Manley: 2017 Jeep Wrangler Could Be A Hybrid
Are you ready for a hybrid Jeep Wrangler? The 2017 model may likely be just that to help the icon navigate through tighter fuel economy standards.
According to Auto Express, brand boss Mike Manley says hybridization is a possibility for achieving fuel efficiency in the upcoming Wrangler, while also ensuring that it keeps its looks and improves its on-road prowess. Such a hybrid would be more focused on off-roading and the issues that could come up:
Where you have to be careful with the Wrangler is range. If you are eight hours and four miles into a trail, there is not a hybrid that we could do which could provide the battery support. The way that combination is calibrated would be more unique for a Wrangler than it would, for example, a Grand Cherokee.
Other options for greater fuel economy include diesel power, as well as usage of aluminum and high-strength steel in the Wrangler’s construction.
How about a narrower track Jeep that might actually fit on a logging trail? One that weighs 800 lbs less and is powered by a 4-cyl engine. Engine torque isn't an issue when you have low range.
So I see half the people in this thread are suddenly experts. Guess what impracticality sells, this vehicle is pure profit, and if Chrysler is smart the only thing they'll do is drop the diesel into it as an option. The diesel will do more for efficiency than changing the body, putting four wheel independent suspension, and a hybrid system combined. Cheap sells, the diesel as a $3,200 option ( same as trucks) is the only sensible change that needs to be made. Unlike all the CUVs the wrangler isn't a fad, the wrangler is a timeless design that holds resale very well. By changing the formula it makes the wrangler as desirable as a 2002 Buick rendezvous. Sorry electric drive motors are expensive on everything they're in, and developing a system that can absorb heavy shock and water resistance for 250k miles of drive time is a pipe dream for anything under $60,000. Independent suspension would completely destroy the sales after an initial 2 year new model fad. The mileage on these isn't terrible for what they are. It seems more people are worried about what the sticker says than what the actual mileage is. No one complains an explorer gets 19 MPG, but when a Jeep with infinitely more capability gets "only" 18 MPG it's somehow blasphemy. You get efficiency or you get capability, and if you want to eat your cake too, you get a diesel. It's truly the perfect vehicle to manufacture, it creates obscene profit, sales seem to only go up, and the buyers refuse major changes. I see this as an effort to gauge the market, and the market is clearly rejecting the Mustang II
Considering what "chick" mobiles these things are I think they should offer a "Barbie" edition that comes in pink w/vanity mirrors in the visors and a center console make-up case. Optional shoe rack that mounts behind the back seat would also be a nice touch.
I predict hydraulic hybrid systems and composite bodies.