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2016 Easter Jeep Safari Concepts

Kamil Kaluski March 10, 2016 All Things Hoon 29 Comments

Each year Jeep holds the Easter Jeep Safari in Moab, Utah. Each year they take it as an opportunity to showcase some very cool, yet almost production-ready, vehicles. This year is no different, except for the fact that this the 50th Easter Jeep Safari, which I guess is special. Among this year’s vehicles is not-so-resto-modded forward-control pickup on a JK frame, a long Wrangler Crew Chief with a Kaiser nose, a shortened CJ-5-like Wrangler, a Hellcar-powered Wrangler because fuck you G65 AMG, and a  Jeep Commanche concept based on the Renegade.

Jeep has a long history of cool concept cars, click here to see most of them from the past years. Last year’s Easter Jeep Safari concepts are here. Thoughts, opinions, and favorites on this year’s concepts are always welcome. I’ll take the Crew Chief, thank you.

Jeep® Crew Chief 715 Concept

Jeep Crew Chief 715
The Jeep Crew Chief 715 concept vehicle was built as a salute to legendary Jeep military service vehicles, in particular the Kaiser M715. This open-air Wrangler Unlimited-based concept vehicle showcases a burly design with heritage styling cues. The Crew Chief 715 utilizes modern-day construction with a rear seat and extra doors for additional passenger capacity while staying close to its classic military roots.

Original Jeep military service vehicles were legendary for getting troops through rugged terrain, and the Jeep Crew Chief 715 illustrates this legacy. Steel front and rear bumpers, 20-inch beadlock wheels and 40-inch NDT military tires pay homage to the original Jeep military vehicles. The Crew Chief 715 utilizes an on-board air system with a hard-mounted quick-disconnect fitting for airing up or lending assistance to other vehicles on the trail. Other features include a master cylinder brake upgrade, cold air intake and a modified exhaust.

Jeep® Crew Chief 715 Concept

Exterior features, such as Jeep Performance Parts off-road rock rails, a winch mounted into the front and rear bumpers, Dana 60 front and rear axles and a 4-inch lift kit with Jeep Performance Parts/Fox 2.0 Remote Reservoir shocks, give the Crew Chief 715 increased capability. The “Tactical Green” color scheme runs from the custom modified M715-inspired front-end to the tailgate. The Crew Chief 715 features a military themed 5-foot cargo bed.

Inside, the no-nonsense interior features leather bucket seats with canvas inserts, aircraft-inspired control switches and Mopar all-weather mats. The media center features a centrally located navigational compass.

The Jeep Crew Chief 715 is powered by the 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine and is mated to a five-speed automatic transmission.

Jeep® Shortcut Concept

Jeep Shortcut
A carefully crafted take on the beloved Jeep CJ-5, this Wrangler-based concept vehicle invokes the spirit of 1950s Americana with a shortened body and functional simplicity.

Exterior styling cues include a unique grille, hood, tailgate, front and rear wheel flares and custom chrome front and rear bumpers. A modified exhaust, 17-inch red steel wheels and 35-inch BF-Goodrich Mud-Terrain T/A KM2 tires help the Jeep Shortcut maintain the look of an icon.

Jeep Performance Parts featured on the Shortcut include a front and rear Dana 44 axle and a 2-inch lift with Fox shocks. Overall body length has been reduced by more than 12 inches to keep the Shortcut concept vehicle light and maneuverable on the trails.

Jeep® Shortcut Concept

Inside, the simple yet functional interior features low-back leather bucket seats with plaid inserts, a red ball shifter handle, four-point safety cage and Mopar all-weather mats.

The Jeep Shortcut is powered by the 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine and mated to a 5-speed automatic transmission.

Jeep® Renegade Commander Concept

Jeep Renegade Commander
The Jeep Renegade Commander concept vehicle is equipped with an assortment of Mopar and Jeep Performance Parts for the ultimate off-road adventure. A 2-inch lift kit and 17-inch Rubicon aluminum wheels with 29.5-inch BF-Goodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2 tires increase the off-road capabilities of the Jeep Renegade Commander.

The “Fluorescent Gray” exterior features Renegade’s MySky open-air roof with removable panels, custom body decal, Mopar off-road rock rails, skid plates and a modified exhaust. Also featured are the Mopar brand’s trailer hitch receiver and front and rear auxiliary lights.

