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Ford SUV To Challenge Jeep Wrangler

F'in Bob

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Read about this from the associated press:

Ford SUV To Challenge Jeep Wrangler


DEARBORN, Mich. (AP) — Ford Motor Co. product designers are creating a convertible four-wheel-drive vehicle to challenge the Jeep Wrangler.

The new vehicle is expected to debut in 2003 as a 2004 model and share a chassis with the redesigned Ford Ranger pickup, which is set to go on sale in 2002.

``It will be interesting to see Ford take on the image of the Wrangler,'' said Jim Hall, an analyst with AutoPacific, a Los Angeles-based automotive research firm.

Ford spokesman Ray Day declined to comment on the new SUV, other than to say the company has some exciting products in the pipeline.

Wrangler's lineage traces back to military vehicles used during World War II. With its flat windshield and sparse interior, it offers no-frills transportation in an age of heated seats and satellite navigation systems.

Last year, DaimlerChrysler's Jeep division sold nearly 90,000 Wranglers, up 6.3 percent from 1998. And the vehicles boast some of the highest owner-loyalty rates in the industry.

``I think there is a definite market out there,'' said Bill Demmer, president of Jack Demmer Ford in Wayne. ``Just look at the resale value of the older Jeeps. It's just one more niche they are trying to fill.''

Other automakers — most notably Suzuki with the Samurai and Sidekick — have tried to capture Wrangler's appeal with limited success.

``We are well aware of the competitive landscape,'' DaimlerChrysler spokesman Jan Zverina said. ``I don't think anyone here wants to give up one inch of our competitive advantage.''
 


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donkey boy

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If this is true, I will probably be changing car in 2004 :D

We should all send Ford a list of things we would like to see in that car, starting with TWO SOLID AXLES ON COIL SPRINGS, PLEASE. That might be a chance for getting the trail worthy Explorer we had been dreaming of :bounce: , or maybe just an other unibody Mickey Mouse car, designed to climb without any damage every -- speedbump :fire:
 




mmpc

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Sounds good...

I wish Ford a lot of luck in designing this vehicle! If they're smart about it and make it truly trail-worthy, they'll have my business. Then all Ford will have to do is come up with another name beginning with "Ex"... How 'bout the EXORCISOR, to drive out all the unholy J**ps from the trail? :D

Actually, the could always call it an Explorer II, kinda like the Bronco II...

[Edited by mmpc on 08-09-2000 at 09:08 AM]
 




Rick

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This is why Ford went on three of our "Serious Explorations" with 30 of their engineers (Fall Colors Run '99, Truckhaven 2000 & Moab 2000). Anyone who was on those trips will tell you they had pen and notebook in hand, and they also shot video and still images of our Explorations.

We definately gave them an earful as to what we would like to see in an off-road worthy SUV. Unfortunately if this project goes through it's not going to be called an Explorer.
 




donkey boy

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German poet Goethe once said: "Name ist Schall und Rauch" (names are [nothing but] sounds and smoke) Who cares how the new vehicle is called, I guess it will be accepted on this board. What about calling it "ExDefender" :D :D :D :D :D

Good to know you guys had a kind of influence on these engineers. I hope they still have their scratch pad where they wrote everything down. Did you tell them about sold axles on coil springs? (I don't think I mentioned that before, did I?)

It really would be fascinating helping to develope a completely new vehicle.

Good luck, Ford, and whenever you need help, feel free to give me a call! ;)
 








Lewdog

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Very exciting news! I vote to call it a Bronco.
 




Blueoval

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Does anybody have a sketch or picture of what it might look like?
 




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