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Unread 10-25-2012, 10:02 AM   #61
Rtone1583
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marauder_Pilot View Post
Crash regulations, aerodynamic requirements, the fact that the tooling was turned into scrap decades ago, assembly line restrictions and about a million other reasons.
I can agree with the tooling aspect but everything else can be accommodated quite easily. Hell even tooling really isn't such a problem. They retool on major redesigns anyway, just consider it a major redesign and get on with it.

I'm just getting tired of badge engineering.

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Unread 10-25-2012, 04:37 PM   #62
funkduck
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Model evolution is natural, I don't see the problem with changing cosmetics.. frankly a lot of retrofuturistic designs kinda stink:




We humans have a strange relationship with nostalgia. One thing I really miss on.. uh.. "vintage" SUV's was their weight/exterior dimensions/interior dimensions relationship. I stripped a 91 Trooper down to about 3000lbs and stuffed 33" tires under it (at stock height, with stock gearing) - it was roomy and it had some decent pep considering its little 120 horsepower V6, and it fit down any trail due to its diminutive exterior dimensions. Big time nostalgia for that thing, but:
  • the boxy shape that gave it such great space efficiency meant its coefficient of drag was probably in the .6's, unacceptable for modern fuel efficiency standards and wind noise levels.
  • the absence of air conditioning, meaningful insulation, crumple zones/collision 'safety cage', passive restraints, power anything, and "interior refinement" that enabled its light weight and relative pep from a modest powerplant would get utterly shredded by 99% of shoppers/reviewers/anyone in today's market
  • the flexy suspension that conformed so well to trails in the hands of a competent driver would be regarded as unacceptable in today's litigious society of blaming manufacturers for driver incompetence.
  • the boxed-frame chassis, load-ready leaf springs and tall step-in height that made it so versatile and durable under heavy use would be viewed as entirely unacceptable by today's shoppers and reviewers.

I do find it depressing that so many cars are being built to be everything to everyone. I know a good all 'rounder is a great thing, but I often wish that a manufacturer would have the stones to flatly say "stop driving 4x4's around carelessly and then complaining that they don't handle as well as a 'Vette and acting like we're the incompetent jerks in this equation" - however until someone at the helm of an automobile manufacturer comes up with a diplomatic way to say that and the stones to actually do so, we're going to be given vehicles built entirely on compromise.

That said, the Grand Wagoneer concept seems like a reasonable offering. I think building it as a machine intended to start a legacy (as in, buy it today, take your kids to daycare in it and watch them take their kids to daycare in it later) would be a good move for Jeep... and charge a premium for that sort of class, character and quality. Making just another trim package for the Grand Cherokee would be silly.
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Unread 10-25-2012, 07:30 PM   #63
Marauder_Pilot
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rtone1583 View Post
I can agree with the tooling aspect but everything else can be accommodated quite easily. Hell even tooling really isn't such a problem. They retool on major redesigns anyway, just consider it a major redesign and get on with it.

I'm just getting tired of badge engineering.
That's an entirely different animal. What you actually want is the same treatment that the Challenger got.

The big hurdle is design costs. Developing a new platform today-and keep in mind, a platform is just a set of dimensions that can accommodate many completely different vehicles-requires that platform to sell around 150,000 units a year for the first few years to remain profitable.

There are two exceptions-platforms that have a few decades of continuous evolution under their belt (Like the Wrangler), and those that are exceptionally specialized and sold for a much higher price (Like the Viper).

The Grand Wagonner doesn't fall under either category. It HAS to share a platform to remain profitable.

That said, most people don't understand how diverse a platform actually is. For example, most people know that the Chrysler JS platform underpins the 200 and Avenger, but it's also the basis of the Journey too. Ford's D3 platform underpins the Ford Taurus, Edge, Explorer and Flex. The new Chrysler/Fiat C-Wide platform will underpin everything from the Dodge Dart to the Liberty replacement, a number of new Alfa Romeo and Lancia small and midsize cars and CUVs and possibly a Maserati.

Platforms are completely separate from parts-but they do lay out the dimensions those parts require.

To build a new BOF Grand Wagoneer platform would require one of two things. They'd either need to design a new BOF platform, and find a way to spread it out over several model lines (Like the old SJs) to amortize development costs, or they'd need to adapt either a Ram platform or the Wrangler platform. However, the Grand Wagoneer is meant to compete against much more luxurious vehicles, and those platforms lack the necessary refinement for what the Grand Wagoneer was last specced at.

