What the heck is a "Jeep Concept" and why is it built?
A "concept" anything is merely an idea which may be in someone's mind, placed on paper or produced as a model or prototype.
Auto manufacturers have been producing and hyping "Concept Vehicles" for quite some time.
Many of these vehicles never get off of the drawing board while others may go as far as being put into partial, if not "full" production for public consumption.
So, why do they go to all of that time, expense and man-power designing something with much of the newest technology and upgrades, when the idea, model or prototype might never be seen beyond the latest Automobile Show or magazine article?
The best answer appears to simply be R & D...Research and Development.
The super competitive world of auto-making demands that these huge companies develop new products with the most sales potential...and ultimately add to the bottom line.
They do this by testing, marketing (hyping) and obtaining feedback from professional and independent
experts in the field. Polls and surveys are conducted as well as looking for things such as the "Buzz" on the internet and other information sharing sources.
No-one can tell the future, but these auto builders want as much reassurance as possible that their
new product will be a "hit" with consumers...before investing serious cash into mass producing these gems.
Many companies have gambled and failed, while others have had undreamed of success. Jeep has been no exception.
So let's take a look at a representative sampling of Jeep Concept Vehicles produced in the past...up to the present.
This is a 1990 Cherokee Freedom prototype, looking very much the car, it had 4-wheel drive and was touted as a rugged "truck".
The 1992 Jeep ECCO looked a lot like some small imports today!
In 1997 the Jeep Dakar Concept Vehicle looks very similar to the 4-door Wrangler Unlimited.
A real 4x4 sports car? This 1998 Jeepster Concept is sharp looking!
The 2001 Jeep Willys Concept. Wild..yet tamer than the Hurricane a few years later!
The Jeep 2004 Rescue Concept (above) and the Dakar (earlier) shows how the Wrangler Unlimited today was being tested and experimented with.
This 2004 Jeep Treo Concept is just too wild for words!
The 2008 Jeep Renegade Concept is really futuristic. Looks Fun!
The 2005 Jeep Hurricane Concept (pictured here and at the top of this page) wins the prize for the most Outrageous...not to mention...Fantastic concept vehicle put out by Jeep...EVER!!!
A number of other Jeep Concepts have been introduced over the years with names such as:
Jeep Cowboy Pickup
Jeep Wagoneer 2000
and, Jeep JT Pickup
I should clarify here that all new or significantly different vehicles start out as "concepts" or "prototypes"... but as you can see some never make it to production...at least not in there original form.