Chrysler Group's Line-Up for 2007 SEMA
30th October, 2007
Chrysler will debut eight ultra-customised Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge vehicles at the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) trade show, the annual showcase of technology, trends and products representing the $36.7 billion automotive parts and accessories industry. The SEMA show will be held 30th October – 2nd November, 2007 at the Las Vegas Convention Centre.
Chrysler’s ‘tricked, tuned and customised’ Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge vehicles were designed for SEMA by the Mopar Underground design team, a group of in-house automotive enthusiasts who donate their time to the SEMA project vehicles.
‘Designed for Customisation’ Philosophy Drives the Mopar Underground Design Team
A contemporary perspective on the design principle, ‘form follows function,’ might state that the ‘form must also be flexible to allow for adaptation.’ For the automotive industry, that means producing vehicles for consumers that not only allow for customisation but strongly encourage it.
Case in point, the 2007 Jeep Wrangler was named one of the most accessory-friendly vehicles by SEMA members. According to a Foresight Research report conducted last year [commissioned by SEMA's Research and Information Centre], more than 1,700 full-size truck owners revealed that 50 per cent had spent or planned to spend $500 or more on accessories – with a high of 63 percent for Dodge Ram owners (most likely to accessorise). And 20 per cent of that group said they bought their trucks at a particular dealership because of the availability of accessories.
Overseen by Ralph Gilles, Vice President of Jeep/Truck & CFM Design, Chrysler LLC, the Mopar Underground design team has been putting that contemporary perspective on the design principle to action by customising production vehicles. Since its implementation in 2002, the Mopar Underground design team has designed vehicle concepts meant to develop performance parts, accessories and customisation as well as new vehicle concepts. In fact, the first-generation SRT4 was developed from this team’s style initiative.
“Our diverse team which changes frequently has been developing SEMA concepts for more than five years. It’s the usual ‘enthusiast’ suspects from our union shops [plastic, paint, metal and wood], Product Design Office, SRT and Mopar Performance Parts and engineering,” said Gilles.
“Every year, we push the boundaries of conventional thinking – customising with no limits to creative expression and freedom, just the power to imagine. We want to build customised concept vehicles for SEMA that flex the potential in our platforms, show that Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge vehicles are indeed designed for customisation and keep the Mopar spirit and passion alive,” said Gilles.
After the SEMA show, the customised Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge SEMA vehicles will be displayed at events throughout 2008 including Easter Jeep Safari, the Miami Motor Show and more.
Jeep Wrangler JT
Built from the military version of the all new Jeep Wrangler, the Jeep Wrangler JT showcases just how flexible this new platform can be. Revealed at the 2007 Easter Jeep Safari in Moab (Utah), it dominated the steep climbs and descents on the slopes of the Hell’s Revenge trail. Its 4x4 capability was established as it negotiated the slick hot tubs and waterfalls – at times, almost completely vertical to the ground.
Beginning with the new platform from the Wrangler Unlimited, the design team managed to design a very nimble, trail-savvy Jeep with a 1.5 metre pick-up bed and an easy-to-handle removable hardtop.
Off-road enhancements include:
The Jeep Wrangler Ultimate with 392 Hemi from Mopar
The name says it all.
The Jeep Wrangler Ultimate with 392 Hemi from Mopar is a concept vehicle that answers the question “how far can you go with the new Jeep Wrangler?” Beginning with the all-new Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon, the design team set out to develop the best of the best – combining high style and materials with the best off-road machine ever offered by Jeep.
The suspension is enhanced with a 3-in. lift to clear the massive 35-in. BF Goodrich Mud Terrain tyres mounted on custom polished Alcoa Forged 18-inch wheels. The exterior is chromed-out, courtesy of Mopar:
To complete the look, the exterior is coated in a wildly experimental ‘Liquid Charcoal Pearl Coat’ paint.
The Wrangler Ultimate’s real story is its interior. Taking cues from rugged adventure sports bags and accessories, the team designed a high style and detailed interior compartment that is as tough and beautiful as the exterior. Seating surfaces are clad in durable orange mesh fabric and dark slate grey Nappa/Province leather – bound with a heavy black-leather baseball stitch. Instrument panel details are treated to a stunning Argent Pearl/Satin Silver paint combination, reinforcing the machine character for which Jeep is known. The interior is also home to the exclusive MyGIG™ Multimedia Infotainment System. There are also DVD screens for passengers in the front and rear.
To provide authentic performance on the trail, the team also dropped in a 392 Hemi crate motor.
Jeep Wrangler All-access
The interior of the Jeep Wrangler All-access has been upgraded with premium materials and paint. To give it “trail and off-road” credibility, the designers vamped it up with Mopar performance parts including Rubicon Express 4-inch suspension lift, front and rear bumper with tyre carrier, rock rails, cold air intake and Warn 9500 ti winch. American Expedition Vehicles supplied its new Pintler sheels.
Painted “Surf Blue,” the Wrangler All-access also features 35-inch BFG Mud Terrain tyres. In 2008, the Wrangler All-access will be seen at Easter Jeep Safari (Moab, Utah) and Camp Jeep.
