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Diesel Powered Jeep Wrangler Trying To Enlist In The Army

Posted in News on February 1, 2016
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Photographers: StaffManufacturer

Like its grandfather, the stout Willys, the Jeep Wrangler is looking to join the service, thanks to the guys at Hendrick Dynamics, a defense contractor based in North Carolina.

The Jeep used for the Ground Mobility Vehicle (GMV) program started life as an oil-burning Wrangler Rubicon built in Toledo, Ohio, but is not yet sold in the U.S. The 2.8L diesel engine provides a reasonable 197 hp and an earth-eating 339 lb-ft of torque.

The Wrangler wasn’t left stock. The guys at Hendrick upgraded the electrical from 12 to 24 V, installed stronger suspension, and added burly axles and bigger brakes to keep this Wrangler rolling in the toughest terrain.

Since the U.S. Army is looking for an inexpensive, featherweight, unarmored personnel carrying vehicle capable of traversing uneven terrain with troops and their gear, Hendrick removed the stock top, doors, and body and added a rollcage to improve the Wrangler’s safety and functionality.

These Wranglers were designed to carry eight soldiers: two lucky ones get the front seats while the other six ride on benches in the back. Hendrick Dynamics also made modifications to the body to allow the GMV to be easily transported on a cargo plane.

Since Hendrick used a Wrangler as the starting point for this prototype, cost is relatively low for a military vehicle, coming in at around $75,000 to build. Thanks to the popularity of the Wrangler worldwide, the parts that both of these vehicles use are readily available.

This prototype GMV Wrangler is still a prototype and will undergo testing by the Army shortly to see if it fits the bill. If this Wrangler-based personnel carrier makes the cut, we will keep you updated.

Source: Digital Trends, Hendrick Dynamics

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