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Jeep Will Keep Wrangler Production in Toledo, Add New Wrangler-Based Picked

But maker will relocate production of popular Cherokee model.

by on Sep.02, 2015

The question has been answered: Jeep is re-entering the truck market with the Wrangler-based truck.

After a long debate that put thousands of jobs at risk, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has decided to retain production of the next-generation Jeep Wrangler in Toledo, Ohio. And CEO Sergio Marchionne confirmed that the maker will add a long-rumored, Wrangler-based pickup to the Jeep line-up.

But Toledo did get one setback in its bid to maintain its long-standing role as Jeep’s ancestral home. FCA will now move production of the Cherokee model to another, as yet-unspecified plant. The compromise follows an intense round of negotiations by Toledo and Ohio officials who struggled to help the automaker reduce costs and update the Toledo plant to handle what will be a radically redesigned version of the ever-popular Wrangler.

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“We found a solution that accommodates a variety of other interests to us because of the way in which we can move some product around,” Marchionne told trade publication Automotive News. “It doesn’t take a rocket scientist (to know) that the only way I can move around the Wrangler is to move it into the other Toledo plant.” (more…)

Biden: Saving Auto Industry Was Right Thing to Do

But anecdotes about Ford and GM show Chrysler has much to do to reenter the conversation about the domestic auto industry.

by on Aug.23, 2010

Vice President Joe Biden tells Chrysler employees at the Jeep assembly plant in Toledo that the Democratic administration saved the auto industry.

Vice President Joe Biden says he’s a Corvette guy. Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown tells a story about his daughters picking the color of the Ford Thunderbird he bought. Are we in a Chrysler plant?

Biden visited the Jeep plant in Toledo, giving the expected stump speech about how Democrats – particularly President Obama and himself – were the only ones who believed in Chrysler and GM 21 months ago when the companies went to Washington, hat in hand to ask for help in saving the companies.

Speaking before about a thousand Jeep employees, with the Jeep Wrangler assembly line as a backdrop, Biden said Democrats saved the American auto industry as naysayers suggested that the industry needed to die before it could be reborn.

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The lack of focus on Chrysler illustrates how desperately Chrysler needs to get new product into its dealers. With a dearth of new product, politicians are left to tell anecdotes that are too far away from the focus of the event.

The story of saving these two automakers is a good one.