Driving a Jeep Magneto 2.0 EV: A concept that is rooted in reality

Jeep Magneto 2.0 EV is a “rolling laboratory” according to Jeep, one that proves that electricity can not only work terrain but also dominate. Mercedes Lilienthal

Stunning rock formations tower over visitors like skyscrapers in New York City. Lush shades of red and maroon drip organically from each formation, attracting spectators for a closer look. Moab, Utah, home of the annual Easter Jeep Safari, or EJS, is surrounded by red cliffs and challenging trails that invite off-road enthusiasts to a place like no other. Every year at the week-long event, Jeep presents its latest concept vehicles, and receives feedback from the public and a select few who drive them.

While some car manufacturers are already firmly rooted in the electric car area, Jeep is methodically changing its range to position the brand as the greenest SUV brand in the world. Production Jeep 4xe plug-in hybrids are currently circulating on the show floors, but the first all-electric Jeep production model has not yet been revealed. Meanwhile, Jeep carefully telegraphs that it not only wants to be the greenest but also the most capable terrain. Considering the older Jeep model, it does not have much to choose from – to show up with something smaller than the massive and massively capable Magneto 2.0 concept would reveal a crack in the armor.

Electrical DNA

During our time with Jeep, Christian Meunier, the brand’s CEO, said, “Electrification is an enhancer of our DNA.” When pressed, Jim Morrison, Senior Vice President and CEO of Jeep Brand North America, politely declined to comment. But a week earlier during a press conference, Morrison said: “We are more convinced than ever that this is the future; electric [powertrains] are fast, powerful, quiet and offer good control, “adds,” a lot is happening on Jeep right now, and very fast by the way. “

Judging by the huge advances of the Magneto 2.0 BEV, a new and updated version of the original Magneto concept that debuted last year, a Jeep EV is close to becoming a reality. The all-electric 2022 Magneto 2.0 concept doubles the horsepower and triples its torque, making it a lean, sleek and massive battery-powered machine.

Jeep Wrangler Magneto 2.0 BEV Concept Drivlina

Together with extra power, Magneto 2.0 sees increases in capacity, technology and control. Magneto 2.0 debuted as a switch in 2021 and followed. Construction began with stretching the Magneto 2.0’s two-door wheelbase by 12 inches, removing the standard Rubicon engine, retrofitting it with an improved battery-electric system and, oddly enough, maintaining a manual transmission. Although it is an unusual choice, Jeep maintains BEV’s position as an “open laboratory” to get a concise feel of how this vehicle is tested in a real environment.

Magneto 2.0’s almost silent function provides a completely new atmosphere for low-speed crawling. Mercedes-Lilienthal

The Jeep “also left the sleek Jeep suspension, knit axles and gearbox,” said Mark Allen, head of Jeep Global Design. “Things we know, and we know how it works. People who are out [in Moab] looking at these vehicles can relate to it because it still has all that. “Additional cosmetic features include a Surf Blue lacquer with unique graphics, a custom bikini top and carbon fiber accents. In addition, an eye-catching hood shows a blue window showing the power unit under the hood .

The 2021 Magneto’s first display was impressive, but Jeep reinforced this year’s Magneto in a huge way. “The engine is actually the same, but we programmed it differently,” Allen said. While Magneto 2.0’s predecessors matched its petrol counterpart’s 280 horses, this year’s Magneto produces 625 horsepower and up to 850 pound feet. torque.

To handle the increased power of Magneto 2.0, “Jeep tied up the entire vehicle.” A Dynatrac 60 Pro-Rock front axle is combined with a Dynatrac Pro-Rock 80 rear axle, both with gears in the ratio 5.38: 1 provide front and rear locking for true four-wheel drive. A three-inch lifting kit and 20-inch Vision wheels wrapped in 40-inch Maxxis Razr clay terrain tires provide a stable surface no matter how off-camber Magneto 2.0 becomes.

Specifications for the driveline include a new, specially built electric motor with axial flow with a 5,250 rpm redline that draws power from four lithium-ion batteries that pump out a total of 70 kWh; the system operates at 800 volts. Not only has the power and capacity increased, but the peak current has more than doubled to 600 amperes. The beauty of an electric motor is of course the wave of maximum torque they develop at low speeds, an ideal feature for all off-road vehicles. Even if we only drove it off-road, the Magneto 2.0 is said to sprint from 0-60 miles per hour in an impressive two seconds thanks to a new electric driveline calibration that maintains peak current for up to 10 seconds; on the other hand, Jeep will not enter a range number.

40-inch clay tires are easy to turn with 850 pound-feet of torque at hand. Mercedes Lilienthal
Custom bumpers, carbon fiber rims and a blue-toned transparent hood accentuate the Magneto design. Mercedes Lilienthal

Driving the Jeep Magneto 2.0 Concept

Unlike an old-fashioned gearshift, Magneto 2.0’s manual gearbox has a learning curve. Drivers choose either 2WD, 4WD high or 4WD low and a specific gear to start in and then release the clutch without finding the intuitive “friction point” that one would do in a traditional vehicle. Release the clutch completely with it in gear, and Magneto 2.0 will not stop or kick. The clutch is only used to select and shift gears; even in gear, however, the vehicle does not roll until the accelerator pedal is depressed.

Magneto 2.0’s power is noticeable but still refined compared to its predecessor from 2021. Its refined behavior enables soft gas transmissions, especially when walking up stairs outside the camber and uneven ground in low areas. In addition, Magneto 2.0 retains its unique electric “whine” as it meanders through boulders and evergreen trees, a sound that was first experienced with last year’s rendering. Experienced rollers will experience a temporary adjustment of their senses when Magento 2.0 crawls over obstacles without the company of a throat exhaust from a gasoline engine. It is a unique experience, but an enjoyable one.

Although the Jeep Magneto 2.0 EV remains a pure concept, it serves as a welcome example of how EV cycling is not only an option but probably closer to reality than one might expect. When, exactly, the transition may take root is still undecided, but Jeep is working hard to ensure it will not be surprised.

The Jeep Magneto 2.0 EV follows the Jeep Overlook concept that the brand built earlier this year for SEMA. Mercedes-Lilienthal

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