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AEV Jeep Wrangler Brute Double Cab

Posted in Project Vehicles on July 1, 2012
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Do you want a Jeep, but need a pickup? Do you need a pickup, but want a Jeep? Well, take a good look at this Brute Double Cab because a rig like this could very well be exactly what you need. And yes, it’s a real pickup truck. It has an honest-to-goodness, fully functional pickup truck bed that is separate from the cab. And speaking of the cab, it seats five passengers, so you’ll be able to carry your entire crew or pretty much whatever else you wish. Oh, and then there’s the fact that you get the Wrangler’s legendary off-road DNA.

There would be no Brute Double Cab if there wasn’t American Expedition Vehicles (AEV). Fifteen years ago, AEV was founded by Dave Harriton, who lived and worked in a small one-bay shop while creating his first prototype stretched TJ. This TJ was the first in a series of wildly popular products that were the catalyst for the impressive growth of AEV. Today, AEV has a 7,000 square-foot facility in Montana and a 36,000 square foot facility in Michigan and the company has an impressive portfolio of innovative Jeep products.

The Brute Double Cab you see here is AEV’s latest creation and it was on display in the AEV booth at the 2011 SEMA Show in Las Vegas, Nevada. As you can imagine, it drew massive crowds throughout the show. This particular rig was fitted with several options including a 6.4L Hemi engine, but AEV says that other configurations are available.

Powering this Brute Double Cab, and we do mean powering, is a VVT 6.4L Hemi V-8 sourced from a ’12 Grand Cherokee SRT8. This engine makes 470hp and 465 lb-ft of torque. AEV manufactures all of the components to install the engine, including the radiator, wire harness, air conditioning lines, power steering lines, fuel lines, mounts, and battery tray. AEV also manufactures an injection-molded intake adapter to allow this engine to be properly packaged in the Wrangler. The stock 6.4L intake bends to the left; however the air filter is on the right side in a Wrangler. This custom adapter allows for full flow efficiency and gives the appearance of an OE installation. Bolted to the engine is a W5A580 five-speed automatic transmission and power is sent to the axles via a Rubicon-spec 241OR transfer case.

We had the opportunity to spend some time with the Brute Double Cab and AEV President Dave Harriton at our semi-secret photo location in the Nevada desert. One thing we quickly learned while talking with Harriton is that a considerable amount of research and development went into the Brute Double Cab to ensure that it was a capable, durable truck.

Passengers are protected by a custom rollbar that is CNC-formed using the same material as the OE rollbar. The rear seats can be folded to offer more storage options.

How did AEV build the Brute Double Cab and what makes it tick? Read on.

Want One?
AEV is hoping to have the Brute Double Cab available in mid-2012. The total cost hasn’t been solidified as of this writing, however AEV says the goal throughout the design process was to keep it less than the current TJ-based Brute conversion ($20,000 turnkey). The Brute Double Cab will be available as a base vehicle either purchased new through AEV; purchased at your local dealership with AEV’s drop ship code (so that it’s delivered to AEV’s Michigan facility); or you can bring AEV your current ’07-’12 four-door Wrangler. The first allocation of vehicles will go to existing AEV customers and dealers. Oh, and there’s already a waiting list.

The Details
Owner/Hometown: American Expedition Vehicles/Wixom, Michigan
Vehicle/Model: 2012 Jeep Brute Double Cab
Estimated value: N/A
Type: Chrysler 6.4L Hemi V-8
Aspiration: Fuel injection
Output, hp/torque (estimated): 470/465
Transmission: Chrysler W5A580 5-spd auto
Transfer case: Rubicon 241OR
Front: AEV 4.5-inch DualSport RS, Bilstein remote-reservoir shocks
Rear: AEV 4.5-inch DualSport RS, Bilstein remote-reservoir shocks
Front: Dynatrac ProRock 44/GKN electric locker
Rear: Dynatrac ProRock 60/Eaton electric locker
Ring and pinion: 4.56:1
Wheels: 17x9 AEV Savegre
Tires: 37x12.50R17 Interco Super Swamper IROK Radial FW

PhotosView Slideshow
This Brute Double Cab is based on a ’12 Wrangler Rubicon. The cab is modified using steel panels that are made in-house by AEV. These deep-drawn panels are made from galvanized steel and are E-coated for corrosion protection. The hardtop is made from a high-tech cored composite material that AEV says is stronger than the material used to make the OE hardtop. This particular vehicle has AEV’s Premium Front Bumper that is outfitted with a Warn 9.5cti winch and pair of IPF lights. The rocker guards are custom made. The rig rolls on 37x12.50 Interco Super Swamper IROK Radial tires mounted on 17x9 AEV Savegre aluminum wheels.

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