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The last time the most recognisable vehicle on the planet was offered with a V-8 engine was in the 1981 Jeep CJ, with its 5.0-litre V-8 that delivered 125 horsepower and 220 lb.-ft. of torque. Jeep enthusiasts have been clamouring for a V-8 powered production Wrangler in recent years, and the new Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept is an indication they may soon get their wish.
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The Jeep brand has introduced its new Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept, powered by a 6.4-litre (392 cubic-inch) V-8 engine that delivers 450 horsepower and 450 lb.-ft. of torque, and a 0-60 mph time in less than 5 seconds. Dana 44 axles, a full-time two-speed transfer case, electric front and rear axle lockers, 37-inch mud-terrain tyres and a Jeep Performance Parts 2-inch lift kit from Mopar combine with suspension enhancements, a more-robust 8-speed transmission and a massive V-8 powerplant to deliver the ultimate fun-to-drive Jeep vehicle with more off-road capability than ever in a Jeep Wrangler.
“Jeep Wrangler enthusiasts have been asking us for a Wrangler V-8, and our new Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept proves that we have the ability to make that happen,” said Jim Morrison, Head of Jeep Brand – FCA North America. “From the recently introduced 29 mpg Wrangler EcoDiesel, to our award-winning Jeep Gladiator, and the upcoming Wrangler 4xe plug-in hybrid electric vehicle, Jeep is clearly listening to its customers. We are anxious to gauge their reaction to this new Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept, a vehicle that delivers an incredible and unmatched level of fun-to-drive performance and capability, on- and off-road.”
Power, performance and capability on- and off-road
To accommodate its 6.4-litre V-8 engine and a stronger 8-speed transmission, the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept features upgraded engine mounts and a modified frame. Suspension upgrades include new aluminium, monotube Fox shocks for improved damping and heat dissipation. A two-mode exhaust alters the performance sound at the touch of a button.
The Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept boasts even more capability courtesy of third-generation Dana 44 axles, a Selec-Track full-time two-speed transfer case, Tru-Lok electric front- and rear-axle locking differentials, 37-inch mud-terrain tyres that wrap around custom 17-inch beadlock wheels that hold tyres to rims under extreme lateral loads, allowing for reduced tire pressure operation and added traction.
A factory Jeep Performance Parts 2-inch lift kit from Mopar makes way for additional suspension articulation, and improved approach, breakover and departure angles. The Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept also features Rubicon rock rails, steel bumpers with a Warn winch, and a steel belly pan – all added to help navigate the toughest off-road terrains.
The more robust 8-speed automatic transmission and full-time 4×4 transfer case improve overall drivability, and massive amounts of low-end torque allow for a 3.73 gear ratio, which delivers improved highway efficiency and a greater range of off-road capability.
Enhanced Jeep Trail Rated capability
The Jeep brand boasts several Trail Rated criteria, which are improved on the Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept. Specifically:
- Traction is improved courtesy of 450 lb.-ft. of torque and custom 17-inch beadlock wheels
- A factory Jeep Performance Parts 2-inch lift kit and 37-inch mud-terrain tyres combine to improve articulation, and contribute to unprecedented levels of water fording capability (34 inches) and ground clearance (13.25 inches), as well as improved approach (51.6 degrees), breakover (29.5 degrees) and departure (40.1 degrees) angles.
Unique, custom design inside and out
The new Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept features Granite Crystal exterior paint adorned with Bronze accentuated tow hooks, badging, springs, shocks and wheels, while featuring a heavy-duty raised performance hood with an aggressive appearance, custom half doors and Wrangler’s Sky One-touch powertop, with removable side panels for complete open-air freedom.
Inside, the Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept features rich Red Rock-coloured leather bolstered seats with gold stitching, along with a performance steering wheel.