This is among the first of several photos snapped recently of the slightly freshened 2008 Jeep Grand Cherokee. The changes, which we are told are mostly cosmetic, will include a redesigned grille and front and rear bumpers, and a taillight makeover. Except for the addition of the Bluetec 50-state diesel that has been rumored for some time, we expect the current powertrain to carry on. No word if the interior will see an upgrade in materials.
Stylin' Concepts, the nation's leading retailer of truck and SUV accessories, congratulates Jennifer Eubank of Brick, New Jersey, as the winner of its Goodmark/Stylin' Concepts 2006 Chevrolet Colorado Sweepstakes. The Stylin' Concepts sweepstakes truck, co-sponsored by Goodmark Industries and painted with its signature orange-over-black flame job, is loaded with the newest truck accessories on the market, including a Skyjacker suspension lift kit, an off-road tire-and-wheel package from Pro Comp, and a replacement grille and front bumper cover from Street Scene. Other custom accessories include a Westin front bullbar and lighting kit, aftermarket LED taillights from Car Wear, an All-Sales third brake-light cover and a Lambo door kit from LSD Doors. Finally, a K&N intake system was installed to work with the Goodmark cowl induction hood.
The truck was awarded to Eubank by Stylin' Concepts' President, John Milos, in a presentation at Stylin' Concepts' facility in Independence, Ohio. Jennifer Eubank's name was chosen randomly from more than 34,000 entries. To learn about other sweepstakes and promotions, visit Stylin' Concepts' Web site at www.stylinconcepts.com.
Just last month, we reported on the strained relationship between Ford and Navistar, maker of the Power Stroke diesel engine. Well, just as we were going to press, Reuters was reporting that International has stopped shipping 6.4L Power Stroke V-8s to Ford, a seemingly major blow to the struggling automaker. International says Ford is not honoring their agreement; Ford says that International is unfairly raising prices and is not sharing warranty costs. Word is that Ford has a short-term supply of the engines stockpiled and it won't disrupt production-for now. Hopefully, for all parties and consumers alike, this will be resolved quickly.
In other H2 news, Hummer is proud to announce that the H2-based "Autobot Ratchet" will be a primary star in the new Transformers movie. We don't know what capabilities it will have, but we assume a special Ratchet Edition H2 is in the works for next year's Hummer lineup-or not.
The nonprofit Tread Lightly! organization recently launched its new mobile education unit, which consists of a 20-foot trailer, towed by a matching Hummer H2. The Tread Lightly! on the Road to Adventure trailer is packed with informative materials, raffle prizes, and a knowledgeable staff, which will be seen at events around the country including races and trail rides. The goal of Tread Lightly! is to attract and educate adults who drive motorized and mechanized vehicles in the outdoors, including ATV riders, dirt bikers, four-wheel-drive owners, snowmobilers, personal watercraft riders, sand duners, and mountain bikers. On the Road to Adventure is made possible through special Partners in Education including the American Petroleum Institute, Hummer, Polaris Industries, Ramsey Winch, Cabela's, and the Bureau of Land Management. Tread Lightly! will also be holding drawings for Ramsey winches and Cabela's products at several of its major stopping points. More information, including upcoming tour stops, can be found at www.treadlightly.org.
The interactive Four Wheeler blogs are up and running on fourwheeler.com, where Four Wheeler's staff checks in weekly to give you an idea of what we are up to behind the scenes. Registration is free and it allows you to post comments to our blogs. Believe it or not, we actually read them and respond back. To join in on Four Wheeler's hot blogging action, point your browser to blogs.fourwheeler.com.
BFGoodrich Tires, in collaboration with Tread Lightly! and United Four Wheel Drive Associations (UFWDA), has recently announced the expansion of its Outstanding Trails program for 2007. This year, the program recognizes five trails in the United States and adds Whipsaw Trail in British Columbia, Canada, as its sixth trail. Each trail is awarded the honor based on its uniqueness, terrain type and enthusiast following.
Launched in 2006, the BFGoodrich Outstanding Trails program is dedicated to the responsible use and preservation of 4x4 trails while aiding in trail conservation efforts.
Other trails receiving honors this year include:
* Redbird State Riding Area, Indiana
* The Rubicon Trail, California
* Tillamook, Oregon
* Poughkeepsie Gulch, Colorado
* "All Day Sucker" at Flat Nasty, Missouri
For more information, and to learn more about the Outstanding Trails program, check out BFGoodrich online at www.bfgoodrichtires.com
* Toyota has announced that the Tundra 4x4 pricing will start at $26,480 and include the 4.7L V-8.
* Toyota finished Number 3 in U.S. sales in 2006, surpassing DaimlerChrysler's number 3 position for the first time and closing in on Ford at number 2.
* Hummer has a new limited edition H2, this time bathed in Victory Red paint.