Seven Concept Vehicles Headlining 57th Annual Easter Jeep SafariMarch 31, 2023
The annual Jeep Easter Safari is heading back to Moab, Utah, for its 57th year, tackling the beautiful scenery and dusty trails with seven one-of-a-kind concept vehicles.
These concepts are a true show of force for the Jeep brand and Jeep Performance Parts (JPP), flexing the might of their 4×4 capabilities and the breadth of aftermarket support. Every year, more than 20,000 Jeep enthusiasts congregate at this event, putting their own rides to the test and seeing how brand engineers continue to push the limits of rock crawling, trail traversal, and Jeep-based adventuring.
Jeep Wrangler Magneto 3.0 Concept
Magneto has always been about creating a battery-electric vehicle (BEV) fully-capable of rock climbing and trail tracking in the silence of zero-emission propulsion. Magneto 3.0 builds off previous versions by adding a more efficient motor, boosting torque output. Updated programming results in a 20-percent increase in usable energy and overall range. Drivers can now select between two different power settings for greater control; the standard mode puts out 285 horsepower and 273 lb-ft of torque, whereas the maximum setting can put down 650 horsepower and 900 lb-ft of torque.
A two-stage power regeneration mode can enable either normal driving while off or enhanced regenerative braking when on. An aggressive hill descent control can be used in low range for “ true ‘one pedal’ off-road driving in serious rock-crawling situations.”
Other accouterments include Dynatrac 60 front axles and Dynatrac 80 rear axles, 20-inch beadlock wheels, 40-inch mud terrain tires and a custom 3-inch lift. The door opening has been modified and swept back six inches, the windshield has been raked back 12 degrees, and the B-pillar was moved rearward 60mm to make room for the custom anti-roll bar.
Jeep Scrambler 392 Concept
This pays homage to the original Jeep Scrambler (CJ-8) first introduced in 1981, the brand’s “first convertible, compact truck.” Similar to the CJ-7, the Scrambler featured a longer wheelbase and long rear overhang for more cargo space.
Here, the Scrambler 392 Concept started life as a four-door Wrangler Rubicon. It has been modified into a two-door version with an open-air vibe, emphasizing lightweight off-road performance through custom carbon fiber bodywork. The windshield leans back 12 degrees and matches the lower roof.
Of course, the name denotes the 6.4-liter HEMI V8 under the hood, pushing 470 horsepower and 470 lb-ft of torque. And under the whole thing is newly released AccuAir air suspension, capable of lifting between 1.5- to 5.5-inches, adjustable on the fly with an in-cab controller or a Bluetooth wireless device.
It rests on 40-inch tires wrapping custom 20-inch wheels, the latter finished in Brass Monkey paint along with the tow hooks.
1978 Jeep Cherokee 4xe Concept
This concept car isn’t just a throwback to a classic model; rather, it is a classic model, now having undergone the full resto-mod treatment and mixed with a 2022 Wrangler Rubicon 4xe.
The original body, though modified, retains some of that bright 70’s vibe through the multicolored paint job. The under-hood bits are all modern thanks to the 4xe powertrain: A 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4 engine and two electric motors, the latter fed by a high-voltage battery pack. An eight-speed automatic is paired to it and a 4:1 transfer case. It rides on 17-inch “slotted mag” wheels and 37-inch tires.
Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 4xe Concept
Judging by the name, you can probably infer that this one is a relatively straightforward idea. No crazy restomod or souped up powertrain; and you’d be right, though that doesn’t make it uninteresting.
What is crazy about it is the pink-hued paint accented by gloss black bits across the front grille and headlight bezels. Speaking of the grille, this interpretation of the seven-slot design was borrowed from the Rubicon 20th Anniversary model, accompanied by a custom hood graphic with a tone-on-tone print.
Off-road chops have been bolstered by AccuAir air suspension, 37-inch tires and 17-inch Borah wheels from American Expedition Vehicles (AEV). Other AEV addons include the front and rear bumpers, the differential covers and the Warn Zeon winch.
Jeep Grand Wagoneer Overland Concept
The Grand Wagoneer Overland Concept retains much of its premium SUV DNA while bolstering its off-road capabilities.
It starts with the new 3.0-liter Hurricane Twin Turbo engine, putting out 510 horsepower and 500 lb-ft of torque– more than enough beef to get you going on the trails. Larger wheel opening and custom flares cover the 35-inch tires and 18-inch wheels, which give a 1.5-inch lift. This, along with a custom front chin and rear valence, improve approach and departure angles.
The interior is well appointed with amenities, including rear seat entertainment and even two oversized bean bags for premium lounging. The cargo floor is truck bed-lined, perfect for stowing away muddy boots.
Above the main cabin is the main attraction: A custom RedTail Overland Skyloft, unfolding in about 10 seconds at the push of a button. Second- and third-row seating was removed in order to make it fit, and the rear-most sunroof was repositioned to create a custom passthrough. The end result is a climate-controlled room for two people to sleep and take in the starry night.
Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 4xe Departure Concept
At this point, you can see some trends. Expect some of the usual enhancements with this one; specifically, a JPP 2-inch lift kit with BILSTEIN performance shocks accommodating 17-inch KMC Impact OL wheels and 37-inch BFGoodrich tires.
But the Departure Concept is an exercise in maximizing departure angle– hence the name. This is achieved by relocating the spare wheel and tire, done by a custom convertible tube gate with front- and rear-facing mounting for said spare. When flipped out, the system acts like a bed extender. When turned inward, rear overhang is improved. This should make clambering a little easier.
Also aiding in rock conquering are customer rock rails with mounted slider tubes. At night, additional trail lighting illuminates the way ahead, as will the custom flat-fender flares with integrated daytime running lights. This concept is the first 50-state legal fender flare with OEM daytime runners and meets 50-state tire coverage requirements.
Gladiator Rubicon Sideburn Concept
Wrapping up the list is the Sideburn Concept, finished in Solar Flash Yellow and outfitted with proper off-road accessories.
It rides on 17-inch HRE wheels wrapped in 37-inch BF Goodrich tires, soaking up the road through a JPP 2-inch lift kit with BILSTEIN performance shocks. They use remote reservoirs for better cooling and suspension travel. The Sideburn is driven by a 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 engine.
The grille is protected by a custom guard; it measures out to 4×1 feet and can fold down to create a bumper bench. Belo it is a modified Rubicon bumper with a Warn winch. The removable pair of 11-inch TYRI LED lights are in direct response to customer feedback, and they are suspended by custom bracketry. In back, the JPP Gladiator Sport Bar enhances the space between cabin and bed, featuring bed steps on either side and a mid-shelf with storage tie-downs. In the bed is a modified Mopar tire carrier, and the whole thing is flanked by a custom tailgate.