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FCA Puts Development of Jeep Grand Wagoneer on Hold

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Development of the upcoming Jeep Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer has reportedly been put on hold.

Doubts arose when Fiat Chrysler Automobiles pushed back the launch of the luxury SUVs from 2018 to 2019, and now two suppliers told Automotive News in an interview that the company has put all plans on the back burner due to a lack of funds.

According to the trade journal, the Italian-American automotive group is the only major automaker with more debt than cash. The fact that the company is also currently in the midst of launching the Alfa Romeo brand in North America while simultaneously designing an all-new Ram pickup and Jeep Wrangler makes its cash situation only worse.

The Grand Wagoneer, which is expected to compete against such premium players as Range Rover, is expected to have a price tag of up to $140,000 that would help FCA’s bottom line. However, it wouldn’t sell in a large enough volume to justify a huge initial investment.

There have been rumors that FCA can’t decide on which platform to use for the Wagoneer / Grand Wagoneer. The Jeep Grand Cherokee’s platform was a natural bet, but engineers are reportedly struggling to stretch the platform to meet the needs of the larger model.

There is also the option of the updated body-on-frame chassis of the next-generation Ram 1500 pickup, but there are concerns it will ride too roughly for an ultra-luxury vehicle.

FCA hasn’t said anything on the matter, but the future of the Jeep Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer is unclear, to say the least.

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Lexus

Next Lexus IS Might Use The Same BMW Engine As Supra

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2017 Lexus IS Sports Sedan, Blue

Engineers are implanting a BMW heart into the Japanese sports sedan.

A new report coming out of Japan states that the next-generation Lexus IS will get the same BMW-sourced inline six-cylinder engine as new Toyota Supra.

According , the 3.0L V6, which produces 335 horsepower and 365 lb-ft of torque in the Supra, will be part of an engine lineup that also includes a 2.0L turbo, a 2.4L turbo, and/or a 2.5L hybrid powertrain depending on region.

It can also be found in the latest Z4 as well as the IS’s natural rival, the BMW M340i.

The next-generation IS is unlikely to change in size but will weigh less, topping the scale at approximately 3,395 lbs compared to the current IS’ 3,737 lbs.

Finally, the Japanese car magazine claims the IS F will make a return packing a variation of the in-house twin-turbo V6 found under the hood of the popular LS 500.

Lexus has not confirmed when the next-generation IS will debut, but there have been rumors that it could arrive in 2020.

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Alfa Romeo

Is Alfa Romeo Giving Birth To A Baby SUV?

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Blue Alfa Romeo Stelvio SUV

Stelvio might be getting a little brother.

Alfa Romeo will reportedly release a brand-new crossover that slots below the Stelvio compact crossover.

Sources famaliar with the vehicle revealed to Greece’s that the model will ride on a model-specific version of the Giorgio platform that underpins the aforementioned Stelvio and the Giulia, meaning it will be rear-wheel drive or, optionally, all-wheel drive.

Power will likely come from a turbocharged, four-cylinder engine and, as unlikely as it might be for the small crossover segment, possibly a V6.

A sub-Stelvio crossover was a centerpiece of the five-year product plan Alfa Romeo presented in June 2018, so this is more than just a rumor. In fact, previous reports claim it will share platforms with either the Jeep Renegade or Compass rather than with the Stelvio.

If designed and built right, the little Italian high-rider could become the company’s best-seller, and releasing it as quickly as possible would help the company reach its goal of selling 400,000 cars annually by 2022.

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Bentley

Bentley Bentayga Speed Nabs “World’s Fastest SUV” Title

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New Bentley Bentayga Speed, fastest SUV

The luxury SUV can launch to 62 mph in under 4 seconds.

Bentley proudly boasts that, with a top speed of 190 mph (306 km/h), the Bentayga Speed is the world’s fastest production SUV.

The 6.0-liter W12 engine found in the standard Bentayga has been tweaked to put out 626 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque, providing enough propulsion to hit 62 mph (100 km/h) from a standstill in just 3.9 seconds.

It’s worth noting that the 641 hp, V8-powered Lamborghini Urus is actually lighter and more powerful yet has the same top speed. The fact that the two SUVs are closely related makes us think there were some politics behind this head-scratching outcome.

In addition to the extra power, the Bentayga Speed provides a more dynamic driving experience than the regular Bentayga thanks to a retuned Sport mode and a stiffened suspension, while the exhaust note is throatier.

Designer gave the exterior a performance-theme characterized by dark-tint headlights, blacked-out grilles, a tailgate spoiler, and unique 22-inch wheels available in three finishes. Inside, one finds contrast stitching on the diamond-quilted upholstery and Alcantara trim, the first time the material has been used in a Bentayga.

The Bentley Bentayga Speed goes on sale in the second half of 2019 after making its world debut at the Geneva Motor Show.

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