Jeep unveils all-electric Wrangler idea SUV

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The Jeep Wrangler Magneto concept is an all-electric SUV based on a 2020 two-door Jeep Wrangler Rubicon.

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Jeep has unveiled a new all-electric version of its iconic Wrangler SUV, but consumers will likely have to wait at least a few years to buy one.

The brand presented the Wrangler “Magneto” as a concept vehicle on Monday. This means that it is a custom product that is usually developed by automakers to measure customer interest or to point out the future direction of a vehicle or brand.

“It’s a sustainable, stealthy climbing group,” said Jim Morrison, vice president of the Jeep brand in North America, during a media event. “It’s a zero-emission concept vehicle with Jeep 4×4 capability that is being taken to the next level.”

Jeep executives have said that every Jeep will offer some form of electrification in the future, but an all-electric version of the Wrangler has not been confirmed. The company recently began selling a plug-in hybrid electric version of the Wrangler under the new name “4xe,” a game for the brand’s off-road reputation combined with electrification. Plug-in hybrid electric models have batteries like electric vehicles, but also a conventional internal combustion engine.

The Jeep Wrangler Magneto concept is an all-electric SUV based on a 2020 two-door Jeep Wrangler Rubicon.

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The Jeep Wrangler Magneto concept is based on a 2020 two-door Jeep Wrangler Rubicon. To make it an electric vehicle, the engineers swapped out its internal combustion engine and some supporting parts for electrical components like four batteries and an electric motor.

The vehicle is capable of up to 273 foot-pounds of torque and 285 horsepower. The Magneto runs 0-60 mph in 6.8 seconds. The company has not approved the vehicle’s electric range.

The most unique thing about the Magneto is that it has a six-speed manual transmission that electric vehicles don’t need because of their engines. Mark Allen, head of Jeep design, said the vehicle had “the best features” of an automatic transmission but the “direct drive feel” of a manual transmission, which is vital for off-road enthusiasts.

The Magneto was featured along with several other custom or concept vehicles for the Jeep Easter Safari, an annual off-road event for the brand in Moab, Utah. Jeep regularly uses the off-road event as a test site for the performance of its vehicles and as a means of measuring customer interest in new products.

“The Moab Easter Jeep Safari has been a tradition for more than half a century,” said Morrison. “It’s a place where we can connect with our die-hard off-road enthusiasts and those who are most loyal to our brand.”

Concept vehicles for this year’s Jeep Easter Safari include (from left to right) Jeep Red Bare, Jeep Magneto, Jeepster Beach and Jeep Orange Peelz.

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