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Negative Media Posting

I have started to post Media Articles concerning Chrysler, Nitro and the Auto Industry. Scalewoodman has replied to several (good thing) that suggests that only positive Links be shown. These posts are not my opinions but what is out there for everyone else to read. Sorry, there are just not many positive articles about the America Auto Industry these days.

I have never bought what I considered a non- American, non Union built car in my lifetime and will not. Years ago I was a Parts Manager for a Chrysler Dealership and have always enjoyed following the Automotive Industry. I had planned to order a 2007 Nitro R/T but when the Dealer found out that a “Full-Time” 4X4 was not available, I said forget it. I had a Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited V-8 and wanted to replace it with nothing less than FT 4X4 that was shown on the Nitro web site (in error). If the 2008 Nitro becomes available with the new Jeep Selec-Trac III full-time four wheel drive two speed active transfer case, I will order one.

I have started watching Auto Line Detroit on the Speed Channel that is also on the Web at http://www.autolinedetroit.tv/. I find it very interesting.

As one would expect much has been covered about the Chrysler sell there but I was most impressed by comments of Guest,
Buzz Hargrove, National President, Canadian Auto Workers Union.

Also it was noted that Europe and Japan have no MPG requirements since gas is taxed higher there. The US Government here requires carmakers to have higher MPG which leads our drivers to spend less on gas and drive more, thus use more gas, NOT less. Never thought of that fact before.

Instead of taking charge since the 1978 gasoline shortage and starting to aggressively tax gas instead of beating up on all the car companies to get better mileage, do you think we would be where we are now? I don’t think so. Sure no one now wants $7 gas, but hasn’t everything gone up more since 1978? If gas was $7 now, do you think Chrysler would be manufacturing some of the vehicles they do now? I doubt it and we would all be better off and so would Chrysler! What do you think?
 

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Agreed

Good post.
Lack of full time setting and the higher than necessary rear floor height (for my dog) put me off at first as well; it seems like a step backwards from our aging Grand Cherokee w/ SelecTrac (which at least has the full time setting/slip coupling for crappy weather). I detest the elevated platform on the Commander to accomodate the 3rd row and there's no 'delete' option for that. After consideration, the Nitro seems like a good alternative although I am the Marketing guys' worst case scenario-- syphoned off from a more profiitable, more expensive vehicle-- they obviously tried to avoid by not including a full-time setting on the Dodge. Plus I'm now in the over 50 category to boot... so much for consumer profiles.

While we are very loyal to Jeep the drivetrain is basically Jeep anyway on Nitro-- 3.7 engine, SelecTrac (w/o full time setting). Size and mileage are comparable.

Since my big problem is a steep driveway, I was thinking the 4X4 full time setting on Nitro would be adequate and it's $5-10K less than another Jeep... It's not clear that the full time setting on the base Jeep Grand Cherokees is any better than the Part Time setting on Nitro in worst weather.

I am not so harsh with Jeep/DCX on the fuel mileage front... Being market driven, they have produced cars that the consumer wants to buy. The most profitable sales (and they are desperate for ca$h profitability) are always the larger SUV's and the market has been very strong to offset the poor margins on the little ones. While the eventual fuel price increase has been predicted, the consumer is very fickle. Remember, cars are a FASHION industry and primarily an EMOTIONAL decision; when the winds shifted towards higher fuel costs, the consumer blows the other way (not to mention the anti American attitude that pervades the business-- some of this well earned by V8 diesels that blew up, aluminum blocks that warped, terrible quality <UAW vs. the Rest of the World> and dust buster vans <I'm using GM for these examples>.

How 'bout the 1.8 turbo VW engine? Yet the market lines up for these vehicles and asks for more... Camry's cylinder scuffing/oil use... the # of recalls of Toyotas recently... other examples come to mind. Remember when the Japanese blamed their seat belt latch problems on the American slovenliness? Is a Saab still a Saab when it's a Trailblazer w/a funny nose?

Anyway the point is that the consumer is very fickle and most purchase decisions are emotional. My former neighbor dumped his Jeep Grand Cherokee for a Saab 9-5 in a panic last summer when the gas prices went up... it cost him $10-$15K to save about 6 miles per gallon on <12K miles/year. Idiot. But typical of the 'boutique' consumer.

Nitro seems like a good compromise of size, utility, and gas mileage.
 
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