Wednesday, September 28, 2011

NHTSA Opens US Investigation Into KJ Liberty/Cherokee Air Bags


The US Safety Agency the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has opened a ODI investigation after receiving seven consumer complaints on model year 2002-2003 Jeep Liberty (Cherokee) vehicles including four owners alleging that the driver frontal air bag deployed without a crash and three owners alleging that both the driver and passenger frontal air bags suddenly deployed without a crash.
Five of the seven complaints alleged an injury incident totaling five injuries. Six of the seven owners stated that their vehicle was being operated on a residential roadway with three alleging that they were travelling on a highway at speeds of 45 mph or greater when the air bag(s) deployed. Some owners noted that the air bag light had been illuminated, or had intermittently illuminated prior to the deployment. In addition, ODI has received 32 early warning field reports involving 10 injury incidents totaling 10 injuries. The field reports indicated that inspections of the vehicles did not reveal any evidence of exterior vehicle impacts or damage that could have reasonably caused the air bags to deploy. A preliminary evaluation has been opened to investigate the alleged defect. The investigation number is PE11035.
It is not known if any Australian delivered vehicles will be effected and the NHTSA has not yet issued a recall as it is still a preliminary investigation. The Jeep KJ Liberty is sold outside North America as the KJ Cherokee. Chrysler Australia would issue any recall notice if required once the investigation is completed in the US.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Chrysler Expands With New Dealers In Australia

Word on the streets is that Chrysler Australia are ramping up their current sales success with the new Jeep Grand Cherokee, 2011 Wrangler and re-priced Dodge Caliber by increasing the number of dealerships in Australia with new dealers already opening in Melbourne.

The Hopper family who currently own Essendon Chrysler Jeep Dodge are re-opening Werribee Chrysler Jeep Dodge at a new location in Point Cook and have also recently purchased Brighton Chrysler Jeep Dodge, their current service centre in North Melbourne will also become a sales outlet moving to a new location possibly in Southbank. Sounds very much like a monopoly doesn't it!
Rumours are also circulating of possible additional dealerships in the eastern suburbs, likely suburbs are Doncaster and Knox. New dealerships are also rumoured for Brisbane and Sydney.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

New Colours For Jeep Wrangler 2012

Want to see the new 2012 Wrangler in its new range of colours?

Check out the US Jeep website as they have now loaded the 2012 model and you get to check out the new colors including Crush, Dozer and Sahara Tan.

They also show the latest specifications for the Pentastar V6 3.6L engine which is now on its way to Australia.
http://www.jeep.com/

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Jeep Wrangler Pick Up Still In The Mix

There is still life in the possibility of a future Wrangler Pickup But......
Automotive News are reporting that the long awaited Wrangler Pickup is still a few years away.
"The wait for a Jeep Wrangler-based pickup truck isn’t quite over: Jeep brand CEO Mike Manley said that while such a vehicle is still a high priority, we won’t see one on the road for at least four years – if at all. Manley told Automotive News that a Jeep pickup wouldn’t be added until the Wrangler is refreshed in 2015 or 2016.
“It is too late in Wrangler’s product cycle to add a pickup. The 2015 or 2016 time frame makes more sense,” Manley told Automotive News. Manley also added that no final decision has been made to produce the Jeep truck.
Recently, Jeep has teased enthusiasts with a slew of concept vehicles like the Gladiator and Wrangler JT, as well as the JK-8 conversion kit. The $5499 JK-8 kit allows owners of a Jeep Wrangler Unlimited to convert the four-door SUV into a pickup truck with just a sawzall and angle-grinder.
The company knows that demand for a Jeep pickup is high; the JK-8 kit has already sold about 300 copies. And the compact Jeep-based pickup could be sold in southeast Asia and Europe, helping bolster Chrysler’s bottom line in those international markets where demand for small pickups is strong.
When the refreshed Jeep Wrangler debuts in 2015 or 2016, it seems quite likely that a pickup variant will be launched. Manley, however, says that no concrete decision on such a vehicle has yet been made.
“I am working closely with the product team because I think a pickup would be a great addition and a natural extension of the product line,” Manley told AN."

Sunday, September 18, 2011

70 Years Of Jeep - In Action During World War 2 - Dutch New Guinea


As part of Jeeps 70th Anniversary we salute the mighty Jeep in action with Allied forces during World War 2.
NOEMFOOR ISLAND, DUTCH NEW GUINEA. 1944-07-03.
A RAAF JEEP BEING HAULED ASHORE BY A US ARMY ALLIGATOR, AN AMPHIBIOUS VEHICLE, FOLLOWING THE ALLIED LANDING ON THE ISLAND ON 1944-07-02.
Photo Courtesy Australian War Memorial archives

NSW Vehicle Modification Laws VSI 50 and VSB 14 - What's Wrong, and Why?

