The Jeep brand has swiftly turned into the global ambassador of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, the world’s seventh largest automaker, with the sport utility-oriented nameplate now on track to hit 1.2 million unit deliveries.
According to Michael Manley, president of the Jeep brand, sales across the planet have jumped 20 percent since the start of the year – even as last year they topped for the first time in history the one million vehicle mark. According to the top executive, the US plants making the best-selling Jeep models across the US have trouble keeping up with demand, he explained to media representatives while at the company’s proving grounds in Chelsea, Michigan. US best-selling models are the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Wrangler, while the Cherokee – unveiled last year – and the new subcompact Renegade – which arrived this spring – are also doing well. In Europe the latter is also particularly popular while the other models remain strong in deliveries as well. The FCA still has trouble figuring out how to manufacture more Jeep Wranglers, the model at the heart of the Jeep line in the US.
Manley said there was no plan approved yet, but the company was trying to figure out how to rebuild or replace the Wrangler factory in Toledo, Ohio. “It’s a very important and very sensitive decision,” said the top executive. He also added that Jeep’s long planned Chinese expansion was finally happening this fall as the make was first introducing the Renegade and then a Chinese version of the Jeep Cherokee, scheduled to be produced at a facility in Guangzhou in southern China.