Renderings of a Jeep minivan hit the headlines a while back, but Jeep is not backing the ideaby Sidd Dhimaan, on LISTEN 03:52
Okay, so I’m quite conflicted about this idea. An off-roading minivan sounds pretty cool, but I don’t want to see it happen. It’s like machines and AI taking over the world; I want to know how it would be in reality, but I don’t want it to happen. Anyway, I digress.
Some renderings of a pretty cool off-road Jeep minivan surfaced on the internet sometime back and it became the talking point for a lot of folks. It looked so ridiculous that one could see the automaker get behind this idea. Jeep, however, dismissed the idea of coming up with a minivan anytime in the future, no matter how off-road-centric it could be. Ugh, that’s disappointing. Or wait, am I happy about it? I don’t know!
The Minivan Renderings Look Pretty Fancy
If I ask you to give me a logical reason as to why it wouldn’t work, you’ll be left scratching for more. Yes, minivans are purely utilitarian and the principle itself sounds preposterous. But, mind you, even wagons and pickup trucks were once bareboned and were meant to be pure work and practical vehicles. They too transformed into different niches successfully, didn’t they?
The renderings were uploaded on Instagram by ‘samirscustoms’. The stretched minivan can be seen with flared wheel arches, off-road tires, off-road suspension system, roof carriages, spare tire mounted on the tailgate, and a whole lot of other off-road specs and features. The fact that this was a Jeep minivan made it even more interesting.
What Did Jeep Have To Say About This?
This caught the attention of the folks at Jeep and the Gladiator’s senior brand manager, Brandon Girmus, spoke to MuscleCarsandTrucks about it. He said,
“I can’t talk about future product, but at the end of the day we’re not going to make a minivan. Whatever we did in terms of future product, it’s still going to be a Jeep. It’s still going to be off-road capable. It’s still going to be Trail Rated. It’s still going to check all those boxes. We’re always looking for new ideas, and new places, and new directions we could take the Jeep brand. We’ll have to see what we come up with next.”
Has There Ever Been A Jeep Van Before?
Brandon may have shrugged off this idea by saying Jeep will not create a minivan, but the company did have a product back in the day which can be considered a van. The Forward Control was a product sold by the automaker in the 50s and the 60s that was marketed as a work vehicle. It was used for civilian, military, municipal, and corporate works. While the Forward Control came with a cargo bed, different types of ‘Jeep approved’ bodies were available in the open market. This meant conversion to dump trucks, fire trucks, or tow truck were not uncommon.
One such iteration was that of a van. You can find a lot of pictures online, too, where people have converted the Forward Control into a van. In fact, a model called M678 was manufactured by the automaker which was essentially a military van.
Why This Could Be A Potential Niche?
Sales of overlanding and camping-related accessories have shot through the roof in the last couple of years. Be it the Tesla Cybertruck or the Ford Bronco; all of them will come with yawnings, tents, LED lights, and all the other such things that can make your vehicle an overnight camper of sorts. Rivian even came up with a kitchen set up as an official accessory for the R1T electric pickup truck.
Seeing how spacious and convenient a minivan would be for such things, you can’t say that an off-roading minivan is a bad option. We can’t exactly comprehend or digest the fact of a can in the middle of nowhere with all the camping accessories, but it could be a great option, nevertheless.
If this was an option, would you consider getting an off-roading minivan like the one seen here? Let us know in the comments section below.
Source: Muscle Cars and Trucks