Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Chrysler LLC kills re-badged counterpart to Dodge Journey


Earlier this week, Chrysler announced it would pull four slow-selling products from the market in 2008. But according to Leftlane sources, company officials also decided recently to kill off a product that hasn't even been built yet — a Chrysler-branded version of the Dodge Journey.

Chrysler recently introduced the Dodge Journey, codenamed JC49, at the Frankfurt Motor Show. It was widely known that plans existed for a Chrysler version of this vehicle codenamed JZ49. Originally the Chrysler model was set to go into production some time in 2009. Later, word came down of a delay, of up to a year, on the JZ49 program.

Now comes word from industry and supplier sources that the JZ49 program has been killed outright. Reasons for the cancellation of JZ49 are not clear, though, product overlap with the Dodge Journey is a likely motive. It's also not clear if this was part of the part of the recent product lineup thinning announced by Chrysler's new management team.

This revelation will prove to be quite significant to Chrysler's lineup. With the Pacifica going away at the end of its current life cycle, and the JZ49 canceled, the Chrysler brand will be left with no traditional crossover vehicle in the show room.

What, if any, new crossover plans there might be for Chrysler are not known at this point. However, it would be hard to imagine that the Chrysler brand would abandon this segment all together.

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