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J8 Military Jeep Wrangler - Modern Military

Posted in Project Vehicles on January 1, 2009
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Photographers: John CappaCourtesy of JeepWayne Mitchelson

With the all-new '07 JK Jeep Wrangler Unlimited as the starting point, Jeep engineers increased the capability and versatility to create the Jeep J8. The frame of the Wrangler Unlimited is reinforced for increased ruggedness and to allow greater payloads - up to a maximum of 2,756 lbs.

The Jeep J8 is available as a two-door with an extended pickup bed for personnel or equipment transport, or a four-door multipurpose vehicle. It may be produced with numerous vehicle-body and seating configurations in either right- or left-hand drive. The two-door version, for example, can be configured as a personnel carrier with seating for up to eight.

While not designed for front-line combat operations, the Jeep J8 is armor-capable and excels in a variety of duties ranging from command vehicle to troop/cargo carrier, ambulance, communications vehicle and other duties - also making it suitable for civilian government applications. Tow eyes and heavy-duty bumpers allow the Jeep J8 to be easily transported by airplane or helicopter.

The Jeep J8 will be produced in the Chrysler LLC joint-venture facility in Cairo, Egypt, and has been available for customers outside of North America since September '08. The J8 long-wheelbase Wrangler will be assembled at the Arab American Vehicles (AAV) facility in Cairo, Egypt, with production having already started. The Minister of Defense in Egypt signed and approved the project for an initial order of 1,000 vehicles and engines, in addition to spare parts, with an option to double this order. AAV is a joint venture company between Chrysler and the Egyptian Government in which Chrysler has a 49-percent share.

Add-ons could include armor plating for land mine protection with a metal hard top, hard and soft top options, and hard doors or soft door options too. An SAS/Commando type version was shown to us as a concept photo. However on talking to the development team, they have been involved with the Belgium Military on taking this a step into this prototype vehicle and evidence was to be seen on this pre-production model. These include: mounting brackets on the rear top part of the heavy-duty and reinforced roll cage for the mounting of a .50 caliber machine gun; extra welded mounting brackets on the windshield frame for a .30 caliber machine gun or mini-gun on both driver and passenger sides of the J8 (either for left- or right-hand drive use); mounting plates in the footwells for extra armor plating to be fitted; and extra mounting reinforcement for a much stronger full external and more complex roll cage/bumper protection, which could also be used for fitting extra machine gun mounts and storage cans for fuel, water and so on. In the rear cargo area (of the four-door model) are two battery boxes for the use of a 24-volt system which can be used for things such as military radio equipment. The boxes that cover these are strong enough to sit or stand on.

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J8 At A Glance
Engine: 2.8L CRD I-4 turbodiesel
Bore and stroke: 3.70x3.94 in
Compression: 17.5:1
Horsepower: 158 at 3,800rpm
Torque: 295lb-ft at 2,000rpm
Transmission: 545RFE Five-speed automatic
Transfer Case: NVG241 Command-Trac part-time
Front Suspension: Four-link coil
Rear Suspension: Spring-under leaf
Front brakes: Disc
Rear brakes: Disc
Axle Ratio: 4.10:1Front axle: Dana 44
Front differential: Trac-Lok limited slip
Rear axle: Dana 60
Rear differential: Trac-Lok limited slip
Wheels: 17x7.5 steel rated at 2,504 lbs each
Tires: LT245/70R17
Curb weight: 4,451 lbs
Payload: 2,756 lbs
Towing capacity: 7,716 lbsLength: 175.2 inches
Width: 73.9 inches
Height: 69.4 inches
Track: 63.4 inches
Ground clearance: 9.1 inches
Approach angle: 44.4 degrees
Departure angle: 40.5 degrees
Fording depth: 30 inches
Fuel capacity: 22.5 gallons
Cargo bed length: 70.3 inches
Base MSRP: $34,250 (two-door), $35,620 (four-door)

Other info: Run-flat tires available, unique shocks and springs, unique air inlet, can run 5 hours in zero-visibility sandstorm, 100,000-mile filter replacement interval

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