Thursday, June 23, 2011

A Rare Look Inside the Big Three: Part 2

A few weeks ago now, Chrysler opened their doors for employees and contractors to bring their family and friends into the normally limited access world headquarters and technical center buildings.  If you missed my first post on the subject, I recommend that you read it before continuing with this post.

In the first part, I promised that I would take you inside the highly restricted design department.  Today, I keep my promise.

 The design department has something that no other area of the company has, their very own exhibition space.  The design dome plays hosts to many events throughout the year, most of which nobody hears anything about until long afterward.  The company utilized the opportunity to bring out the brand new 2012 Dodge Avenger R/T.  Since I work on this car, I'm very proud of it.  We've done a number of things to make this a very special vehicle, most notably special performance tuned dampers and higher rate springs to give better feedback at the wheel.  We've also swapped out the rear stabalizer bar for a larger one, giving the car better performance through corners.  

 This is one of the first times that this little guy has made an appearance.  For 2012, the Dodge brand has a brand new front grille logo, reflecting the new, performance and attitude driven direction of the brand.  The dual red stripes that you've seen in both print and video media reflect not just the R/T stripes on the side of the vehicle, but also show forward movement, and bring about imagery of the black tire paths left by a burnout.

 I kept oogling this car as we made our way by.  Several people made comments similar to "What happened to it?" or "Why didn't they clean it up?"  The answers are simple.  This is a racing Viper and they didn't clean it up because this is what it really looks like after a race.  It's fantastic.  I wouldn't want to see it any other way.
  This is a Jeep that will make Jeep purists smile.  This is a Lower Forty-eight concept.  It features full time four wheel drive, solid front and rear axles, and the ability do disconnect the front and rear stabilizer bars.  If you don't understand, it's ok.  It's a Jeep thing.
  This heavily modified Jeep Wrangler is known as the Porkchop.  Why?  Heck if I know.  What I do know, is that Mopar got their hands on this thing and took it out on the annual Moab trip, where it performed beautifully. 
 This is the Dodge Coronado concept car.  It's made many appearances as the Dodge Zeo, but this one says Coronado on the side.  There are a great number of unique features to this vehicle, most notably, a windshield that seamlessly transitions into a glass roof.
This is the concept art for the Zeo/Coronado.  This shows several different interior options, the unique wedge shaped profile, and a combination scissor/suicide door system.
  There's not much to say about this picture other than that it's an in-process sketch of the 2011 Dodge Charger.
 This is what the Chrysler 300 used to look like.  It is the very definition of luxury.  While our current Chrysler 300 is a fantastic vehicle, I would love to see it replaced with a vehicle as unique as this.
  Of course, you probably recognize this.  This happy banana is an old school Fiat 500 Cabriolet.

 This is a panoramic view of some concept art for the Chrysler 300. I won't distract  you any further from enjoying the beauty of it.
  And this is the Chrysler 200.  Notice the several different options for tail lights that were not chosen along with the wealth of wheel options.  Many of the wheel designs are architecturally inspired, as can be seen by the pictures of the buildings that inspired them on the left.

I hope you enjoyed this rare look inside the auto industry.  This is the work that we put in to make cars great.  This is the passion that we have for our jobs.  This is what will make Chrysler great once again.

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