Is Jeep Looking to Re-enter the Pickup Truck Market?

Is Jeep Looking to Re-enter the Pickup Truck Market?
By Mark Williams for PickupTrucks.com

Jeep hasn't offered a pickup for sale to consumers in North America since the 1992 Jeep Comanche, but the idea continues to be kicked around its halls. Mike Manley, president and CEO of the Jeep brand, expressed great interest in the compact and midsize pickup truck market in a recent interview during the media's first drive of the 2011 Grand Cherokee.

“That’s a segment that I’m very curious about,” Manley said. “I know it’s had a rough time here in the U.S., but globally it still seems to be an important sector.”

As CEO, Manley has profit and loss responsibility for Jeep’s global portfolio, so he’s driven to make sure everything Jeep does can make money. As a result, he said he ‘s looking for every opportunity to expand the brand, as well as make sure it stays true to Jeep's heritage. But could that mean a pickup?

“I know there’s a lot of elasticity in the Jeep brand globally, so we’re not limiting our search for new-vehicle opportunities or new markets,” Manley said.

Interestingly, when discussing the future of Jeep, Manley was quick to go back to some recent pickup truck concept vehicles, but without calling any of them by name. They’ve kept coming in a steady cadence during the past decade.

An apparently production-ready Jeep Scrambler made a brief appearance at the 2003 NADA convention in San Francisco before it was suddenly pulled after only a few hours. Nothing was heard from about that truck again. In 2005, Jeep showed the well-received Gladiator Concept. In 2007, there was the Jeep JT and in 2008, the J8 Sarge. Most recently, we drove the awesome Jeep Nukizer 715 in Moab, Utah, earlier this year at Easter Jeep Safari.

Manley’s background is deep with international sales and marketing experience, so he’s very familiar with Europe, Asia, and China, where small trucks are big business. He was originally brought on during the DaimlerChrysler days to work with international sales and distribution.

Before this current job as Jeep’s CEO, Manley was in charge of sales and global product planning operations.

Although no information or confirmation was given about future products, we were encouraged to hear that there might be some playful thought being given to expanding the Jeep brand in a pickup truck direction.

It wouldn’t surprise us if a futuristic-looking Kaiser pickup truck appeared at one of the big auto shows by next year, based on the overwhelmingly positive response the Nukizer 715 received in Moab. We can only hope.

Comments

That Jeep Gladiator concept from 2005 was just about perfect. I remember seeing it at the NYIAS and loving it, especially with the small diesel it had. I would have loved to own one of them, which says a lot, as I typically favor SUVs over pickups.

I would like to see this thing on the market, so i'd be able to own one!

If I believe Jeep pickup will great than Mahindra pickup. I know Ford Ranger will die by 2011. I think popular will buy more Jeep pickup more than Nissan Frontier.

"...the idea continues to be kicked around..."

JUST DO IT!!!!!!!

"...the idea continues to be kicked around..."

JUST DO IT!!!!!

@matt

WTH? Who is "popular"?...just curious cause I have never met a person by that name.

Build It!!! It will sell better than a Tacoma.

Oh be still my beating heart...Jeep DIESEL pickup in a less-than-fatso size?

Bring it on, Jeep! Do it for less than 35K and you'll have a hell of a work truck or offroad vehicle, which is what trucks are supposed to be, not posh fatboy wagons for commuters.

that jeep pictured at the top is something i would buy without hesitation it looks awesome... and with a diesel it would be all that much better

Jeep will be the ones with the brass set and bring a pickup to market with the off-road prowess of a Jeep and the minimum, all truck and nothing else package that a large market is begging for, and the looks that people love. And Ford wants everyone to drive a stripped F150 as a base truck, and the Rangers are gone - only in the states, and GM's twin smalls are history, maybe, and who cares about the Dakota, and the Toyota and the Nissan mids have just about run their course. And the Mahindra is well, the Mahindra.
Jeep what is taking you so long?

More bullsh1t from Jeep either build a pickup or shut the fu#$ about it we are tired of hearing about it .

To whom at Jeep may I send my deposit??? I want one of these Gladiators RIGHT NOW!!!

Please offer it with a small turbodiesel.

And remember that independent suspension is a deal-killer! Please equip it with the Rubicon's solid axles and diff locks front AND rear and you'll sell more of these than you have the capacity to build!

Has to many blinds spot n the side mirror are to small, but its a good lookin Jeep....

