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Restructuring Plans: Caddies, 300s, And Grand Cherokees, Oh My

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2011 Cadillac CTS Coupe

2011 Cadillac CTS Coupe

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2011 Chrysler 300

2011 Chrysler 300

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2010 Jeep Grand Cherokee

2010 Jeep Grand Cherokee

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If you've got nothing better to do on a Wednesday morning, we highly recommend you flip through the restructuring plans Chrysler and GM submitted yesterday. (And really, what could you possibly have to do that's more important than that?) Among all the legalese and financial statistics, there's plenty of info about each company's rollouts to tease and tantalize. We're pretty sure the folks at Ford have already printed out that stuff in quadruplicate and wallpapered the breakrooms with it.

Here are a few of the tidbits that caught our attention--and there are plenty more where these came from:

The Cadillac CTS Coupe (pg 65 of the GM plan):

  • Start of production: 2010
  • Location of production facility: Lansing, Michigan
  • Powertrain with best fuel economy: 3.6L V6, 6-speed auto 

We've seen it in person, and we have to say: the CTS Coupe is one sweet ride. We're sad that production was delayed by a year, but we're happy to see the model hasn't been scrapped. Rumors abound that a CTS-V coupe with a supercharged V8 may also be in the works, too, but not a convertible (even though the Cadillac XLR convertible will soon go the way of the dodo).

Next Generation Jeep Grand Cherokee (pg. 130-131 of the Chrysler plan)

  • Chrysler’s revenue in the near term will get a boost with the debut of a redesigned Jeep Grand Cherokee.
  • Jeep is an iconic American brand whose roots go back to World War II, when the U.S. military needed a go-anywhere, do-anything vehicle to support American troops in every theater of the war.
  • Today, Jeep is one of the best-known and strongest automotive brands in the world.
  • Jeep Grand Cherokee set the trend as the first luxury SUV.
  • The new fourth-generation Jeep Grand Cherokee will be built in the United States and will feature improved fuel economy and a best-in-class interior.

Obviously, this baby's ready for the assembly line, and the 2010 - 2012 model year versions will boast a 19% increase in fuel economy.  Its styling may be a little "generic SUV" for some, but Jeep's legendary brand loyalty will likely turn this model into a winner on the lot.

All- New Chrysler 300 (pg. 132-133 of the Chrysler plan)

  • Chrysler 300 is the Company’s flagship sedan.
  • The Chrysler 300C has won more awards than any car ever – including North American Car of the Year, Motor Trend Car of the Year, Automobile Magazine’s Automobile of the Year, and Car and Driver’s Ten Best list.
  • The next generation Chrysler 300 will feature stylish new exterior and interior designs, improved fuel efficiency and unprecedented “uconnect” connectivity.
  • Powertrain options will include an all-new fuel-efficient six-cylinder engine in addition to the HEMI eight-cylinder engine. The HEMI engine features Chrysler’s Multiple Displacement System (MDS) that automatically deactivates engine cylinders for enhanced fuel economy.
  • Safety features available on the new Chrysler 300 include:
  1. Rear Cross Path and Blind Spot Monitoring systems to warn drivers of unseen vehicles
  2. Electronic Stability Control, all speed traction control, and four-wheel anti-lock brakes
  3. Energy-absorbing steering column, rear-sill reinforcement and structure, and available side-curtain and seat mounted side air bags.

According to the doc, Obama's former car of choice will see a fuel economy boost of 22% in the 2010 - 2012 model year, and certainly no one can argue with the 300's popularity. And the new fuel efficient V6 in lieu of the HEMI V8 is a nice touch.

But what say you, gentle readers? Is all this enough to pull Chrysler and GM out of the tank?

[source: Chrysler's PDF and GM's PDF]

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Comments (5)
  1. "Mr."

    More smoke and mirrors. Chrysler touts its awards but does not include sufficient details on how it will move more steel. It tells us about a fuel efficient V-6 but does not say how efficient. To my knowledge the best city number for a V-6 is 21 mpg. It would have been better for them to say that the 300 and Grand Cherokee spent time in the wind tunnel, dropped 1000 to 2000 pounds or so, and will offer fuel efficient clean turbodiesel engines, all to allow these vehicles to achieve 24 to 30 mpg in the city. That would be progress. They should add that Lotus was commissioned to improve the steering and handling to BMW levels and that Consumer Reports was being used as a benchmark to ensure that reliability ratings for these vehicles achieves much better than average. As for GM, my only advice is if you charge Audi, BMW and Mercedes prices for your vehicles, make sure that your vehicles are equal or better. Sadly when you look at the Cadillac CTS, they still have a way to go. The same can be said of the Malibu and Aura, with their fake locking fuel filler doors and missing passenger assist grips, versus the Accord and Camry. Add to it that GM needs of philosophy of less better quality offerings instead of more average offerings.
     
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  2. "Agreed, but..."

    ...this might be enough to convince congress that Chrysler and GM are on the Road to Wellville. There's also the pesky matter of practicality and the corporate environments of each: even if they managed to think differently, could they apply that new thinking to new/revamped models in time to bring them to the marketplace before their ships sank?
     
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  3. "Blando"

    The 300C looks quite bland, just the same design but with a new, and worse grill. The 300C stood out because it was different, but now it's not. V6 instead of hemi-V8? You have to be kidding, people went for the hemi because it was a hemi. a V-6 option makes sense though but they need to keep the V8 for the top power models.
    Cherokee used to have a unique styling, latest evrsion started to go away from that and this version looks like any other SUV except for the Jeep Grill. though is an impovement on compass/patriot and that awful Commander. Yes Jeep was a great brand name but so was buick once. Brand name only stays great if you have product that continues that. jeep hasn't in a very long time
     
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  4. "Car Enthusiastic"

    I wouldn't give "fitty cent" for any of these cars. Boring, overpriced, not what I want in a car. I like European handling, styling, fuel economy, safety, performance, etc. These cars are more of the same old thing and are part and parcel of what will eventually bring them down.
     
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  5. "Maybe......"

    The CTS coupe is nice but low volume....concerned that GM is abandoning segments (mini-van, mid-size SUV's)... they need to put their talents into a volume vehicle that they can sell above a Chevrolet price (higher margins)
    I don't expect the 300 mania any more but a new Grand Cherokee could be the pivot point that determines Chryler's survival
     
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