Jeep is headed back to Moab this year with a host of new and returning concepts and builds for its annual Easter Jeep Safari. Wrangler takes center stage this year as the foundation for three of the five new concept vehicles the iconic 4×4 brand will show off in its traditional stomping ground. The fourth is a Gladiator-based monstrosity and the fifth is reserved for the newest (for now) addition to the Jeep family — the Grand Cherokee 4xe. Let’s dive right in.
Jeep brought its all-electric Magneto concept to Easter Jeep Safari last year, so the idea of battery-powered Wrangler concept is nothing new. However, it has been upgraded (“amped up,” literally) for 2022. Instantaneous torque output is now 850 pound-feet (more than three times the Magneto 1.0) at the wheels, and total power output is now 625 horsepower. And all of that goes through an old-fashioned manual transmission.
To handle that torque, Jeep had to borrow its manual gearbox from a Hellcat and then beef it up even further. Plus, the enormous 40-inch wheels required an even more aggressive axle ratio (yeah, even with 850 lb-ft on tap). The Magneto 2.0 boasts a a Dynatrac 60 Pro-Rock axle up front and a positively massive Dynatrac 80 in the rear rear axle with a 5.38 ratio and lockers for both axles, which also required custom driveshafts.
Grand Cherokee Trailhawk 4xe Concept
We recently had the opportunity to get our hands on Jeep’s new plug-in hybrid Grand Cherokee 4xe, and while you’ll have to wait until later in the month for our impressions, we can safely say we’re encouraged to see Jeep embracing the PHEV powertrain alongside its battery-electric concept. This example boasts purely aesthetic upgrades for the most part, though the 33-inch BFG mud-terrains offer some additional situational capability.
The Jeep ’41 also leans into the company’s electrification strategy. This 4xe-based Wrangler is finished in what Jeep calls “olive D.R.A.B. ‘41 matte green” with powder-coated bumpers and accessories. Those may look like steelies, but they’re actually 17-inch aftermarket alloys by Fifteen52. They’re wrapped in 35-inch mud terrains with a two-inch lift kit installed to clear the extra rubber.
Note that this combination is not yet available in the real world. Jeep’s 35-inch package, dubbed Xtreme Recon, is available only on 3.6L and 392 Rubicon models for the time being. As for later on? Jeep brand boss Jim Morrison says you should watch this space.
Rubicon 20th Anniversary Concept
This one’s pretty straightforward. It was built with the signature red interior found in previous commemorative Rubicon models; you’ll probably recognize the Granite Crystal exterior too. To contrast with the red, Jeep chose gold tow hooks and badge accents along with a telltale hood decal. A 2-inch JPP lift kit, 17-inch Mopar beadlock-ready wheels and 37-inch mud terrains round out the package.
OK, technically it’s the “Jeep Bob Concept,” but we’re going to stick with “Bob.” This concept gets its name from the practice of shortening truck overhangs for better off-road departure angles, which is colloquially referred to as “bobbing” and is typically seen in pickups and other off-roaders that have a lot of body hanging over their rear wheels. That’s exactly what happened here. See, Bob started life as a Gladiator with the 3.0-liter diesel before Jeep’s fun squad went to work on it.
Bob got a 3-inch lift with custom suspension components, Dynatrac Pro-Rock 60 axles supported by a mix of King Coils and Bypass shocks, and 40-inch tires mounted to 20-inch beadlock wheels. Then, Jeep’s engineers hacked off everything that was getting in the way, including a good bit of the bed and the Gladiator’s big fenders. The result is Bob. Hi, Bob.
We’ll get a chance to drive Jeep’s concept cars in Moab later in April, so be sure to check back for drive impressions and additional photography later in the month!