Like many posters are saying, just build it!! Keep it simple stupid, the gladiator concept rocks. Make one body style, extended cab; have one engine choice, 4 cyl. TDI, and a part-time 4WD system, like Selectrac with the AWD option. Have a few options, but that's it. It needs to be able to tow at least 5,000 lbs., six grand would be better.
Keep the price south, way south of $30K

I'll believe it when I see one on my local dealer's lot. Same goes for any brand's ruminations.

Why keep teasing us if they are not going to build one? Either build it with the Diesel or stop showing one.

I will be one of the first in line if you build it with the Diesel. Almost any version of the pickup's will work.

They are loosing all crediability by us showing one then then saying "Just kiding North America", It's not for you.

Strangely it would not be a goer here as a Pickup, too much competition in that market. Definitely in the US, I think it would be a no brainer.
Jeep has great off road abilities that is its strong point. Build quality and on road not so great.
In Australia we get two diesels that are a lot better than the gas engine.

GM (Hummer) screwed up with the H3T single cab, so please Jeep - build it the Wrangler truck, I'm still waiting!

They gotta do it. I'd love to see the Gladiator happen, on the
Commander platform(keep the Commander, btw) as
well as a smaller truck, like the Comanche, on the Liberty
platform, and the Renegade, as a pickup, on the Wrangler
platform. 3.6 or 3.3 V6 and auto tranny, and reg, extended
and crewcab. Just do it though, already!!

I really hope this goes into production. It has the potential to be pretty popular if it comes out before everyone else thinking of hopping back in the compact/midsize market does so. No matter how much i love my truck I would hope that it bit the dust just so I could get one. Jeep + Truck = 42

Build it already. You have the parts. I want a turbo diesel, part time 4wd. I want crank windows, vinyl seats, and a basic AM/FM radio. Price it like a small work truck should be priced. You can have it loaded up for others, I'm using it to work.

keep it simple and under 25K i will buy one

Everyone here – great ideas. Jeep, we are your focus group at no charge. Keep it simple. Give it capability. Offer it de-contented – not de-abilitied. Offer it with the right engine(s) but not at the cost of buying what we don’t need. Make it a real Jeep, but also a real truck. Offer an extended cab with a 6' bed. And offer it at a base price that makes sense. Then I will replace my small fleet of Rangers with the Jeeps. Done deal.

Keep it simple. Manual transmission standard and give us a economically sized diesel engine.

Great idea, but as others have said, I'll believe it when I see one at a Jeep dealer. Jeep always teases us with great concepts, but they seem to never make it into production. Jeep decides against the Gladiator, but builds the Patriot? What was up with that?

I'm a big fan of the AEV Brute version of the Jeep pickup. They actually sell kits now so you can build your own (if you're so inclined). I love my Jeep TJ, but I also love my Tacoma pickup...Jeep would have to create a real kickass truck for me to abandon both of those vehicles. They're each great at their specific tasks: offroading and hauling.

I would love this I own a v8 dakota right now and love it and was looking into a Ram for my next truck but I dont need a full size I just need a pickup but I hate all the current midsize trucks but I would love a jeep one blends my two favorite things about truck 4x4 for off roading and a bed

There are fiberglass kits to make a pickup out of a Wrangler,with those,who would need Jeep to make one?
Jeep's Commanche was killed off due to Chrysler "Having a small truck already...Ram50/Dakota",who thinks that Chrysler would pull the plug again when a new Dodge Rampage comes along down the road??

Considering that the J8 series is already in military use in the middle east and other countries, it's not like Jeep really needs to retool to build it--all they need is the demand for the product. Considering that the 4-door Wranglers have been selling so well since its introduction, I believe that demand is here; Jeep just needs to know about it.

I think a Jeep pickup would be a great idea. The J8 body would be perfect. If not, they should at least base it on the Wrangler with a choice of both 4 cylinder and V-6 engines. Make it standard with four wheel drive and offer two wheel drive as a reduced cost option. As others have said, it should be a great seller, especially with other companies moving away from the compact pickup market.

BUILD IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and i like heyhombres reference to the meaning of life.

Let me be another to echo the above comments.

STOP BEATING AROUND THE DAMNED BUSH AND BUILD THE DAMNED THING!!
I have been drooling like an idiot waiting for these things to show up on the show room floor.

Why hasn't this happend by now???????

Paul. Have you priced a "brute" kit. After it is built you typically have over 40k invested in it. I think the majority here a looking for a truck a little cheaper then that.

