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It's the end of Liberty

Production of Jeep Liberty SUV to cease on August 16

Published: August 10, 2012, 7:00 AM

2012 Jeep Liberty

The last Jeep Liberty compact SUV is scheduled to roll off the production line at Jeep's Toledo North assembly plant on August 16, according to the Detroit News.

The Liberty was introduced as a replacement for the Cherokee in the 2002 model year (although it retained the Cherokee name in markets outside North America.)

Initially available with either a four-cylinder V-6 engine, it briefly offered a diesel as well. Since the second-generation model was launched in 2008, however, only a V-6 engine has been available.

While its sales have been solid, they have never been spectacular. Some suggest their potential was limited by the introduction of the parallel Dodge Nitro, which was similar except for styling, and the lower-priced Jeep Compass and Patriot.

Although the Liberty featured unibody construction, it was biased heavily towards Jeep's traditional off-road capabilities, which may also have limited its appeal in the face of a host of car-based competitors.

Its replacement, which will probably carry a different name, is expected to make its debut at the 2013 North American International Auto Show in Detroit in January.

It will be a true crossover (CUV), built on a platform shared with Fiat. Beyond that much, mid-2013.