No new vehicle is as modification-ready as the Jeep Wrangler. The 4-wheel-drive icon is built with future customization in mind, which has largely been left up to dealer service bays, owners’ garages, and, of course, myriad aftermarket shops.
Now, the Toledo Blade reports that Jeep is looking to cash in on the action — both figuratively and literally. The Ohio city’s mayor said in late 2020 that the city will sell an old factory to Jeep — one that is adjacent to the automaker’s decades-old assembly line — for just $1, assuming Jeep uses it to build a 250,000-square-foot facility that will be used to further tweak already rugged Jeeps.
This would allow Jeep to build relatively “bespoke” vehicles. Jeep already offers numerous special editions of all of its vehicles, though the heart of its lineup is certainly the popular Wrangler.
Jeep Wrangler upgrades
Jeep was once largely content to let aftermarket firms offer suspension lifts, dressier wheels, fancier tops, and other equipment, but in recent years the automaker’s Mopar accessories department has significantly stepped up its offerings. Mopar offers suspension lifts and tires as big as 35 inches, all covered by a factory warranty.
The Wrangler itself dates back to the original military “jeeps,” which proved their mettle in World War II and became popular with hobbyists looking to explore the great outdoors during peacetime.
A spokesperson for the union that represents the 6,000 or so workers who build Jeeps in Toledo said that Jeep is planning to use the facility to fit additional features such as upsized tires and off-road gear, though the automaker has remained mum.