If Chrysler product planners were looking for a sign that a Jeep Wrangler-based pickup truck could prove popular with buyers, this may be it. The automaker’s Mopar accessories brand launched a JK8 Independence conversion kit earlier this year, and new reports indicate demand for the DIY
While Chrysler employees are busy churning out Wranglers this holiday season, Jeep Wrangler enthusiasts are apparently still clamoring for Mopar’s JK-8 Independence kit, which allows owners to convert a four-door Wrangler Unlimited into a two-door, short-bed pickup truck. Ward’s Auto reports that demand for the do-it-yourself kit has greatly exceeded Mopar’s projections. Mopar initially anticipated selling between 200 and 300 of the $5499 JK-8 Independence kit, but currently have dealer orders for 400.
So, is a factory-built Wrangler pickup truck on the horizon? Mopar President Pietro Gorlier told Ward’s Auto that public response will play a huge part in future of a Wrangler pickup but warned the company “needs to balance the excitement of those who are blogging with real [sales] numbers.” Ouch.
Even with that ambiguity, Gorlier told Ward’s Auto that Jeep head Mike Manley “has been pretty clear. When we go to the next generation of the Wrangler, [a pickup] will probably be considered.”
The next-gen Jeep Wrangler is set to debut around 2015.
Source: Ward’s Auto