

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: rich
Ooh..temper. Powered-coated?
All caps! You must have been angry.
Too much salt

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: rich
Is this salt versus bracket discussion gonna go on
indefinitely? Were kinda off the track. Ok we now
know Michigan must have the most incredible
weather and obsession with salt in all the
contiguous 48! The point is, the rear mounted
tire on XJs and TJs sucks as it is.
It should should either be moved under(sucks)
on top(maybe) or mounted higher and attached to the bumper or frame.
Otherwise we can all buy those aftermarket set
ups for a mere 4-500 bucks!

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: mr jeep
here is my comment

Yeah, well Bob, for some reasons michigan roads especially northern roads eat Jeeps right up. I agree some of the newer Jeeps have gotten better and that washing definitely helps. But, if a Jeep comes with a 100,000 mile warranty on the body, it better not rust through. The other reader implied that his Jeep doesn't rust and he drives his in the ocean or something-good for him. But, the salt mixtures in Mich differ than other states, different laws etc. I have a 91 Jeep commanche and I bought it well within what the body should have been covered and the doors at the bottom rusted out as well as the rockers-Chrysler wouldn't fix it. I had a 87 Jeep Cherokee and bought it after about a year old, guess what it never rusted at all-all the rockers were galvanized-and i never washed it! My point is more brackets more rust...

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Bob
Ocean guys have to put up with salt water, which
really can do a number on your vehicle.

Bo

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: rich
Yes the extended bumper would be fine.
I think another idea is to mount tires
similar to after market mounts such as those
heavy duty tubular bumper/mount set ups where
most of the slow impacts are absorbed by the
bumper and the tire is held higher on the back
to avoid other vehicles pushing it through
your rear body.
Hey why not do what they showed on the Dakar?
The vehicle they SHOULD have produced. It was on
a rooftop sliding mechanism. Ahhh too bad.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Utah
A step bumper would be a good idea Bob. Plus if it stuck out further as you suggest, maybe they could design it to absorb a low speed impact so that there would be almost no expensive damage in a bumper crash test.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: utah
and one more thing Matt....nobody PLANS to back into a lamp pole. That's why they are called accidents. But as they say " Accidents Happen " so that's why the Institute does these tests. To determine rates. I hardly think that they are part of a large conspiracy against SUV's. After all they tested the Trailblazer and it's damage was around $1000 less than the Liberty. So where's the conspiracy?

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Matt
My suggestion is that everyone should just relax! The test was a Liberty backing into a flat barrier (a wall). Unless you plan on backing into a wall or lamp post, the spare tire on the tailgate does not matter. The bumper will contact another vehicles, not the tire and bumper. These tests are designed to make trucks and SUV's, which environmentalist liberals love to hate, look bad. By the way, the Liberty has the spare tire holder as part of the tailgate, just like the Wrangler. It does not use a seperate swing away carrier. I had my Wrangler for 4 years and 100,000 miles. It spent a lot of time fishing on the beach, exposed to saltwater, and I never had any rust around the spare tire carrier.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: mrjeep
here is my comment

I have always like the looks of a spare on the back of a jeep-it's always been that way since 1940. The reason it was an idea dragged off the ole MB'S-there was no room for passengers if they put a spare behind the seats. The old XJ always had it as an option up until about 1997 when they changed the rear bumper to plastic. I remember back about 94 seeing a brand new Jeep with the 'off-road' package at the time with the spare on the back-factory installed. The biggest pitfall of that spare on the outside is not so much the damage when running into things, but the brackets rust! For awhile when they first introduced the XJ-especially the cherokee chiefs had the brackets bolted on the side of the body then the rest were on the fiberglass-which didn't matter too much-but they are rust spots-period! They finally went to the bracket bolted on the bumper only. Give the new Liberty's about 2-3 years and then look at the back ends-they'll surely rust. I like the tire on the back but is it worth the problems? You'll surely need the 100,000 mile rust through warranty when it is all said and done.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: utah
The press often comments negatively about the fact that the spare tire for the Cherokee is inside rather than outside the vehicle. I have never really considered it to be a negative to have the spare inside. First, I like that the tire is inside. That means if I need to use it I don't have to crawl under my vehicle to get at it....or work extra hard to remove it. I never notice it when I drive because of where it is positioned in the back, and it really does not take up all that much space.

So, when the Liberty came on the market, one of the great new features according to the auto press was the spare tire was on the outside. Well, I guess it might not be that great a feature after all. It appears as though it can cause a lot of extra vehicle damage if you back up into something at 4 or 5 mph.

To me D/C had no option but to put the tire on the outside of the Liberty. There is no room for it behind the back seat anyway. Plus....they obviously measure the vehicle length including the tire...to help pump up the so-called improved specs of the Liberty over the Cherokee.

