The long-anticipated Jeep Wrangler-based pickup has broken cover, but is still under wraps.
Spy photographers have caught a heavily camouflaged prototype for the upcoming truck being tested on dirt and paved roads.
It’s built on the chassis of the next generation four-door Wrangler Unlimited, which maintains the current model’s body-on-frame construction, but will be lighter and more aerodynamic to improve fuel efficiency. Rear wheels misaligned in their wells suggest there’s still some work to do, but it looks closer to production spec than an early development mule, and features removable roof panels for open-top driving.
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Prototypes of the conventional Wrangler have been spotted with a variety of engines, including a 3.6-liter V6, a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder, and the EcoDiesel V6 currently offered in the Jeep Grand Cherokee. Eight-speed automatic and six-speed manual transmissions are also being tested, and the truck will carry over the Wrangler’s front live axle, which should make its most hardcore off-roading fans happy.
The all-new Wrangler is scheduled to go on sale in the 2018 model year, and the pickup version will likely follow at at later date. Both will be built at the brand’s historic home in Toledo, Ohio.
A name for the model hasn’t been floated yet, but the last Jeep pickup was the Cherokee-based Comanche of 1992, and Jeep has unveiled several concepts since then, including the Gladiator and retro-style J10.