The new Jeep Wrangler has all you need for off-road excursions or everyday street driving. The 2017 models have something for everyone. You can satisfy your needs with the fully featured Rubicon or the tough, no frills Sportmodel. Whatever your ideal vehicle may be there are always pros and cons to purchasing a particular model. Buying a new Wrangler is no different. Here, we’ll review the positives and negatives to purchasing the 2017 Jeep Wrangler.
The Wrangler Pros
The Wrangler is the perfect vehicle to use in all-terrain settings. The Sahara and Sport models come with a Dana 30 front axle and a Dana 44 rear axle. These models also have a Command-Trac, two-speed transfer case. This includes a 2.72:1 gear ratio. These models are also equipped with a Trac-Lok limited slip rear differential.
The Rubicon takes it to the next level by adding Dana 44 axles on the front and back. It also has a low range gear ratio and Roc-Trak two speed transfer case. Additional features include 32-inch tires and a front sway bar that disconnects. The Rubicon is clearly the winner when it comes to being able to conquer all types of surfaces.
Another plus for all the Wrangler models is their rugged appearance and solid feel. Wranglers have always had that military style look. This is particularly attractive to people who appreciate durability and simplicity over the refined, luxury look of other SUVs. These Jeeps are perfect for the true outdoorsman or the weekend warrior.
Wranglers are also privy to a strong aftermarket products selection. Many parts manufacturers create unique add-ons or Wrangler models. This allows Wrangler owners to truly customize their vehicle in a way that’s important to them. Owners can choose from a wide variety of mods like side-steps, bumpers, winches and lift kits. The Wrangler is easily the most customizable Jeep in the auto manufacturer’s lineup.
Wrangler is also considered a fairly safe vehicle. The 2016 models received high marks for frontal crash ratings. Side impact ratings came in at the second to highest level. Overall, Wrangler does a good job of keeping drivers and passengers safe in crashes.
All in all, the new Wrangler is a top-rated vehicle that handles off-road driving with ease. In the next section we’ll discuss how it actually performs for on-road driving.
While the Wrangler is considered a superstar of off-road driving it does not perform as well on the road. The on road driving experience suffers from power problems and a slow transmission. It also performs poorly at braking with a 138-foot braking range when traveling at a speed of 60 mph. The Wrangler also has poor fuel economy. The estimated EPA MPG is 16 mpg in the city and 21 mpg on the highway. Considering these facts, the Wrangler is better suited for the dirt and hills rather than paved roadways.
Another issue with this model is the lack of interior space. Wranglers are not meant to be spacious family SUVs. Squeezing a family of four into this vehicle can be a little uncomfortable. It might be fine for short rides, but driving long distances with a family could be a little claustrophobic. Buyers looking for a roomy vehicle might want to check out some of the other models in Jeep’s line-up.
Finally, the Wrangler’s base models lack the technology based bells and whistles that are commonly found in other vehicles of its class. Adding on tech features tends to increase the price of the vehicle substantially. People who want Bluetooth or wi-fi will have to upgrade the model. The same goes for those who want plain luxuries such as power windows and door locks. These features are optional on new models while other manufacturers include these in the standard package.
The Bottom Line
The Wrangler is for the serious adventurer. Buyers who need a daily driver type of SUV probably won’t appreciate what the Wrangler offers. Fortunately, there are many other Jeep models, such as the Cherokee, that are reliable, every day drivers. However, before you give up on the Wrangler make sure to check out all of the available trims. You may find that this vehicle is the right one for you after all!