I think I would be pissed to do that kind of damage to my vehicle in a 5 mph fender bender. That can't be good for insurance rates which are usually tied directly to cost of repair.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Matt
Check out the latest issue of Four Wheeler Magazine (the four wheeler of the year contest). The Grand Cherokee Overland won, but that is not the big story. According to them, Jeep has actually designed an IFS that really works. The Liberty took second place, but just slightly behind the GC. It only lost because it was slower, and had a small back seat. Check out the results--the Liberty scored HIGHER in trail points than the GC. Now, don't get me wrong, I loved my YJ, I loved my XJ, and I love my 2001 WJ (up-country package). But can't we give credit where credit is due? The experts who have ACTUALLY DRIVEN A LIBERTY OFF-ROAD say it is a real Jeep that can really wheel.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: rich
Gary that was just the complaint with so many TJ owners! They did stretch a TJ..it was called the Dakar as you may recall, and DC chose not to make
it. I love my TJ but I also have kids,a dog, etc.
But DC didn't listen and instead concentrated on that damn Liberty. I say bring back the CJ6! That
has to be the sweetest vehicle Jeep ever made.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: MRJEEP
here is my comment

RICH, it is all this salt in michigan that drives my blood pressure up ha ha. Utah, or 'Ontario', remember mich is right next to you guys, but yeah I know about your salt problems too (I spent 2 months rebuilding my 78 CJ-7 body this fall). And as far as the snow goes michigan beat ole buffalo as far as snow fall this past week goes they had well over 80 inches and they are asking the state for emergency relief. In fact this is nothing really new the Sault in mich got hit hard a few years back as well as Buffalo and declared it a national disaster and called in the guards for a couple of weeks. Believe me I was there and the only thing that saved my a.. was my faithful Jeep XJ, one of the only things that could drive around town, except for a few pickups-4x's. When you have to dig 2 feet to a payphone to make a call the snow is deep. Jeep girl, all that I can say is that I hope you engineers at DC are listening to us Jeep people and don't screw up a good thing. When others had abandoned there cars by the hundreds in snow covered Sault St Marie, I was able to drive, my cherokee XJ had to go over snow covered ice formations in the road about a foot high in spots (bolder like), I literally wore out the gas tank skid plate due to the sharpness of the ice. But the trusty XJ made it through with only a 132,000 miles miles on the trusty 4 banger. So, speaking as a Jeep owner who has had dozens of Jeeps and is an engineer as well, please go in the right direction with the Jeep product line, example the Rubicon...

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: XJKen
This is in response to Tj girl. I have heard about the Rubicon TJ and I think
its agreat idea. Now, try and convince the other designers that the Grand and
the Liberty need Rubicon models in their lineup. We already have enough
luxury Jeeps, we need more trail capable Jeeps right out of the box.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Joe that owns a Miata and calls it a Jeep
A........ everybody knoes a stock jeep v-hickle
cans like, go ova anytin n stuff. DC tests aul
stock jeeps ova da RubiCON.... n drive dem
ova like...... terty foot bouldas n stuff...... any
stock jeep can easily handle 10 gzillion feet a
snow..... don believe me's...... we'll I's seen
it.... knoe..... I's actually driven my stock
cherokee ova foorty feet a snow one day n
stuff.......

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: utah
Hey...Ontario Canada must be the salt capital of the world. Nothing like white rings around the cuff of your pants and white stains on your shoes as a fashion statement!

Seriously...it's gross the amount of salt that they put on the roads here. And that salt is great for any vehicle too!!! My old 78 CJ-7 was quickly turning into a bowl of frosted flakes by the time I sold it in 1993. More holes in it than my old gym socks!! It was still running good though.

Seriously though....How bout Buffalo NY with 7 ft of snow since xmas eve!!! What kind of lift kit would you recommend for your Jeep to handle that?????

Happy New Year everybody!!


Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: MRJEEP
here is my comment

WELL, IF YOU DON'T LIKE THE SALT CONVERSATION, RICH, THEN WRITE SOMETHING YOU WANT TO TALK ABOUT-I REALLY DON'T GIVE A RAT'S A.. ANSWER TO THE REAR TIRE PROBLEM, MAKE A POWERED COATED STEEL BUMBER AND MOUNT A SWING AWAY TIRE TO IT-THERE'S THE F'IN ANSWER..

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: mrjeep
here is my comment

Yeah, my point was, Bob, that Matt stated that he never had a problem and live in 'salt' year around with his Jeep. Well, did he wash it everyday? What year was it built? Salt in Mich hangs onto a vehicle because of the contents and slush mixed together, Mich has severe weather changes summer its high 60's to sometimes 90, then it drops to 40 below in the winter then goes upto 50 a week down the road-all this time the vehicle is subjected to this drastic change. I am not arguing the fact that people near the ocean are subjected to salt? But do most people like Matt drive drive their Jeep on the beach (ok maybe 30% at the mostttt) and the others get it in the air, and so Matt is saying they have it so much worse because of that? How are the roads salted in the winter? So many factors, but Michigan vehicles in the winter might just as well having a guy stand by the side of the road spraying their vehicle with salt, sand, slush, 12 hours aday...and then see how the brackets stand up to that...

