2012 Jeep Wrangler Predicted To Hold Its Value Better Than Any Other Vehicle
The 2012 Jeep Wrangler will hold its value better in five years than any other vehicle, Kelley Blue Book predicts.
The Wrangler has risen to the top of the compact SUV category in separate rankings by ALG and Kelley Blue Book, which predict future resale values.
Five years from now, Kelley Blue Book predicts, a 2012 Jeep Wrangler will be worth 55 percent of its current, new-vehicle price. That projected residual value put it at the top of Kelley Blue Book’s compact vehicle category, up from second place last year, when the 2011 Wrangler’s residual value was projected at 45.2 percent.
Eric Ibara, director of residual consulting at Kelley Blue Book, says his company is “amazed” at how well Wrangler holds its value — and isn’t sure why. It competes in a category with such vehicles as the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4 and Hyundai Tucson but is perceived as different from them, he says.
“We have some theories,” Ibara says. “It’s easy seeing those vehicles competing against each other, but there’s not much competition for a Wrangler.
“Part of its popularity, we think, is just being unique.”
Kelley Blue Book released its resale brand rankings as part of its 2012 Residual Value Analysis. Its predictions are for five years to reflect the typical length of new-vehicle ownership. Test drive the new 2012 Jeep Wrangler at your local Chicago Chrysler Dodge Jeep dealership today.
Source: [Auto News]
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Dodge Charger Super Bee and Challenger Yellow Jacket Pack Hemis and Heritage
Back in the day, 1968 to be exact, a Dodge Coronet was stripped down, offered with a Hemi, renamed the Super Bee and rolled out as part of the Scat Pack, Dodge’s exclusive coterie of high-performance cars. In 1971, the Charger inherited the Super Bee name. In either configuration, the Bee distinction was a hit with muscle-car enthusiasts, who could enlist the limited-edition cars as commuters or as fierce drag-strip competitors.
Super Bees were offered, however, through only 1971, until Dodge and SRT, Chrysler’s in-house performance division, resuscitated the name in 2007 for the Charger SRT8 Super Bee. The brand continued to offer packages that included special trim and retro colors of paint, as well as performance equipment, like the Hemi, as a nod to that heritage.
The 2012 Dodge Charger SRT8 keeps the Super Bee name alive, with a limited-edition package that again has an emphasis on performance. No surprise, there’s a Hemi — Chrysler’s 6.4-liter V-8 with 470 horsepower and 470 pound-feet of torque — and Brembo brakes tuned by SRT. The optional paddle shifters on the steering wheel are new, as are the 20-inch wheels with black painted pockets.
The 2012 Dodge Challenger SRT8 392 gains a nearly identical package to the Super Bee, called Yellow Jacket. The 1970 Yellow Jacket was a Dodge show car that also had Scat Pack attributes, including a shaker hood and wide tires.
Dan Reid, a Chrysler spokesman, said in an interview here that the Charger Super Bee’s price would fall between that of the Charger R/T and Charger SRT8, or $31,220 to $47,620. “We should have final numbers within a few weeks because ordering begins in December,” he said. Price range for the Yellow Jacket was not disclosed.
Test drive a 2012 Dodge Charger or a 2012 Dodge Challenger at your local Chicago Chrysler Dodge Jeep today.
Source: [NY Times]
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Chrysler Revives Dodge Dart
Chrysler is bringing back the Dodge Dart — Italian style.
The automaker’s Dodge division last offered a Dart in 1976, when bell-bottom pants were popular and the angular Dart models had names like Swinger and Hang 10. This time, Chrysler says the Dart will be more curvy and stylish.
The new Dart, a 2013 model, will be the first Chrysler vehicle based on a Fiat architecture, in this case the Alfa Romeo Giulietta. Italian automaker Fiat owns Alfa Romeo and holds a controlling interest in Chrysler. All three companies are starting to share auto development and design.
The redesigned Dart joins a growing number of once defunct nameplates that are making a comeback.
Last year, Ford Motor Co. brought the Ford Fiesta compact car to the U.S. market after a 30-year absence. Chevrolet also reintroduced its sporty Camaro in the 2010 model year after last selling a version in 2002.
Automakers are playing off these older names on the belief that they still resonate with consumers or have good buzz overseas, said Brandy Schaffels, senior editor at auto information company TrueCar.com.
“Fiesta was not a popular car in the United States the first time it was sold here, but it has had a very good following in Europe,” Schaffels said.
Chrysler introduced the Dart in 1960, and by 1963 it was part of a triumvirate of popular U.S.-built small cars — they would seem large by today’s standards — that included the Chevrolet Corvair and the Ford Falcon.
Although the Dart was known as a smaller family vehicle, it also came in several muscle car trims that compared well to the other muscle cars of the early 1970s, giving it a vibe that might attract the youthful buyers Chrysler hopes will purchase the vehicle.
“They put some pretty big engines in them and made them pretty competent street machines,” said Leslie Kendall, curator of the Petersen Automotive Museum.
The 1963 the Dart sold for $2,041, $1 more than the Corvair but $6 less than the Falcon, Kendall said. (Chrysler may announce pricing and availability of the 2013 Dart model at the Detroit auto show next month.)
“The Dart did pretty well. At the time, Chrysler was known for its engineering and they had one of the better engines of the day, the ‘slant six,’” Kendall said.
