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SalesAutoWeek's Editorial Director Blasts Jeep, October Jeep Sales
Posted by mike on 2003/11/4 0:00:00 (658) reads

The guy who publishes AutoWeek implores Jeep not to dilute the brand.

Keith Crane, the chairman of Crain Communications, Inc., publisher of "Automotive News" and "Automotive News Europe" as well as Editorial Director of "Automotive News" and "AutoWeek" recently wrote an editorial in AutoWeek magazine blasting the decision by DaimlerChrysler to make a "less-capable" Jeep.

Here's a snippet:

A few weeks ago, the COO of the Chrysler group sent out the first hint that the company will change the Jeep.

Not every Jeep has "to go down the Rubicon Trail," Wolfgang Bernhard said at a press event in Texas.

But Chrysler just doesn't get it.

Whether every Jeep goes off-road doesn't matter. Every Jeep that is sold to a consumer anywhere is expected to have certain traits and characteristics, including the ability to go anywhere the driver wants. Anything else will cheapen the brand and destroy much of the value that it has developed over the past 60 years.

Many products exceed the demands of the consumer: watches that are far more rugged or of a higher quality than the user ever will need, boats that outperform the expectations of the buyer.

The success of the Jeep brand has been exactly what Chrysler seems intent on destroying.

Unfortunately, it wouldn't be legal for us to reprint the entire article here, and the article is only available to subscribers to www.autonews.com - sooooo, if you want to read the rest of Mr. Crane's blasting of DaimlerChrysler, you'll have to register (it's not free).

Jeep October Sales Up

Finally, there's some encouraging sales news out of the Jeep division - while Liberty sales where flat compared with October, 2002, both the Grand Cherokee and Wrangler posted significant increases over October of last year (8% and 60%, respectively). Here's the numbers:


       DaimlerChrysler Corporation U.S. Sales Summary Thru October 2003
                                Month Sales   DR %      Sales CYTD     DR %
              Model           Curr Yr  Pr Yr Change  Curr Yr   Pr Yr  Change
  Wrangler                     6,485   4,052   60%    58,163    54,984    6%
  Liberty                     14,815  14,792    0%   133,364   139,314   -4%
  Grand Cherokee              18,968  17,626    8%   163,718   178,801   -8%
    JEEP BRAND                40,268  36,470   10%   355,245   373,099   -5%

 

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Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Nupantswithzipper
The way i look at it is that jeep is down 5% for the entire line for the whole year with the only bright spot being the wrangler with a gain for the year to year sales. The month to month really means nothing unless your looking to see maybe when more people buy wranglers. You know it was Wrangler weather in october for most of south plus the incentives so im sure this helped to boost wrangler sales/

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: v8
Want to increase jeep sales.. Put a V8 in the wrangler. Put a V8 in the liberty. DCX you know you had one in the liberty for a prototype..
Put the HEMI in all the jeep line up...

Charge more for them and people will come.. Look at the ram! People love the Hemi.. SO get jeep into the action and ride the hemi wave for awhile. But don't put out a weak as* jeep. That is are reasoning behind paying maybe more for a jeep than an escape or a geo tracker. Because In a jeep you can and will go through the woods to grandmothers house and back..

Could you imagine the sales increase if you had the Hemi in the liberty?? It would out tow everything in it's class.. Maybe make the hemi version just a tad longer.. Hmmnnn but then again.. This all sounds too easy..

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Gene
Daimler only wanted to buy, yes I said buy, Chrysler to get the Jeeps.. They view the rest of the company as disposable.. Now it appears the Jeeps are disposable too...

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: xjgary
Take a look at the sales figures. The most trail capable Jeep is the Wrangler. It's sales increased by 60%. The next most trail capable is the GC with an "old fashioned" solid front axle. It's sales increased 8%. Ther least capable Jeep, with IFS, and being butt ugly to boot, got a 0% increase. Yet DC wants to build more vehicles under the Jeep name that are not trail capable. What are they thinking!

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: jeepz
Hey jeepers2 I sell jeeps too..

I do get some who complain about the old cherokee..
But getting them to over come the looks of the liberty for some is the hardest part..
I agree with the last commment.. The grand isn't the best in quality..

I think only time will tell on the engine.. but I have heard that the new grand is going with the 3.7L and so is the wrangler in a year or two..
Chrysler is doing away with the I-6. Why is beyond me. That motor is bullet proof..

Hope sales are going good for you jeepers2.. very slow over here. very slow.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: rich
Yaaaa! sour krount!!!

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: jeeper2
In all reality.. If the jeeps in the past would have been of better quality the liberty and the grand sales would be in a better spot than what they are..