Leading 4WD Journalist and Author Robert Pepper has published an informative article on the proposed VS150 on his blog. Check out the full article on the link below.
"So what is VSI50 and why should you, the recreational offroader, care?
VSIs, or Vehicle Standards Information, are official documents describing what you can or cannot do with vehicles. Clearly, there has to be some limit on modifications otherwise entirely unsafe vehicles would be driving up accident rates.
The NSW RTA’s VSI50 covering the raising and lowering of vehicles, and as offroaders, we’re more concerned about raising than lowering. The industry uses the term “lift” instead of raise, and generally a lift through suspension or body, so I’ll use the term “lift” instead. But for the purposes of VSI 50 a lift also means increasing tyre diameter."
Roberts article makes a heap of sense and takes out some of the 'hype and emotion' from the reporting.
"Some people are asking what's driven this change. Is it a result of a study showing that modified vehicles have a disproportionate effect on the road toll?  The answer to that is no.  It is not clear what the thinking is behind this, and one could well argue that if a lower road toll is the objective the effort for VSI50 could be better directed elsewhere.
There are no studies, to my knowledge, of the effects of modified vehicles on road safety, just anecdotal evidence and guesswork.  I don't think statistics from accidents are collated and analysed."
See the whole article HERE

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

4 WHEEL DRIVERS CALLED TO ACTION! NSW VS150 MODIFICATION RULES TO CHANGE AGAIN!

Australia's leading 4WD magazine, 4 Wheel Drive Action, have published the following article about proposed new laws in NSW that will effect all owners of modified 4 Wheel Drive Vehicles in Australia. Once one state goes down this path the others will follow. Please pass this message on to all your 4WD freinds as a matter of urgency.

"Australian 4WDers,
We are contacting you today as a matter of urgency, this one is extremely important and will ultimately affect every single 4WDer in Australia.
VSI50 anti-modification laws are back on the RTA’s agenda in NSW. You’ll no doubt remember when the previous version of this document surfaced – known as the ‘hoon laws’. It unfairly and drastically limited the types of suspension and tyre modifications we could make back then, and it’s even worse now.
Make no mistakes about it – this document threatens 4WDing as we know it. This isn’t sensationalism, this is pure fact.
There are two areas where the revised VSI50 severely impacts on every single 4WDer’s ability to modify their vehicle.
The biggest issue is that of vehicle ride height. Under VSI50, vehicles with a combined ride height more than 75mm above standard will only be eligible for ‘conditional registration’. The document isn’t clear on what this means, but you can be certain conditional registration will force you to justify why you ‘need’ to be driving your 4WD every single time you get behind the wheel. There is a way around this – VSI50 states that if you are a member of an affiliated 4WD club, and have completed a driver training course, then you’ll be allowed full registration.
I thought compulsory unionism was dead in Australia. I thought this was a free country.
What we’re witnessing is un-reasonable and un-Australian.
VSI50 forces you to pay membership fees and join a 4WD club, simply so you can have full registration on your sensibly modified 4WD. What if you don’t want to be a member of a club? What if you can’t find a club to join? What if you’re stretched enough as it is and don’t want to pay anymore bills?
If VSI50 becomes official legislation, 4WD NSW & ACT will have ultimate say over when and where you can drive your 4WD!
The second issue of concern with the revised VSI50 document, is a blanket ban of all tyre diameter increases of more than 50mm. That means than generally speaking, anything larger than a 31in tyre on a dual-cab ute, or a 33in tyre on a full-sized wagon, will be absolutely illegal.
There’ll be no option to ever have a bigger set of tyres put through engineering tests to be deemed safe. VSB14, which is the guideline document VSI50 has been created from talks about a maximum headlight lift of 150mm over standard. We believe that’s fair – what we don’t support is the fact that the proposed VSI50 plan limits the way in which you’re allowed to achieve that 6in headlight height raise. Sure, a lot of us will be happy with a vehicle running a 2in lift and 2in over standard diameter tyres, but what if you did want to take it to the next level and run 35in tyres?
If you wanted to spend the time and money on brake and suspension upgrades to ensure your 4WD could run 35in tyre safely - why should you be denied that?
So what can you do to stop this?
We are going to need as many numbers as we can to fight this battle against the RTA. Even if you don’t live in NSW you still have to get behind this and stop these ridiculous rules come into play. Because guaranteed these rules and restrictions that severely limit how we can modify our 4WDs will filter into every state and territory.
We need to be able to communicate with and rally every 4WDer in Australia to fight this battle to protect our rights.
Please pass this message on to as many people as you can"
PDF of Proposal HERE
Check out the full story at 4WD Action Magazine HERE

Monday, September 12, 2011

ARCTIC JEEP WRANGLER FOR EUROPE - DO WE GET IT HERE?