Yes! Build something like the dead Hummer H3T, which was a cute but overpriced pickup, and had the reputation of gas-guzzling, faux-bling, over-estimated HUMMER! Keep her simple Jeep!

stop toying with the public and make a jeep truck!!! I drive my 89 comanche with 85K mile on it with pried and submit it to cars shows every one ask me if jeep will ever make a new jeep truck? my replay: it going to happen one way or another eather under a custom shop is going to hammer it out under jeep nose or someone in jeep gains intelagent and git the job done. my engen choice oppions I6 long bore or the terbo diesil. my coustem fav engin remaster iron duke I4

The 2005 Gladiator Concept is stunning – definitely wish it would make its way to dealerships. Unfortunately, even if Jeep decides to take the pickup idea seriously, we’re still years away from a vehicle launch. Same thing goes for the rumors that GM is planning to introduce a small truck. I’m much more interested in Mahindra’s midsize pickups. To begin with, they actually exist and the company has announced December 2010 as their launch date. Plus they’re diesel-powered and deliver excellent fuel mileage.

Come on Chrysler!? I already said I'll buy one. Just build the Gladiator... please?

Jeep Pickup could be a good replacement for the discontinued Hummer-3 pickup, all it needs is four real doors and a V8.

I've said this may times before, and I'll say it again. The reason Jeep doesn't have any pickus right now is Dodge. When Chrysler bought AMC in 1987, Dodge management made it clear that it should be the only unit to sell pickups. That's why the J-10 and Commanche disapoeared. Then in 2003 Jeep showed a Scrambler concept to be sold in 2004, but Dodge complained and the Scramble became the stretched-wheelbase Wrangler Unlimited instead. Then Gladiator appeared in 2005, ready for production, and guess who vetoed the process?

Call me crazy, or make jokes if you wish, but the truth is, whatever Dodge wants, Dodge gets. It doesn't matter if the truck division is named Ram, Dodge is still in control of the situation. No doubt Dodge management is protesting this possible move, but this is where Fiat needs to be strong, whereas Cerberus and Daimler didn't have the guts to do so, and tell the dodge boys to shut up and stand aside and let Jeep do its thing.

imoore:
Yes, I believe there are management people stupid enough to make that decision and leave untold millions of dollars on the table because of inside politics and dumb logic. One of the reasons that the parent company was next to death. I hope Fiat has some people all over this with brains to see this is a huge truck success story that has not happened, yet. Examples are every where in print and web of one-offs that would make the design work almost easy, like the Nukizer 715. Make the d*mn truck and watch the customers rush to the dealers.

btw:
I think the first company to bring a TRIM pickup that is easy to package, easy to de-content, with a few smart engine choices, smart cab choices, a couple of bed choices, can go off road and has the attitude and personality of this Jeep with invent the 1964 ½ Mustang of the truck world.

@Vulpine. The J8 is being built for Egypt and Israel. It was not designed for frontline combat operations ,more as a command , troop/cargo carrier, ambulance or communications vehicle.
It is powered by the 2.8 Litre diesel, that does not meet current US regulations.
A civilian version was apparently considered for the local Israeli market, but the idea was abandoned.

Gee, product testing? The above "Gladiator" is a Wrangler pickup. aka Scrambler extended cab.

The Nukizer is a wrangler pickup that at least looks like a Gladiator. It would clearly eat the truck above for breakfast.

But Alas we can have both. or better yet a real Jeep pickup. What a concept! A Senior Series Jeep pickup will replace the Dakota nicely.

C'mon Mike, I said it before, if we don't see a production Nukizer in Detroit next Jan. you're Fired! ;-)

PS 7 ft bed please, and a glove box in the middle where it belongs. On a Jeep TRUCK that is.

"Please!",

Mr. Mike Manley:

Build a (way over do) Jeep Pickup Truck, because it will Definitely Sell.

"Thanks, Mr. Mike Manley"

If you build it... we will buy... :)

I'm still waiting for a desiel wrangler, then they can make the truck

I wish Jeep would quit teasing us about the pickup as well. Either build it or shut up about it. Would love the gladiator and as most folks would want the diesel. The Nukizer is nice as well. My last Jeep truck was a 92 Commanche. I gave it to my girlfriend. We split ... I don't miss her ... but I sure as hell miss the truck.

They will tease the public enough that when they actually do produce a pickup truck nobody will buy it as a protest . . .

Mike

Bring back the J20 (modern but with the original look).

I had a J-10 pickup in the late 70s and 80s and am driving a Commander today. If there was one, I would buy a Jeep pickup tomorrow.



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