MARCH 28 2012 23:13h
Jeep considers increasing production
"We are looking at everything we can at this time to overcome hurdles for increasing production," said Mike Manley, president and chief executive officer of the Jeep brand.
Manley said adding new shifts, increasing the speed of existing assembly lines and finding more efficient ways to get parts to plants were all under consideration, the Detroit Free Press reported Wednesday. Jeep sales in the United States rose 34 percent in January and February compared to the same period a year earlier.
Jeep is gearing up for its annual brand celebration in Moab, Utah, which generally draws 10,000 Jeep enthusiasts.
The brand expects to test six customized Jeeps at the event this year, which begins March 31 and runs through April 8.
Manely said demand for the brand is strong, but would run into a headwind if gas prices continue to rise.
Jeep is a brand that likes to boast of its tough, off-road capabilities more than its fuel efficiency, which averages 18 mpg. Rising gas prices could undermine the decision to ramp up production, the newspaper said.
AUBURN HILLS, Mich., March 28 (UPI) -- The president of Chrysler's iconic Jeep brand said the company was looking at ways to increase production in the United States.