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Cperez 12-27-2010 10:32 PM

Taking remote delivery: Destination Poconos
Blasting off at oh-dark-thirty on Tuesday morning to pick up a one-way rental vehicle from Reagan Washington National. My daughter will ride shotgun with me as we head about 200 miles to Allentown PA (Lehigh Valley Int'l Airport/ABE). From there we'll drop off the rental sled and will be met by the Gen'l Manager of Gray's Chrysler Dodge Jeep of the Poconos. He will then drive us the final 40 miles to his dealership in Stroudsburg, PA.

The snowstorm this weekend threw a major kink into Plan A, which was for me to fly to ABE and then make my way to Stroudsburg via car service. There were so many flights and even trains cancelled that the I-95 corridor is not where you want to be if you have options. Fortunately, there is an equidistant and much more scenic route that will take us up through Gettysburg and then Harrisburg before bending east and heading to ABE. I've got my good camera packed as well as a Flip Mino and I have assigned my daughter as my mobile camera-gal and videographer. That said, she's 16 and driving on her permit but she's pretty good behind the wheel, so I'll probably let her drive a bit just to mix it up and reward her for keeping her old man company on this boondoggle.

The GM at Gray's, Joe Galati, has been a pleasure to deal with. I had contacted his dealership when it appeared that they had what I was looking for on their lot (using The person I spoke with said that it was a dealer trade and already spoken for so I moved on. I got a call back that afternoon from Joe saying that this Overland was in fact available. He agreed to honor TL pricing (1% under invoice). I only had to tussle with him a little bit over a doc processing line item that he threw in, but I agreed to let it pass because he had already offered to drive the 80-mile round trip to get us at ABE. I like a deal as much as the next guy but I wasn't going to be an ungracious cretin about it. Also, his organization just purchased this small Chrysler dealership and I felt it was appropriate to support his future success in some small way. Joe also told me that he had ordered 13 Overlands and this was the first one to come in, and he wasn't sure when the rest of them would even be gatelined. Finally, after our first conversation on 12/24, he pulled the Overland into the heated garage and locked it up, so it didn't sit out during the snowstorm. All in all, I thought it was a fair deal.

Taking delivery should be pretty straightforward; a few signatures, a quick tutorial on the various systems, some handshakes all around, and we'll hit the road. Everything else has been handled remotely. I'll try to get some pics during the trip for a little travelogue. Hopefully we'll be in good view of the Poconos while we're there. Further reports to follow. I gotta make sure I correctly programmed my new coffee maker to have my brew ready at 0500!

Mashie 12-27-2010 10:36 PM

Re: Taking remote delivery: Destination Poconos
Have fun Cperez! I would love to hear about your first impressions as well as your driving impressions right after you get it. You are going to have a blast driving it home :). Oh and the Mineral Grey/Black is slick! :D

moosehead 12-27-2010 10:37 PM

Re: Taking remote delivery: Destination Poconos
thumbsup CP, enjoy and safe travels home

Lingohocken 12-27-2010 10:54 PM

Re: Taking remote delivery: Destination Poconos
Any further comments you have on the dealer would be helpful.

yukon 12-28-2010 06:54 AM

Re: Taking remote delivery: Destination Poconos
The adventure is something you and your 16 year old daughter will treasure for years. Enjoy and safe travels.:)

Navy1 12-28-2010 07:10 AM

Re: Taking remote delivery: Destination Poconos
Congrats mom works at the ABE airport at Hertz! I hope you enjoy your ride back...couldn't think of a better way to get acquainted with your new Jeep than riding through the Pocono's after a good snow storm!

Ventzi 12-28-2010 09:57 AM

Re: Taking remote delivery: Destination Poconos
Grays sux ...go to Brownd-daub

Cperez 12-28-2010 10:01 AM

Re: Taking remote delivery: Destination Poconos

Originally Posted by yukon (Post 324166)
The adventure is something you and your 16 year old daughter will treasure for years. Enjoy and safe travels.:)

She's driving right now and loving it. I snagged the wifey's MiFi device before leaving so I'm surfing JG from my iPad and getting my game face on!

We stopped for breakfast at a friendly little greasy spoon somewhere north of Gettysburg. We are about 20 min from ABE now. Getting close.

moosehead 12-28-2010 10:16 AM

Re: Taking remote delivery: Destination Poconos
Awesome CP, how about a little beta on that MiFi device?

Big question is whether you'll let your girl drive the new WK2 on its maiden voyage?

If so, you're a better man than I!

Cherodude 12-28-2010 01:43 PM

Re: Taking remote delivery: Destination Poconos
Have fun, but take it safe and slow if needed due to conditions and traffic. A trip to remember for sure!

SvenskaJeepGuy 12-28-2010 09:42 PM

Re: Taking remote delivery: Destination Poconos

Originally Posted by Ventzi (Post 324203)
Grays sux ...go to Brown-daub

i second that, i have bought a few parts from brown daub and they are great!

have fun driving through my neck of the woods lol

also, just a heads up, your daughters maryland permit is not valid in pennsylvania.

Cperez 12-29-2010 12:02 AM

Re: Taking remote delivery: Destination Poconos
3 Attachment(s)
First off, thanks to everyone for the good wishes and encouragement.

