The Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept is the brand's not-so-subtle way of teasing that a model featuring a new 6.4-litre V8 is on the imminent horizon. The mill pumps out an impressive 450 bhp (336 kilowatts) and 450 pound-feet (610 Newton-metres) of torque, which is a huge upgrade over the existing 3.6-litre V6 making 285 bhp (213 kW) and 260 lb-ft (353 Nm).
If this sounds too good to be true, then be optimistic. In the concept's announcement, Jeep heavily hints that a production version could happen. "Jeep enthusiasts have been clamouring for a V8-powered production Wrangler in recent years and the new Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept is an indication they may soon get their wish," the automaker's press release says.
Jeep has previously said that a V8-powered Wrangler wasn't happening because the engine didn't allow for enough crush space to be safe in a crash. The company might now have a solution, though. For the Rubicon 392 Concept, there is a modified frame and upgraded engine mounts. The video below offers a glimpse of the mill running in the bay, and it doesn't appear too tight in there.
The Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept uses an eight-speed automatic gearbox and two-speed transfer case. Jeep claims it can hit 60 miles per hour (96 kilometres per hour) in less than five seconds, which is lightning quick by Wrangler standards.
Gallery: Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept
A Wrangler isn't about straight-line speed, though, and Jeep equips the concept with the hardware for making off-roading easier. There are high-strength Dana 44 axles and locking differentials at both ends. A two-inch suspension lift, monotube Fox shocks, and 17-inch beadlock wheels with 37-inch mud-terrain tyres improve the SUV's ability to get around in rugged environments.
It's worth noting that Jeep's unveiling of the Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept comes on the same day as the much-anticipated premiere of the revived Ford Bronco. It's impossible not to see that there's some gamesmanship happening in an effort to take some of the wind out of the Blue Oval's sails.
Mike Levine, Ford North America Product Communications Manager, noticed Jeep's attempt to steal the limelight from the Bronco. He tweeted (above) that it's a sign of the Blue Oval's competition being nervous.
Jeep® Introduces New 6.4-liter V-8 Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept
Jeep® Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept’s V-8 engine amps up Jeep fun-to-drive quotient and Trail Rated 4x4 capability
6.4-liter V-8 engine with 392 cubic inches of displacement results in 450 horsepower,450 lb.-ft. of torque and a 0-60 mph time of less than five seconds
The Jeep brand’s exclusive Trail Rated criteria have been enhanced with the Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept
Unmatched 4x4 capability courtesy of added torque, Dana 44 axles, full-time two-speed transfer case, electric front- and rear-axle lockers, 37-inch mud-terrain tires and a Jeep Performance Parts two-inch factory lift kit
Robust eight-speed transmission, massive low-end torque and 3.73 gear ratio combine to deliver improved on-road performance and greater off-road capability
Two-mode exhaust alters performance sound at touch of a button
Custom exterior design features half doors, Granite Crystal paint and Bronze-colored accents on tow hooks, springs, shocks, wheels and badging
Unique interior features Red Rock-colored leather seats with gold stitching and a performance steering wheel
July 13, 2020 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - The last time the most recognizable vehicle on the planet was offered with a V-8 engine was in the 1981 Jeep® CJ, with its 5.0-liter V-8 that delivered 125 horsepower and 220 lb.-ft. of torque.
Jeep enthusiasts have been clamoring for a V-8-powered production Wrangler in recent years and the new Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept is an indication they may soon get their wish.
The Jeep brand has introduced its new Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept, powered by a 6.4-liter (392-cubic-inch) V-8 engine that delivers 450 horsepower and 450 lb.-ft. of torque, and a 0-60 mph time of less than five seconds. Dana 44 axles, a full-time two-speed transfer case, electric front and rear axle lockers, 37-inch mud-terrain tires and a Jeep Performance Parts two-inch lift kit from Mopar combine with suspension enhancements, a more robust eight-speed transmission and the massive V-8 power plant to deliver the ultimate fun-to-drive Jeep vehicle with more off-road capability than ever in a Jeep Wrangler.
“Jeep Wrangler enthusiasts have been asking us for a Wrangler V-8 and our new Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept proves that we have the ability to make that happen,” said Jim Morrison, Head of Jeep Brand – FCA North America. “From the recently introduced 29-mpg Wrangler EcoDiesel to our award-winning Jeep Gladiator, and the upcoming Wrangler 4xe plug-in hybrid electric vehicle, Jeep is clearly listening to its customers. We are anxious to gauge their reaction to this new Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept, a vehicle that delivers an incredible and unmatched level of fun-to-drive performance and capability, on- and off-road.”
Power, performance and capability on- and off-road
To accommodate its 6.4-liter V-8 engine and a stronger eight-speed transmission, the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept features upgraded engine mounts and a modified frame. Suspension upgrades include new aluminum, monotube Fox shocks for improved damping and heat dissipation. A two-mode exhaust alters the performance sound at the touch of a button.
The Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept boasts even more capability courtesy of third-generation Dana 44 axles, a Selec-Track full-time two-speed transfer case, Tru-Lok electric front- and rear-axle locking differentials and 37-inch mud-terrain tires that wrap around custom 17-inch beadlock wheels that hold the tires to the rims under extreme lateral loads, allowing for reduced tire pressure operation and added traction.
A factory Jeep Performance Parts two-inch lift kit from Mopar makes way for additional suspension articulation and improved approach, breakover and departure angles. The Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept also features Rubicon rock rails, steel bumpers with a Warn winch and a steel belly pan – all added to help navigate the toughest off-road terrains.
The more robust eight-speed automatic transmission and full-time 4x4 transfer case improve overall drivability, and massive amounts of low-end torque allow for a 3.73 gear ratio, which delivers improved highway efficiency and a greater range of off-road capability.
Enhanced Jeep Trail Rated capability
The Jeep brand boasts several Trail Rated criteria, which are improved on the Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept, specifically:Traction is improved courtesy of 450 lb.-ft. of torque and custom 17-inch beadlock wheels
A factory Jeep Performance Parts two-inch lift kit and 37-inch tires combine to improve articulation and contribute to unprecedented levels of water fording capability (34 inches) and ground clearance (13.25 inches), as well as improved approach (51.6 degrees), breakover (29.5 degrees) and departure (40.1 degrees) angles.
Unique, custom design inside and out
The new Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept features Granite Crystal exterior paint adorned with Bronze accentuated tow hooks, badging, springs, shocks and wheels, while featuring a heavy-duty raised performance hood with an aggressive appearance, custom half doors and Wrangler’s Sky One-touch powertop, with removable side panels for complete open-air freedom.
Inside, the Wrangler Rubicon 392 Concept features rich Red Rock-colored leather bolstered seats with gold stitching, along with a performance steering wheel.
Built on nearly 80 years of legendary heritage, Jeep is the authentic SUV with class-leading capability, craftsmanship and versatility for people who seek extraordinary journeys. The Jeep brand delivers an open invitation to live life to the fullest by offering a full line of vehicles that continue to provide owners with a sense of security to handle any journey with confidence.
The Jeep vehicle lineup consists of the Cherokee, Compass, Gladiator, Grand Cherokee, Renegade and Wrangler. To meet consumer demand around the world, all Jeep models sold outside North America are available in both left- and right-hand drive configurations and with gasoline and diesel powertrain options. Jeep is part of the portfolio of brands offered by global automaker Fiat Chrysler Automobiles. For more information regarding FCA (NYSE: FCAU/ MTA: FCA), please visit www.fcagroup.com.