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Filed under: Minivan/Van, Chrysler
"The minivan package has always been a sacred thing ... it's basically a life tool" - Ralph Gilles
The stalwart duo of Chrysler
minivans will be reduced by half
in the vehicle's next generation, with the Dodge Grand Caravan
likely going away in favor of a new people-mover-type vehicle
. And while the reworked Chrysler Town & Country
shouldn't radically shake up the usual minivan formula, a new report from Automotive News
suggests that some new technologies and thoughtful updates are in the cards for our Canadian-built van.
Not surprisingly, the next Town & Country is expected to use the automaker's new nine-speed automatic transmission - a gearbox that, despite its rough launch
in the 2014 Jeep Cherokee
, will also be available on the 2015 Chrysler 200
. Speaking of the 200, AN says the next T&C is also slated to get optional all-wheel drive. We suspect it could very well be the same system found in Chrysler's new midsize sedan, a unit that features novel full rear axle disconnect. This wouldn't be an all-new thing for the Town & Country, though, as the minivan was offered with AWD throughout the 1990s and into the early 2000s. Today, only Toyota
offers a minivan with all-wheel drive, the Sienna
Other T&C updates will include revised, easier-to-use Stow 'N Go seating and the latest version of Chrysler's Uconnect infotainment system.
"The minivan package has always been a sacred thing: the function, the customers, the flexibility, It's basically a life tool. We're trying to push the envelope and not disturb what's good about the minivan," Chrysler's head of design, Ralph Gilles
, told Automotive News
On that design note, think back to the 2012 Detroit Auto Show
, where Chrysler quietly rolled out the 700C concept
(pictured below). The automaker didn't release any details about this pure design concept, and while we originally poked fun at it for looking a bit dated, we wouldn't be surprised to see elements of the 700C show up on the next-generation Town & Country.Automotive News
reports that the design of the next minivan is about 95-percent complete.
The sixth-generation model is expected to launch in time for the 2016 model year and continue to be built in Windsor, with the plant getting ready to retool thanks in part to more than $500 million (Canadian) in just-approved government subsidies. Chrysler is also negotiating for further incentives to go along with its own expected investment of $2 billion Canadian.
Next Chrysler minivan to get optional AWD, nine-speed auto originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 19 Feb 2014 16:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink
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Filed under: Minivan/Van, Plants/Manufacturing, Chrysler, Dodge
Recent reports have suggested that Chrysler may soon phase out its long-running Dodge brand
, and while the company remains mum on the subject, you can't blame analysts for thinking that's the direction the Pentastar's everyday brand is heading. After all, Chrysler
has shown a willingness to shutter brands, having killed off Plymouth
back in 2001, and it's putting big dollars behind its bid to build Fiat
into a North American force. Chrysler also recently took the step of spinning off its trucks into the stand-alone Ram
brand and relocated its halo Viper
supercar under the SRT
Couple that with long-held gossip that the full-size Dodge Durango
utility vehicle and the Avenger
sedan are both living on borrowed time, and you've got a dwindling product portfolio. That would leave Dodge with the Dart
compact (a model that isn't selling particularly well
), the Charger
(which has a mechanical twin in the Chrysler 300
) and the Challenger
, which could be supplanted by a rumored Chrysler/SRT Cuda
. On the people-mover front, Dodge offers the aging Journey
and the Grand Caravan
, which is the twin to the bigger-margin Chrysler Town & Country
Stories for some time have pegged Chrysler as only moving forward with one minivan, though there has been some waffling as to whether the next-generation MPV would wear the Town & Country badge or that of the Grand Caravan. A new report out of Canada - where the vehicles are built - says that the winner in the sippy-cup derby is the next Chrysler Town & Country, which will carry a 2016 model year designation. In addition, sources report that T&C production at the Windsor Assembly Plant will be joined by an as-yet-unnamed large near-luxury crossover for 2017, another long-rumored model that could be similar in concept to the long-defunct Pacifica
. The brand for this new model? You guessed it - Chrysler.
Next Chrysler minivan to be Town & Country only, fueling Dodge closure rumors originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 19 Jun 2013 14:14:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink
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Parking can be difficult, but typically not in a nose-in parking space wide enough to fit two cars. Watch this minivan pilot ineptly try to guide the bulky purple machine into one such cavernous stall. More »
If you weren't already nervous when traveling behind a logging truck on the highway we're afraid these pictures might inspire some anxiety next time you spot one on the open road. More »
Filed under: Etc.
We record Episode #251 of the Autoblog Podcast tonight, and you can drop us your questions via our Q&A module below. Check out our discussion topics or chime in to help determine what else the crew chats about this evening. Subscribe to the Autoblog Podcast in iTunes
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Discussion Topics for Autoblog Podcast Episode #251
] Interact LIVE at UStream - 10PM Eastern on Monday, October 11, 2011
] Subscribe to the Autoblog Podcast in iTunes
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Submit your questions for Autoblog Podcast #251 LIVE originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 11 Oct 2011 17:28:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink
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Filed under: Minivan/Van, Plants/Manufacturing, Work, Canada
Call it a Caravan
, call it a Voyager
, call it whatever you want - just don't call it a Dodge
. Because while it may look exactly like a Dodge, it's actually a Ram. And as the suits in Auburn Hills will point out, the Ram truck brand is no longer under Dodge's purview.
What it's actually called is the Ram C/V
, which doesn't stand for Commercial Vehicle but for Cargo Van. It's the panel-wagon version of the Dodge Grand Caravan, and it's just entered production in Windsor, Ontario.
The Class 1 commercial vehicle offers 1,800 pounds of cargo capacity and 3,600 pounds of towing capability for a Gross Combined Weight Rating of 8,750 pounds, all the while delivering up to 25 miles per gallon on the highway. It also gets a heavy-duty radiator and transmission oil cooler over the family-hauling version. It's ready to order now from your local Ram dealership.
Continue reading 2012 Ram Cargo Van starts rolling in Windsor
2012 Ram Cargo Van starts rolling in Windsor originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 31 Aug 2011 13:59:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Permalink
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