Is Jeep assuredly activity to accord in? Man, do we achievement so. Because we’ve aloof apprenticed a Wrangler with a factory-fitted V-8, and it’s sick.
Earlier this summer Jeep alien the Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept, and as the name implies it has a 392—as in the 392-cubic-inch (6.4-liter) artlessly aspirated iron-block “Hemi” V-8. It’s acquainted for 450 application and 450 lb-ft, a bit beneath than the 485/475 you get in a Challenger. It’s adapted with the eight-speed automated manual and a full-time four-wheel-drive system.
What did it booty to get a Hemi into the Wrangler? Not abundant abreast from a shoehorn. Twist and weight were the big concerns. For the former, Jeep upgraded the anatomy and the motor mounts; for the latter, Jeep acclimated upgraded Fox shock absorbers. Jeep additionally adapted a dual-mode exhaust, a red covering interior, and 37-inch tires. And afresh there’s the hood, which bulges like a codpiece as it struggles to accommodate the blowing within.
Driving the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 Abstraction
We got to booty a abrupt drive in this creation, and it’s every bit as batty as we’d hoped. Floor the burke and the left-front bend jerks upwards like it’s been aerial with a crane (we can see why the anatomy bare to be strengthened), the agent roars (the abstraction has no ancillary or rear windows, the bigger to adore that V-8 bellow), and tires—one, some, or all, we couldn’t absolutely tell—start breaking loose. Back you get annoyed of crumbling rubber, a quick lift of the accelerator lets it dig in, and abroad you go.
Alternatively you can aloof barrage with absorption ascendancy engaged. It’ll lift, hiccup, afresh bam, you’re off like the accepted scalded dog. Jeep claims a 0-60-mph time of beneath bristles seconds, and that feels about right. Floor the pedal at any speed, and the V-8 powered Wrangler leaps appear the border absolutely the way you’d apprehend it to do.
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The abstraction appearance 37-inch auto and a two-inch abeyance lift, which Jeep says gives it 13.25 inches of arena approval and the adeptness to drive through baptize about three anxiety deep. Jeep’s point is that the V-8 wouldn’t accommodation the Wrangler’s allegorical off-road abilities.
Frankly we couldn’t affliction less—we aloof appetite to apprehend the clear bawl of the bankrupt and feel the bench bang us in the aback like it’s aggravating to assignment its way through our bark and bottomward to the bone. Because, really, that’s what the 392 does. It’s not absolutely Hellcat-insane, but it’s absolutely on the aforementioned spectrum—the affectionate of affair your idiot brother-in-law ability appear up with back he’s absolutely bashed (“Hey! Let’s put a big-block in a Jeep!”), but instead of actuality congenital in his backyard with a clapped-out 383, a coarse agent elevate and a lot of Budweiser, it was accumulated by real-life engineers. Sober ones.
The Best Brainless Abstraction … Headed to Production?
Those absolutely are the two take-aways from our abrupt drive. First, this is a phenomenally brainless idea, and we use the chat brainless in the best adulatory way possible. The Wrangler Rubicon 392 Abstraction handles like—well, like a Wrangler. It’s got big, billowing tires and doesn’t absolutely go area you point it, with the added benefit of a behemothic slab of adamant aloft the advanced wheels. Activity fast in it is a baleful move of Kevorkian proportions, which is absolutely why we adulation activity fast in it.
Take-away cardinal two is that the abstraction we collection seemed cautiously able-bodied engineered. Best concepts are cobbled calm and feel like it. They’re fabricated to show, not to go. The actuality that Jeep let us drive this one—hell, the actuality that Jeep alike let us sit in it—is a big indicator of the marque’s intent. This abstraction didn’t aloof drive, it collection well. Okay, the fit of the covering was a little hinky and the doors acquainted cautiously ablaze (did someone, er, accidentally leave out the blast bars?), but from a automated perspective, this affair feels like it could accept appear off a assembly line.
Concept cars are ridiculously big-ticket no amount how coarse they are, and automakers don’t advance the array of time, money and accomplishment it takes to absolute article that’s a one-off. If Chrysler Fiat-Chrysler FCA Stellantis Jeep announces a assembly version, the aftermost affect you’ll see us affectation is surprise.
If and back a assembly V-8-powered Wrangler arrives, we’ll be aboriginal in band to drive it again. Does anyone charge a V-8 powered Wrangler? No, aloof as they don’t charge a supercharged full-size four-door or a Hellcat-powered desert-bashing auto truck. What we do charge in these afflicted times is added things that put huge smiles on our faces. And that’s absolutely why Jeep needs to put the Wrangler Rubicon 392 into production. Now.