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Bob
Mr. Jeep, I wasn't speaking of road salt per say,
but you have valid point.

My point was that people who live by the ocean, or
spend a lot of time there not only have to put up
with road salt (as you do), but also saltwater
air, etc. For these folks "salt" is a 365 day a
year issue. And as you stated, it's very
corrosive

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: rich
I had my 87 Wrangler from summer 86 to early 95.
I always washed and waxed it. In the spring and
fall I did a quickie spraypaint job on the interior since I had no top at all from May to
November. I live in the Boston area with plenty of
salt air, snow roadsalt etc.
Even after 2 rear collisions I had no rust. Though these collisions eventually weakened my
rear tub corners significantly, which is why they should mount the spare on a frame or bumper set up.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Joe that owns a jeep
I agree with Mr jeep about rust. I live in Mi. also & rust is a big prob. My 91 wrangler always would develop rust on it's hinges but my 97 has no rust on it except for it's undercarriage witch I repaint every spring the new Tjs are a 100x better then the older Wranglers in this regard.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: mr jeep
here is my comment

Well Matt, you must be lucky because I have seen plenty of wranglers and Chevy blazers in the dealership getting repainted because of rusted tailgate hinges. I have looked at lots of used wranglers over my years of jeep buying with rusty hinges. The only jeeps that I have known not to have paint problems were the 87 Cherokees painted colorado red-they had more galvanized parts on them that didn't rust. I live in Michigan and guess what, whatever we have rusts-period-some vehicles worst than others, I have known of several people with fullsize dodge pickups 2-3 years old all with the center lower doorskin rusted right through! And vehicles like the wrangler with those f'in brackets rust and have to be repainted. So, maybe you ocean guys don't have the extreme tough temp's that us michigan people have to put up with...

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Bob
It's not just backing into something. It's also if
you're rear-ended, something you have no control
over...

I just think vehicles with rear-mounte spares
should have step bumpers that extend out beyond
the spare tire. In fact, a step bumper would be
very useful on the Liberty, since it is so tall.
It would mean accessing the roof rack much easier,
that's for sure.

The Liberty is not the only vehicle with this
problem.

Anyway, just my .0

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: utah
I'm very relaxed.

A couple of things though. The Liberty was backed up into a pole, not a flat wall as you claim. Now backing into a pole is something that could happen fairly easily. You don't see the pole behind you out of your side mirrors and you back into it at 4-5 mph.

Also, consider the fact that the institute tests all vehicles the same way....but the Liberty produced much poorer results than most others. Why?...cause the spare tire impacts the pole first and then drives itself throught the glass and into the rear gate increasing the actual damage to the Liberty.

So the question is....why such a poor thought out design? It's not hard to figure out....there is no where inside the Liberty to put the tire. There is not enough room behind the back seat. So they put it on the rear tailgate. Once there, D/C designed the Liberty more for looks and function (split tailgate), then for impact resistance.

Again, the cost of repair and the amount of claims, affects a vehicle's and their owners insurance rates....so these tests are something to think about if you are looking to purchase a Liberty.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: MIchael Emery
Damage tests on the Liberty are clearly a concerning issue and one that will affect my buying decision, such a substantial compromise (read design oversight) to ruggedness is not something that I would have expected from a Jeep.

It would be interesting to see other reader suggestions on how damage might be best mitigated through a use of accessories. The addition of a towbar would perhaps do very little in this respect. Given the spare tyre overhang and swing gate design, I struggle to identify appropriate protection bars that would suit the Liberty without looking stupidly utilitarian.

So any suggestions?

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: XJKen
I put my full size spare on the roof of my Cherokee. I ordered the rack from the Mopar catalog, and installed it in about ten minutes. It looks rugged
and its out of the way.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Mark
It seems that every news story about the new KJ is negative. It's interesting, however, that Four Wheeler Magazine just voted it a very, very close second to the Grand Cherokee as four wheeler of the year. Both the ZJ and KJ were light years (in overall p[oints)ahead of the other 6 SUVs tested. Jeep must be doing something right!

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Bob
Utah, I'm surprised that you find having a spare
hanging off the rear causes a great deal of damage
in rear-end collisions. This is not *new* news.
Every vehicle with a rear-mounted spare has this
same problem—and the insurance industry has been
complaining about this issue for years...

This is why I too prefer the spare to be mounted
inside the vehicle. If Jeep had designed the
Liberty with a bit more rear overhang, thus having
a deeper cargo area, the tire could indeed have
been put there.

Oh well, this is just one of a number of things
Jeep could have done bett
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