Jeep Mashed Up a Retro 1970s Cherokee With Their Hybrid Wrangler
The 1978 Jeep Cherokee 4xe is the star of the company’s annual Easter Safari concepts
April 1 is a big day for disappointment as all your favorite brands are bound to release some lame April Fools’ Day gag. Well, unless your favorite brand happens to be Jeep. Then April 1 is on par with Christmas Day, as the automaker is heading to Moab, Utah for the 57th annual Easter Jeep Safari, a nine-day off-roading event in the desert where they’ll debut a number of concept vehicles showing the customization potential of their current and former lineup, and previewing the future of their highly-capable SUVs.
The big news out of the Easter Jeep Safari in recent years has been their Magneto model, an all-electric Wrangler with a stick shift (really). That continues for 2023, with the Magneto 3.0 offering another look at what a future Wrangler EV could look like (though we still have no real clues as to when that will happen). But of the seven one-off concepts Jeep and their partner in crime, Jeep Performance Parts by Mopar, dreamt up, the one that we’d gladly open up our bank account for is not the Wrangler from the future, but an SUV that mashes up 1970s nostalgia with modern-day electrified driving.
Jeep’s restomod build for 2023 is the 1978 Jeep Cherokee 4xe Concept, a deliciously retro two-door that combines the old-school style of an original Cherokee SJ (which was introduced in 1974 as a two-door variant of the Wagoneer) with the performance of a 2022 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 4xe, a higher-end hybrid SUV.
It’s a best-of-both-worlds approach. I mean, who doesn’t want to drive around in a 1970s Jeep, especially one that has been given a fresh Starburst yellow paint job? Anyone who wants modern power and reliability, that’s who. In that regard, the Wrangler Rubicon 4xe powertrain — “two electric motors, a high-voltage battery pack and a high-tech 2.0-liter turbocharged I-4 engine” — provides peace of mind. So do the 37-inch tires around the custom 17-inch wheels.
Jeep Built a Mind-Blowing Electric Wrangler, But You’ll Never Get One Like This
The Magneto 2.0, which debuted at the Easter Jeep Safari, is a fairy-tale EV with a stick shift
If you won’t be in Moab yourself this coming week, here’s the rest of the Easter Jeep Safari concept lineup for 2023. Maybe your personal favorite will give you some ideas for you want to customize your own Wrangler (or Grand Wagoneer, or Gladiator).
- Jeep Wrangler Magneto 3.0 Concept
- Jeep Scrambler 392 Concept
- 1978 Jeep Cherokee 4xe Concept
- Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 4xe Concept
- Grand Wagoneer Overland Concept
- Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 4xe Departure Concept
- Jeep Gladiator Rubicon Sideburn Concept
If you’re not ready for this little off-road daydream to end, check out our list of the best custom Wranglers from the Easter Jeep Safari over the years.
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