The Wrangler would absolutely be at a disadvantage like you've pointed out, with the reduced aerodynamics, larger tires, metal frame, etc. The engineers need to earn their money somehow, they better figure it out. At least nobody expects 35 to 40 mpg for a Wrangler, so they could afford to lose a lot of efficiency with the inevitable losses.In theory I agree wholeheartedly, but that setup only works because the i3 is so light. That car has SO MUCH clever engineering to make it light enough for a 2-stroke motor to feed the battery, and even then it gets itself into trouble by running out of buffer when the car is dealing with a perfect storm of sustained incline + cold weather + highway speed. Imagine stuffing 33" tires underneath it. the whole model sort of blows up. You'd need a bigger motor, which means more weight, which means less range, which means now we're right back to the PHEV model.
My dream is to have an all-electric Rubicon with a roof that folds out solar panels. Tesla is teasing us with that concept for Cybertruck, claiming 15-40 extra miles of range per day. Would be amazing on a Wrangler as well. Maybe a next-gen aftermarket mod. Basically I want Cybertruck specs in a Wrangler body. 500 miles of range, 14k lb towing, and the solar option.
Having the charge level dip beyond what the generator can keep up with really only happens at constant 70+mph speeds. I don't imagine many will be doing those speeds through the woods or over rocky terrain, so it should be able to manage the fun environments just fine.
I've never been a fan of variable power dynamics under foot. When I step on the accelerator I want to know exactly what's going to happen. I don't like the different response of electric power sometimes, with ICE power or a combination of both at other times. I've never owned a vehicle like that, so maybe you just get used to it quickly.
I'm excited to see how the Cybertruck turns out, I've got my placeholder reservation. The solar panel integration is clever. Let's stick a crank on there as well, so the kids or wives have something helpful to do!