A member of the JL Wrangler Forum, Mattiek27, seems to have captured shots of a 2018 Jeep Wrangler testing in a fenced-off parking lot outside a Fiat Chrysler facility in Michigan.
Mattiek27 and the moderators of JL Wrangler Forum seems to be pretty positive that this is a next-gen Wrangler pickup based on its missing rear-side windows on the soft top and the lacking of rear doors. However, RoadAndTrack has a different opinion altogether.
Road&Track reported that a regular pickup truck is constructed in two halves consisting of the engine compartment and cab in front and a distinct cargo bed in the back, and previous spy shots have confirmed that Jeep will not be moving away from this way of construction.
Similar to all other pickup trucks currently available in the US market, except for the Honda Pilot, the upcoming Wrangler will be utilizing a body-on-frame construction. A separate cargo box would allow the chassis to be flexible while minimizing body damage.
Based on Mattiek27’s photos, it seems that the vehicle only has a one-piece body with no cut line and a canvas roof that reaches the tailgate, which is pretty unusual for a pickup truck. Besides that, the rear axle seems to have leaf springs which haven’t been made into production after the 1995 YJ was discontinued.
According to Road&Track, this is not the next-gen Wrangler pickup, instead it could be a Jeep J8, “a Wrangler-based military vehicle built in Egypt and Israel by contact partners of Fiat Chrysler.”
Well, it sure looks like Mattiek27 could be wrong but what do you think? Could this be the next-gen Jeep Wrangler?