Sub-Gladiator Jeep Compact Truck Born as Electric CGI Revives the Jeepster Commando

Given the traditional values that define the Jeep brand, certain enthusiasts might fear the already-in-progress model range transformation brought about by parent company Stellantis’ electrification-focused Dare Forward 2030 business strategy highlited last month. However, all-electric proposals could allow Jeep the re-enter segments it left decades ago, such as the compact pickup truck market, which is currently on the rise.

During the said March 2022 presentation, Jeep teased its first EV, a compact SUV that’s scheduled to enter production next year. The automaker released a rendering portraying a Compass-sized crossover featuring a rather conservative design that might reach a larger audience than an all-out futuristic wrapping for the EV architecture.

Jeep had already announced the current 4xe hybrid iteration of the Wrangler would be joined by an all-electric version in 2024, which means the Gladiator mid-size truck could follow suit. Meanwhile, though, Brazil-based virtual artist Kleber Silva, also known as KDesign AG, took the official Jeep EV rendering and turned it into a compact pickup truck.

Envisioned as a sub-Gladiator offering, the digital proposal places the styling language featured on the previewed crossover on the body of the Fiat Strada, an Italian offering that’s already been rebranded as the Ram 700 for the South American and Mexican markets.

And while the design of the body might not be entirely in line with the Jeep visual identity, the unofficial concept makes a strong case for such an offering.

After all, the compact pickup truck segment is gaining serious traction in America, with the growth sustained by the introduction of all-new models like the Ford Maverick and the Honda Ridgeline. And while these aren’t EVs, the battery-only architecture would only mean designers have more freedom to play with the shapes.

The 1960s Jeepster Commando could be the inspiration for the electric compact truck

Speaking of which, Jeep could tap into its history for releasing a compact electric pickup. That’s because back in the 1960s, the automaker came up with the Jeepster Commando.

Aimed at the leisure rather than the heavy off-roading side of the market—just like the officially previewed EV crossover—this Kaiser ownership era model was born in 1966 to take on the Ford Bronco and the International Harvester Scout, as well as on the Toyota Land Cruiser. And while multiple body styles were available, a pickup truck was on the list—you’ll find a 1967 example in the YouTube video at the bottom of the story.

PS: The digital artist looked past the Jeep brand, using the officially rendered concept to portray two other Stellatis EV crossovers, namely a Fiat version called Scudo and based on the Panda, and a Peugeot 1008 linked to the real-life 2008.



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