That said, there is some speculation that the Grand Wagoneer might wind up in one of those and come downmarket a little bit-aiming more at the Suburban and friends.

But building a 'new' Grand Wagoneer, built BOF and modeled after the original with new powertrains, is an economically impossible proposition.
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Unread 10-25-2012, 11:20 PM   #64
Rtone1583
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marauder_Pilot View Post
That's an entirely different animal. What you actually want is the same treatment that the Challenger got.

The big hurdle is design costs. Developing a new platform today-and keep in mind, a platform is just a set of dimensions that can accommodate many completely different vehicles-requires that platform to sell around 150,000 units a year for the first few years to remain profitable.

There are two exceptions-platforms that have a few decades of continuous evolution under their belt (Like the Wrangler), and those that are exceptionally specialized and sold for a much higher price (Like the Viper).

The Grand Wagonner doesn't fall under either category. It HAS to share a platform to remain profitable.

That said, most people don't understand how diverse a platform actually is. For example, most people know that the Chrysler JS platform underpins the 200 and Avenger, but it's also the basis of the Journey too. Ford's D3 platform underpins the Ford Taurus, Edge, Explorer and Flex. The new Chrysler/Fiat C-Wide platform will underpin everything from the Dodge Dart to the Liberty replacement, a number of new Alfa Romeo and Lancia small and midsize cars and CUVs and possibly a Maserati.

Platforms are completely separate from parts-but they do lay out the dimensions those parts require.

To build a new BOF Grand Wagoneer platform would require one of two things. They'd either need to design a new BOF platform, and find a way to spread it out over several model lines (Like the old SJs) to amortize development costs, or they'd need to adapt either a Ram platform or the Wrangler platform. However, the Grand Wagoneer is meant to compete against much more luxurious vehicles, and those platforms lack the necessary refinement for what the Grand Wagoneer was last specced at.

That said, there is some speculation that the Grand Wagoneer might wind up in one of those and come downmarket a little bit-aiming more at the Suburban and friends.

But building a 'new' Grand Wagoneer, built BOF and modeled after the original with new powertrains, is an economically impossible proposition.

The problem is that they don't build distinctly different vehicle based on the same platform. As far as tooling cost, generally when a vehicle is badge engineered, it shares the same basic layout with sometimes very slight changes to the body lines. If they are going to do this, why can they not in the very least attempt to make the vehicles distinctly different? Many non-American manufacturers have been able overcome this supposedly insurmountable hurdle (Volkswagen comes to mind with their shared platforms among VW, Audi, Lamborghini and their other stable mates).

I honestly believe that if the GW actually sees the light of day it will be similar to the proposed Maserati Levante in that it will be a not so well disquised clone of the GC.
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Unread 10-25-2012, 11:47 PM   #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rtone1583 View Post
As far as tooling cost, generally when a vehicle is badge engineered, it shares the same basic layout with sometimes very slight changes to the body lines.
That's not even slightly correct. You're confusing badge engineering and platform sharing.

The Dodge Journey and the Fiat Freemont are badge-engineered. The Chrysler 200 and Dodge Avenger are a more extreme case of badge engineering. But two vehicles sharing the same platform don't need to share a single component or styling detail. They don't need to share beltlines, wheelbases, track widths, overall dimensions, anything. Certain dimensions have to be within the same range, but that's it.

Read this article to start, and look for more on Allpar by Bob Sheaves. He's a former Chrysler engineer, and, if you register on Allpar and ask him, will gladly give you a far more detailed explanation than I can.
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"Buying a Jeep for on-road handling is like downloading porn to savor the cinematography."
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| ARB/Old Man Emu | Northridge 4x4 Canada | Warn | Modern Classic Enterprises | American Expeditionary Vehicles | GenRight | Poison Spyder | OR-FAB | Metalcloak | East CoastGear Supply | JKS | M.O.R.E. |

2000 Jeep Wrangler TJ Sport-OME HD Lift, ProComp bumper, 32" BFG TA K/Os
2010 Kawasaki KLR650-Stock
2005 Ford E350-Clydesdale 4WD Conversaion
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