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Auto blogTue, 11 Mar 2014 14:00:00 EST
The headlines are still rolling in for the new Renegade that Jeep unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show last week, but already reports are surfacing, citing sources within the company, about what Chrysler's iconic off-road brand will do next.
Speaking with Auto Express (whose reports we tend to take with a grain of salt or two), Jeep chief Mike Manley suggested that two courses of action are currently under consideration at Auburn Hills to develop two very different new models - one smaller and one larger than anything Jeep currently makes.
One plan would be to make an SUV or crossover even smaller than the new Renegade, although it isn't immediately clear what platform it would take. The Renegade (pictured above in Trailhawk spec) will be built in Italy alongside Fiat's upcoming 500X, but uses a heavily modified platform. We figure the smaller model, if approved, could base itself on the new Fiat Panda Cross.
If 2012 was the year of the dragon in China, perhaps the US can claim 2014. After showing the Jeep Wrangler Dragon Design Concept at the 2012 Beijing Motor Show, and apparently receiving "tremendously positive feedback" from Jeep enthusiasts across the globe, the automaker has decided to introduce a production version that will hit US showrooms this fall with a price of $36,095.
"The dragon symbolizes strength and power and is an aspirational character normally associated with royalty and good fortune," says Jeep, and that apparently equates to a blacked-out Wrangler Unlimited with bronze satin gloss highlights inside and out, along with big dragon decals that start on the hood and run down the fenders. There are 18-inch matte black wheels with a bronze outer edges, and a dragon-emblazoned spare tire cover completes the look.
We suggest you peruse the high-res image gallery above to see all the black and bronze detailing yourself, and make special note of the interior. In related news, all 2014 Jeep Wrangler models get an optional Trail Kit and clear park lamps to replace the previous amber units. New colors include Amp'd, Anvil, Copperhead, Flame Red, Granite Crystal and Hydro Blue (Freedom edition only), which join carryover colors Billet Silver, Bright White, Black and Dune.
Software glitches that randomly illuminate warning lights and cause instrument cluster blackouts are forcing Chrysler to recall 140,800 vehicles, The Detroit News reports. The automaker is recalling 132,000 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokees, 91,559 of which are in the US. In addition to the Jeep recalls, Chrysler is adding 10,800 2014 Ram 1500, 2500 and 3500 trucks to the list for similar problems.
Chrysler reportedly says, "Both events occurred infrequently and appeared to resolve themselves by tuning the vehicle's ignition off and then on."
Engineers discovered a problem with the anti-lock-braking system software that causes the instrument cluster display of the Grand Cherokee to illuminate warning lights and black out - even its ABS and electronic stability control systems are affected. To fix the Jeeps, Chrysler will update the vehicle's software.