Brits militarize Jeep Wrangler for spec ops duty

PARIS — A British company took the classic Jeep Wrangler and militarized it in hopes of selling it to foreign armies unveiling its special forces variant Monday here at Eurosatory 2012.

Jankel started out selling sports cars in the 1950s and then specialized limousines to the ultra rich until 15 years ago when their clientele started dying off. Since then, they’ve entered the military market and haven’t looked back.

The company partnered with Chrysler, builder of Jeep, in 2008 to help it sell the iconic American Jeep to foreign armies. Now, they look to challenge Mercedes Benz and Land Rover to supply Europe’s armies with their future tactical wheeled fleets. It’s Europe’s answer to America’s Humvee.

Jankel’s hope is that European armies squeezed by shrinking budgets will look to the cheaper Jeep versus Mercedes Benz. Ghana and Uruguay have already bought variants of the Jeep J8 family of vehicles for UN missions.

Switzerland has started to test Jankel’s personnel and cargo carrier variant. Jeep J8 features six variants to include the light patrol and border patrol; personnel carrier; cargo and communications; military armored; ambulance; and pickup/chassis cab.

The Jeeps feature seats U.S. soldiers should recognize. Jankel’s has installed their blast limiting attenuation seats into vehicles like the Oshkosh Mine Resistant Ambush Protected All Terrain Vehicle the U.S. Army drives in Afghanistan.

The special forces variant called the Pegasus is the sexiest member of the family. It is named after the Pegasus Bridge crossing the Caen Canal the British 6th Airborne Division wrenched from the Germans in the invasion of Normandy in World War II. Lets just say Newman might have met a different fate at the end of Jurassic Park if he was driving this Jeep variant with two .50 caliber machine guns mounted to the Jeep’s roof and backseat.

Pegasus was built to load inside a CH-47 Chinook with the ability to unload it in 15 seconds. The Jeep is powered by a direct injection, common rail, turbo charged, intercooled diesel engine. The 24 volt electrical system features one NATO jump socket with two USB sockets.

Pegasus built the frame to fit inside the Chinook. The frame is 201 inches long, 79 inches wide, 72 inches tall with an 11 inch ground clearance. It has a curb weight of 6,610 pounds and a potential payload of 3,310 pounds.

The off road capabilities of the Pegasus have been beefed up to take on the stress of a special operations capability set. It can scale a 60% gradient and a 40%  side slope with the driver only.

Pegasus can carry four special operators and maybe a fifth in a pinch. Unit commanders can add an extended range fuel tank as well as underslung airlift solutions.

Lorne Stoddart, a commercial manager for Jankel, said they have targeted seven countries interested in Pegasus. He offered Holland as an example of one country who will have requirements to buy a vehicle like Pegasus.

Andrew Jankel, Jankel’s chairman, said his company chose not to bid for the U.S. Special Operations Command’s Ground Mobility Vehicle program because of the constantly changing requirements. He would prefer to let the BAE Systems and General Dynamics of the world fight that out.

Of course, if Congress can’t get its act together and avoid sequestration, then all bets are off and U.S. special operators might soon find themselves inside the Pegasus.

— Mike Hoffman

36 Comments on "Brits militarize Jeep Wrangler for spec ops duty"

  1. I agree, when can I get one ?

  2. A military Jeep? Never thought I'd see the day…

  3. Itzzzz much better having MUD RALLY with these toys……..der appearance r cool but de only show up in true colours in a war !!!

  4. A NICE! upgrade to the ol' Willeys. Hmmm … actually it's come full circle I guess you can say.

  5. Lightweight and mobile. Makes sense, versus using the comparatively heavier Humvees. People will likely get obsessed about V-bottoms and mine resistance, but there's a time and a place for that stuff.

  6. So it's heading back to its roots?

  7. Do the "two .50 caliber machine guns mounted to the Jeep’s roof and backseat" come as "option"? If so how much and where can I get one?

    I think there will be more than just 9 countries wanting it.

  8. For the first time in a long time the UK made alot more sense than the US on a light scout vehicle. Jeep was always better then a large target the HUMVEE is and even larger easier to see JLTV so Hope we can learn from our British allies.

  9. I'll take one in OD green please.

  10. The US invents and uses the Jeep, in partnership with the British, to defeat the Germans, then eventually abandons the line in favor of something new. Germans reinvent Jeep (Chrysler is German now), and a British company reintroduces it to military service as a more pragmatic solution to infantry mobility. You can't make this stuff up.

