Jeep only last week showed off a Wrangler concept fitted with Fiat Chrysler Automobile’s 6.4-liter V-8, and now we’ve spotted a prototype that’s likely for the production version.
The Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept, unveiled the same day as Ford’s reborn Bronco, featured an output of 450 horsepower and 450 pound-feet of torque, as well as subtle visual cues that hinted at its V-8.
The most obvious of these cues was the concept’s vented hood, which featured a “392” badge lining its power dome. Most readers will recognize 6.4 liters as measuring 392 cubic inches.
The prototype sports the same hood as the concept (minus the badging), along with a set of quad-exhaust tips. The wheel design is also the same as on the concept, in this case a set of 17-inch beadlock wheels with 37-inch mud-terrain tires.
Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept
With 450 hp on tap, Jeep estimates the Wrangler will sprint to 60 mph in under 5.0 seconds. Of course, any Wrangler V-8 will still need to go off-road. Looking again at the concept, we can expect a 2-speed transfer case, a lift kit, underbody protection, Dana 44 axles, and electronic axle lockers front and rear. An 8-speed automatic will likely be the only transmission.
While Jeep hasn’t actually confirmed plans for a V-8-powered Wrangler, Jeep said the Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept was an indication that Wrangler fans clamoring for just such a vehicle “may soon get their wish.” Given the lack of camouflage gear on the prototype, we think their wish could come true as soon as the 2021 model year.
Jeep has more in store for the Wrangler to put up the fight to the Bronco. This includes a Wrangler 4xe plug-in hybrid variant that’s due out later this year as a 2021 model. There’s also the diesel that was just added for 2020.
Will we ever see a Wrangler with the Hellcat 6.2-liter supercharged V-8? Unfortunately FCA has downplayed the chances due to cooling issues, though there are aftermarket options.