Updating a story we first reported on in January of 2013 on the Jeep Wrangler Pickup Truck. IT’S HAPPENING!!!
Two universal desires you’ve probably heard Jeepers voice over and over again since what seems like the beginning of time (or at least since the good ol’ Willys Jeep days) are their fiery hunger for a diesel powered Wrangler and yearning for a factory-built Wrangler pickup truck. Today, AutoNews sung sweet melodies to off-road enthusiasts around the world by announcing that Mopar plans to finally execute on one of Jeeper’s age-old desires–a production Wrangler truck is officially in the works for either the 2017 model year.
We’re Finally Getting A Jeep Wrangler Pickup Truck!
According to a recent article from Automotive News, the highly anticipated Jeep Wrangler pickup truck will hit lots sometime in 2017 or 2018. Which is huge news for Jeepers, considering the New 2017 Jeep Wrangler is expected to come out around the same time. According to suppliers close to the situation, the redesigned Jeep Wrangler, which will come in both two and four-door, and the Wrangler-based pickup are expected to reach a production number of 350,000 per year, meaning you will have your fair share of chances to get your hands on either the new 2017 Wrangler or Wrangler pickup truck.
At this time, there is no word or concepts of the Wrangler-based pickups exterior or interior. We believe the Wrangler truck will utilize aluminum parts like the next-gen Wrangler and will also come stock with a small turbocharged four-cylinder diesel engine. We also expect the Wrangler pickup to enter the market competing with the Chevy Colorado, the GMC Canyon and the Toyota Tacoma. However, aesthetically, we are left to wonder if it will look the 2015 Jeep Gladiator concept or something completely different!
2017 Jeep Wrangler
From what we know, this redesigned 2017 Wrangler is going to hit lots sometime in 2017 as a 2017. Although a full aluminum body was rumored for months, it has been confirmed that the 2017 Wrangler will not be an all-aluminum body but will instead utilize aluminum body parts such as the doors, hood and tailgate. It is also expected to come with solid axles in both the front and the rear, making it easy to modify it with aftermarket parts. To cut additional weight, and meet the new fuel economy requirements, it is rumored that Jeep will swap the traditional safety bar from the top in favor of a set of permanent tubes. This change reduces the weight of the vehicle by eliminating the need for lower-body reinforcement the safety bar requires.
I thought Mopar Already Built a Wrangler Pickup Truck?
Not really, kinda, but not really. Back in 1981 Jeep produced a number of CJ-8 “Scrambler” model CJs for the US market. These “trucks” were a long wheel-based version of a standard CJ-7 that would later be replaced by the CJ-8 and by 1986 would be replaced by the Jeep Wrangler. The “scrambler moniker came from an appearance package that included a diverse graphics package and special-edition wheels. However, only 230 were sold in the States and less than 28,000 were built world-wide from 1981-1986.
Next, Jeep produced the Jeep Comanche or simply “MJ” from 1985-1992. While this also was not a tried and true Wrangler, it was however a very capable off-road vehicle produced and endorsed by Jeep. A spin-off from the Cherokee XJ, the Comanche could be had with the Metric Ton package on long-bed models that included, among other things, a Dana 44 rear axle and increased towing capacity that exceeded all other mid-sized trucks. This would be Jeep’s last dance with a production truck built for the US market.
The Jeep Wrangler JK-8 Concept Truck
The JK-8 concept was released by Mopar as a post-factory add-on for Wrangler Unlimited models. This truck conversion kit featured Mopar-stamped and welded steel paneling, removable fiberglass roof, JK-8 badges and of course a fully converted pick-up bed. It’s basically the Scrambler of JKs in the form of a Mopar built and sanctioned kit, though not a factory “Wrangler truck” like the newly announced version coming with the next generation Jeep Wrangler.
When Are We Getting The Next-Generation Wrangler Pickup?
The jury is still out on this one officially, but many signs point to a late 2017 release for the newly redesigned Wrangler and a Jeep slideshow displaying the company’s plans over the next five years stated a 2017 redesign as well . It would be expected the truck version to be released very shortly after new model Wranglers start showing up on dealer lots.
Might We See A Diesel Powered Wrangler Truck?
It’s definitely a possibility. CEO Mike Manley was quoted in an interview as saying:
“Wrangler is on the radar to get (a) diesel”
To many a Jeeper, this is an answer to a long-awaited prayer. With rumors of the 2017 Wrangler getting a 30+ MPG V6 EcoDiesel, many are anticipating a lighter (possibly us an assortment of aluminum-based parts), more fuel efficient Wrangler that will bring along a greater selection of models and options. Only time will tell us for sure, but with how Jeep sales have looked recently, banking on a diesel is a pretty safe bet.
Are you excited to see a Jeep Wrangler Pickup Truck?
Image via: Allpar.com