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Spy Shots Reveal Jeep Wrangler Pickup Truck Testing

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Jeep Wrangler pickup truck

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The long-rumored Jeep pickup truck is finally on its way, with new spy photos showing that it’s under development.

Captured by Chris Doane Automotive, the photos show the Wrangler-based pickup undergoing some very light off-road testing, and as we all imagined, it’s essentially a regular Wrangler that’s been modified to have a bed.

With both the Wrangler and pickup trucks being super popular, it’s a bit surprising that Jeep has gone so long without a Wrangler pickup. Word on the street is that the vehicle will be offered with a new 2.0L turbocharged four-banger that produces 300 horsepower, a diesel engine and possibly a hybrid powertrain, all using a ZF-sourced automatic transmission.

Jeep’s truck will compete with mid-size trucks like the new Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon twins, as well as the segment-leading Toyota Tacoma. Expect it to be more off road-capable than any of the competition.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (owner of Jeep) has announced plans to spend $700 million on retooling the Wrangler’s Toledo, Ohio, plant for the next-gen Wrangler, which is expected to begin production sometime in 2017. The pickup is expected to arrive a year later in 2018.

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Auto Tech

Fiat Chrysler Unconnect Now Lets You Order Pizza Using Your Car

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Chrysler Jeep Ram UConnect market

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Uconnect has consistently been one of the best infotainment system on the market, and Uconnect Market will make it even better.

Not to be outdone by General Motors, which has been a dominant force when it comes to offering in-car commerce, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has has given its Unconnect infotainment system a new Market platform that treats Jeep, RAM, Chrysler, and Dodge owners to most of the same convenience features enjoyed by owners of GM vehicles.

Unconnect Market allows a variety of third-party companies to offer connected buying services directly through the infotainment system. With it, you will be able to order and pay for food, reserve a table at a restaurant, fill your tank at pump-and-pay gas locations, locate and pay for nearby parking, and even schedule service appointments.

Adding a credit card when setting up a Uconnect Market account gives you authorized card-free fuel fill-ups at participating Shell stations.

The Unconnect Market platform rolls out via an over-the-air (OTA) update in the second half of 2019 for current 2019 model year or newer Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep and Ram vehicles equipped with Fiat Chrysler’s 8.4-inch touchscreen.

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Jeep

16 Interesting Jeep Facts Every Jeep Lover Should Know

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Jeep Wrangler Old vs New

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There are few automotive brands as interesting and well-known as Jeep.

It should come as no surprise that the Jeep brand has had a profound affect on, well, the whole World. And considering the ubiquity and historical pedigree of the brand, there is a lot that can be said and also a lot that is often forgotten. This article looks at 16 interesting facts about Jeep that might surprise you.

1. The original jeep was designed in two days

With WWII on the horizon, the US government recognized a need for a small, lightweight, four wheel drive vehicle. A designer working for Bantam Corporation, Karl Probst, got to work on July 17, 1940 and had a fleshed-out design of the first Jeep just two days after. By July 22nd, the entire proposal, including cost estimates, was handed over to the US Army.

2. Ford, Willys, and Bantam further developed the concept

Knowing that Bantam was too small and didn’t have the resources to build thousands of Jeeps, the Army approached Willys and Ford for quotes. Ford accepted and built a prototype of the Bantam design, including a number of innovations in the process. They called the vehicle the “Pygmy.”

Willys Corporation was also interested and built their own version based on the Bantam plans. Called the “Quad”, the model incorporated four-wheel steering.

3. The design of the iconic front end came from Ford

This one came from our friends at Rochester Jeep (Rochester Hills, MI.) reminded us that, despite the bulk of the design coming from Bantam, the Army chose Fords Pygmy’s flat front grill design. So, in a way, there is a bit of Ford in every Jeep, especially the Wrangler and its derivatives like the Gladiator.

4. No one really knows how the name came to be

Automotive historians have long argued over the origins of the Jeep name, with many insisting that “jeep” is a truncation of General Purpose vehicle, or GP.

A more interesting theory is that Jeep is named after Eugene the Jeep, a cartoon character in “Popeye” that was created prior to the Bantam 4×4. Either way, the name was minted during the war and it has stuck.

5. The “CJ” name stands for Civilian Jeep

For the first time, Jeeps were available to civilians after the war and Willys-Overland named them with a “CJ” prefex.

6. Made in Toledo

Jeep has been headquartered in Toledo, Ohio, ever since it began production. In fact, all Jeep models were made in the United States until 2014, when the company began shifting some production to Brazil, China and India.