Jeep® Renegade Commander Concept

Inside, the Renegade Commander includes Katzkin seat covers, body color bezel accents, a pedal kit, Mopar off-road kit and Mopar all-weather floor mats.

The Jeep Renegade Commander is powered by the 2.4-liter Tigershark engine with MultiAir2 mated to a 9-speed automatic transmission with Jeep Active Drive Low.

Jeep® Comanche Concept

Jeep Comanche
Based on the Jeep Renegade, the Jeep Comanche concept vehicle is designed to be off-road ready with practical utility. A nod to Jeep pickup trucks of years past, the Comanche concept takes styling cues from military and civilian Jeep heritage.

The Comanche’s “Beige Against the Machine” concept exterior paint is accented with a Satin Black hood, a concept lower front fascia, winch, steel rear bumper, soft top and spare tire in the bed. The wheelbase has been stretched an additional six inches versus a production Renegade to accommodate Comanche’s 5-foot bed.

Jeep® Comanche Concept

Inside, the Comanche features custom seat covers, pedal covers, door sill guards and Mopar all-weather mats. Jeep Performance Parts like off-road rock rails, a 2-inch lift kit and a winch bolster the Comanche’s off-road capability. The Comanche rolls on 16-inch painted wheels and 32-inch BF-Goodrich All Terrain T/A tires.

The Jeep Comanche is powered by a 2.0-liter diesel I-4 engine and mated to a 9-speed automatic transmission with Jeep Active Drive Lock, which includes low range and a locking rear differential.

Jeep® FC 150 Heritage Vehicle

Jeep FC 150
A true American workhorse, this 1960 Jeep FC 150 concept vehicle is rich with heritage and built to tackle both challenging rocky trails and the harshness of a western cattle ranch. Originally built from 1956 to 1965, the FC 150 is based on the CJ-5 and offers a clever packaging solution by keeping overall length to a minimum for maneuverability, but maintaining a full-length cargo box for utility.

This heritage Jeep vehicle continues to utilize its original steel body that proudly bears battle scars while components underneath have been revamped. The FC 150’s off-road prowess has been enhanced courtesy of a 2005 Jeep Wrangler chassis modified to accept a Dana 44 front axle, Dana 60 rear axle and 17-inch white steel wheels wrapped in 33-inch BF-Goodrich Mud-Terrain T/A KM2 tires.

Inside, the FC 150 features vinyl seat covers, a custom headliner wrapped in a vintage duck hunting pattern, CB radio, analog compass and Mopar all-weather mats.

The Jeep FC 150 heritage vehicle is powered by a 4.0-liter PowerTech I-6 and is mated to a 3-speed automatic transmission.

Jeep® Trailcat Concept

Jeep Trailcat
The Jeep Trailcat concept vehicle is the ultimate off-road machine, equally at home on Moab’s rugged trails or a high-speed section. Utilizing the supercharged 6.2-liter HEMI® Hellcat V-8 engine, and mated to a 6-speed manual transmission with a custom shifter ball featuring an embossed Hellcat logo, the Trailcat concept vehicle leaves everything else in a cloud of dust.

To get the 707-horsepower Hellcat engine into the Trailcat, designers stretched the wheelbase an additional 12 inches while chopping the windshield two inches for a sleeker look. Mopar exterior enhancements include a power-dome vented hood, Satin Black grille, LED headlamps and fog lamps and rock rails.

Jeep® Trailcat Concept

The robust off-road look is further aided by steel front and rear bumpers, 17-inch beadlock wheels and 39.5-inch BF-Goodrich Krawler T/A KX tires, front and rear Dana 60 axles and Fox shocks.

Subtle design cues, such as a Hellcat decal on the front quarter panels and a “Trailcat” decal on the side of the hood, hint at the horsepower that lurks beneath, making this much more than a typical production Wrangler. The Trailcat’s interior is simple yet functional and features sport bucket seats from the Dodge Viper, made from carbon fiber and featuring Katzkin leather seat covers with accent stitching.

Jeep® Trailstorm Concept

Jeep Trailstorm
The Trailstorm concept vehicle is the ultimate Jeep Wrangler for exploring off the beaten path. Offering room for extra gear and fuel tanks, it is based on the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited, and delivers elevated capability to conquer trails with ease.

Off-road capabilities are enhanced with several Jeep Performance Parts, including 17-inch concept off-road wheels wrapped in 37-inch tires, a 2-inch lift kit with Jeep Performance Parts/Fox shocks, a Jeep Performance Parts Rubicon winch, and Dana 44 front and rear axles. Half doors offer a clear view of obstacles ahead and a bedlined interior makes cleaning up after a day on the trails easy.

