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A Plethora of Jeep Concepts for the Easter Jeep Safari

The Easter Jeep Safari is an event consisting of day-long trail rides, departing from Moab, Utah, throughout the nine-day-long event. The Jeep Safari was started in 1967 by the Moab Chamber of Commerce as a one-day trail ride. Over the years, as participation grew, the Safari expanded until it finally reached the current nine-day event. “Big Saturday” still remains the culmination of the event on the Saturday of Easter weekend. This year Jeep bring several in-house projects to the event to push the brand and show off their after-market range.

 

Seven new, ultra-capable Jeep® concept vehicles – featuring an array of Mopar and Jeep Performance Parts available to consumers – will conquer the famous and challenging trails of Moab, Utah, at Easter Jeep Safari, March 19-27. Thousands of off-road enthusiasts are expected to descend upon Moab this year to celebrate what will likely be the most popular Jeep Safari ever, as the 50th annual event coincides with the 75th anniversary of the Jeep brand.

“Every year the Jeep team looks forward to pushing the limits with new, exciting and capable concept vehicles for our most loyal enthusiasts at the Easter Jeep Safari in Moab, where we receive a tremendous amount of valuable feedback,” said Mike Manley, Head of Jeep Brand – FCA Global. “This year is extra special, as together with our biggest fans, we celebrate Jeep’s 75th anniversary – as well as the 50th running of the Jeep Safari. We’re delighted to share seven of the most capable and eye-catching concept Jeep vehicles we’ve ever created at this year’s historic event.”

The 2016 crop of Easter Jeep Safari concept vehicles utilises both production and prototype Jeep Performance Parts. The Mopar brand is responsible for developing, building and ensuring that all Jeep Performance Parts meet rigorous specifications and with 4×4 capabilities in mind, allowing Jeep owners to further enhance their stock vehicle.

“These seven vehicles have been modified with Mopar and Jeep Performance Parts to take on the toughest trails, to go beyond where the road ends,” said Pietro Gorlier, Head of Parts and Service (Mopar), FCA – Global. “Mopar’s mission is to provide all FCA US vehicle owners with unique performance parts and accessories to tailor vehicles to their individual lifestyles. Nothing supports that more than demonstrating how we can equip Jeep owners to take on some of the more extreme trails in the world.”

The seven new Jeep concept vehicles built for Moab this year were created by a team of dedicated, passionate engineers, designers and fabricators that have been customizing production vehicles since 2002, and have introduced more than 50 concept vehicles for the enthusiasts who attend the popular Easter Jeep Safari.

The 2016 Easter Jeep Safari concept vehicles include:

Jeep Crew Chief 715

The Jeep Crew Chief 715 concept vehicle was built as a salute to legendary Jeep military service vehicles, in particular the Kaiser M715. This open-air Wrangler Unlimited-based concept vehicle showcases a burly design with heritage styling cues. The Crew Chief 715 utilizes modern-day construction with a rear seat and extra doors for additional passenger capacity while staying close to its classic military roots.

Original Jeep military service vehicles were legendary for getting troops through rugged terrain, and the Jeep Crew Chief 715 illustrates this legacy. Steel front and rear bumpers, 20-inch beadlock wheels, and 40-inch NDT military tires pay homage to the original Jeep military vehicles. The Crew Chief 715 utilizes an on-board air system with a hard-mounted quick-disconnect fitting for airing up or lending assistance to other vehicles on the trail. Other features include a master cylinder brake upgrade, cold air intake and a modified exhaust.

Exterior features such as Jeep Performance Parts off-road rock rails, a winch mounted into the front and rear bumpers, Dana 60 front and rear axles and a 4-inch lift kit with Jeep Performance Parts/Fox 2.0 Remote Reservoir shocks give the Crew Chief 715 increased capability. The “Tactical Green” color scheme runs from the custom modified M715-inspired front-end to the tailgate. The Crew Chief 715 features a military themed 5-foot cargo bed.

Inside, the no-nonsense interior features leather bucket seats with canvas inserts, aircraft-inspired control switches and Mopar all-weather mats. The media center features a centrally located navigational compass.

The Jeep Crew Chief 715 is powered by the 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine and is mated to a five-speed automatic transmission.

 

Jeep Shortcut

A carefully crafted take on the beloved Jeep CJ-5, this Wrangler-based concept vehicle invokes the spirit of 1950s Americana with a shortened body and functional simplicity.

Exterior styling cues include a unique grille, hood, tailgate, front and rear wheel flares and custom chrome front and rear bumpers. A modified exhaust, 17-inch red steel wheels and 35-inch BF-Goodrich Mud-Terrain T/A KM2 tires help the Jeep Shortcut maintain the look of an icon.