7. Jeep Wrangler Square Headlights

The Jeep CJ was rebranded the Jeep Wrangler in 1987, and remains Jeep’s most iconic model. But while most people know the Wrangler by its round headlights, the model actually had square headlights for a time between the 1985 and 1995 model years.

8. The Willys Station Wagon was the forerunner to the modern SUV

Originally intended for farm use, Willys Station Wagon proved to be a mainstream success, finding a home on streets and trails across North America and beyond. It the first mass-market all-steel station wagon designed and built as a passenger vehicle.

9. The Jeep Wagoneer was the first SUV

The Jeep Wagoneer replaced the Willys Station Wagon as Jeep’s people-mover, bringing to market a number of modern conveniences like an automatic transmission and power steering. It kicked off the SUV segment, and after a long hiatus, is being re-invented for the 21st century by FCA.

10. The Rubicon Trail Story

In 1953, a man named Mark A. Smith organized the first Jeep “Jamboree” across the Rubicon Trail near Lake Tahoe, kick starting a tradition that continues strongly to this day. In fact, the Rubicon name has since been immortalized and now adorns the most rugged of Jeeps.

11. The Expediciones De Las Americas is the most badass road trip ever

A couple of decades after starting the Rubicon Jamboree, Mark A. Smith led an expedition of Jeeps on the longest off-road trip in history, trekking 21,000 miles (33,796 km) over some of the world’s nastiest terrain from the southernmost tip of Chile to the northern reaches of Alaska.

12. In 1959, Jeep introduced a special version just for resorts

Depending on the market, the model was called the ‘Surrey’ or ‘Gala’ and featured a fringe-lined canvas top, not unlike a Fiat Jolly.

13. The Jeep brand has had many owners

In 1953, Willys-Overland was bought by Kaiser Motors, which was eventually sold to American Motors Company (AMC). AMC was then bought by first Renault and then Chrysler.

Jeep is now part of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA), a multinational automotive group that was created when Italian automaker Fiat merged with Chrysler.

14. “Jeeping” is a sport unto itself

When Mark A. Smith organized the first Jeep trek across the Rubicon Trail, he probably never expected it to become a sport for off-road enthusiasts. Today, Jeep Jamborees are so large that Jeep brings unique concept vehicles to the event in appreciation of all loyal fans.

15. Just About everyone copied the original Jeep

From Land Rover to Toyota, Suzuki to Mahindra, the original Jeep has been imitated by just about every automaker. Did you know that the Toyota Land Cruiser was originally called the “Toyota Jeep”?

Many companies around the world have made copies under license, including Mitsubishi and Ford.

16. The USPS makes the mail Jeeps

In case you were wondering about the Jeep mail trucks, they are genuine Jeeps and the company has been building them for over 30 years. To keep up with production, Jeep established a separate facility for government orders. Following AMC’s takeover (see point 8), the facility was made into a separate company called AM General that went on to produce the Hummer, a direct competitor to Jeep.

For a deeper look at the history of Jeep, read our article “Jeep History: An American Brand Conceived For War.”

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Concept Car

Jeep Gladiator Gravity Is A Pickup Truck For Rock Climbing Fans

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Jeep Gladiator Gravity Rock Climbing Truck

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This is one Jeep concept you can build right now.

What happens when the Jeep Gladiator and rock climbing culture collide? You get the Jeep Gladiator Gravity, that’s what!

Inspired by rock climbing, the Gladiator Gravity “concept” stands out as the brightest of the six Gladiator concepts Jeep developed for the 2019 Moab Easter Safary, thanks in large part to its Punk’N Metallic Orange exterior. Every piece of accessory it showcases is available for order via Mopar, including the steel tube doors and rock rails, 17-inch gear wheels with 35-inch tires, two-inch lift kit, mesh sunbonnet, and tie-down straps that secure the windshield when lowered.

The bed area features Mopar cross rails and a cargo carrier basket to divide up storage space for rock-climbing gear, such as ropes, carabiners, helmets and shoes, while a unique Mopar/Decked truck bed storage system further adds to its versatility.

A cold-air intake and cat-back exhaust system up the Jeep Gladiator Gravity’s performance ante.

Even though the Gladiator Gravity is called a concept, it’s something you can build today by raiding the Jeep Performance Parts catalog. All you need is a spare $8,000 to get all the necessary accessories.

If rock claiming isn’t your thing, then check out of the other five Jeep Gladiator concepts: Gladiator Wayout, Gladiator M715 Five-Quarter, Gladiator J6, Gladiator Scrambler, and Gladiator Flatbill.

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