Fiat Chrysler is telling us a “hybrid” plug-in Jeep may certainly happen in 2020. But, us ModernJeepers can’t help but wonder about getting “connected” and plugged in for a charge right before running the Rubicon, or taking on some slick rock in Moab. We are open to the idea that the hybrid is designed for all sorts of off-road abuse.
This will be the first ever electrified production version of the Wrangler. Let’s hope the future continues to bring us great off-roading as well.
According to FCA, the PHEV (Plug In Hybrid Electric) Wrangler’s components will come from just a few miles away from the main Wrangler assembly line in Toledo, Ohio.
Jeep is offering new details about the upcoming Wrangler plug-in hybrid by announcing a plan to in-source production of its power electronics module. The automaker’s Toledo Machining plant in Perrysburg, Ohio, will handle the manufacturing and will then ship them a few miles up the road to the Wrangler assembly line. The PHEV variant will join the lineup in 2020.
The power electronics module is located in a protected area underneath the Wrangler between the exhaust and the driveshaft. It consists of the power inverter module and the integrated dual charger module – a part that includes the on-board charger and the dc/dc converter. The Toledo Machining plant will be responsible for assembling the various sub-systems, upload the necessary software, and conduct final testing of the coolant and electrical systems.
“The in-sourcing of this highly advanced work to Toledo Machining is a reflection of the commitment the workforce has made to improving their processes through the implementation of World Class Manufacturing,” Brian Harlow, Head of Manufacturing at FCA North America, said in the production announcement. “As the most iconic of the Jeep nameplates, it is critical that we flawlessly execute the launch of the Wrangler PHEV. The Toledo Machining employees have made a strong business case as to why we should put our faith in them to deliver a great product.”
Jeep isn’t yet providing any technical details about the plug-in hybrid powertrain. Earlier rumors raised the possibility of it using the setup from the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid that pairs the 3.6-liter V6 already available in the new Wrangler with a 16-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery. However, the automaker hasn’t yet said whether this setup was adaptable to the Jeep Wrangler.
There’s also no word yet whether the PHEV powerplant would only be available on the Wrangler or if it might be an option for the Scrambler pickup that shares the same underpinnings.