On the eve of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, FCA has officially confirmed the expansion of the Jeep product line to add a Jeep Wagoneer, Grand Wagoneer and the long-discussed pickup truck along with a major announcement on investing $1 billion in U.S. manufacturing capacity.
While the Grand Wagoneer has been described as a very high-end SUV competing with luxury brand offerings, the question will be how the Wagoneer sits in the lineup relative to the Grand Cherokee. The current high-end packages on the Grand get close to luxury-brand pricing and amenities.
Lots of thoughts have been floating around on the pickup as well as spy photos, we can’t wait to see the real deal. 2017 and 2018 should be great years for Jeep fans!
HUGE UPDATE! Mike Manley has confirmed in an interview with Fox News that the Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer will both be body-on-frame and doesn’t dismiss the option for wood paneling! Also, the JL will be released in the 4th quarter this year at an event TBD, possibly even it’s own launch event.
Here’s the complete release from FCA…
FCA US Expands Jeep® Product Lineup, Adding Jeep Wagoneer, Grand Wagoneer, and a Jeep Pickup Truck; Makes Further Commitment to U.S. Manufacturing With $1 Billion in New Investment and 2,000 New Jobs
- Announcement is a continuation of the efforts already underway to increase production capacity in the U.S. on trucks and SUVs to match demand
- Confirms addition of new models to award-winning Jeep® lineup – a Jeep pickup truck and the storied Jeep Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer
- Investment includes retooling and modernization at Warren, Michigan, and Toledo, Ohio, plants; creates additional 2,000 American jobs
- Total U.S. committed investment grows to more than $9.6 billion since 2009, with 25,000 jobs created to date
- Production moves solidify U.S. as the global manufacturing hub for the flagship Jeep products
January 8, 2017 , Auburn Hills, Mich. – FCA US today confirmed the next phase of its industrialization plan by announcing a total $1 billion investment in plants in Michigan and Ohio, and the addition of 2,000 new American jobs. Consistent and combined with previously announced investments, FCA US is further demonstrating its commitment to strengthening its U.S. manufacturing base, and aligning U.S. capacity to extend the Jeep® product lineup. In total, FCA US has committed investments of more than $9.6 billion in its U.S. manufacturing facilities and created 25,000 new jobs to date since 2009.
Today’s announcement is the second phase of an industrialization plan announced in January 2016. The plan called for the realignment of the Company’s U.S. manufacturing operations to fully utilize available capacity to respond to a shift in market demand for trucks and SUVs, and to further expand the Jeep and Ram brands.
With the $1 billion investment, FCA US will retool and modernize the Warren Truck Assembly Plant (Michigan) to produce the all-new Jeep Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer, and the south plant of the Toledo Assembly Complex (Ohio) to build an all-new Jeep pickup truck. These actions are planned to be completed by 2020. More than 2,000 jobs also will be added to support production of these models. The added benefit of the investment in Warren is that it will enable the plant to produce the Ram heavy duty truck, which is currently produced in Mexico.
“The conversion of our industrial footprint completes this stage of our transformation as we respond to the shift in consumer tastes to trucks and SUVs, and as we continue to reinforce the U.S. as a global manufacturing hub for those vehicles at the heart of the SUV and truck market,” said Sergio Marchionne, Chief Executive Officer of FCA N.V. “These moves, which have been under discussion with Dennis Williams and the rest of the UAW leadership for some time, expand our capacity in these key segments, enabling us to meet growing demand here in the U.S., but more importantly to increase exports of our mid-size and larger vehicles to international markets.
“The expansion of our Jeep lineup has been and continues to be the key pillar of our strategy. Our commitment to internationalize the Jeep brand is unwavering, and with these last moves, we will finally have the capacity to successfully penetrate markets other than the U.S. which have historically been denied product due to capacity constraints. In addition, these all-new products will reach new consumers, as well as those that have been part of the Jeep tradition,” said Marchionne.
The actions announced today are subject to the negotiation and final approval of incentives by state and local entities.
Photo credit: the photo of the excellent Wagoneer used in this story’s opening image was taken by Jake White, owner of CartoTracks on a trip to Hurricane, UT.