Iconic American utility vehicle maker Jeep has released two sketches of the Yuntu concept ahead of its global unveiling at the Auto Shanghai auto show scheduled to start on April 18.
The images give a hint that the Yuntu concept will turn into a new seven-seater flagship SUV of Jeep in the future. Jeep's SUV portfolio had a void after the Commander was taken off in 2010, leaving people who wanted over five-seater vehicles to look at other auto makers.
The pictures suggest that the concept will showcase a futuristic exterior design without compromising on the rugged DNA of the Jeep brand. The three-row vehicle is instantly recognisable as a Jeep product, thanks to the trademark seven-slot grille and square wheel arches. The slim headlights and horizontal LED daytime running lamps connected to the grille add a contemporary touch. Below the grille, Jeep has added a pair of tow hooks along with an aluminium underbody protection.
The side profile gets monstrous wheels and suicide doors. Both are unlikely to be a part of the production-spec. The roof panel and the A-pillars are completely blacked out and a thin strip of chrome that runs from the side mirrors to the top of the D-pillar adds visual appeal. At the rear, thin tail lamps complement the design of the headlamps. Two aluminium exhaust tips finds place at the rear bumper, and the lower section of the bumper gets aluminium underbody protection.
The PHEV badge on the front doors indicates that it will be a plug-in hybrid vehicle, although technical specifications are not available at the moment. Fiat Chrysler, the parent company of Jeep, already has a PHEV system on duty in the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid. There is a possibility of this being carried over for the Yuntu.
The Yuntu is expected to be a China-only model. The production version of the Yuntu can be expected to come sometime in 2018.