Trail leads to Geneva auto show, European debuts for three ‘rugged, sophisticated’ Jeep® SUVs

The Jeep® brand put its stamp on the 2018 Geneva International Motor Show this month with three major premieres and a flurry of other product presentations.

The Jeep Cherokee debuted with a premium design true to the brand’s heritage.

The new Wrangler and Cherokee models took the spotlight with their regional debuts – comprising Europe, The Middle East and Africa – while the Grand Cherokee Trackhawk, “the most powerful Jeep SUV ever,” appeared for the first time at a motor show in Europe.

Other highlights included the new Compass Night Eagle special-edition and new Grand Cherokee S.

But the Wrangler was the star of the brand’s Geneva presentation and display, introduced as “the vehicle that started it all,” by Mike Manley, global head of Jeep Brand. “There are only a few vehicles instantly recognizable around the world, vehicles that can be called true icons – and this is one of them.”

In this case, the Wrangler was a gleaming, Steel Blue-Metallic Sahara model, which made its way to the stage via a short sky bridge and ramp, and heroic background music and applause.

(A pair of Rubicon models followed a little later – one of them via the sky bridge and ramp.)

Wrangler Sahara, center, and a pair of Rubicon models go off-road at Geneva auto show.

The all-new Wrangler is a fourth-generation vehicle that remains true to the original – which was launched as a civilian vehicle in 1945 and since has sold more than five million units – according to Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA), while offering adventurers “unmatched, legendary off-road capabilities” that have been further improved over the previous generation.

With “the DNA of the iconic original,” the Wrangler comes with new, advanced engines, more open-air driving options and “a host of advanced technology features for added safety and connectivity.”

“They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder,” said Manley, standing alongside the Sahara, “and this is what gorgeous looks like to someone who is facing uncharted terrain. The design is modern [but] unmistakable … rugged on the outside and sophisticated and quiet on the inside.”

Other highlights of the brand’s auto show presentation were:

Jeep Cherokee

The new Jeep Cherokee debuted with a premium design true to the brand’s heritage “while introducing new technological contents and advanced engine options,” said FCA.

Grand Cherokee Trackhawk

The most powerful and fastest Jeep SUV ever, the Trackhawk can go from 0-60 mph in 3.7 seconds and offers a top speed over 170 mph with “world-class on-road driving dynamics.”

Compass Night Eagle

A new special-edition model introduces Gloss Black accents and exterior finishes “which provide a more aggressive flair and sporty appeal to the sophisticated design of the compact Jeep SUV.” The Jeep lineup previously offered special-edition Renegade, Cherokee, Grand Cherokee and Wrangler in Europe.

Grand Cherokee S

This special edition adds a sporty interpretation of the world’s most-awarded SUV with a Bright White Clear Coat exterior, complemented by a black leather and suede interior.

“From high-performance capability to extreme off-road capability, the Jeep portfolio continues to expand, fueling our global growth,” said Manley, citing the strength of the SUV market worldwide.

“But while many automakers borrow such words as capability, authenticity and passion and use them as marketing tools, the Jeep brand embodies those words,” he said. “They have been part of our core DNA for over 75 years. This is who we are, and this is what we do.”

The auto show held in Geneva, Switzerland, is the first major European event of the calendar year.