Is Jeep’s New Segment A Trail-Rated Van? Brand Manager Won’t Deny It

Minivans are dead. Unless you are into the whole Van Life thing-then, they’re red hot right now. So which is it? Van Life is just off-roading with a van, and off-roading is the whole Jeep raison d’etre. 

What would be more natural than a Jeep trail-rated van?

Jeep Wrangler van rendering | Samir S
Jeep Wrangler van rendering | Samir S

So what would be more natural than for Jeep to make a trail-rated van? And honestly, what would be cooler than that? Instead of using your Jeep to get to a camping site to pitch a tent, your Jeep becomes your sleeping abode. Naturally. 

Jeep’s FC Forward Control platform in the 1960s made for a versatile amount of vehicles. One of them was a van. Its cab-over design made it perfect for making a van. So Jeep has a history of van-making though it was never a big part of its focus or production.

Van life is a thing and people need solid vans for their quest

Jeep Wrangler van rendering rear 3/4 view
Jeep Wrangler van rendering | Samir S

But the 21st century is different. Van life is a thing, and people need solid vans as a foundation for their quest. And most of it depends on the aftermarket, something that Jeep really ties in with. So there is another reason why morphing Jeep and vans is a perfect marriage of convenience. 

“I can’t talk about future products, but at the end of the day, we’re not going to make a minivan. Whatever we did in terms of future product, it’s still going to be a Jeep,” Brandon Girmus, senior brand manager of the Jeep Gladiator told Muscle Cars and Trucks. “It’s still going to be off-road capable. It’s still going to be Trail Rated. It’s still going to check all those boxes. We’re always looking for new ideas, and new places, and new directions we could take the Jeep brand. We’ll have to see what we come up with next.”

That is actually more than you expect from the product and design people at the various manufacturers. They’re mostly tight-lipped. But we get it, there is just enough said to tease without giving away the farm. 

Jeep needs to make a Jeep van

Jeep Wrangler van rendering | Samir S
Jeep Wrangler van rendering | Samir S

RELATED: Why Don’t SUVs Have Sliding Doors?

These images from designer Samir Sadikhov blew up on the interweb earlier this year. They depict an imaginary Jeep as a van. In reality, we doubt Jeep would make a van so literal to the Wrangler, but that doesn’t matter. What does is the idea that Jeep needs to make a Jeep van. 

There is just too much synchronicity between Van Life and off-road excursions. And those excursions are exactly what Jeep is known for. We think that a van made by Jeep could garner more buzz than the recent Hyundai Santa Cruz has.