Name: 2010 Icon CJ3B
Year Produced: 2010
Number Built: ?
Body Type: 2-door passenger, 4-passenger SUV
Engine: General Motors 2.4L in-line 4 cylinder
Power: 220 hp
Top Speed: (?)
Transmission: 5-speed manual
Length/width/height: 142.9in/ 63.85in/ 77.73in)
Wheelbase: 84 in.
Base Price: US$79,000
Autoblog.com sheds some light on their assertion on why the 2010 Icon CJ3B is worth its weight in gold in spite of its hefty price tag of almost US$ 79,000 – a much higher offering of more than US$50,000 as compared to a Jeep Wrangler (it only costs US$21,460). Despite what it may look like, it’s actually a new vehicle – hand-built in Los Angeles, CA. Although they resemble those classic 4x4s, Icon’s vehicles are completely custom built.
While those Land Cruisers, Jeeps, and Willys are still beloved by endless off-roaders, none of them are perfect. For example, the passenger seats in the old Land Cruisers weren’t adjustable, while the gas tank sat under the seat inside the cabin. But thanks to decades of innovative trailblazing, Icon is able to engineer the ultimate trail-ready rock crawler. Looking past the technicality with regards to Icon’s suspension system and engine, one maybe quick to ask, “so what?”
As our road tester from autoblog.com experienced, “Not until you physically put your hands on the Icon that the vehicle and its high asking price make both empirical and emotional sense. For instance, grab a Jeep Wrangler’s fenders and they’re nothing but flimsy plastic that in no way satisfies the Willys longevity ethic. Grab the Icon CJ3B’s fender, however, and the quality of the metal is startling. Short of an armored car, we’ve never felt automotive sheet metal this solid. If you were to hit the fender with a hammer, you’d be more concerned for the hammer.”.
Another thing that is immediately noticeable is the wire tie-down under the Icon’s hood. Instead of the usual cheap plastic, they are made from premium, sharp looking aluminium components ordered from a LA-based aircraft manufacturer. In fact, according to Icon CEO Jonathan Ward, they try to use as many aircraft components as possible. “The distribution channels are just as good and the quality standards are way above and beyond what’s considered acceptable by car makers”, he shares with Autoblog. “There is not a single light bulb anywhere on the CJ3B – even the headlights are LED, as they last longer and use less energy.”
As it seems, Ward gets his inspiration from a host of enduring and high quality parts. Take for example the clasps that hold the windshield in place wherein he got it from Sub-Zero. Furthermore, the seats are made from Tempur-Pedic foam, while the chairs and bikini top are made out of a Chilewich vinyl material Ward spotted in a suite at the Wynn Hotel in Las Vegas. The CJ3B emblems are built from pewter and then enameled by hand, built by a specialty jeweler in Pennsylvania as “an expression of old world craftsmanship.”
Though these and a host of other hand-built pieces of workmanship that comes with the CJ3B don’t come cheap, there is little argument that indeed this Icon IS worth more than its weight in gold.