Monster Mopar Weekend and Nostalgia Super Stocks headed for Gateway this weekend

Dennis Diepenbrock, who competes in a Wedge-headed ’64 Plymouth wagon, leads the Victory Performance Nostalgia Super Stock Series points. (Michael Fischbeck photo)

Mopars will invade the heartland this weekend as the Monster Mopar Weekend will be held June 8-10 at Gateway Motorsports Park near St. Louis. Also, the (mostly Mopar) Victory Performance Nostalgia Super Stock Series will run their third event of the 2012 season.

For more information on Monster Mopar Weekend go to www.monstermopar.com and for more info on the Victory Performance Nostalgia Super Stock Series go to www.dragracingonline.com/challenge/nsss.html. [6/4/2012]

Caravan wins reprieve, but Town & Country to cease production

Chrysler Group LLC plans to kill the Chrysler Town & Country minivan, but will continue production of the Dodge Caravan. The manufacturer also plans to end production of the Jeep Compass.

Chairman and CEO Sergio Marchionne has told Automobile magazine that production of the Dodge version will continue at the company's factory in Windsor, Ontario, while the Town & Country will be replaced by a new Chrysler crossover. The Town & Country name may be retained.

Marchionne decided to keep the Caravan because it was the first minivan, launched by former Chrysler boss Lee Iacocca himself in 1983. And while other automakers — notably Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Co. — replaced their minivans with crossovers years ago, Chrysler has remained a major player, vying with the likes of Honda Motor Co. and Toyota Motor Corp. for dominance in the segment.

Dodge and Chrysler combined sold 200,000 of their minivans in 2011: 110,862 Caravans and 94,320 Town & Countrys.

The new Grand Caravan will be "sportier, more emotional and less utilitarian," according to Automobile. (photo courtesy Chrysler Group LLC) [6/4/2012]