The biggest complaint from customers. They don't want another jeep. They had too many problems with them. Espically the cherokee model.. So they are affraid to go to the liberty, or grand for that matter.

Most have jumped over to the ford explorer or the chevy trail blazer. Hoping to get better quality.

Once people realize the liberty is really the best built jeep ever made as far as quality fit and finish, and very dependable... People will lets hope come back.. Lets hope the new grand comming out next year is built as good as the liberty..

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Lobolitanina
Those percentages can be misleading to the eye.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: JGCLover
Those damn Germans are getting rid of the brand that helped defeat them in the last world war. How dare they! We need to have somebody from this country buy back Chrysler, Jeep, and Dodge (not to mention Eagle and Plymouth) before the whole thing is either ruined or gone. I don't want a Jeep ML320, and that's what it seems to be coming to with the next model!!

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Jebidia
Just a guess but my thinking on the jump in wrangler and grand sales is attributed to the large incentives on the 03' models for both and still an impressive incentive on the 04 models. Interested to see how the sales hold up for the next few months with the 03' off the lot...

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Buyer
Woohoo! Sell me one for dirt cheap!

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

I owned a Ford Exploder. I will never make that mistake again. My Jeep Cherokee is light years more reliable than my Ford ever thought of being. My Cherokee never has any problems. The reason I'm afraid of the Liberty is that it doesn't have an I6 engine or an AW4 tranny. Plus - despite all the hype - I'm not convinced it can go offroad with a Cherokee.

MSN.COM rates XJ's more reliable than Explorers or even 4-Runners. Look at consumer reviews from any site and you'll see how satisfied people are with the Cherokee.

The Grand Cherokee is a different story. Probably due to the fact that it is a total Chrysler product. We'll see if the Liberty holds up to the Cherokee after 300,000 miles. LOL

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: jeeper2
Hey it may sound funny.. but when you are selling them and that is the response you are getting......

Grant it alot of people still like the look of the cherokee over the liberty..

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: MalcomXJ
jeeper2, that is the most delusional form of spin I've seen yet as to why the Liberty isn't meeting sales expectations. Congratulations.

LOL

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Bowser
The Jeep brand is known for a specific something, and that's obviously for it's off-road capability.

We all buy a Jeep because of that. The grille and the head-light arrangements are what give it away and it is how we recognize those vehicles - even at night. And I think that is something special, even extroadinary, to all of us. I'm sure all of you feel the same way, but I think it's great when people notice that I'm driving a Jeep. If it was a Mitsubishi they might not know what it is, but when they see the seven-slot grille and a happy driver they know it's a Jeep vehicle. Sure, it's silly, but it's a Jeep thing - what we drive is so obvious to everyone else they don't even think twice about it. They look at me and my vehicle at a glance and say 'Nice Jeep' without having to decipher something on the hood - it's just something that everyone knows and is easily recognizable.

And, just like the recognizability of our Jeeps, the heritage and capability are equally important to us.

What is DaimlerChrysler losing with Jeep? What's so hard to make about them? Sure, they're specialty off-road vehicles; but they're also the most popular and loved SUV in the world. How do they think they are going to make it more popular by watering it down? Don't enough people own them already - aren't they popular enough already? Jeep vehicles make up 20% of American SUVs - what does DaimlerChrysler think they're going to change?

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: OR Bruce
Keith Crane is right on the money. Make the AWD vehicles Eagles, Dodges, or Chryslers. A Jeep should always have Jeep capability. They should all be "Trail Rated." It's one of the world's best known vehicle names. Keep it special.

Poster Thread
Anonymous
Posted: 1969/12/31 19:00  Updated: 1969/12/31 19:00
 Originally posted by: Sean M.
Whoever this Wolfgang Bernhard thinks he is, he needs to take his butt back to Germany and shut up! Go ruin mercedes and leave Jeep and the US alone.

Jeep has always been the leader and done things first in the market, not followed others. All DC wants to do is pump Jeep (aka: cach cow!) for profit and ride the "SUV" craze.

If someone at DC had something other than sour crount between their ears they would bring back the Eagle line and make the entire line ALL WHEEL DRIVE. This would be a perfect division to compete with the likes of Subaru and the others making AWD cross over vehicles. Just leave Jeep alone and let them do what they do best, make 4x4 TRUCKS!

Go ruin Mercedes Wolfgang! Not that the name already isn't, along with every other luxury CAR maker that now makes "SUV's". Come to think of it we don't have unlimited speed limits in the US so why do Mercedes need to cruise at 150MPH? Just start selling GEO storms for $60k, the public will gobble them up if you put a Mescedes hood ornament on them. DC can make some big profit on those!
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