New Model News

Plug-in hybrid Jeep Wrangler coming before the end of 2020

The Jeep Renegade and Compass 4xe have already gone on sale in Europe.

Photo courtesy of FCA

More and more vehicles are being electrified and it was only a matter of time before America's beloved off-roader, the Jeep Wrangler, had its turn. Instead of first going mild-hybrid then advancing to full hybrid before landing on plug-in hybrid (PHEV), the brand is going straight to a plug-in hybrid version of the four-wheel drive model.

During the company' recent annual general meeting FCA CEO Mike Manely discussed the importance of the model to the U.S. market, sharing that it will be on the "front line of our electrification strategy in North America."

Despite the fact that FCA doesn't have many models available in the North American market that are electrified (Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid and Ram 1500 with the mild-hybrid powertrain are it), the company is expanding its options worldwide including the forthcoming Maserati Ghibli Hybrid. The coming merger with PSA Group should help bring many other parts of the lineup along.

Plug-in variants of the Wrangler will wear the "4xe" badge. This was first revealed at CES earlier this year. At that time, the brand revealed that PHEV versions of the Jeep Wrangler, Compass, and Renegade are all in the pipeline.

Jeep Renegade 4xe (European model)

Photo courtesy of FCA

Jeep Compass 4xe (European model)

Photo courtesy of FCA

Jeep is saying that the forthcoming production variants of these vehicles will be the "most efficient and responsible Jeep vehicles ever, providing absolute and quiet open-air freedom while taking performance, 4x4 capability and driver confidence to the next level."

The Wrangler 4xe is expected to have 31 miles of all-electric range, can reach 62 mph when running on electric power, and have around 240 total combined horsepower.

Originally, the models were set to debut at the Geneva, New York, and Beijing auto shows. The Geneva show was cancelled as COVID-19 took hold in Europe. The New York International Auto Show was postponed to September as the pandemic ravaged New York. As the sickness continued to cause shutdown, the organizing body was forced to cancel the show altogether. The Beijing show is still on the books for September.

After its debut, the Wrangler PHEV will be available in China and Europe in the first quarter of 2021. The timeline for U.S. availability has not yet been made public.

The Renegade and Compass 4xe have already been shown to the European market and reservations are now being accepted. Both models are powered by a turbocharged 1.3-liter gasoline engine with an electric motor located between the rear wheels, which is powered by an 11.4 kilowatt-hour battery. Depending on trim level, the models achieve either 190 horsepower (Limited version) or 240 horsepower (Trailhawk and S). The models have Electric, Hybrid, Sport, and E-Save drive modes.

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Pininfarina is set to begin delivers of its Battista hypercard soon.

Photo courtesy of Pininfarina

The Pininfarina Residenza at-home electric vehicle charging point may be the most exclusive wall box charger in the world. The exclusive home charger is available to buyers of its 1,900-horsepower Pininfarina Battista.

The box was designed in partnership with Green Motion and is badged with the Automobili Pininfarina name. It has up to 7.2 kilowatts of energy flow in North America.

The design of the wall box was inspired by the lines of the Battista. It features a painted cover finished in the same color the owner has selected for their pure electric, Italian luxury hyper GT. The box is constructed of recycled and organic materials.

Pininfarina Battista Pininfarina promises 1,900-horsepower Battista electric hypercar deliveries will begin soon. Photo courtesy of Pininfarina

For North American customers, the Residenza wall box features a tethered Type 1 cable (Mode 3) which includes an integrated cable management system which automatically gathers and rolls the lead into the box.

Each Battista is powered by a 120-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack. The pack can be charged by the wall charger in six hours. The top-up provides 310 miles of range (WLTP).

Pininfarina has announced a partnership with ChargePoint for charging outside the home. ChargePoint's network has approximately 115,000 places to charge in North American and Europe, as well as 133,000 charging spots through roaming integrations with other charging network providers.

Using a 180kW DC-charging system, owners will be able to charge their Battista from 20 percent to 80 percent in just 25 minutes.

Battista owners receive five years of unlimited public charging at no extra cost with their purchase.

"Our clients will love the thrill of Battista's extreme electrified performance, yet they also need to enjoy living with this advanced technology," said Automobili Pininfarina Chief Product and Engineering Officer Paolo Dellacha. "For that reason we have ensured there are a comprehensive number of public charging points available to them, made possible through our collaboration with ChargePoint.

"At the same time, a large proportion of the Battista's charging will be done at home and our exclusive wall box design provides owners with a bespoke solution, finished to their exact taste."

The Residenza wall box may be activated through a dedicated app, which allows owners to remotely schedule the charging of their Battista and monitor its charging status. The app also enables owners to view the charging history and is integrated with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant for enhanced convenience.

Owners use their Battista keyfob or app to link to ChargePoint network chargers. Each fob contains a secure RFID chip that can be used to complete a charge purchase without any additional charging cards required.

The Pininfarina Battista is priced at over $2 million.

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The SCC Tautara is now the world's fastest car.

Photo courtesy of SCC North America

He's an entrepreneur, philanthropist, and car enthusiast. He's also the new King of Speed. Dr. Larry Caplin's SSC Tuatara recently became the fastest production car ever with a set of of records during an October 10 event in Pahrump, Nevada along a seven-mile stretch of State Route 160.

With professional racing driver Oliver Webb at the wheel, the Tuatara hit an average of 316.11 mph following two consecutive high-speed test runs. To comply with test regulations, the car traveled first in one direction down the road clocking 301.07 mph then turned around and went the other direction on the same road getting to 331.15 mph, consecutively, within one hour.

SCC Tautara Shelby Webb sign Jerod Shelby, CEO of SSC (left) and driver Oliver Webb (right) celebrate the car's record.Photo courtesy of SCC North America

The times were then averaged. Officials were on site to verify all world record criteria was met and even reviewed Dewetron GPS measurements, which tracked the speed runs using 15 satellites. The Tuatara earned the title of the "Fastest Production Vehicle".

The car also earned three other titles: "Fastest Flying Mile on a Public Road" at 313.12 mph, "Fastest Flying Kilometer on a Public Road" at 321.35 mph (517.16 km/h), and "Highest Speed Achieved on a Public Road" at 331.15 mph.

Caplin is celebrating the milestone by donating community programs that support children, youth, and military families worldwide. His $316,000 donations will support health and wellness programs in underserved schools, provide college scholarships to first-generation students, and help military communities and families nationwide.

Larry Caplin SCC Tautara record car Dr. Larry Caplin celebrates the record set by his car.Photo courtesy of Dr. Larry Caplin

"I am beyond thrilled to own the World's fastest car because it's another opportunity to shine a light on important issues that support local communities and serve military families," said Caplin. "Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that I would be the owner of a historic vehicle, but I recognize that I have a responsibility to use this opportunity to help those who need support in a tangible way."

SSC North America is producing 100 SSC Tuatara hypercars. High-speed,high-downforce, and track versions are now available to customers.

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