There has been a US-available diesel engine rumored to be planted in both the Wrangler and the Grand Cherokee for many years. In 2007, Daimler/Chrysler released a 6-cylinder diesel () in the WK Grand Cherokee, which got killed off in 2009 due to tighter US emissions restrictions…so it’s been a LONG time coming that we actually have some sort of Diesel offerings in the Grand Cherokee. My suspicion is that they are going to test the marketability of the Diesel in the Grand, and then offer up one for the Wrangler after they see that they sell to expectation. Jeep Wrangler guys have been SCREAMING for Diesel offerings for a million years (almost).
Anyway, here’s the article that got me all excited about the “verification” that all this was not still just “talk” from Chrysler…
Chrysler to add workers for 2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee diesel production
Jan 5, 2012 by Steve Tarlow
JEEP WILL PRODUCE A DIESEL GRAND CHEROKEE FOR THE FIRST TIME SINCE 2008. (PHOTO CREDIT: CC BY-SA/AMMAR SHAKER/WIKIPEDIA)
Good hiring news is on tap for the Chrysler Group, reports Automotive News. In preparation for production of the 2013 Jeep Grand Cherokee clean diesel, Chrysler will add a third shift at a Detroit SUV plant. This will mark the diesel Grand Cherokee’s first appearance on the North American market since 2008, said company spokesman Todd Goyer.
Chrysler to hire 1,100 workers
According to reports, the Chrysler Group will add 1,100 workers as part of a new third shift at the Jefferson North assembly plant. The bolstered workforce should enable the automaker to reach its production goals with the new Jeep Grand Cherokee and keep the Chrysler name on top of the heap when it comes to innovation, noted Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne.
“Detroit long has been home to renowned innovators and craftsmen,” Marchionne said. “So it is in the Motor City, home of our industrial heritage and a resilient people, that we are entrusting the manufacture not only of the ultimate American sports car, the SRT Viper, and the Jeep Grand Cherokee – the most awarded SUV ever – but also a diesel version of the Jeep Grand Cherokee for North American markets.”
Grand Cherokee sales were up 51 percent in the U.S. last year to 127,744 units, while the Durango tallied a respectable 51,697 units sold in its first full year back on the U.S. auto market. The upcoming diesel version of the Grand Cherokee will reportedly deliver both greater torque and increased fuel efficiency in a clean-burning diesel engine. It will produce 241 horsepower and 406 pound-feet of torque in the base model, a V6 turbo diesel. While fuel economy isn’t known yet, a lower-powered European version achieved the equivalent of 28.3 mpg U.S.
Jefferson North adds Maserati to the mix
Previously known as a facility where the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Dodge Durango are assembled, the Jefferson North plant will soon also be responsible for portions of the 2013 Maserati Kubang. This SUV will be making its North American debut for Fiat S.p.A., the company that controls Chrysler.
Leaked photo of the 2013 Maserati Kubang concept
Green Car Reports