Jeep Performance Parts featured on the Shortcut include a front and rear Dana 44 axle and a 2-inch lift with Fox shocks. Overall body length has been reduced by more than 12 inches to keep the Shortcut concept vehicle light and maneuverable on the trails.

Inside, the simple yet functional interior features low-back leather bucket seats with plaid inserts, a red ball shifter handle, four-point safety cage and Mopar all-weather mats.

The Jeep Shortcut is powered by the 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine and mated to a 5-speed automatic transmission.

 

Jeep Renegade Commander

The Jeep Renegade Commander concept vehicle is equipped with an assortment of Mopar and Jeep Performance Parts for the ultimate off-road adventure. A 2-inch lift kit and 17-inch Rubicon aluminum wheels with 29.5-inch BF-Goodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2 tires increase the off-road capabilities of the Jeep Renegade Commander.

The “Fluorescent Gray” exterior features Renegade’s MySky open-air roof with removable panels, custom body decal, Mopar off-road rock rails, skid plates and a modified exhaust. Also featured are the Mopar brand’s trailer hitch receiver and front and rear auxiliary lights.

Inside, the Renegade Commander includes Katzkin seat covers, body color bezel accents, a pedal kit, Mopar off-road kit and Mopar all-weather floor mats.

The Jeep Renegade Commander is powered by the 2.4-liter Tigershark engine with MultiAir2 mated to a 9-speed automatic transmission with Jeep Active Drive Low.

 

Jeep Comanche

Based on the Jeep Renegade, the Jeep Comanche concept vehicle is designed to be off-road ready with practical utility. A nod to Jeep pickup trucks of years past, the Comanche concept takes styling cues from military and civilian Jeep heritage.

The Comanche’s “Beige Against the Machine” concept exterior paint is accented with a Satin Black hood, a concept lower front fascia, winch, steel rear bumper, soft top, and spare tire in the bed. The wheelbase has been stretched an additional six inches versus a production Renegade to accommodate Comanche’s 5-foot bed.

Inside, the Comanche features custom seat covers, pedal covers, door sill guards, and Mopar all-weather mats. Jeep Performance Parts like off-road rock rails, a 2-inch lift kit and a winch bolster the Comanche’s off-road capability. The Comanche rolls on 16-inch painted wheels and 32-inch BF-Goodrich All Terrain T/A tires.

The Jeep Comanche is powered by a 2.0-liter diesel I-4 engine and mated to a 9-speed automatic transmission with Jeep Active Drive Lock, which includes low range and a locking rear differential.

 

Jeep FC 150

A true American workhorse, this 1960 Jeep FC 150 concept vehicle is rich with heritage and built to tackle both challenging rocky trails and the harshness of a western cattle ranch. Originally built from 1956 to 1965, the FC 150 is based on the CJ-5 and offered a clever packaging solution by keeping overall length to a minimum for maneuverability, but maintained a full-length cargo box for utility.

This heritage Jeep vehicle continues to utilize its original steel body that proudly bears battle scars while components underneath have been revamped. The FC 150’s off-road prowess has been enhanced courtesy of a 2005 Jeep Wrangler chassis modified to accept a Dana 44 front axle, Dana 60 rear axle and 17-inch white steel wheels wrapped in 33-inch BF-Goodrich Mud-Terrain T/A KM2 tires.

Inside, the FC 150 features vinyl seat covers, a custom headliner wrapped in a vintage duck hunting pattern, CB radio, analog compass and Mopar all-weather mats.

The Jeep FC 150 heritage vehicle is powered by a 4.0-liter PowerTech I-6 and is mated to a 3-speed automatic transmission.

 

Jeep Trailcat

The Jeep Trailcat concept vehicle is the ultimate off-road machine, equally at home on Moab’s rugged trails or a high-speed section. Utilizing the supercharged 6.2-liter HEMI® Hellcat V-8 engine, and mated to a 6-speed manual transmission with a custom shifter ball featuring an embossed Hellcat logo, the Trailcat concept vehicle leaves everything else in a cloud of dust.

To get the 707-horsepower Hellcat engine into the Trailcat, designers stretched the wheelbase an additional 12 inches while chopping the windshield two inches for a sleeker look. Mopar exterior enhancements include a power dome vented hood, Satin Black grille, LED headlamp and fog lamps and rock rails.

The robust off-road look is further aided by steel front and rear bumpers, 17-inch beadlock wheels and 39.5-inch BF-Goodrich Krawler T/A KX tires, front and rear Dana 60 axles and Fox shocks.

Subtle design cues, such as a Hellcat decal on the front quarter panels and a “Trailcat” decal on the side of the hood, hint at the horsepower that lurks beneath, making this much more than a typical production Wrangler. The Trailcat’s interior is simple yet functional and features sport bucket seats from the Dodge Viper, made from carbon fiber and featuring Katzkin leather seat covers with accent stitching.

