"Pretty soon." That's the answer Jeep president Mike Manley gave to Australian site Car Advice when asked about a decision on a Jeep pickup truck. And with the next-generartion Wrangler planned for arrival in 2015 or 2016, this is the window for getting with planners. There's certainly plenty of lust for a Jeep pickup – just look at the strong sales of Mopar's JK8 kit.
Jeep enthusiasts have been asking for a Wrangler pickup for years, and 2011 is the year they finally got their wish – at least in kit form. The only thing that could keep the JK-8 Independence kit from being a success is the $5,499 price, which doesn't include assembly. But it appears that the serious Jeep fans are all-in, and Mopar is stepping up to meet demand.
For those of you patiently waiting for a production Jeep pickup that you can pick up at your local dealership, we have bad news. Automotive News is quoting Jeep CEO Michael Manley as saying it won't be happening anytime soon.
Chrysler has already confirmed that the next Viper is on its way in two years' time, but showing it off this early is a clear indication that work is well underway. There's still some debate about what powertrain will be fitted to the thoroughly updated Viper, but early reports indicate that the same 8.4-liter V10 could carry on, possibly with the inclusion of Fiat's MultiAir technology to reduce emissions and boost output over 700 horsepower. An entry-level V8 option is a possibility, and there
UPDATE: Mike Levine at Pickuptruck.com speculates that Jeep may be going after the postal fleet market. These mules are right-hand drive (to reach mailboxes perhaps?) and leaf springs (to handle the heavy load of mail maybe?)