Study Suggests State of the World Has More Americans Considering a Jeep

Dave

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#1
March 26, 2020

Two weeks have now passed since much of the United States' population went into self-quarantine and the world hasn't quite turned into a Mad Max: Fury Road apocalyptic wasteland. But while the viral outbreak's impact could see a whopping 30-percent contraction of new car sales by year's end, new research suggests that people are still apparently looking at new cars, more specifically, they're looking at Jeeps.

The poll, completed by YouGov BrandIndex, asked potential customers "When you are in the market next to purchase a car or truck, from which of the following would you consider purchasing?" and offered a list of manufacturers to choose from. The responses showed that customers considering a Jeep vehicle rose 2.6-percent in the last 30 days, which amounts to 16-percent of the population considering a Jeep product.

As the infection spreads and Americans continue to hoard toilet paper, flour, beans and rice, and guns, with many believing this is the intro to a real-life The Walking Dead, it's not exactly rocket science to connect people's interest in Jeep's rugged lineup and our current reality. Between the new Wrangler, the Grand Cherokee, and even the diminutive but still capable Renegade, Jeeps are pretty factory-ready for the end of the world.

The Drive's own Jeep coverage illustrates that further, with Editor-in-Chief Kyle Cheromcha's review of the new Jeep Gladiator, saying "it's hands down the off-road king of pickups," to our first dalliance with the all-new Wrangler in which writer Eric Adams declares, "That's the beauty of the Jeep Wrangler--it's not like other cars. Sure, its creators spent time homing in on ideal button placement and speccing out interior materials to generate specific kinds of visual and tactile qualities, but the Wrangler caters to a different kind of buyer overall, and the brand's devotion to usability and utility feels as much like they're fulfilling a military contract as providing for consumer needs."

YouGov posits a similar theory, stating, "It may be too early to tell, but the brand has long positioned itself as a rugged go-anywhere machine, which may be appealing to consumers in uncertain times. Jeep could benefit further as gas prices are expected to slide further as we enter a recession, making SUVs and larger vehicles attractive to the consumer."

While our own thoughts may have drifted toward ready-for-anything rigs in recent weeks, YouGov's poll only tallied 426 responses, which is low when looking to trend anything in the United States. To get true metrics, most statisticians look for sample sizes of 1,000, which means YouGov's 426 is hardly enough to categorically state Americans are looking at Jeep a lot more since the coronavirus outbreak began.

Additionally, Jeep sales have been on fire for the last half-decade, with both Jeep and Ram propping up a flailing Fiat Chrysler. As such, interest in Jeep products has seen steady growth throughout the years and YouGov's data collection could be related to that trend, not one spurred on by the outbreak.

YouGov's research also doesn't talk about how the new car market has contracted heavily in recent weeks as companies layoff, furlough, or send employees home to save money and reduce the spread of the outbreak. So while interest in such vehicles may be up, Jeep interest may also be very theoretical, wishful thinking when there is still so much uncertainty, especially when you consider TrueCar's analysts predicting a whopping 30-percent decline in new car sales by the end of the year.

But what do you all think, is Jeep your go-to brand for when the end comes? Are you still looking for a new car or SUV? Is there a better answer than just any Jeep? Let us know in the comments below.


*Full article HERE
 

Dean

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#2
Even before the virus... and speaking specifically about the JL and JT, I think Fiat has done a very good job of listening to consumers, reading the aftermarket popularity of the Jeep brand, as well as taking the leash off Jeep engineers.

That said, the rest of the brand has continued to go to shit due to them putting lipstick on pics and just rebranding Fiat cars with a seven slot grill. Call me notaligic, call me old fashioned, call me a purist, but I really liked the state of the Jeep brand back in the 90's when you had cross-platform ubiquity within the Jeep brand with shared components between models. That's one thing that helped keep cost down and also identified the Jeep brand as a cohesive brand. It's too late now, and it would never happen, but I'd love to see solid axle utilitarian Jeeps again beyond just the Wrangler.

Now, the realist in me fully recognizes the appeal of the Wrangler having four-doors, leather seats, power windows, remote start, and all those other 'luxury' options does widen the appeal of the platform to fill the void left behind form the (real) Cherokee and (real) Grand Cherokee. I just wish you could still get a basic bare-bones stripped down version of the Wrangler that was more affordable. The bloat in price of the chassis over the years is a bit depressing.
 
#3
While this purely anecdotal, I had a conversation with a garage/tow company owner in Southern California (40 years in the same location) a month or so ago. He brought up the fact that the number of vehicles he has had to "recover" in his area from trails and the desert rapidly increased in the past year. A vast majority of those cases were people driving beyond their abilities (stuck in sand, etc.) but what struck me was the #1 vehicle he has recovered in the past 6 months -- overwhelmingly Jeeps, specifically the Gladiator followed by Land Rovers. Engines that quit, bits that fall off and in two instances, frame failure. Several had been heavily modified with suspensions, bigger tires, etc.. Vehicles he rarely recovers for mechanical issues -- Tacoma's, older Jeeps and early Ram diesel pickups (before DEF).

Jeep has a long history of having good years and bad years of manufacturing quality, (like many others). But the hype surrounding the Gladiator, given its many issues, has been surprising. Next time I am in the market for a new vehicle, I might consult the people who actually recover them.
 

Al Swope

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#4
I'd like a 2 door. Spec'd out the way I'd like, it's 50k. I don't see the value. I have the money but I just can't spend it on what I think should be a bare bones utility vehicle. I know they are not "bare bones" anymore, i just wish they were. For 50k, there are so many better choices.
 
#5
Frankly, to my mind, a jeep doesn't make all that much sense as a lesson to have been learned from a pandemic.