In order to highlight the most adventurous soul and the legendary 4x4 capability of the iconic Jeep Wrangler, Jeep introduces in Frankfurt the all-new Arctic special-edition model.
The grueling and demanding environments of the arctic offer the type of terrain the legendary Jeep Wrangler was engineered to conquer. Based on the Jeep Wrangler Sahara (US) model, the Arctic’s winter theme is immediately recognizable. The new special edition features exclusive styling cues. The Arctic badge and decal recall the Yeti, the legendary creature that according to folk tradition lives in the uncontaminated nature of the extreme North.
With unique black 17-inch wheels, original Mopar® accessories and an exclusive interior enhanced by distinctive colors and details, Jeep Wrangler Arctic is powered by the new 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 petrol engine matched with the automatic five-speed transaxle or by the 2.8-liter turbo diesel powertrain paired with a six-speed manual or five-speed automatic transmission.
The new Arctic model will be introduced in European Jeep dealerships in the first quarter of 2012 and will be available for Jeep Wrangler and Wrangler Unlimited.

The big question is will we see this model in Australia? No word on the grapevine yet.

Friday, September 9, 2011

MOPAR LAUNCH NEW AUSTRALIAN WEBSITE

MOPAR have launched a new interactive website for Australia
Now Mopar offers a full line of trail and off-road gear for your favorite Jeep® vehicle. Everything from the latest Mopar Motor Sport News, Merchandise, Parts and Accessories to High Performance Parts the new site is now re-geared to the Australian market.
Let's hit it. MOPAR

GRAND CHEROKEE DOMINATES CHRYSLER AUSTRALIA REVIVAL

A revitalised Chrysler Australia has delivered a record sales month lead by exceptional sales of the award-winning Grand Cherokee, according to official VFACTS figures for August.
The Chrysler Group (Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge) for August was significantly up on last year (1,144 units v’s 787 in August 2010) as was YTD (7,062 v’s 5,832 in August 2010).
The all new Jeep Grand Cherokee was a star performer for Chrysler Australia, dominating the Luxury SUV segment with 501 units, almost 300 more than the next placed competitor.
The 2011 Grand Cherokee’s premium on-road performance and world-class interiors have made it the most capable and refined Grand Cherokee ever, with widespread acclaim and a deserving contender for the Luxury SUV crown.
Veronica Johns, General Manager, National Sales at Chrysler Australia said August results were a fantastic achievement.
“We have been incredibly pleased by all aspects of the Jeep Grand Cherokee and these results are just the beginning, as we strive to satisfy the huge customer demand for our range”.
“The 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee is the best value premium SUV in the Australian market. Its power, performance, safety features and luxurious interiors are comparable to that of European SUV contenders, but from just $45,000,” said Ms Johns.
“We’re also receiving fantastic response to the long-awaited new diesel variant of the Grand Cherokee. Alongside our sensational new V6 petrol, we’ve got the tools to continually drive more success”.
The Dodge Caliber also had a strong month, up 250% for 2011 YTD (343 units). With a recent pricing reposition to $23,500 for the SXT automatic, this boldly-styled hatch is resonating strongly with customers.
Source The Auto Channel .com

Monday, September 5, 2011

Grand Cherokee SRT8 In Australia in January 2012

Reports indicate that the new 2012 Grand Cherokee SRT8 arrives in Australia January 2012.
The Grand Cherokee SRT8® takes capability to a new level by giving driving enthusiasts extreme performance on street and track. The all-new 6.4L HEMI® V8 engine with Fuel Saver Technology delivers an estimated 470 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque.

The most powerful Jeep® vehicle ever, runs from 0-100 kph in 4.8 seconds with a top speed of over 250 kph and brakes from 100-0 kph in 47 meters, for an outstanding driving performance in all conditions. An active intake manifold and high-lift camshaft with cam phasing delivers maximum low-end torque while optimizing high-end power across a wider and improved rpm band. 90-percent of peak torque is available between 2,800 and 6,000 rpm, for improved straight-line performance
It is a luxurious high performance vehicle aimed directly at the high performance luxury SUV's from Europe. The SRT8 is also able to tow trailers, boats, caravans and horse floats unlike it predessor.
CHECK OUT US SPEC HERE

JEEP GRAND CHEROKEE 2012MY CHANGES

2012 Models for Australia are arriving from October onwards so we will know confirmed details of Australian specification changes soon. Please note that information that has been published elsewhere about price reductions on 2WD models and option prices do not apply to Australia as we do not have that model here. Changes in specification and pricing in the US markets do not apply to our Jeeps as our vehicles are built especially for our market.

