The director of Jeep's owner said he welcomes the possibility of ditching the Cherokee name from vehicles after recent censure from the Native American tribe's principal chief, The Informant reported Thursday.
Carlos Tavares, the chief executive of Stellantis N.V., said the company had met with the Cherokee Nation over the use of the name.
"We're ready to go to any point, up to the point where we decide with the appropriate people and with no intermediaries," The Wall Street Journal quoted Tavares as saying.
Cherokee Nation head chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. told Car and Driver Feb. 22 that Jeep does not honor the Native Americans by having the tribe's name "plastered on the side of a car."
Hoskin also said their proud name should not be "a corporate marketing tool."
Jeep has two models, the Cherokee compact SUV and the bigger Grand Cherokee that the company sells in the U.S. and other countries.
According to Tavares, at this stage, he does not know if there's a real problem, "but if there's one, well, of course we'll solve it," he said.
The dispute over the Cherokee name is one of the sensitive issues facing Tavares, who took control of Stellantis when it was formed earlier this year from the combination of PSA Group and Fiat Chrysler.
The Stallantis chief executive also discussed cutting the company's 14 brands, making Fiat assembly lines more competitive and his plan to continue doing business with China.