1. That’s Interesting
•Have you ever wished there could be an Exclusive Nonluxury Vehicle of Prudential Center and the New Jersey Devils? Granted: Jeep, for the 2016-2017 NHL season.
•The Toyota Dream Car Contest is setting out to get kids excited about cars and has invited wee ones of age 4-15 to submit hand-drawn art of their concept dream car. The details can be found at tfsinthecommunity.com/dreamcar. The contest ends January 31, 2017.
•OnStar has donated $20,000 to 20 public safety personnel, who were seriously injured or endured a hardship that affected their ability to continue doing their job. This was part of OnStar festing its own 20th anniversary.
•Hennessey Performance has built a VelociRaptor 6x6 concept vehicle, which is a ’17 Ford Raptor with six-wheel drive and more than 600 horses, plus unique bumpers, a tweaked suspension, and an optional twin-turbo, as well as other beefiness. So, if you have $295,000 burning a hole in your Dockers, you now know what to do with it.
•NASCAR Technical Institute has partnered with Fiat Chrysler to add Mopar Technical Education Curriculum (Mopar TEC). It’s about learning how to work on Jeeps, Rams, and more, including how to use handheld scanners and diagnostic equipment.
•Nissan bought Mitsubishi.
•Tremec, of manual-transmission/driveline fame, is expanding globally, with its newest facility opening in Belgium.
•Consumer Reports put out its annual reliability survey, and Toyota and Lexus once again came out on top.
•Fiat Chrysler is investing $10.4 million into a new 500,000-square-foot Mopar Parts Distribution Center in metro Detroit. It’s set to open late-2017.
2. Is It True?
•Did a junkyard mistakenly sell an ’18 Jeep Wrangler prototype hood? And then did Fiat Chrysler ask the buyer for it back? And all the drama was shared via jlwranglerforums.com?
•Might self-driving cars make the roads safer for motorcycles?
•The future Jeep Wagoneer will run about $140,000?
•No more internal-combustion engines in Germany by 2030?
•Kia’s SUV, the Telluride, will go into production?
•Ford might be doing an eight-lug light-duty pickup?
•Are baby boomers losing interest in sports cars?
3.Your Government at Work
•NHTSA punched the numbers and learned there were 35,092 deaths from traffic crashes in 2015, which means the decline in that is over; that’s a 7.2 percent increase since 2014. NHTSA said the last time there was this much of a whopper of a single-year increase was back in 1966.
•A new law is in place in Michigan: Forest roads must be opened to motorized use by the public unless the Department of Natural Resources has stated otherwise, and written notice of a road or trail closure has to be provided to local governments.
•The U.S. Postal Service has been on the hunt for new cutting-edge vehicles to replace its aging fleet of guzzlers and old tech. AM General’s concepts were picked by the USPS Next Generation Delivery Vehicle Prototype Awards.
•Put it on the to-do list: July 14, 2017, will be the 8th annual Collector Car Appreciation Day across the nation. The event is designed to bring awareness to auto restoration and collection, and is also an excuse to vehicle-party.
•The Metropolitan Transportation Commission did an annual ranking of the Bay Area’s most congested freeways. “The afternoon drive on northbound U.S. 101 and eastbound Interstate 80 in San Francisco supplanting the morning commute along westbound I-80 from Hercules to San Francisco as the region’s most notorious location for traffic trouble,” said the statement.
4.What’s Happening in the Industry
•Truck Hero has bought Husky Liners.
•And the same thing happened over at Continental. It has bought Hoosier Racing Tire.
•Hankook has opened a new tire-R&D center in South Korea called Technodome.
•Over at Skyjacker, Lonnie McCurry Jr. has been promoted to president, while his father, Lonnie McCurry Sr., will shift focus to being CEO and chairman of the board.
•BFGoodrich and Remington Industries are partnering as BFG begins offering interior accessories and floor protection products for off-road and outdoor enthusiasts.
•ExtremeTerrain, which does the ol’ e-commerce thing with Jeep Wrangler parts, is sponsoring Philadelphia Outward Bound School, a charity that’s all about adventure-based education. The company’s donation will help send two classes of students on a backpacking or canoeing trip for five days.
5. Four Wheeler App
Seriously, you should check out the Four Wheeler app, available from the iTunes App Store. We could tell you what you’d find, but then we’d have to say, “spoiler alert.”
6. 2017 GMC Sierra HD All Terrain X
Looking for the most hardcore off-road rig GMC offers? Check out the ’17 Sierra HD All Terrain X, a limited-edition 2500 HD Crew Cab 4x4. It’s available with a gas or diesel mill, and features the Z71 suspension package, aggressive Goodyears, underbody protection, Eaton auto-locking rear diff, sport bar for lights, front skidplate, and appearance add-ons.
7. Trucks of Texas: Toyota, Nissan, and Ford
The annual Texas Truck Rodeo revealed the winners of the 2017 Truck of Texas awards, which included Ford being named Truck Line of Texas. Named the Truck of Texas was the ’17 Ford Super Duty, while the SUV of Texas was the ’17 Nissan Armada. Best Commercial Vehicle went to the ’17 Nissan Titan XD Single Cab, and Heavy-Duty Pickup Truck was the ’17 Super Duty. Luxury Pickup was the ’17 Ram 1500, while the ’17 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro nabbed Midsize Pickup, and Fullsize went to the ’17 Nissan Titan. The ’17 Jeep Grand Cherokee and Cherokee scored Midsize and Compact wins, respectively, while the ’16 Renegade was the Compact CUV winner. And the winners in the off-road categories? The ’17 Ram 2500 Power Wagon and ’17 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon.
8. Meet a HERO Jeep
We all think Jeeps are heroes, but this one really is doing heroic work. Omix-ADA has partnered with the Hope of Life HERO Jeep and built specifically to get through remote roads and trails throughout the world—we’re talking jungle. The organization rescues babies, children, and families, and Omix-ADA became a partner in building the first Hope of Life Jeep, with other sponsors that include Rugged Ridge, Katzkin, Jeeps R Us, BFGoodrich, and Mopar. Learn more about these amazing missions and the Jeep at jeepheroes.com.
9. ’17 Ram 1500 Lone Star Silver Edition
The Ram 1500 Lone Star is expanding to now come in Silver Edition, which as you’d imagine will have chrome and chrome and some chrome and more chrome and then chrome. That’s everything from towhooks and wheels to grille inserts. Package pricing is $900, which is a starting MSRP of $38,995.