Just one week after teasing the concept for a V8-powered Jeep Wrangler, it seems FCA is actually serious about bringing it to market. TFL reader Jerime spotted these Wranglers and even a camouflaged Ram TRX parked outside a cafe in Daniels, West Virginia.
These two white Rubicons may look pretty run of the mill to the casual observer, but there are some clues that give away what’s lurking within. Per the earlier concept, the performance hood and (we assume functional) scoop give the game away, while other outlets have spotted four exhaust outlets at the back for the Hemi-powered Wrangler. This is more of an anecdotal take on the situation, but the fact that these Jeeps are testing wit the TRX may also lend some credibility to their true identity.
In case you missed it, the Wrangler 392 Concept packs a massive, naturally-aspirated 6.4-liter Hemi V8 under the hood. It’s tuned a bit differently from what we’ve seen in other applications like the Dodge Challenger R/T Scat Pack and the Ram 2500 Power Wagon. In the concept, at least, it produces 450 horsepower and 450 lb-ft of torque. The concept also had massive 37-inch mud-terrains, but the tires we see here aren’t that extreme. On that basis, Jeep may be using a standard Rubicon as a powertrain test mule, then the company can work on the concept-like bits once they dial in the Hemi to work well in the Wrangler.
While Ford is sticking with smaller, turbocharged engines in the new Bronco, this is a clear sign FCA is still keen on offering huge V8s. At least, they’re doing that while they still can. Bear in mind a new hybrid Wrangler 4xe is also on the horizon, and the smaller 2.0-liter turbo help bring up the brand’s average fuel economy long enough to sustain a Wrangler 392 until emissions regulations force it into the history books.
There’s no word at the moment as to when we’d actually be able to buy a Jeep Wrangler 392. Perhaps sometime in 2021, though we expect to hear more official details from FCA soon. The company did reveal the concept in the wake of the Ford Bronco, so perhaps more information will emerge later this year, as FCA’s rival starts to put the Bronco into production.