•Tread Lightly!, in conjunction with California State Parks, has scheduled four trainer courses and two master trainer courses in California for 2010. These classes are for dedicated volunteers interested in sharing the Tread Lightly! message with their club, local schools, nature centers, and on the trail. For more information, see www.treadlightly.org.
•Speaking of Tread Lightly!, Goodyear is offering a $100 rebate to any individual member of the organization that buys a set of four Wrangler tires. The offer is good through August 31, 2010. Visit www.treadlightly.org for details and a rebate form.
Jeep Brand To expand
Last month we brought you highlights of Chrysler's plans under the direction of Fiat management. We learned a few more details about what's in store for Jeep from an interview Automotive News conducted with Chrysler and Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne. He believes Jeep's position as an off-road brand has limited its sales potential. "Staying in the corner where it stayed, Jeep has allowed everybody else to occupy a space which probably does not belong to them," he said. "We have to go back and reclaim that territory."
That means crossovers, folks. Fiat-based, all-wheel-drive crossovers are due to join the Jeep lineup in 2013. One will be about the size of a Honda Fit. We can only hope it will be as interesting as the Jeep Renegade diesel/electric hybrid concept shown in Detroit a couple years ago.
New ARB for ford
Owners of '97-'08 Ford F-150 pickups as well as Expedition and Navigator SUVs of the same vintage can finally have an ARB Air Locker. The new RD150 fits Ford's 93/4-inch axle and is made from heavy, cross-sectioned nodular cast iron. Retail price is $1,094.50, and ARB is accepting orders now. Visit www.arbusa.com for more info.
Gordon Wins SCORE Championship
Robby Gordon finished Fifth at the recent Baja 1000, but he just needed to finish to clinch SCORE's Overall Points Championship and Trophy-Truck Championship. Gordon's record in SCORE for the '09 season included a win at the Laughlin Desert Challenge, runner-up in the San Felipe 250, a top 10 finish in the Baja 500, and another win at the Primm 300. Gordon was also one of 14 racers to earn a 2009 SCORE Toyota Milestone Award for completing every required mile of every race. Gordon's double championship marks a first for major sponsor Toyo Tires.
Go Topless In May
All Things Jeep is hosting the third annual Go Topless Day for Jeep owners May 8. While the "flagship" top-down event will be held in Lancaster, Massachusetts, near All Things Jeep's headquarters, the accessories retailer is encouraging Jeep clubs around the world to take part. The company is also donating a portion of the proceeds from Topless Day T-shirt sales to benefit Tread Lightly! To find out more about joining them or hosting your own Topless Day festivities, visit www.allthingsjeep.com.
Cooper & Toyota Compete In Dakar
Cooper Tires teamed with Toyota to form a team to compete in the South American Dakar Rally. A Land Cruiser KXR was shod with Cooper Discoverer STT tires for the two-week-long endurance event, which was held in January. Find out how they did by logging on to toyotacoopertire.com.