I've been following some of the mainstream RV forums and reading about people who've traveled across the country, north from FL and AZ up to and even into Canada. They've all raved about how great it was to be able to eat and sleep in their own vehicles, self isolating as they've crossed the country.

A 4x4 pickup with a camper makes so much more sense than a jeep . . .
 

Dave

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#10
A vast majority of those cases were people driving beyond their abilities (stuck in sand, etc.) but what struck me was the #1 vehicle he has recovered in the past 6 months -- overwhelmingly Jeeps, specifically the Gladiator followed by Land Rovers. Engines that quit, bits that fall off and in two instances, frame failure. Several had been heavily modified with suspensions, bigger tires, etc.
I think this is due to inexperienced drivers/user error and poorly executed aftermarket crap as much as anything else. The frame failure that went viral on social was due to shocks that were too long and repeated jumping of the vehicle with a trailer in tow.

New drivers who know jack about driving offroad and want to "send it" in the desert with a stock vehicle of any brand will break it.
 

Dave

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#11
Any full size truck for 50k will do everything better than a 2dr except go off road. I get that it's a "life style" vehicle but historically they were bare bones and priced under what trucks of the day went for.
But that's the point in this segment - to go offroad.

Other than the Power Wagon (Raptor or Tremor, which is NOT a $50k truck last I checked) there is no full size competition in this genre that can touch a JT offroad.

Jeeps haven't been bare bones for many years now :tango

;)
 

Dave

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#12
They've all raved about how great it was to be able to eat and sleep in their own vehicles, self isolating as they've crossed the country.

A 4x4 pickup with a camper makes so much more sense than a jeep . . .
Except one important thing. They leave isolation every time they stop for fuel or to take a leak as they "cross the country" under these conditions. Truck stops et al were nasty before this, and a sure fire petri dish now. No thanks.

As a guy who had what some considered the ultimate "4x4 pickup with a camper", I can tell you the grass is not always greener on the other side. It is nice to have a camper, but they are HEAVY (and top heavy too), lack aerodynamics in a big way, are fuel hungry, maintenance heavy and $$$. And diesel fuel costs more too and now you need DEF. And they just don't do well when the road ends. Not a fan anymore now that I owned one.

Yeah, it's all perspective and what's important to you. For me, I'd rather be faster and lighter these days.

But as I age that pendulum may swing yet again... RV's are cool ;)
 
#13
"Jeeps haven't been bare bones for many years now"


Yup. They haven't been worth a D#$#^% since they made the roll bar standard equipment........:tango

That's why I spent all day Saturday under my '72. I could afford a new one, but then I would be out $50k and still wouldn't have anything I like as well as a CJ5. And believe me, a stock 1972 CJ5, at about 2,500 lbs curb weight, will run with a stock 2020 JL at 4,500 lbs. Like you said fast and light.
 
#14
As a guy who had what some considered the ultimate "4x4 pickup with a camper", I can tell you the grass is not always greener on the other side. It is nice to have a camper, but they are HEAVY (and top heavy too), lack aerodynamics in a big way, are fuel hungry, maintenance heavy and $$$. And diesel fuel costs more too and now you need DEF. And they just don't do well when the road ends. Not a fan anymore now that I owned one.

Yeah, it's all perspective and what's important to you. For me, I'd rather be faster and lighter these days.

But as I age that pendulum may swing yet again... RV's are cool ;)
wait, are you saying after owning the rig you brought to uwharrie rendezvous a couple years ago (white truck with camper), you'd rather have something different? what would you choose?

are you doing something different than you used to, so your requirements have changed? or would you really rather have a taco and trailer with RTT or something all along?
 

Dave

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#15
"Jeeps haven't been bare bones for many years now"


Yup. They haven't been worth a D#$#^% since they made the roll bar standard equipment........:tango

That's why I spent all day Saturday under my '72. I could afford a new one, but then I would be out $50k and still wouldn't have anything I like as well as a CJ5. And believe me, a stock 1972 CJ5, at about 2,500 lbs curb weight, will run with a stock 2020 JL at 4,500 lbs. Like you said fast and light.
JL will do 80 across I-40 without breaking a sweat.

I can’t imagine trying it in a CJ-5 :lol
 

Haggis

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#18
What a silly article. It’s like fanboy click bait. Less than 500 surveyed does not a trend make. Not even getting into the intrinsic value of purchasing a Jeep or any other lifestyle ride...just what is it going to gain you? It won’t feed you, it won’t pay your mortgage, it won’t wipe your arse, it won’t take you anywhere without an already established road and even if it did what would it gain you? Where are you going to shelter long term, how are you going to gain substance? Hell the vast majority of people on overlanding forums are no more woodsmen than I am a rocket scientist. Yep, I bought a Jeep to be independent and now I’m sitting in the woods starving to death eating twigs and tree bark next to an overpriced monthly payment.

Listen to old Uncle Haggis...invest your money in ridding yourself of debt, don’t incur it. Learn to raise food, can and preserve it. Surround yourself with helpful hands, strong backs and keen minds, build a support system. A Community...a real one that you can depend on whether it’s family, friends or a mix of both. Buying that Jeep or any other rig to feel secure is just dumb.

But it will look cool on Instagram when your posting your bushcraft cosplay pics.
 
#19
Owning at least 2 Jeeps at any given time since 1985, I'll admit, has better prepared me for this mess. I've honed my mechanical skills (they break down). Survival skills (while being broken-down), sailing skills (drive a CJ5 on 38's on a windy day), sewing skills (too cheap to buy new soft top), welding skills (they rust ALOT) etc.
:looney
 
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