 

Jeep Trailstorm

The Trailstorm concept vehicle is the ultimate Jeep Wrangler for exploring off the beaten path. Offering room for extra gear and fuel tanks, it is based on the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited, and delivers elevated capability to conquer trails with ease.

Off-road capabilities are enhanced with several Jeep Performance Parts, including 17-inch concept off-road wheels wrapped in 37-inch tires, a 2-inch lift kit with Jeep Performance Parts/Fox shocks, a Jeep Performance Parts Rubicon winch, and Dana 44 front and rear axles. Half doors offer a clear view of obstacles ahead and a bedlined interior makes cleaning up after a day on the trails easy.

Mopar exterior enhancements include a winch guard, Satin Black grille, LED headlights and fog lights, high top fenders, power-dome vented hood, Mopar off-road rock rails with a step, Big Brake Kit, a concept fast-back soft top, tail light guards and a Mopar fuel filler door. Finishing the Trailstorm’s exterior upgrades are a steel front and rear Rubicon bumper and a Jeep Performance Parts tire carrier. The Trailstorm is wrapped in camouflage allowing it to blend into its surroundings in the Utah desert.

The Trailstorm’s bedlined interior also features Katzkin seat covers and Mopar all-weather floor mats. The Jeep Trailstorm is powered by a 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine and is mated to a 5-speed automatic transmission.

Nissan Titan Concept – Behind the Design

 

Nissan put an exclamation point on the start of sales of its all-new 2016 TITAN XD by unveiling a super-sized, off-road modified design study it calls the TITAN Warrior Concept. Nissan Design America (NDA) took the TITAN XD’s production design to new extremes with unapologetic, aggressive, athletic styling features that declare the concept’s off-road adventure intent and Nissan’s optimism for the truck market.

“Truck buyers have a seemingly insatiable appetite for more content and more unique offerings,” said José Muñoz, executive vice president, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. and chairman, Nissan North America, Inc. “Even though our all-new 2016 TITAN XD just started arriving at Nissan dealers nationwide last month, we are already exploring new territory where TITAN might go in the future.”

Pushing the Boundaries
Just as the all-new TITAN XD with its Cummins® 5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel engine has bulked up the standards for customers shopping the light-duty pickup class, the TITAN Warrior Concept was created to take the production version to the extreme.

“Nissan has always pushed the boundaries of traditional automotive design and engineering, from our Nissan GT-R supercar to the new TITAN XD,” explained Muñoz. “We do this with a clear conviction that there are buyers out there who appreciate something everyone else does not have. A `work hard, play harder, get bigger’ TITAN XD certainly does the job.”

The TITAN Warrior Concept builds on the recent Project Titan, a crowd-sourced customization of an original-generation Titan that sent two U.S. military veterans representing Wounded Warrior Project® on a once-in-a-lifetime adventure in Alaska. The new concept truck also pays homage to Nissan’s heritage of off-road racing and adventuring, which goes back to the days of Baja “Hardbody” competition pickups and Paris-Dakar Rally treks.

“As we launch the all-new 2016 TITAN XD, the TITAN Warrior Concept was conceived to share our team’s pride and excitement to be back in the truck market in a big way,” added Muñoz. “The team delivered.”

A Warrior with a “Modern Armor” Exterior
The TITAN Warrior Concept creators had more than a strong foundation on which to build their vision of a bold and expanding future in the full-size pickup market, they had a familiar one.

As part of the group that brought the “American TITAN” to life – a group that ranged from Tennessee, Michigan, Mississippi, Indiana, Arizona and California – the design team imagined how their original TITAN design, inspired by warriors in ancient Greek mythology, might evolve to extreme levels of adventure duty.

First, while maintaining the TITAN XD Crew Cab’s standard wheelbase and length, they wanted to give the concept truck an even more powerful presence than the original. The height was raised nearly three inches, from 78.7 inches to 81.5 inches, to fit a quartet of 37-inch tall off-road tires mounted on custom 18×9.5-inch aluminum-alloy wheels. The wheels’ machined aluminum surfaces feature a dark matte finish and continue the production TITAN XD’s “precision tool” design theme.

To create clearance for the new oversize tires and accommodate the new, long-travel suspension, the TITAN Warrior Concept’s width was extended three inches on each side, from 80.6 inches total to 86.6 inches. Once the dimensions and imposing stance were mapped out, the extreme makeover began in earnest.

Building on the new second-generation TITAN’s warrior-inspired styling, the designers amplified the protective look of the production exterior. Designating the new look as “modern armor” – with a stealthy, robotic quality – they continued the anatomical feel of the production TITAN, but added a more machine-like, sharper-edge appearance.

