Chrysler has partnered with the Jankel Group to bring new tactical versions of the once iconic Jeep back to the battlefield. The Jeep J8, named because it's the 8th version of the Wrangler, will soon be available only on the foreign and domestic military/government market.

"What the J8 is, really, is a tremendously capable and flexible platform for modifications," Jack Robinson, Jeep Government & Military Sales General Manager says. "Our business model is to have Jankel, JGMS's parent company, work with Jeep engineering to create a family of vehicles."

The J8 is based on the commercially available Jeep Unlimited and has been extensively modified for military operations. The common, long-wheelbase, drivetrain is available in 12 configurations that include a three- or five-door light patrol vehicle variant, pickup truck variant, personnel carrier variant, armored variant, cargo variant and ambulance variant.

Chrysler began with the Jeep Unlimited gave it a VM Motori 2.8L, four-cylinder turbo diesel engine then reinforced the frame, added heavy-duty brakes, engine cooling and suspension systems, a upgraded axles and an enhanced air filtration system that is designed to keep the vehicle running for 5 hours in a desert sandstorm. Many of the upgrade parts came from the Dodge truck line.

Chrysler then turned to the military vehicle engineering specialists at Jankel Armour Holding in the UK to modify the vehicle further for use in military operations. The Brits designed 12 variants by adding roll-bars, tubular mounts for weapons and accessories, a weapon turret, a folding windshield, and light ballistic armor to the J8 base vehicle.

The conversions from base vehicle to each of the 10 other variants can be completed in an average of 25 man hours on the South Carolina factory floor and Jeep will offer modification packages for local assembly.

The base, 3-door vehicle is priced in the high $30,000's.