No Australian specifications have been confirmed yet but known changes that should arrive here are:
  • 6 Speed Transmission on Hemi 5.7L models
  • Electro-hydraulic power steering on V6 Pentastar 3.6L Models
  • New Style Wheels on Overland and Laredo
  • New Colours (Late Availability)
These are the late availability colours - some may not come to Australia
Black Clear Coat
Black Forest Green (Very Dark Green)
Canyon Brown (Golden Brown)
Maximum Steel (Dark Grey)
True Blue (Midnight Blue)
Winter Chill (Light Blue Metalic)

Continuing Colours Are:
Bright Silver
White Gold
Stone White
Mineral Grey
Deep Cherry Red (Replaces Inferno Red)
Brilliant Black (some doubt of this continuing)

We will keep you posted as details emerge of Australian changes to models coming to our shores.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

High Country Festival Next Summer

Annual Festival In The Victorian High Country
The Mountain Cattlemens association Of Victoria are holding their annual Festival at Merrijig near Mansfield on the 13th - 15th January 2012. Want to do something different next summer? Head for the Victorian High Country and experience some of the legendary Mountain Cattlemen culture. Come and experience a great weekend with live entertainment, cattlemen's cup, full catering, hot showers, whip cracking competition, 3 days and 3 nights of entertainment, music and fun for all. 

The Mountain Cattlemen’s Association of Victoria (MCAV) represents a hardy group of people whose families and predecessors have grazed their cattle and maintained the Victorian High Country dating back to 1834.  From Australian settlement to the present, caring for their cattle and custodianship of the land has been a cross generational family undertaking, so their training in the mountains is a lifetime experience.  Consequently, the cattlemen are known for their love and knowledge of the bush, for independent action but with the ability to co-operate.  They are persistent.  They have a profound interest in the past.  They respect their elders because of past lessons learned.  As the cattlemen went about their difficult business, a unique Australian culture and heritage was gradually developed without them even knowing!

Friday, September 2, 2011

Mopar Nationals At Calder Park

Mopar Nationals are To be Held at Melbourne's Calder Park Raceway on 3rd December 2011.
Chrysler Jeep and Dodge fans will enjoy all sorts of activities including Drag Racing, Show and Shine, 4x4 Activites, Mopar Vehicles both old and new. Come and see all your favourite Chrysler Classics. See the Mopar Drag Team do their stuff. Heaps of activities to enjoy for all.

CANUNGRA SWAP MEET & FIELD DAY 2011

The Military Jeep Club Of Queensland are running the Canungra Swap Meet & Field Day on the weekend of the 14th and 16th of October 2011.
So if you are into Military Jeeps and historic military vehicles and you can make it to Conungra make sure you check it out. It's being held at Canungra Sports & Recreation Reserve Coburg Rd, Canungra Qld

Military re-enactments and prizes for best military site display, rarest World War II vehicle and other military vehicle sections, plus lots of other fun stuff for all.
Check Out The Website for more details HERE!

Jeep Leads The Way In US Chrysler Sales For August

September 1, 2011 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - Chrysler Group LLC today reported U.S. sales of 130,119, a 31 percent increase compared with sales in August 2010 (99,611 units), and the best August sales since 2007.
“In spite of a volatile market, Chrysler managed to significantly outperform the industry again in August with retail sales up 42 percent,” said Reid Bigland, President and CEO – Dodge Brand and Head of U.S. Sales. “Last month also represented our 17th-consecutive month of year-over-year sales growth, and on the back of our 16 all-new or significantly-refreshed products I see that trend easily continuing into the fall.”
The Jeep brand continues to roll in 2011 posting a 58 percent sales increase in August, the brand’s best sales volume month since December 2007 and its 16th-consecutive month of year-over-year sales gains. All five Jeep brand models posted a sales increase compared with the same month a year ago.
With 12,949 units sold, the Jeep Wrangler was the top-selling Jeep model in August, and was second only to the Ram pickup truck as the top-selling Chrysler Group model. The Wrangler – the most capable and recognized vehicle in the world – becomes even more capable both on- and off-road for 2012, courtesy of an all-new, more fuel efficient and more powerful 3.6-liter V-6 engine, and a new five-speed automatic transmission – both of which it shares with the award-winning Jeep Grand Cherokee.

The new Jeep Compass, with its unsurpassed compact SUV 4x4 fuel economy (28 Hwy mpg), posted a 130 percent sales increase, the largest year-over-year percentage sales gain of any Jeep model in August. For the year, Compass sales are up 124 percent. The Jeep Grand Cherokee continues to forge ahead with sales up 77 percent in August versus the same month in 2010. August marks its 12th-consecutive month of year-over-year sales gains.
source ChryslerLLC