* The redesigned '08 Liberty finally has a price for its head. MSRP, including destination: Sport 4x2, $20,990; Sport 4x4, 22,600; Limited 4x2, $25,175; and Limited 4x4, $26,785. That Sky Slider canvas-roof thingy has an MSRP of $1,200.
* Shall we segue into Liberty production delays? OK! The Toledo Blade has reported the model went into production a week later than scheduled.
* The new Grand Cherokee has debuted in Europe.
* Shall we segue to Camp Jeep Europe? OK! It had record attendance-1,500 people and 650 vehicles.
* We've heard more hints the JT pickup is under serious consideration. Seriously. And could it get a Cummins? Seriously?!
* There are 80,000-plus Wranglers being recalled for potential engine stalling. We told you last month the government was investigating the JK, and now Chrysler is going to have dealers reprogram a power module that could cause a temp interruption of electrical power to the engine and the instrument panel on affected vehicles.
* Cerberus-the Chrysler Group's new owner-says it's not planning to sell the Jeep brand.
"Have fun out there. Jeep." The new ad campaign features its own Web site, of course, called www.havefunoutthere.com. You know, in case you can't get enough of it from TV commercials, billboards, buses, and so on and need to have fun out there in front of your computer.
* Why do chicks drive with both hands on the wheel and dudes with only one? Dr. Iain MacRury from the University of East London was one of the researchers who looked into this. As he told the Daily Mail, "Men talk about their cars as if talking about themselves. Women are more comfortable expressing their feelings directly and see the car as separate. That's why women give names to their cars. It's also why men drive with one hand on the steering wheel. They are physically relaxed, as they think the car is part of them. Women drive with two hands because they see the car as more 'detached.'" Fascinating, no? No.
* We pretty much avoid any Web site with "please" in the URL (at least at work). But we went to www.betterdrivingplease.com without fear of the IT guys shutting down our operation. It's a virtual vent-fest-you can seek out United States entries (it defaults to the United Kingdom, but the search feature works) and read and/or post about not-so-swift driving you've encountered because, let's face it, your significant other is tiring of you whining about the stupid people during your commute. "Driver just hogged the lane and did not move over to allow me entry" has an enthusiastic readership here.
* Ready to downgrade from your Jeep to a Rolls-Royce? The Provenance program is preowned R-Rs. You're probably still looking at a low six figures for someone else's discarded mid-six-figure ride.
* Happy Summer of E85! (If you live in Iowa.)
* "The Simpsons" is now a movie! If you know us, then you know we live and breathe this television show. So when the editorial staff heard about the Burger King-sponsored www.simpsonizeme.com, we headed over with our mugs and got ourselves Simpsonized. (Sorry about the blank pages in the magazine this month, but we have our priorities). Hazel wonders why he's a yellow Tupac (easy to spot him on the trail, though), while Cappa is hurriedly upgrading his Match.com photo. We're still explaining to Pete that it doesn't mean he'll actually be on the show.
* "I've been sorry for buying it since before I handed over the money. I shouldn't complain. It only needs everything."-Hazel on his new white flatfender that doesn't run
* Speaking of: Worst vehicle ever purchased? Someone said his wife's American car (rhymes with mocus but not mucous). Another person said a $50 '84 CJ-7. The plan was to make that Jeep a daily driver, but it stayed rusted and minus floors and with a dead motor. Not to mention all the parking tickets. Nothing was ever done to it and now it's someone else's problem.
* One of us has too many boxes and toothbrushes in the garage. Another has unorganized random bolts, nuts, and washers from past projects. Someone else may or may not have a body.
* You read the magazine. How many guesses do you need to figure out who buys just as much peanut butter as he does ammo?
We told you this time last year that the Jeep Parkway facility in Toledo was going to be demolished. But Chrysler found it in its heart to keep one of the three smokestacks intact on the site (the Overland), recognizable landmarks since 1915 (this photo is from 1926). Parkway was the oldest manufacturing plant in North America; in 1909, it was the main facility for Willys-Overland and produced military vehicles in the early '40s. It stopped doing business in 2006 when the Wrangler models all moved to the fancy, new Toledo Supplier Park.
If you want to own a commemorative brick (with a walnut wood base), go to www.thescoop-cg.com/jeepbricks or call 888/267-2187. The bricks are $39.99 each (plus there is a shipping charge), but that money will go to the Boys and Girls Club of Toledo.
* BFGoodrich nabbed the military-tire contract for the HUMVEE from Goodyear. BFG is now building a special 37-inch Mud Terrain km2 specifically for the military to fit the 16.5-inch-diameter Hummer wheels. They should be on the Hummers as you read this. About 5,000 units have already shipped. The new Mud Terrain km2 is also available to civilians. It's starting with the following sizes, some of which are new and bigger. More sizes in 15- and 16-inch wheels to follow in September 2008.
|• 35x12.50R17/D||• 245/70R17/E|
|• 35x12.50R18/D||• 285/70R17/D|
|• 37x12.50R17/D||• 305/55R20/E|
|• 37x12.50R18/D||• 305/60R18/E|
|• 37x12.50R20/D||• 305/65R17/E|
|• 38x14.50R17/D||• 315/75R16/D|
|• 40x14.50R17/C||• 325/60R20/D|
|• 42x14.50R20/C||• 335/55R22/D|
*Rock Krawler Suspension is in the process of designing and building prerunner lift kits specifically for high-speed off-road use. This will include kits for TJs, LJs, XJs, and WJs.
"We both bought Jeep Grand Cherokees. It was funny because Ben (Affleck) and I, we both always wanted a Jeep Grand Cherokee for some reason. That was the car. We always talked about it but never could afford one. So when we suddenly had the money, we each instantly started trying to convince each other to get a different car. We'd say, 'Hey, have you seen the Explorer? The Ford Explorer is really cool.' Because we knew it would just be so gay to get the same car."-Actor Matt Damon in the August issue of GQ magazine