Your future Jeep may not just be all-electric, but could come with a companion drone and even drive itself off-road, the automaker is teasing today. Jeep’s roadmap for electrification under its 4xe branding is being revealed, as part of parent company Stellantis’ big EV Day 2021, and just as Dodge is looking to electric for a new breed of American muscle car, Jeep is aiming to take full advantage of its potential out in the mud.
Jeep is, of course, no stranger to electrification already. The Wrangler 4xe has been on sale in the US and Europe for some months now, and the automaker says it has been a rapid success: the order books for the rest of 2021 are full, in fact.
Meanwhile, the Grand Cherokee 4xe will go hybrid next, as Jeep’s premium SUV pairs gas and electric. Beyond that, though, we’re expecting to see even more hybrid Jeep options, along with models that do away with internal combustion altogether.
By 2025, Jeep said today, 70-percent of its vehicle sales are expected to be electrified. At the same time, there’ll also be a zero-emission 4xe model in every SUV segment it offers a car in. EV makes a whole lot of sense for off-roading, the automaker argues, where the instant and readily-controlled power helps with navigating tricky terrain, while the near-silent drivetrain makes it easier to enjoy remote locations.
Still, that alone hasn’t stopped Jeep from thinking about some more unusual possibilities, which it’s teasing in concept form today. By 2025-2030, for example, Jeep sees future EVs supporting features like peer to peer charging. You could use one Jeep 4xe as a mobile battery for another, directly linking the EVs together to exchange charge.
Jeep drone pairing, meanwhile, would see a semi-autonomous drone link to the 4xe SUV. That could be used to give a glimpse of terrain beyond the line of sight, or just to document interesting excursions.
Biometric recognition could use facial recognition to allow entry to a Jeep, and for the drivetrain to be powered on, just as it allows access to a smartphone. That could mean no longer worrying about where you’ll keep your keys – or what might happen if you misplace them on a hike. Meanwhile, the SUV could even meet you out on the trail, with autonomous off-road driving teased.
Jeep had a fanciful set of digital glasses that could remotely show where the SUV had got up to.
Just how practical all of this is will vary, though Jeep is certainly leaving no room for confusion that “4xe is the new 4×4.” We’ll see the Grand Cherokee 4xe two-row SUV revealed fully later this year.