May 28, 2024
Automotive Events

Jeep commemorates 70 years of extreme 4×4 adventure

Jeep enthusiasts celebrate Rubicon Trail’s 70th anniversary

The Jeep brand and Jeep Jamboree are celebrating 70 years of intense off-roading experience in the United States, where since 1953, the Rubicon Trail, known as one of the most challenging off-road trails in the world, has been a lifestyle symbol of Jeep 4×4 off-road adventuring for the Jeep community. 

Some 450 Jeep enthusiasts and their families and friends, driving 125 Jeep Wranglers and Gladiators as part of a Jeep Jamboree, recently took to the Rubicon Trail to celebrate its seven-decade anniversary for the off-road community in the US.

The iconic Rubicon Trail is in northern California, near Lake Tahoe in the Sierra Nevada Mountains.

Iconic 4×4 trail

This world-renowned 4×4 playground spans approximately 35.40km of the most challenging off-road terrain on the planet – terrain that Jeep Trail Rated 4×4 vehicles are designed and built to overcome.

Jeep Jamboree covers 12.07km of the most challenging terrain on its trail rides—elevations range from approximately 1,646 metres to more than 2,134 metres.

Today, the Rubicon is widely recognised as the premiere off-road vehicle route in the United States.

Jeepers take to the Rubicon Trail to celebrate its 70th anniversary for the off-road community. Image: Stellantis

Jim Morrison, SVP and Head of Jeep brand North America said: “For more than 80 years, the Jeep brand community has defined the Jeep brand and, for 70 of those years, the Rubicon Trail has been heralded by the community as one of the most challenging off-road trails in the world, which combined with its beauty has put the Rubicon Trail on every Jeep 4×4 customer’s bucket list.

“Conquering the Rubicon Trail is tangible proof that these Jeep vehicles can go anywhere and do anything. Jeep 4xe vehicles demonstrate how we continue to push the envelope as we develop our next generation of electrified Jeep 4xe vehicles that can take 4×4 capability to the next level and conquer the seemingly impossible,” Morrison added.

Testing ground

Jeep engineers have long used the Rubicon Trail to develop and test the most capable Jeep SUVs, including the Wrangler.

Adorned with the Rubicon Trail name, the Wrangler Rubicon took the industry by storm in the summer of 2002.

The model, inspired by the enthusiasts who dreamt about it and often tried to build one of their own, became available to order straight from the factory.

Jeep tests its Trail Rated 4×4 vehicles on the iconic Rubicon Trail. Image: Stellantis

It was equipped with options unheard of at the time and unavailable on any production Jeep SUV, including Dana 44 axles, front and rear lockers, disconnecting sway bar, rock rails, oversized 31-inch mud-terrain tyres and wheel flares. 

The Wrangler Rubicon remains a ‘proof of concept’ for Jeep, where lessons learned from iconic off-road locations like the Rubicon Trail and where feedback gleaned from enthusiasts and Jeep brand loyalists continue to push the brand and the entire Jeep lineup forward.

What is a Jeep Jamboree?

Jeep Jamborees are off-road adventure weekends that bring together the outdoors, down-to-earth people, and their Jeep 4x4s.

These off-road treks have a long tradition dating back to 1953 when 4×4 pioneer Mark A. Smith organised the first Jeep Jamboree and voyaged across the Sierra Nevada Mountains through the old Rubicon Trail.

In 1954, Willys Motors, then the manufacturer of Jeep vehicles, became involved with the adventure, and Jeep Jamborees have been an off-road tradition ever since.

Jeep Jamboree operates more than 40 events annually and continues to expand, launching two trips to Iceland this year.

Featured image: Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392. Image: Stellantis

    Arnold Pinto

    Arnold Pinto

    Arnold Pinto is an award-winning journalist with wide-ranging Middle East and Asia experience in the tech, aerospace, defence, luxury watchmaking, business, automotive, and fashion verticals. He is passionate about conserving endangered native wildlife globally. Arnold enjoys 4x4 off-roading, camping and exploring global destinations off the beaten track.
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