The Jeep J8 is a military vehicle based on the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited platform built by Chrysler LLC. The model was introduced at the Defence Systems & Equipment International (DSEi) trade show on September 13, 2007. Targeted for use by the militaries in overseas markets, the J8 is not available in the United States because it is not designed to meet U.S. emission standards. The J8 is assembled in Egypt and in Israel.
The J8 is equipped with larger brakes, axles and suspension components than the civilian version and has a payload capacity of 1,339 kilograms (2,952 lb). The J8 also differs from the civilian model by utilizing rear leaf springs. The Jeep J8 is powered by a VM Motori 2.8-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine that produces 145 kW (194 hp) and 460 N·m (339 lb·ft) of torque, providing towing capability of up to 3,500 kilograms (7,716 lb). The engine is mated to a five-speed automatic transmission. The J8 also features a unique air-intake system with special filtration and a hood-mounted snorkel that enables the J8 to wade in water up to 762 mm (30 in) deep and tackle sandstorm conditions for up to five hours.
Available as a two-door with an extended pickup bed for personnel or equipment transport, or a four-door multipurpose vehicle, it may be produced with numerous vehicle-body and seating configurations in either right-hand- or left-hand-drive.
While not designed for front-line combat operations, the Jeep J8 is fully armour capable (BRV 2009 VR7) and can be used for a variety of duties ranging from command vehicle, troop/cargo carrier, ambulance or communications vehicle. Heavy-duty bumpers with tow eyes allow the Jeep J8 to be easily transported by fixed wing aircraft or helicopter.
The J8 was first planned for assembly at a Chrysler joint-venture facility in Cairo, Egypt. On July 2, 2008, the production version of the Jeep J8 was unveiled at Euro Camp Jeep 2008, a customer event in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany.
On November 13, 2008, Chrysler LLC and the Arab American Vehicles Company (AAV) officially announced the manufacturing launch of the Jeep J8 at AAV's assembly plan in Cairo.
Jeep J8 is also assembled in Israel, by Automotive Industries Ltd. (AIL) of Nazareth. It is locally badged Storm 3, and will be supplied as a command vehicle to the Israeli Defence Force (IDF). A pair of production J8s was tested by Israeli web magazine Jeepolog.com journalists in April 2009. It was dubbed "probably best Jeep ever". A civilian version was apparently considered for the local Israeli market, but the idea was abandoned.
American Expedition Vehicles, a Montana based Jeep aftermarket parts producer, has struck a deal with Chrysler to sell 120 J8 "component chassis" in the US. These chassis are sold fully assembled but without an engine or transmission. This allows the customer to install or have installed either a 2.8L VM Turbodiesel with 339 lb.-ft. of torque (460 N • m) or a 5.7-liter V-8 Chrysler HEMI. The vehicle can then be legally registered as a "component vehicle".
- "New Military Version of Jeep Wrangler Unlimited". jeephorizons.com. Retrieved on September 16, 2007.
- "Back in the Army". CNN.com. Retrieved on September 23, 2007.
- "Iconic Jeep J8 Offers Cargo and Towing For Humanitarian, Commercial and Military Uses". jeephorizons.com. Retrieved on September 7, 2008.
- "Jeep J8 Production Begins at Arab American Vehicles Company". jeephorizons.com. Retrieved on November 13, 2008.
- "AIL Storm 3, AKA Jeep J8 - world exclusive road test". jeepolog.com. Retrieved on April 21, 2009.
- "New Military Version of Jeep Wrangler Unlimited". jeephorizons.com. Retrieved September 16, 2007.
- "Back in the Army". CNN.com. Retrieved September 23, 2007.
- "Iconic Jeep J8 Offers Cargo and Towing For Humanitarian, Commercial and Military Uses". jeephorizons.com. Retrieved September 7, 2008.
- "Jeep J8 Production Begins at Arab American Vehicles Company". jeephorizons.com. Retrieved November 13, 2008.
- "AIL Storm 3, AKA Jeep J8 - world exclusive road test". jeepolog.com. Retrieved April 21, 2009.
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