Jeep EV formula: Off-road, eco-responsible

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Meunier is banking on predictions that battery costs will drop in coming years, making Jeep’s electric vehicles more affordable and helping the brand achieve its goals. Its parent company, Stellantis, is working to introduce solid-state batteries, which are expected to provide improvements in safety, cost, weight and performance over lithium-ion batteries, by 2026. Stellantis invested in solid-state battery company Factorial Energy and signed a development agreement to advance the technology.

Jeep is looking to meet its 2030 electric vehicle sales target by selling premium models, as it always has. The Recon will not have a streamlined $30,000 version.

Meunier said a “very cheap car” won’t be available as an EV for some time, especially in North America.

“Electrification is more expensive, but the cost will come down, the chemistry will improve, the battery size will go down,” Meunier said. “It will take a few years. [2026-27], the solid state will reduce some costs. So there are a lot of things that are evolving that will make it easier.”

The rugged Recon follows the Wrangler’s tradition of open-air experiences, while the Wagoneer S shares a name with its larger counterparts, but has its own design language and flair as a midsize crossover. Both will be built in North America.

Meunier wouldn’t share details on the Recon’s range, saying only that it will be less than 400 miles. He believes the Recon can also do well overseas.

It includes Selec-Terrain traction management, e-locker axle technology, underbody protection, tow hooks and all-terrain tires. It also has the latest generation Uconnect infotainment system, including travel guides for remarkable off-road trails.

Jeep is aiming for a range of 400 miles for the Wagoneer S and aims for it to produce 600 hp with a 0-60 mph time of around 3.5 seconds. It will be sold in major markets around the world, including Europe.

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