  11. Funny how it's the new long wheelbase Wrangler, and not the more compact one. Then again…

  12. “It’s Europe’s answer to America’s Humvee”

    I had to LOL a little when I read this. So the answer one American 4×4 is another American 4×4?

  13. Has anyone checked to see if one of those could fit inside an Osprey? If it does then we REALLY need to buy those.

  14. now why didnt we think of that…? oh yea, i almost forgot, its because we've have a nearly unlimited, severly overleveraged budget based on corporate/politician "quid pro quo".

  15. Maybe the USA should be considering something smaller as well… The Jeep design is timeless.

  16. Put some Multisorb on it and youre in business!

  17. I own a Wrangler and really want to get my hands on the plans the Brits used to "pimp" their Wrangler. Rush our is a bitch these days and it's every man and machine for himself!

    This is sweet!

  18. Hell I want one. I have always loved Wranglers. Plus what better to protect the family on a trip than this beast!

  19. stephen russell | June 11, 2012 at 8:45 pm | Reply

    Love to rent one & get one dressed up for TV show Rat Patrol LRDG with single MA2 50 cal on Jeep rear.
    Awesome to Own & Rent.
    Id drive one around Big time.
    Use Range River engine?

  20. History re.apeats and the jeep makes its return. And, an inexpensive one at that. It does make a lot of sense, especially for third world countries and others who are broke.

  21. I would like to have my Willy from Nam era never a problem with engine,tires nothing I miss that one2 years I should have been able to buy it from army when I leftfor stateside..

  22. This is really cool and all, but… As a Jeep owner, the one thing that frustrates me is seeing over the hood to stuff just in front of the vehicle. One often has to look out the driver's side window to see objects that are just ahead. If there was some way to shorten the hood, slope it downwards more, whatever, then I'd say the design is perfect.

  23. Jeepers thats a humdinger!

  24. this is the sensible way for military equipment. this type of vehicle is needed for use in most situations of patrol and fast deployment. the humvee is way to big for normal operations in countries where the roads serve normal vehicles(try and turn one of the big tu-ds around) and can cause many problems for all concerned, don't dare drive a humvee down a back alley. loading the humvee with armour did not stop ied's damage and death to occupants so loading this one with the armour may not help much against the proven ied(the more armour added is offset by additional explosive material) even the mrap is not surviving a hit. sounds like a good vehicle for the use intended.

  25. Chrysler left the Benz family years ago. It's majority owned by Fiat now. HumVee on the other hand is sort of out in the cold with the SUV hating. part-GM-owner, Obama administration pushing to sell it's domestic division to the Chinese. In a way I hope Jeep makes a killing in the military market.

  26. Jankel J8 Pegasus BPV spec sheet:

    More info, pics, and spec sheets for other models at:

  27. How is that different from Chrysler's military version of the Jeep (export only, unfortunately)?

  28. Matt Holzmann | June 12, 2012 at 2:06 pm | Reply

    any kevlar?

  29. If Congress doesn't get their act together US Forces might be on foot and horseback again!

  30. THE RAT PATROL IS BACK AND BETTER!!! Did you guys ever watch Rat Patrol or the movie Play Dirty. OR WATCH ANY OF THE FILMS ON THE SAS IN NORTH AFRICA DURNING WWII?

  31. I have a 4D Jeep Wrangler — and now I have to resist these neat upgrades. ;) Boy it's tough being a Jeep owner. I have to admit that we could have used them when I was in Iraq. Upgraded /uparmored Humvees were a bit much for general purpose use and we ended up using off-the-shelf 4×4 Ford and Chevy pick-ups to fill the gap.

  32. Isn't it ironic the Brits have built this!!!! lol

  33. Yup, you and Gunner both did.

  34. DisabledVeteran | June 22, 2012 at 12:20 pm | Reply

    Don't get me wrong, I'm a Jeep FANATIC and I want one of these – but I would be interested to see if they've addressed the narrow doorframe issue. Getting in and out of the newer Wranglers without barking your shins is difficult wearing penny loafers and a golfing hat – much less combat gear and carrying a PDW…

  35. grimmkommando XBL | June 25, 2012 at 1:35 pm | Reply

    Jeep Wrangler is a beast and always will be one.

  36. dont know why they are bothering, they will never be better than Land Rover!

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