Jeep® Trailstorm Concept

Mopar exterior enhancements include a winch guard, Satin Black grille, LED headlights and fog lights, high top fenders, power-dome vented hood, Mopar off-road rock rails with a step, Big Brake Kit, a concept fast-back soft top, tail light guards and a Mopar fuel filler door. Finishing the Trailstorm’s exterior upgrades are a steel front and rear Rubicon bumper and a Jeep Performance Parts tire carrier. The Trailstorm is wrapped in camouflage allowing it to blend into its surroundings in the Utah desert.

The Trailstorm’s bedlined interior also features Katzkin seat covers and Mopar all-weather floor mats. The Jeep Trailstorm is powered by a 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine and is mated to a 5-speed automatic transmission.


  • Wayne Moyer

    I really want the Shortcut to become a thing just to mess with those who get Unlimiteds.
    But it’s the Comanche concept that has my attention. Is that a pretty accurate look at the new 2017 Jeep truck?

    • BigRedCaveTroll

      I like the Comanche concept too, especially with a small diesel and 9 speed transmission. I know some guys like to make fun of the Renegade (usually people who have gotten stuck in ditches in their TJ Wranglers, or people with 22″ rims and low-profile tires on their JKs…), but I quite like it.

      • karonetwentyc

        Remembering back to when the Patriot and Compass hit the market and the ‘how dare they’ uproar that seemed to affect the Jeep community that their debut caused, I was one of the few who was OK with Jeep fielding entries in the CR-V / RAV4 / Forester segment.

        The caveat to that was that offering from Jeep had to have absolutely killer capability off-pavement compared to the competition. That doesn’t mean that they should be able to keep up with a solid-axle model over the Rubicon, but rather that they do stuff the others couldn’t, like cope with ploughed fields, handle moderate off-road conditions well, and provide a reasonable low range for times when a bit more low-speed grunt was called for. Unfortunately, the Patriot and Compass never really lived up to that expectation.

        (The above notwithstanding, I was impressed with how the Patriot handled itself – and the trail conditions – .)

        Looking at the BU Comanche, it seems as though Jeep has the opportunity to do what I wanted them to a decade ago: build a light 4WD vehicle that has some actual capability. Crossovers are generally not particularly good at any of the mishmash of capabilities that have been expected of them, but given the potential for a lot of the mechanical bits in the Comanche to filter back into the Renegade, there’s good potential for both of these vehicles to turn that generality onto its head.

  • BigRedCaveTroll

    Sadly, a lot of JKs get stuck on mall-crawling duty, so what I’m about to say wouldn’t really make sense financially for Jeep, but I’d love to see a JK with Dana 60s (or the AAM 10.5) front and rear, an optional diesel engine (like the one out of the Ram), selectable lockers all around with a limited slip function when unlocked (like on the Power Wagons rear 10.5″ AAM axle), and the 9 speed transmission (although supposedly that’s in the works).

  • GTXcellent

    We were just lamenting how boring interiors are – Jeep, MAKE THOSE RED PLAID SEATS HAPPEN!

  • The guys at Jeep must take perverse pleasure in constantly parading before us a constant stream of concept cars they have no intention of putting into production. You bunch of unholy prick-teases.

    • Wayne Moyer

      I think the two Renegades have a good chance for production.

    • kyle_a_m

      I don’t know what you’re talking about. *twitch*

        • pj134

          I was about to post that lower forty too.

      • pj134

        It’s not even right that they can keep doing this to us.

      • neight428

        Came here to post that.

      • boxdin

        This FC concept is the jeep I dream of.

    • Krautwursten

      Must … resist … urge … to become … Hulk …

  • Sjalabais

    Not much of a Jeep guy here, but the 715…wow. Total road domination ensues.

    • pj134

      Check the reply from me on the thread above this. The last time I think the restraint made it even prettier.

      • Sjalabais

        I’m a bit split, the tires seem a bit too beefy on the earlier version. This years truck also seems to run on testosteron only.

  • karonetwentyc

    Interesting to see the BU Renegade-based Comanche concept as I’ve been semi-scanning the usual places for MJ Comanches recently. We could use a compact truck, and I’m familiar with the underpinnings through ownership of a few XJ Cherokees.

