There may yet be unexplored country in the off-road utility vehicle world, but the classics are still among the very best. That’s why the Jeep Chief Concept for the 49th annual Easter Jeep Safari in Moab, Utah, is such a stunner.
Designed to bring out the traits of the original Cherokee, the Jeep Chief also throws a casual wave at surfer style. The Ocean Blue paint lends a vintage look, especially with the white accent roof. The grille is a take on the original Wagoneer’s “razor grille”; chrome bumpers and 17-inch slotted mag wheels finish the classic look.
Inside, it’s a Hawaiian theme, with pink, blue, and white flowered cloth on the leather-trimmed seats; stickers on the console and door handles; and a Rosewood front-passenger grab handle with Tiki-style shifter.
Of course, the Chief is a real truck, even if it is a one-off custom, with a 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 under the hood, Jeep Performance Parts including a two-inch lift kit, Fox shocks, Dana 44 axles with lockers, modified Rubicon rock rails, and a cold air intake. Best of all: it gets a six-speed manual transmission.
Beyond the beautiful, brilliant, beastly Chief, the Easter Safari concepts focus on the outdoor, military, and off-road aspects of the Jeep brand.
The Easter Jeep Safari is a nine-day event, first run in 1967 as a one-day trail ride. Since then, it has grown to draw thousands of enthusiasts from across the country. It runs March 28-April 5.