So, now that brings us to 2017 and the Jeep brand is known world wide. No longer the basic go everywhere, simplistic 4x4, the Jeep, the first suv, has expanded its line up to cover almost all bases, even to the point of being about to introduce a 707 HP Hellcat powered Trackhawk.
The rest, as they always, say is history. Jeep supported Chrysler and now does a pretty fair job of supporting FCA, or at the very least doing a better job than the problematic, but well reviewed Alfa.
So what is a Great Wall? This is a Chinese company that by 2020 wants to become the world's largest seller of suvs (or something like that). There they are again, the Chinese. Only a handful of years ago being laughed at by many (not by me) for their aspirations. Now, they are being regarded as a respected powerhouse of car manufacturing and development (see Volvo, folks). And what better way to achieve that than to have the Jeep brand in their arsenal.
Currently Great Wall has a few nothing special sedans, that you'd lose in a empty parking lot, they are so boring. Also, and this is where they sell volumes (after all this is China), some nothing special suvs, which they sell under the Havel name..........
No surprise here, as Chinese manufacturers have been cloning other companies' products for more than a few years. Chinese knock-offs often find themselves in other countries' courts, who actually have copyright laws. Growing pains, since this will change, as China's manufacturers take on the world.
Great Wall also has introduced a luxury suv, being marketed under the Wey nameplate. This is its just introduced suv.......
Attractive and a touch derivative, but hey, aren't many cars and suvs like that these days?
And of course, any self respecting company also has to have a pick-up in the line up.......
So Great Wall has big dreams and apparently, more to the point, big pockets, if they think they have any chance of wrestling Jeep away from FCA. Who would think that FCA would even entertain an offer for this steady and big profit maker? But obviously Great Wall knows something we don't. Or, just maybe they are dreaming. FCA could use the coin, but lose out in the long run?
A story whose ending has yet to be written, but don't think it's impossible to read this ad in the not so distant future......Your Great Wall dealer cordially invites you....."Come in and drive a Jeep yourself."
Hope springs eternal.
Until next time..........and since I'll be heading to England for a couple of weeks holiday, next time will be September 12th. As always, my car camera will be at the ready.