The grille and signature TITAN headlights were enhanced to offer a more technical, menacing look. The front and rear fenders have been flared and offer an extremely muscular appearance. Functional hood vents were added for cooling the powerful diesel engine. The broad hoodline is balanced underneath by the large front skidplate, which interlocks into the powerful front bumper.

Custom LED lights, front and rear, add to the TITAN Warrior Concept’s stealthy presence. The headlights carry a sense of the new Nissan signature boomerang lights, but with a more precise, upright, robotic feel. In the rear, the integrated LED taillights take the form of a TITAN “T” logo, split by the wide tailgate. As a finishing touch, a quad-tipped exhaust system is integrated into the rear bumper.

Despite its massive bulk, TITAN Warrior Concept adds several aerodynamic elements, including carbon fiber rear cab spoiler and tailgate spoilers. Additional unique body elements include integrated, roof-mounted LED off-road lights.

The TITAN Warrior Concept is covered in a custom matte-gunmetal paint called “Thunder” and accented in special “Magma” orange and black color highlights.

“There’s a sense to the exterior design that the TITAN Warrior Concept could drive right off the auto show stage and retrace the historic route of Nissan’s off-road racing victories in the Baja Peninsula,” said Muñoz. “And given the high-torque Cummins 5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel, extensive suspension modifications and TITAN XD heavy-duty durability, it certainly could.”

A Polished, Premium Sport Interior
Inside the TITAN Warrior Concept’s rugged performance-focused exterior is an interior conceived to handle the abuse experienced on an extended off-road excursion in comfort and style.

“Today’s truck enthusiasts don’t just use their trucks for weekend adventures, they do double-duty as daily drivers,” explained Muñoz. “Therefore the TITAN Warrior Concept’s interior reflects a premium outdoor lifestyle, closer in look and content to a new TITAN XD Platinum Reserve model than a stripped-down pre-runner.”

The interior design team at Nissan Design America wanted to give the vehicle a unique polished “chronograph” look and feel, focusing on materials and detailing while remaining true to the TITAN Warrior Concept’s active performance theme. For example, the seats are covered in a carbon-colored high-strength seat fabric trimmed with “Magma” orange accents. Interior surfaces utilize material, such as carbon fiber, polished chrome finishes, leather with accented Magma orange stitching.

The TITAN Warrior Concept’s steering wheel is custom-built, continuing the technical adventure theme, milled from one block of aluminum. Other interior details include unique hot-and-cold drink containers integrated into the center console. Robust auxiliary toggle switches are integrated into the center stack for additional off-road accessories. Instrument panel-mounted auxiliary gauges are provided to easily monitor truck performance.

Performance Unleashed
As an extreme adventure version of the new 2016 TITAN XD, the TITAN Warrior Concept utilizes the factory fully boxed ladder frame and Cummins® 5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel engine and the standard heavy-duty 6-speed Aisin automatic transmission as its base.

Where the TITAN Warrior Concept departs from its production counterpart is in the full custom suspension design. In the front, the standard suspension has been replaced with custom upper and lower control arm with performance ball joints, along with racing-style internal bypass reservoir coil-over shocks with custom reservoir mounts and tie-rod extensions.

In the rear, the modifications include custom internal bypass reservoir shocks with custom reservoir mounts. Adjusted-length prototype axles were installed, along with a custom sway bar, relocated sway bar brackets and rear lift blocks and U-bolts. Hydraulic pressurized bump stops were also added front and rear.

Exploring New Boundaries
The debut of the TITAN Warrior Concept at the North American International Auto Show comes exactly one year since the debut of the production TITAN XD on the same stage. TITAN XD has been named “Truck of Texas” by the Texas Auto Writers Association (TAWA) in their annual Texas Truck Rodeo, which puts the industry’s best trucks, SUVs and CUVs through a grueling two-day evaluation. In addition to the competition’s top award, Truck of Texas, the TITAN XD won three other honors – Luxury Pickup Truck of Texas, Off-Road Pickup Truck of Texas and Best Powertrain for its standard Cummins® 5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel engine.

Now that TITAN XD Crew Cab with a Cummins 5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel engine is in Nissan showrooms, the rollout of new models continues. In December, Nissan announced that advanced gas-powered Endurance® V8 producing 390 horsepower and 401 lb-ft of torque will be available in both TITAN and TITAN XD models beginning in early spring 2016.

Ultimately, the new TITAN will be offered in three cab configurations, two frame sizes, three powertrain offerings and five grade levels (more information on the full lineup will be available at a later date).

“While Nissan still has many roads and trails to travel as we continue to launch additional production versions of our bold new TITAN, this new TITAN Warrior Concept gives an important signal to American truck enthusiasts that our vision for exploring new boundaries remains strong,” concluded Muñoz. “Truck lovers are never static and neither is TITAN.”