    The Renegade Comanche is actually the package that I wanted for a North American-market Fiat Strada Adventure Locker – real 4WD, 2.0-litre turbodiesel, and locking diffs. It probably doesn’t have a snowball’s chance of making it to market, but if it does (and in the package shown) I’m in for one. We an extra 6″ of space behind the rear seats would be nice for carrying smaller bags, etc. with two people aboard, but it’s hard to tell how much room there is between the seat backs and rear firewall from the photo.

    On a side note, why does it seem to be completely impossible for Jeep to offer the JK Wrangler in a 2-door medium-wheelbase model like they did with the CJ-6, CJ-8, and TJ Unlimited? The 4-door is a pain to turn around on some trails due to its length (I’ve tried; it wasn’t fun) and the 2-door still has insufficient cargo space for what I want it to do.

    • Wayne Moyer

      Jeep is putting a pickup into production during 2017.

      • karonetwentyc

        True, but it’s still bigger / longer than I either want or need. There’s also something to be said for an enclosed vehicle when camping – sure, I could put a shell on the back of the Jeep pickup and sleep in the bed, but then why not just get the Wrangler to begin with?

        Diesel’s also a factor. I just don’t want a gasoline-engined work vehicle, and especially not one that may need to double as a commuter. As far as I know, there are no solid (read: confirmed) plans for a diesel in the Wrangler lineup at this time.

        • Rover 1

          Jeep have been making them, I’ve driven a few.

          I wonder why not for the US market?

          Here’s one that’s a few years old, a 2013 Jeep Wrangler CRD.

          • karonetwentyc

            From what I’ve heard, there were issues with the 2.8CRD passing emissions requirements in North America after about 2006. That engine was briefly (2005-2006, IIRC) offered in the KJ Liberty, but they only sold around 20,000 of them in two years before pulling the plug.

            Add to the emissions testing what was happening with Daimler-Chrysler around that time, the subsequent government bailouts, and the fact that there was no suitable diesel waiting in the wings to replace the 2.8 motor with, and you had a perfect storm of killing off the chances of a diesel Wrangler (or other models) in North America.

            One footnote to that last paragraph: the Grand Cherokee has been offered with a diesel a couple of times since 2007 or so, but not the 2.8CRD. If memory serves, the first engine offered was a 3.0-litre Mercedes unit; the current one is a VM Motori lump unrelated to the 2.8.

  • njhoon

    Almost missed that last one…

  • 1977ChevyTruck

    of course, the Trailcat is the one I want to drive, but that Comanche is the one I want to own.

    I’m always on the lookout for the old ones in my local classifieds, but their usually in the wrong configuration (2.5L, Auto, RWD) or beat to shit.

    Also, I’d prefer a hardtop.

    I understand why they put a convertible on the concept, but IMHO, it looks kind of goofy, and would suck in inclement weather.

  • Tiller188

    Man, that 715…whenever they do a group of these concepts, if it contains a Kaiser-inspired truck, that’s almost always my favorite on appearance. Couldn’t even tell you why, it’s just a cool look.

    Also, whoever is in charge of paint-color naming at Jeep is clearly having a good time. “Beige Against the Machine” is amusing and at least a little ironic-seeming, but trying to figure out what “Fluorescent Gray” would look like caused a mental BSOD.

  • Tiller188

    Also, just noticed something: what’s with the molded-in step on the 715 that’s at exactly the same height as the door sill? Doesn’t seem especially helpful…

    • Vairship

      Looks like a styling thing. If that “step”wasn’t there, you’d see the large size of the panel there and wonder why they didn’t make the rear door a little longer at the bottom…

      • karonetwentyc

        Looking at where the step was positioned, I think it might be intended for easier manipulation of cargo at the front of the bed. One foot on the step, one foot on the rear tyre, and you’ve got good access to whatever’s at that end of things without having to climb through the bed.

        That said, the 715 reminds me a bit of the Rescue concept from ten or twelve years back that ultimately provided the styling for the JK Wrangler. Shame that one never went into into production; it could have been an H2 that was actually usable.

      • karonetwentyc

        Looking at where the step is positioned on the 715, I think it might be intended for easier manipulation of cargo at the front of the bed. One foot on the step, one foot on the rear tyre, and you’ve got good access to whatever’s at that end of things without having to climb through / into the bed.

        That said, the 715 reminds me a bit of the Rescue concept from ten or twelve years back that ultimately provided the styling for the JK Wrangler. Shame that one never went into into production; it could have been an H2 that was actually usable.