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The Jeep J8: Egyptian military Jeep Wrangler

Launched in 2008, the Jeep J8 was a beefed-up Wrangler Unlimited assembled in Cairo from knockdown kits, for use in areas too demanding for conventional vehicles. The Jeep J8 was essentially a beefed-up Jeep Wrangler Unlimited, with a reinforced frame for greater payloads (1,339 kg or 2,952 lb). Axles, brakes and suspension components were upgraded, and the rear suspension was replaced by a tough leaf-spring system.

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The rear axle was a Dana 60, with 4.1 ratio and 2,273 kg capacity; the front is a heavy-duty, 1,764-kg capacity model. The NVG 241 transfer case had a 1.0:1 high gear and 2.72:1 low gear, with a 4.10:1 final drive gear ratio. Dual 850 CCA batteries were fed by a 180 amp alternator, with an optional 45-amp 12V to 24V DC converter for running external gear. The J8 was finished out with Euro IV emissions compliance and full size doors with windup windows.

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The sole engine was a VM 2.8-litre four-cylinder diesel rated at 118 kW (158 hp) and 400 Nm (295 lb.-ft.) of torque, with towing capability of up to 3,500 kg (7,716 lbs.). A five-speed Chrysler 545RFE truck automatic transmission (not a Mercedes NAG) connected to the Command-Trac® four wheel drive system.

The J8 used a unique air intake with Donaldson air filtration and a hood-mounted snorkel to go through up to 30 inches (762 mm) of water, or to tackle zero-visibility sandstorm conditions for up to five hours. Top speed was 140 km/hour, fuel capacity was 85 liters; and gas mileage was an estimated (Euro IV) 11 liters/100 km.

Also sold as a two-door with an extended pickup bed for personnel or equipment transport, the J8 was provided with numerous vehicle-body and seating configurations in either right-hand- or left-hand-drive.

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For use in dangerous areas, the Jeep J8 was armor capable and could be used as a command vehicle, troop/cargo carrier, ambulance, or communications hub. Heavy-duty bumpers with tow eyes allowed for air transit. The curb weight was 2,600 kg; trailer towing was rated at 3,500 kg; gross weight was 3,864 kg.

An armored version of the Jeep J8 was the first vehicle to be certified under BRV 2009 VR7 for ballistic protection using hot-formed steel technology to create an external, non-parasitic protective shell. The BRV 2009 standards (which range from VR1 to VR7) require comprehensive destructive testing, including multiple shots. The car, including firewall, windshield, rear, roof, sides, and aperatures can be shot at from any angle; VR testing certifies the bulletproofing on the vehicle itself for real-world applicability.

VR7 protection is similar to the B7 level (most Middle Eastern armored cars are at the B6 level).

After its Egyptian launch, Israeli company Automotive Industries Ltd (AIL) built their own version, dubbed the Storm 3, as a command vehicle for the Israeli Defense Force, following up in 2012 with the Type R, with no doors or windshield, 35" tires, metal tube fenders, and a roll-cage, for use by special military forces. Neither Storm 3 variant looks different from the Jeep J8 (other than, of course, the modifications made to the Type R).

Criterion 2007 Toyota
Jeep J8
2007 Unlimited
Running ground clearance 99.1"10.1 (rear axle)
Approach angle31°44.4°44.4°
Departure angle 24°40.5°40.5°
Breakover angle 28°22°20.8°
Gradiant (hard surface) 45°
Side slope (driver) 40.5°

Jack Robinson, manager of the Middle East and Africa regions, said:

The Jeep J8 was actually designed for militaries outside of North America. That's why it has a diesel engine. However, the more we talked to various agencies, the more we realized there could be applications for the U.S. military operating outside North America ... Aside from the difference in payload, it's got front and rear bumpers that have been beefed up so you can actually pick the vehicle up with a helicopter. ... We've also had a lot of backdoor interest in commercial use for this vehicle-for construction workers, farmers, some in mining operations and those in utilities.
See: Mike Manley on the Jeep J8, 2012 interview

The J8 was still in production in 2016.

J8 predecessor and concept car

"Desertbuzz" sent in some photos of the Egyptian long wheelbase TJ, the predecessor of the J8 and Wrangler Unlimited, back in 2006:

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The 8 gallon auxiliary tank is visible on some photos; the ambulance version is fitted with roll-out bed.

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Thanks to Jeep News Now. Also see the JK-8 Independence

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