Dodge Ram BFT
“Built for towing,” the Dodge Ram BFT is also one “big fast truck.” Designed to be the “ultimate” workhorse, the vehicle will appeal to the extreme truck buyer. And there’s one thing the heavy-duty trucker can never get enough of: a bigger pick-up box.
The design team placed a standard cab on a 160-inch Dodge Ram Heavy Duty wheelbase frame so the 2.8 metre chopper fits snugly in the 3 metre plus box. The team also accommodated the "dually" set-up with a 6-inch suspension lift kit from Superlift and Alcoa’s 22.5 inch 10-lug semi wheels. The BFT also features full-length polished bed and step rails.
The Ram BFT has a Banks-enhanced 6.7-litre Cummins turbo diesel engine that is matched to an automatic transmission.
In the end, the Ram BFT provides “maximum” hauling and towing power. And dependability, durability and capability is what Ram is all about.
Dodge Avenger Tuner - Stormtrooper
The Dodge Avenger Tuner – Stormtrooper is a sedan designed to appeal to an adult tuner with an appreciation for technical superiority, exhilarating performance and unbridled luxury and style. The technical, yet organic nature of the Stormtrooper costumes from Star Wars inspired its execution. The Avenger Stormtrooper represents the holistic fusion of technology, racing, comfort and performance.
Smooth power is unleashed by the digitally-tuned 4.0-litre V-6 engine – that packs the punch of a velvet hammer. It features an all-wheel-drive powertrain and six-speed automatic gearbox with AutoStick steering wheel paddle shifters and KW custom coil-over suspension that is tuned for ride-height and damping. Its custom exhaust is from Borla. The large 20 x 9 custom Alcoa Forged rims come with die-sub custom graphics and Michelin 245/35R20 Pilot Sport PS2 tyres. It also features a StopTech six-piston front and four- piston rear big-brake package, Xenon HID projector head lamps, Umnitza Predator halo lighting and Challenger fuel filler cap.
Exterior custom modifications on the Avenger Stormtrooper include:
Painted a custom pearl white, the Avenger Stormtrooper’s story continues on the inside.
The Alcantara suede-lined interior features four black and white Dodge SRT8 bucket seats with red stitching and stripes to carry the driver and three lucky passengers for the thrill ride of their lives in style. The instrument panel, doors, headliner and pillars are swathed in this performance material. The custom Dodge "rim-shell" steering wheel and shifter paddles are constructed of black leather, white suede and red accent stitching and centre stripe. The centre stack/console features triple gauge pod and glossy pearl white finish.
Revolutionary technology abounds for the sophisticated tuner. There are two Azentek mobile PCs installed with 1.8GHz Intel Core Duo processors and two gigs of ram – one unit is in the front dash and one is in the rear seat centre console. With the touch of a finger, the driver is “master of the vehicle network domain.” ETAS’ INCA software digital interface to the engine controller could allow the driver to have the capability to control its tuning and read vitals. The owner could even order parts or download engine calibrations through Mopar Performance Parts and could communicate with engineers and other Dodge owners in Web logs and chat rooms. The driver could adjust fuel maps (as opposed to static flashing) and even download Technical Service Bulletins (TSBs) from a Chrysler, Jeep or Dodge dealership as he or she drives by.
Entertainment – Internet, gaming, music and video – is also controlled. Sync Bluetooth® links to any devices: phone, iPhone and Zune. Heart-pounding sound is provided by KICKER® Audio. It also features a Mopar Performance gauge pack with red accent LED lighting.
The Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show, the annual showcase of technology, trends and products for the $36.7 billion (USD) automotive parts and accessories industry, will be held 30th October – 2nd November, 2007 at the Las Vegas Convention Centre. The premier automotive specialty products trade event in the world, SEMA draws the industry’s brightest minds and hottest products to the Las Vegas Convention Centre and attracts more than 100,000 industry leaders from over 100 countries in the automotive, truck and SUV markets. Open to domestic and international industry professionals, the 2007 SEMA Show will feature more than 2,000 exhibitors. More than 100,000 are expected to attend this year. SEMA was founded in 1963. The industry provides appearance, performance, comfort, convenience and technology products for passenger and recreational vehicles.
70 Years of Mopar
When Chrysler bought Dodge in 1928, the need for a dedicated parts manufacturer, supplier and distribution system to support the growing enterprise led to the formation of the Chrysler Motor Parts Corporation (CMPC) in 1929.
Originally used in the 1920s, Mopar (a simple contraction of the words MOtor and PARts) was trademarked for a line of anti-freeze products in 1937. It was also widely used as a moniker for the CMPC. The Mopar brand made its mark in the 1960s – the muscle car era. The Chrysler Corporation built race-ready Dodge and Plymouth “package cars” equipped with special high-performance parts. Mopar carried a line of “Special Parts” for super stock drag racers and developed its racing parts division called Mopar Performance Parts to enhance speed and handling for both road and racing use.
Today, Chrysler’s Global Service and Parts division is responsible for the manufacturing and distribution of nearly 250,000 authentic Mopar replacement parts, components and accessories for Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge vehicles sold around the world.
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