Video - Jeep Trailhawk II Concept Vehicle

Apr. 18, 2013 By Josh Burns, Video by Adam Wood

With all the cool and unique vehicles the Jeep and Mopar teams took to Moab, Utah, for the 47th Easter Jeep Safari, one of the most eye-catching was the Trailhawk II. Based on the Trailhawk off-road package Jeep offered customers in 2013, the Trailhawk II takes this concept of off-road savvy to the to the next level with a 2014 Grand Cherokee.

It may be deceiving at first, but the Jeep team did fit 35-inch Mickey Thompson MTZ tires on the Trailhawk II, which is impressive considering the vehicle relies on the stock suspension. Head of Jeep Design Mark Allen put the team to work by cutting out the wheel wells to fit the larger rubber while modifying the fender flares to raise the lines but make it look stock. The Mickey Thompson tires are fit on 17-inch wheels from the 10th Anniversary Jeep Wrangler Rubicon that give the profile of the Trailhawk II a nice touch.

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The blood orange paint job on the Trailhawk II really gives the vehicle a unique pop. Although it does have a flashy appearance, Jeep decided to not go overboard with its powerplant, instead focusing on using engine technology currently available on its products. The Trailhawk II is powered by the company’s new 3.0-liter diesel engine that produces 240 horsepower and a class leading 420-lb-ft of torque. The new diesel engine is mated to the new eight-speed transmission found on the ’14 Grands, which helps it boast a potential 730-mile fuel range.

Check out more on the 2014 Grand Cherokee

While keeping the theme of using current engine technology, the Jeep team only made minor upgrades to the Trailhawk II, such as outfitting it with a Banks exhaust system custom made for the vehicle. The Trailhawk II will retain use of the Selec-Terrain system to adjust its off-road capability to the conditions.

For trail protection, the 2014 Grand is outfitted with custom front and rear skid plates. The team also installed steel rock rails on the Trailhawk II for side protection. The signature red tow hooks of the Trailhawk are modified for the Trailhawk II, and the team borrowed the front fascia from the SRT Grand Cherokee and modified it to fit. The lightweight hood from the 2014 SRT Grand is also used on the Trailhawk II.

Inside Jeep didn’t spare on the comfort and appearance, as the concept vehicle features black leather throughout the cab including the seats, upper trim on the dash and the steering wheel. Black suede accents the seats, while anodized silver paint and dark brushed silver provides more customization inside. Mopar slush mats and a trunk mat help keep dirt off the interior.

Of all the Jeep and Mopar concept vehicles introduced at the 2013 Easter Jeep Safari, the Trailhawk II may be one of the closest to a realistic potential vehicle. Without the use of a lift to retain a low center of gravity (COG), the Jeep team fit 35-inch tires under the 2014 Grand Cherokee is a way that makes it look as though they are stock. This low-COG design almost gives it a sleeper appearance until you take a closer look.

The Trailhawk II is no slouch on the trails, as it only improves the trail clearance and overall off-road performance of the 2014 Grand Cherokee. What’s more, the skid plates really provide peace of mind that you’re not going to damage any crucial parts under the SUV on obstacles. We did manage to rub the tires on a few obstacles during our time in the vehicle, but overall its off-road performance on the obstacle course Jeep put out for us was great. It’s a fun vehicle to drive, the added rubber helps tackle large obstacles, and the low-end torque of the new diesel engine is really great for slow-speed crawling.

It was in 2012 that Jeep brought out itsTrailhawk Grand Cherokee concept to Moab, and in 2013 the vehicle was sold to the public (heck, we drove next to one on the highway for a few hours in Utah). If we’re lucky, maybe the Trailhawk II will see the light of day as Jeep offering in the near future. With a few slight refinements, we’d be first in line to get one!

More Easter Jeep Safari
Video – Jeep Stitch Wrangler Concept

2013 Jeep, Mopar Concept Vehicles Newsletter
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