The all-new 2018 Jeep Wrangler JL comes loaded with big updates – the most important of which happen under the steel and aluminum skin. The familiar 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 returns mostly unchanged, but with an auto stop/start system. The big news, however, is the new 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder, the new eight-speed automatic, and the availability of the 3.0-liter EcoDiesel V-6 in 2019. There’s also a new Auto4WD system available and strong Dana axles.

Staring with the 2.0-liter, it makes an impressive 270 horsepower and out-grunts the V-6 by 35 pound-feet of torque with a whopping 295 pound-feet. Some of that low-end twist comes via the new belt-starter-generator that helps turn the crankshaft at lower revs. Sadly, Jeep won’t let you pair the engine with the manual transmission. You can read our more detailed breakdown of the engine here.

As for the V-6, its specs remain unchanged at 285 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. It can be mated to either the new six-speed manual or the new ZF eight-speed automatic. For the 2019 model year, the well-loved 3.0-liter EcoDiesel V-6 will finally make its appearance in the Wrangler, though only in the four-door model and with the eight-speed auto. Power is improved, too, at 260 horsepower and 442 pound-feet of torque. Expect this to be the fuel economy leader.

Three transfer cases are available: the standard Command-Trac, the Rubicon’s Rock-Trac, and the new Selec-Trac offered, which is optional on the Sahara trim. Unlike the other two, the Selec-Trac can operate as a full-time 4WD system. Just select “Auto4WD” and the T-case will automatically send power to the front wheels when traction out back becomes an issue. The Rubicon’s Rock-Trac T-case has its crawl ratio bumped from 73:1 to 84:1, making it even better at low-speed crawling.

Lastly, the new Dana axles are stronger than before despite their same names. The Sport and Sahara trims come with a new Dana 30 front and Dana 35 rear axle. Final drive ratios include 3.45 and the optional 3.73. The Rubicon get the new Dana 44 both front and rear and comes only with the beefy 4.10 ratio. The suspension remains familiar, though improvements were made. Both use multi-link arms and coil springs, though the rear axle’s shock absorbers are now mounted outboard of the fully boxed frame rails for better roll control in corners. The wheelbase is also lengthened slightly for better on-road comfort and off-road stability.

Continue reading for detailed drivetrain specs.

2018 Jeep Wrangler JL Transmission Specifications

Availability Standard — 2.0-liter I-4; Optional — 3.6-liter V-6
Description Adaptive electronic control or Electronic Range Select (ERS) driver-interactive manual control and electronically modulated torque converter clutch
Gear Ratios
1st 4.71
2nd 3.13
3rd 2.10
4th 1.67
5th 1.28
6th 1.00
7th 0.84
8th 0.67
Reverse 3.53
Availability Standard — 3.6-liter V-6
Description Synchronized in all forward gears and Reverse, multi-rail shift system with top-mounted shift lever, 50% shorter throws
Gear Ratios
1st 5.13
2nd 2.63
3rd 1.53
4th 1.00
5th 0.81
6th 0.72
Reverse 4.49
Final Drive 3.45 standard, 3.73 optional (4.10 Rubicon)

Transfer Case Options

Availablity Standard on Sport and Sahara Standard on Rubicon Optional – Sahara
Type Part-time Part-time Full-time
Operating Modes 2WD High
4WD High
4WD Low
2WD High
4WD High
4WD Low
2WD High
4WD High
4WD Low
Low Range Ratio 2.72:1 4.0:1 2.72:1

2018 Jeep Wrangler Axle Specifications

Front Axle Dana 30
Dana 44 on Rubicon models
Differential Type Open (Dana 30) or Tru-Lok electronic locking (Dana 44)
Axle Ratios: 3.45
Rear Axle Dana 35
Dana 44 on Rubicon models
Differential Type Open (Sport and Sahara) with available Trac-Lok anti-spin, Tru-Lok electronic locking (Rubicon)
Axle Ratios 3.45


2018 Jeep Wrangler

2018 Jeep Wrangler
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Read our full review on the 2018 Jeep Wrangler.

2017 Jeep Wrangler

2017 Jeep Wrangler High Resolution Exterior
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Read our full review on the JK-gen 2017 Jeep Wrangler

2017 Los Angeles Auto Show – Visitor's Guide
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Read more 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show news.

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