Every Easter, thousands of Jeep enthusiasts converge on Moab, Utah, to thread their cars across, through and over challenging off-road desert trails.
Still organised – as it originally was in 1967 – as an enthusiast event, the Easter Jeep Safari (EJS) has nevertheless become such a significant gathering that Jeep showcases new design ideas and this year revealed seven EJS concepts, five based on the new ‘JL’ Wrangler, the range icon launched last year.
Jeep won’t commit to production of any of the concepts, but they provide a creative entrée into a busy year for the brand, which will winch up another level on 1 June when Jeep’s owner, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA), announces its next five-year business plan out to 2023.
Jeep and its CEO, Michael Manley, are on a roll right now. Manley, born in Edenbridge, Kent, joined DaimlerChrysler in 2000 as dealer development head and, 18 years on, he runs the two jewels in FCA’s crown – Jeep and RAM – making him one of the most senior Brits in the global car industry.