Classics, SUVs and off-roaders for Moab
Easter is almost here. Along with eggs, hot-cross buns and family, that means it's time for a glut of concepts from Jeep at its annual Easter Safari in Moab.
Based on the Wrangler, the Sandstorm has been inspired by Baja racers. It's meant to be driven through the desert at high speed, although Jeep says it still handles the daily drive.
The front axle has been moved forward compared to stock, and there's a heavy-duty four-link suspension setup for improved ground clearance. The rear axle has been shifted back, and uses a trailing arm four-link setup. Jeep says the longer wheelbase improves high-speed stability, while the 14-inch (35cm) front and 18-inch (46cm) rear suspension travel should make it capable of clearing most obstacles.
To make sure it looks suitably tough, there's high-clearance bumpers at both ends, tweaked rock rails, an on-board air compressor, a race-style fuel filler and special auxiliary lighting. Jeep has also fitted a vented carbon-fibre bonnet, flared fenders and a roll cage.
Inside, you get leather-trimmed seats, a unique off-road GPS and rocker switches for all your hardcore off-roading equipment.
The 4SPEED is designed to continue where the lightweight Pork Chop and Stitch concepts left off. Power comes from the Wrangler's new 2.0-litre turbo four-cylinder engine, while the body has been shortened (on a stock wheelbase) for better approach and departure angles.
A carbon-fibre bonnet, carbon fenders and a carbon-fibre rear tub have all been fitted for lighter weight, while there's a roll cage and raked windscreen to fit the light and pointy ethos behind the car. The car rides on 18-inch monoblock wheels wrapped in 35-inch tyres, and there are Dana 44 front and rear axles.
Inside, the driver is faced with a custom instrument panel, and passenger sit in re-trimmed seats.
Unlike the Wrangler concepts, the B-Ute isn't an exploration of how far you can push your car's off-road credentials. Instead, it's a showcase for the range of Jeep Performance Parts offered to Renegade buyers.
Riding on 17-inch wheels under a 1.5-inch (3.8cm) lift kit, with flared guards to house the bigger rolling stock, it certainly looks tougher than the average compact SUV. A roof rack and rock rails round out the exterior tweaks.
There are custom-trimmed seats inside, and a special finish has been applied to the shifter, speaker surrounds and air vents. All-weather floor mats mean your muddy boots won't soil the floor.
Like the B-Ute above it, the Nacho is a showcase for the Jeep Performance Parts catalogue – although the Nacho Yellow paint certainly helps it stand out, too.
Along with the chunky bonnet, front bumper/winch and retina-searing LED lights, the car has been fitted with a 'rear off-road scouting light' that flashes red when the car is stopped, before changing from amber to green as the speed increases.
The Nacho rides on 17-inch beadlock wheels wrapped in oversized 37-inch tyres, housed beneath a 2.0-inch (5.1cm) lift kit and more accomodating fenders at both ends. Jeep has fitted chunkier rock rails, tube doors and embossed grab handles from the catalogue as well. A heavy-duty spare wheel carrier has been fitted to handle the heavier 37-inch rubber.
As has become a theme over the last few years, Jeep has tweaked a modern Wrangler to look and feel like a compact, classic off-roader.
With a two-tone paint theme, a concept hardtop and a raked windscreen, the car looks compact and punchy. The custom windscreen can also be folded down, even though it's not the standard shape.
Although it looks properly unique, most of the parts on the Jeepster are direct from the Jeep Performance Parts catalogue. There's a special bonnet and graphics, but no snorkel or cold-air intake. There are 5.0-inch and 7.0-inch lighting systems, while the black fuel door, grab handles and all-weather floor mats are all factory-fit options.
The car rides on a 2.0-inch (5.1cm) lift kit, supplemented by chunky body shocks hooked up to 37-inch BF Goodrich tyres and beadlock wheels.
Inside, there's a concept roll cage, an in-cabin spare-wheel carrier, black leather seats and all the red trim you'd expect of a car like this. The rear is also home to a storage system, designed to hold supplies like food and water.
Based on the Wrangler Sahara, the J-Wagon is another showcase for Jeep's Performance Parts. The exterior colour is a concept at the moment, offset by brass highlights scattered around the cabin and exterior.
Along with the add-on LED lighting system, the car is fitted with concept rock sliders, a roof rack and chunky spare wheel mount for the bigger BF Goodrich tyres.
Inside, Jeep has tried to give the car a premium feel with camel-coloured leather seats with piped edges, along with brass trim scattered around.
We've saved the best until last. With power from a 5.7-litre V8 hooked up to a four-speed automatic, the Roadtrip is designed to evoke memories of packing the family up, hitting the road and heading for the hills.
The modern reincarnation rides on a stretched wheelbase, with a wider track and custom fender flares to house the new underpinnings. There are rock rails integrated into the body, working with touches like a reinforced, boxed frame, locking differentials on both axles and four-link suspension with coils.
There are bench seats inside, trimmed in oxblood-coloured leather offset with a wicker headliner. There's a period-correct esky on board, and the toolbox is fashioned from the rocker covers from the original OHC-6 engine from this Wagoneer.