While not everyone loves the intorduction of electrification to the Jeep lineup, the Magneto 2.0 is the most interesting Easter Safari Concept to me based on the obscene levels of performance. Yes, it is powered by an all-electric motor system, but it still features a proper 6-speed manual transmission and huge Dynatrac front and rear axles – making it a very quick, very capable EV.
Magneto 2.0 Debut
The Jeep Magneto Concept debuted at last year’s Moab Easter Safari, showcasing the all-electric capabilities with a manual transmission and an array of otherwise common off-road bits. The Magneto Concept showed the world how an electric motor could replace an internal combustion engine without departing from other familiar drivetrain bits – mainly the manual transmission.
The Magneto 2.0 is based on the same premise, but the engineering team went far more extreme with the electric drivetrain. This Jeep is powered by a custom-built axial flux electric motor that operates at more than 5,000 rpm with the help of four battery packs, yielding a total output of 70 kWh at 800 volts. Using an DC-to-AC convertor borrowed from the world of EV racing, this Jeep motor system delivers 850 lb-ft of torque – more than triple the output of the original Magneto Concept – along with 625 horsepower. That motor is designed to deliver peak torque for a whopping 10 seconds, but it takes this Jeep just 2 seconds to rocket from a stop to 60 miles per hour. 10 full seconds of peak power would have to yield incredible speeds, especially for an off-road vehicle.
As mentioned above, the Magneto 2.0 Concept features a 6-speed manual transmission, but the first gear ratio has been changed from 5.13 to 3.36. With all of that instant torque and the Rock-Trac transfer case system, this Wrangler doesn’t need such extreme low-end gearing. A Dynatrac 60 Pro-Rock front axle and a Dynatrac 80 Pro-Rock rear axle help put the power to the ground with 5.38 gears and lockers. This rig rides on 20-inch wheels wrapped in 40-inch rubber.
As you might expect, the Magneto 2.0 Concept has a 3-inch suspension lift, but the team has also stretched the wheelbase by 12 inches, making room for the electric drivetrain components. The folks at Jeep state that this vehicle now has a similar wheelbase to the 2004-2006 Wrangler Unlimited models. The longer wheelbase required some unique body work along the sides, joined by lightweight front and rear bumpers and carbon fiber front and rear wheel flares.