Jeep unveils 3 more versions of Wrangler
“We are pretty confident that [double-digit growth] will work out,” Pablo Rosso, CEO of FCA Korea, told the Korea JoongAng Daily on the sidelines of a media event held in Gwanghwamun, central Seoul, Wednesday.
According to the Italian-American automaker, Jeep’s Wrangler lineup has been showing steep growth over recent years, especially with the first fully changed Wrangler in 11 years rolling out in Korea in August.
Last year, four versions of the Wrangler were introduced. On Wednesday, the automaker introduced three new versions of the all-new Wrangler, the Wrangler 2-Door, Wrangler Overland 4-Door - which replaces the Wrangler Sahara - and Wrangler Power Top 4-Door, making a total of six Wranglers on the Korean market.
More than 1,700 Wranglers were sold in Korea last year, up 24.1 percent compared to 2017.
Rosso said the company hopes to maintain sales growth of its iconic off-roader by expanding the target customer base of the car.
“What we are trying to do is to give the opportunity to more people to get to know Wrangler, and that’s why we are launching many different trims,” Rosso said. “I think in the past, Wrangler customers were very off-road-oriented.”
The company said the 2-Door version could cater to the needs of off-road enthusiasts. The car comes with a shorter wheelbase and higher break-over angle - the angle a vehicle can drive at without its undercarriage touching the ground - compared to the 4-Door versions, enabling the car to more easily handle different off-road conditions. A shorter wheelbase enables the car to turn more easily with less room.
The Overland 4-Door is designed for urban drivers who would like to use the SUV every day. FCA Korea emphasized that the car comes with improved on-road driving performance.
The Power Top 4-Door suits trend setters and off-road manias, according to FCA Korea, introducing it as a “multiplayer.” It has a soft-top cover that can be opened up with the press of a button.
The price of the six Wranglers ranges from 46.4 million won ($40,900) to 61.9 million won.
As for the whole Jeep brand, the company is targeting 10,000 sales this year. To achieve that, Rosso said the automaker will continue on with its so-called Jeep-focused strategy rather than its non-SUV lineups branded under Fiat and Chrysler.
BY KIM JEE-HEE [firstname.lastname@example.org]