Photo Source/Copyright: Stellantis Media
This year’s Easter Jeep Safari had many new concept cars, cool innovations, off-road antics, and built on upcoming technology for their forward-thinking plug-in and hybrid vehicle options.
A major sticking point to transitioning into the battery-powered vehicle world is the practicality, ease of use, and accessibility of the platform throughout a given grid.
The off-road automaker did just that at the March event by launching an all-new Jeep 4xe Charging Network tailored for the hybrid adventure vehicle.
A major concern for most hybrid vehicle owners is the expenditure of fuel across the two platforms and the accessibility of being able to charge a vehicle in the event their gas tank hits empty. So Jeep is jumping ahead of the curve by launching such a program that enables drivers in the Jeep community to feel at ease with their new hybrid or upcoming EV charging needs.
In partnership with Electrify America, the Jeep 4xe Charging Network is taking EV charging grids to the next level by placing designated Jeep branded charging stations at or near the openings of qualified Jeep Badge of Honor off-road trails over the next year.
The Jeep Badge of Honor Program initially launched with 49 designated off-road trails that were eligible to qualify for a Jeep Badge of Honor and slowly grew to become a rite of passage for Jeepers. After adding more trails in 2020, the network has now expanded to 56 certified trails with ranging difficulty. Some trails include Rubicon Trail in Pollock Pines, California and Big Bear, California; Imogene Pass in Colorado; the Northwest OHV Park in Texas; and Hell’s Revenge in Moab, Utah.
The reason for the launch of the station is twofold. Number one is giving an advantage to new Jeep 4xe series owners the luxury of charging their hybrid vehicles carefree before hitting the trails. Secondly, Jeep and parent company Stellantis would justify purchasing a plug-in or fully-electric vehicle and convince prospective and current drivers on the road to make the switch in the coming years. However, in order to fully make the transition, the company wants to show they are making the effort to make owning a non-gas reliant vehicle practical. The end goal would be to make charging stations as popular as gas stations.
“Electrification opens a new chapter in the Jeep brand story, and it brings an entirely new level of excitement and enjoyment to our enthusiastic owners,” said Christian Meunier, Jeep Brand Chief Executive Officer. “Key to making Jeep brand the greenest SUV brand is assuring our owners can enjoy the benefits of electric propulsion wherever they go, including the most iconic off-road trails in the country.”
Jeep’s pledge to become the greenest SUV brand puts the automaker into the spotlight, and that will have to reflect in its innovation.
Jeep 4xe Charging Stations will also use solar panels or direct connection to a grid for powering purposes. The stations are scheduled to pop up around the trails by the end of 2021, but future plans include expansion beyond the trails and into cities.
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Terry is an avid Nascar fan who grew up attending races at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, North Carolina, just down the road from his hometown of China Grove, NC. Terry currently resides in Wellington and has been writing for 15 years. He also enjoys watching the Road Runner Looney Tunes cartoon with his two sons in his spare time.