Easter Jeep Safari is a time when thousands of Jeeps descend on Moab, Utah, for some wicked off-roading. Jeep builds a fleet of concepts each year to show off the latest and greatest in 4x4 prototypes, and it's bringing an impressive mix of rigs to the 2023 shindig. The Jeep Scrambler 392 Concept may be the neatest of the bunch, along with the 650-horsepower Wrangler Magneto 3.0 and 1978 Jeep Cherokee 4xe.
All right. I can't lie. They're all pretty sweet.
Grand Wagoneer Overland Concept
As much as we all love modified Wranglers and Gladiators, it's cool to see another kind of Jeep get some mod love. In this case, it's a top-shelf Grand Wagoneer with the twin-turbo 3.0-liter inline-six making 510 hp and 500 pound-feet of torque. It sends all that twist through an eight-speed automatic before eventually reaching all four tires, which have been upgraded to 35-inch BF Goodrich rollers wrapped around custom 18-inch wheels.
The truck's stance is already pretty sweet, with a modest 1.5-inch lift to boot. It needed that extra clearance for the larger tires, along with some additional trimming that you might not want to perform on your own $100,000 family car.
Either way, Jeep went for it and created this slick rig that's topped off with a RedTail Overland Skyloft. It's a hard-shell tent that's climate controlled with enough sleeping space for two people. Jeep created a pass-through entrance by removing the Grand Wagoneer's second and third-row seats, opening up the sunroof for easy accessibility. Neat stuff!
1978 Jeep Cherokee 4xe Concept
If you like clicking through page after page of Craigslist ads, just know Jeep does too. That's how the automaker's engineers found the 1978 Cherokee donor truck for this throwback concept. It was in rough shape with no engine when they found it, but that didn't matter because it was always destined for a complete swap anyhow.
The handsome two-door now sits atop a Wrangler 4xe chassis and powertrain. That means it's propelled by a hybridized 2.0-liter turbo making 375 hp and 470 lb-ft of torque. An eight-speed auto and 4:1 transfer case distribute power to all four 37-inch tires, which gives the modernized Cherokee impressive clearance.
A lot of attention was paid to detail inside too, with vibrantly colored materials, a four-point cage where the rear seats used to be, and a full-size spare tire.
Jeep Scrambler 392 Concept
This is the mack daddy, if you ask me. What started off as a four-door Wrangler Rubicon was then cut into the shape you see here with a lower roof and raked windshield. The Scrambler 392 Concept wears carbon fiber body panels that help remove a huge chunk of weight, and these savings are complemented by a rowdy 6.4-liter Hemi V8 making 470 hp and 470 pound-feet of torque.
It harkens back to the original CJ-8 Scrambler, which was like the Jeep CJ-7 but featured a longer wheelbase. Like the old one, this new build has a decent amount of cargo space out back where you'll find a brightly painted luggage rack rather than a traditional bed. It sits on 40-inch tires and AccuAir adjustable suspension, meaning the lift ranges anywhere from 1.5 to 5.5 inches.
I know Jeep would never put the Scrambler 392 Concept into production, but I'm always stoked to see extreme projects like this actually get built.
Jeep Wrangler Magneto 3.0 Concept
Speaking of extreme projects, the Wrangler Magneto 3.0 might be the most out-there of all these. It's a tweaked version of the electric Wrangler off-roader we've seen at the past two Easter Jeep Safaris, but slightly different. This year, it has two power modes to choose from: 285 hp and 273 lb-ft or 650 hp and 900 lb-ft.
That's possible thanks to a new and more efficient motor design that, when paired with improved programming, results in 20% more usable energy and range. The Wrangler Magneto still uses a six-speed manual transmission, though half of those gears are more for vanity. You don't have to use the clutch so you could shift into third and take off from a stop without stalling it. What's more, it makes it a whole lot easier to modulate the throttle on rocky trails when you don't have to worry about killing it.
Finally, the Wrangler Magneto 3.0 has a new hill descent mode that's especially aggressive. When in low range, it can be engaged to provide a true one-pedal experience. If you've been on a technical trail before, you know how big of an advantage that provides.
Jeep Gladiator Rubicon Sideburn Concept
While this show build is a little tamer, it's still heavily modified for extreme utility. The Gladiator Sideburn Concept has an obviously reworked bed that's packed with MOLLE panels and built-in storage. Integrated RotoPax containers provide space to stash liquids of all kinds, and there's a Mopar spare tire carrier back there that also fits a full-size 37 with ease.
The bed-mounted JPP sport bar is just a concept for now, but here's hoping it'll make it to production someday with its carbon fiber and steel construction. It features a mid-shelf that includes tie-down spots for totes, while a set of four T-track rails means it's easy to mount a bike, kayak, or what have you as well.
Instead of some kooky engine upgrade, the Gladiator Sideburn Concept uses the tried and true 3.6-liter V6.
Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 4xe Departure Concept
Closing out the group is a tube-door Wrangler with an awesomely contrasted color scheme. The Wrangle Rubicon 4xe Departure's dark blue paint job looks great against the rich brown leather interior, and the bronze wheels pull it all together. But take a closer look up front.
See that grille? It folds down into a bench. I can't think of a better spot to lounge on the side of a trail, or around a campfire. It's like a tailgate for the front. It'd be nice to have a wraparound cushion, but beggars can't be choosers.
Tubular rock sliders keep the theme going, as does the flip-over tire carrier that allows you to store your spare inside the trunk or right above the back bumper.
Easter Jeep Safari kicks off April 1. Pay attention to social media to see these rigs crawl around Moab over the weekend, and look for more coverage here if anything goes fantastically wrong or right.
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