We had a fantastic time from start to finish. The anticipation during the drive up there, the fun of "the reveal" when the dealership team took me back to inspect my prize, and of course the blissed-out experience of the drive home. In fact, it occurred to me during the ride there and back that any thoughts I shared would be more from the perspective of the Jeep lifestyle than from a technical standpoint, although I do have some observations.

Here's a stream of consciousness report:

The drive up to the Poconos from DC was a breeze. Weather was clear and cold but not as bitter or windy as the day before. Roads were dry as a bone and traffic was very light. We got a Chevy HHR for the trip and it was adequate and even borderline fun. As mentioned, we took a clockwise route that sent us northwest on I-270, then north on US 15, then we curled around to the northeast and went through Harrisburg, Allentown (dropped off the rental there), and on to Stroudsburg after being picked up by the dealer and one of his guys in a Blackberry Limited Hemi. Took about 4 hours flat to get to the airport, including the breakfast stop.

During the final leg of the drive the GM told me that this was their first official WK2 sale (he had put his wife in a Limited lease so that didn't really count). Said that at least 5 other dealers had called him about a swap on this vehicle so he knew he had a unit that he could easily move. They get an average of 6 months of winter weather so 4x4's tend to sell pretty well there.

Once at the dealership, as promised, the Overland was spiffed up and ready for inspection. As many of you know, you can test drive the heck out of these things, sit in them on the showroom floor, and spend hours inspecting photos and videos, but when you sit in the one that will belong to you after a few signatures, it's a special feeling. I had no gripes with the condition of the Jeep. The dealer had even abided by my "no dealer badging/decals" dictum. The only small issue was one we had previously discussed; the blemish on the front driver's side wheel. The replacement will be drop-shipped to my local dealer in MD for replacement; already cleared with Chrysler.

I sat and listened politely as the dealer's finance manager went through the laundry list of optional services. Passed on all of them although I do plan to purchase B2B extended warranty before 12 mos/12K miles. I told him I'd give him a chance to beat and I will, however I will use Redcivic's gambit of making them discount enough to offset the sales tax. One thing he said that I need to research and verify: they offer a program through Zurich, not Chrysler, and he said the benefit is that you can take your vehicle to ANY ASE-certified mechanic, not just Chrysler dealers. Anyone have experience with this?

I have been driving my family nuts with my WK2 talk, so I was prepared for my daughter to be polite but somewhat blasť about the vehicle. Wrong. She, like me, could not keep the s/e grin off of her face. She made an unprompted observation that the interior really reminded her of my RR HSE. She loved the gadgetry and had fun playing with the navi and Sirius radio. No, moosehead, she didn't get any wheeltime today!

Count me among the converted w/regard to the tech package. bpmcgee and others, you called it...once you experience it in action it sells itself. The way it modulates your speed is limousine-smooth. I had one "whoa, boy" incident when traffic in front of us quickly got bolloxed up. I covered the brake as insurance but allowed a bit of pucker factor (didn't actually press the brake) to see how far the technology would manage the situation. It was flawless, including a terse beeping at the end when I finally (literally) stepped in. For all I know it would have taken us to a standstill. Also tested it by sliding into slots behind slower-moving vehicles and pulling out again; worked as advertised in a grin-inducing display of technical panache.

Ditto for the blind spot monitoring. Maybe it's the way I'm adjusting my seat, but looking over my left shoulder for lane changes in that direction yields zilch in the way of useful info. I get a sliver of a view through the rear passenger window and have to rely on the mirror. It is very intuitive to scan the mirror and the outboard corner of it for the triangular amber warning light.

Speaking of scanning instruments, I found that the beefy steering wheel blocked the headlight indicator that some thought was too bright. I like my wheel on the lower side, which works great for me in this vehicle because after about 5 minutes of driving it became second nature to use the EVIC for speed and not the needle (and certainly not the speedo hidden in the corner of the navi).

When I think of its road manners and feel, the word that comes to mind is "substantial." This guy is beefy and drives heavy but in a good, confidence-inspiring way. It felt bigger to me on the inside than it looked on the outside.

iPhone 4 synced w/o problem and made and received phone calls. I think someone said that the 430n made them wait 3 rings before allowing them to answer, but I didn't experience that. Nor did I have any problem with repetitive and lengthy address book downloading. iPhone BT music streaming was fine with the workaround where you put the phone to sleep after invoking iPod mode. Tried the USB connection in the center console but didn't have the patience to let it read our devices. I will try this later. After I got home I loaded a few CD's worth of tunes but I'm going to use a flash drive for the bulk load. Still need to study up on how to organize the files in folders.

I admit it, I didn't do anything special for break in purposes. Oh, I punched it a couple of times once it was good and warmed up, and I took it out of 5th now and then to avoid MDS, but finally decided to drive it in my usual fashion from the get-go. That said, we hit some very slow spots on the way home so the Hemi wasn't running flat out for extended periods by any means. I'm still on the first tank of gas and my avg MPG is showing 16.1.

Got a couple of shots to share and will get more over the next few days. The last one is in front of a little place that a friend had told me about. We just happened to see it as we drove by and wheeled it in for a bite at the last minute. My daughter and I agreed that we needed to submit the place to "Drive-Ins, Diners, and Dives". The day could not have gone better in any respect.

PS: moosehead, will address MiFi question in the morning...

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