Dart production peaked in 1974, when Chrysler built about 340,000 Darts, but the company quickly phased out the vehicle when import brands began to make inroads into the small-car segment of the U.S. auto market.
Kendall said that American consumers will probably be receptive to a sporty compact car that has “exotic” Alfa Romeo heritage.
In a review, Greg Migliore, news editor of AutoWeek, described the Alfa Romeo Giulietta as fun to drive, with “tons of power and panache in small packaging small car.” He said it is comparable to the sporty Volkswagen GTI and the Mazda Mazdaspeed 3 compact cars.
The Dart will be Dodge’s reentry into the compact-sedan segment and will be an important vehicle for Chrysler as it works to improve the efficiency of its vehicle line to meet more stringent federal fuel economy rules.
This latest version of the Dart will offer buyers a choice of four engines, all four cylinders and ranging from 1.4 to 2.4 liters.
It will be produced at Chrysler’s Belvidere Assembly Plant in Belvidere, Ill. The company is pouring $600 million into the site to reconfigure the factory to produce a range of autos. Chrysler said it is building a 638,000-square-foot body shop at the factory and installing new machinery, tooling and material handling equipment.
Interestingly, the Dart previously had a touch of Italian heritage. In 1956, Chrysler showed a concept car called the Dart, which featured styling by Ghia, the Italian auto design house.
To test drive the all-new 2013 Dodge Dart come in to your local Chicago Chrysler Dodge Jeep dealership today.
Source: [LA Times]
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A New Year’s Resolution That Pays Off
In the New Year, why not resolve to perform regular vehicle maintenance? By spending a little time now on preventive maintenance at Zeigler’s Chicago Service Department, drivers can save a lot of headaches in the long run and make for a great year on the road in 2012, according to the Car Care Council.
“Many New Year’s resolutions go by the wayside pretty quickly,” said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council. “Regular car care is a resolution that will pay off all year, every year. It’s relatively simple to implement and the results are demonstrated in a better performing vehicle and fewer unexpected repairs and breakdowns that can result from vehicle neglect.”
The council recommends the following service interval schedule to use when making regular vehicle maintenance part of your New Year’s resolution:
• Perform monthly checks of tire pressure and the condition of tires, lights and windshield washer fluid. The vehicle should also be cleaned monthly.
• Every three months or per the owner’s manual, check the engine oil and filter, check the levels of other fluids including automatic transmission, power steering and brake, and check battery and cables, belts and hoses. The exhaust and fuel filter should also be checked at this interval.
• Every six months or 6,000 miles, the chassis lubrication should be checked and windshield wipers should be replaced.
• Every 12 months or 12,000 miles, the brakes, spark plugs, coolant and steering and suspension should be checked.
If the “check engine” light comes on, vehicles should be immediately taken in for service to identify the problem.
The Car Care Council Web site has a Service Interval Schedule for vehicle owners to follow. Drivers should also consult their owner’s manual for specific recommendations by the carmaker.
Source: [Car Care]
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Resolve To Be a Better Driver in 2012
If you haven’t made your New Year’s resolutions yet, consider adding a few from behind the wheel. A change or two to your driving style can make all the difference on the highway – and could even save your life.
1. Buckle yourself and your children properly. No single thing can prevent more highway accidents, injuries and deaths than belting in, especially for children and small adults.
2. Concentrate on driving. If you must use a car phone, use a hands-free device. If you must eat on the road, pull over for 15 minutes so you’re not balancing a 64-ounce drink in your lap while doing 70 mph on the highway.
3. Stay in control. Aggressive driving doesn’t only occur during commutes. If someone irritates you or makes threatening maneuvers, don’t challenge them. Instead, slow down and blend into more sane traffic.
4. Become a mirror-checker. Not for your makeup or hair, but for the flow of traffic. You’ll see many potential incidents before they happen if you scan your rear view and side mirrors every half a minute or so.
5. Pass left, drive right. The left-most lanes are meant for passing. If you’re not passing or not completing a pass in less than a minute, move over and let others by.
6. Park with a conscience. Other people’s cars deserve the same care you’d give your own. If a space is too tight to open your doors comfortably, find another spot.
7. Learn how to stop in a hurry. While anti-lock brakes are standard or available on most cars today, many drivers still aren’t familiar with how they work. If you’ve never experienced your anti-lock brakes in action, find a parking lot to test them out. It’s easy to hit the brakes hard and feel the pulsation on the brake pedal. Don’t lift your foot; keep it on the pedal firmly. That pulsation is your anti-lock brakes working.
8. Create some breathing room. The proper following distance of three car lengths is almost nonexistent in today’s traffic-clogged commutes. Still, there’s no reason to travel tightly packed. Open some space between your bumper and the car ahead and you’ll cut the risk of being a statistic.
9. Pay attention to flashing lights. Whether it’s an emergency vehicle, police car, school bus or a fellow driver flashing to pass and pull right, pay attention to vehicles that require extra attention.
10. Change lanes safely. Missed your exit? Need to make the next right-hand turn – but you’re in the left lane? Don’t move across three lanes of traffic or cut off other drivers – wait until the next opportunity, go back, and try it again. It may save your life or the lives of others.
Resolve to be a better driver in 2012.
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