2018 Jeep Wrangler JL - First Look
The time has finally come; we’ve gotten a chance to spend quality time behind the wheel of the all-new 2018 Jeep Wrangler JL. Jeep flew us out to the deserts of Arizona for our first view of the Wrangler since it debuted the week prior at the 2017 L.A. Auto Show.
We’ve coved the new Wrangler to death with nearly a dozen articles focused on various aspects of the Jeep, and most recently, our driving impressions, pricing information, and fuel economy. We can say the new Wrangler is wholly improved and in no way less capable off-road. In fact, Jeep designers and engineers worked tirelessly to retain (and in many areas improve) the Wrangler’s capabilities. So without further ado, here’s our take on the 2018 Jeep Wrangler JL
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2018 Jeep Wrangler Breaks Cover in Los Angeles!
After years of waiting and speculation, the all-new, 2018 Jeep Wrangler is finally here! The fourth generation of the iconic American off-roader, called JL, is here to replace the JK model after ten years of service. The new Wrangler is significantly lighter, boasts new technology, and gets its juice from new engines.
Design-wise, the new Wrangler features many changes, but Jeep opted to keep the SUV familiar, so the redesign is far from extreme on the outside. The shape and size of the previous model are still there, but the tiny details tell a different story. Up front, the Wrangler retains the round headlamps, but they are slightly larger and feature new LED tech. The seven-slat grille is also a carryover, but with taller and slightly wider vertical slats. Down below, there’s a beefier bumper with larger foglamps and chrome trim.
Unlike its predecessor, the JL comes with LED daytime running lights on the front wheel arches. The turn signals are still mounted at the corners, but they look more modern now. When viewed from the side, the JL is almost identical to the JK it replaces. Sure, there are slight changes in the side steps, the wheel arches, and the door handles but overall we’re looking at the same design. Around back, the Wrangler continues to sport a boxy design, but it now has larger LED taillights. The bumper and the tailgate have been redesigned as well. The new Wrangler is available in both two-door and four-door body styles. Jeep also offers hard-top, soft-top, and convertible top configurations, the latter with a number of removable roof panels.
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Holy Toledo! 2018 Jeep Wrangler JL Breaks Cover
Well, it’s finally happened – the 2018 Jeep Wrangler JL has been spotted without camouflage. The next-generation Jeep was reportedly spotted inside Jeep’s Toledo assembly plant and sent to our friends at JLWranglerForums. The grainy photo was undoubtedly not supposed to be taken, as evidenced by the limited view it affords of the new Wrangler Unlimited. Still, there are plenty of details to pour over.
First, it’s clear this is a four-door Wrangler Unlimited, otherwise known as the JLU. It’s lack of badging, knobby tires, and rock rails suggests this is a Sport model, though its hood features vents – a previous sign of an upper-class model or special edition. The windshield bump-stops on the hood have been redesigned, too. Also visible is the side vent integrated just behind the front fender. It’s smaller than anticipated, but thankfully doesn’t distract from the Wrangler’s classic lines. And speaking of lines, the cowling panel and doors have strong creases, helping break up the flat, vertical sides seen on the previous Wrangler JK. New side mirrors are present, too, with integrated turn signals. Gone are the push-button door handles, replaced with pull-style handles in black. The front fenders carry a new shape and appear molded from richer, higher-quality plastic. This particular Jeep has the soft top option, which we’re glad still exists. Unfortunately, the photos don’t show much of the interior, beyond the black seats covered in protective plastic. Of course, at this rate, we’ll have a full view of the 2018 Jeep Wrangler JL long before its official debut at the 2017 LA Auto Show in November.
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2018 Jeep Wrangler To Debut At LA Auto Show
The upcoming and highly anticipated 2018 Jeep Wrangler JL will debut at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show in late November. That’s the official word from Jeep CEO Mike Manley, originating from an interview with Auto Express. What’s more, Manley confirmed the Wrangler will have a hybrid powertrain option, the details of which will be announced before the end of 2017. Thankfully, the Wrangler will still have the rugged looks and off-road capability of the current Wrangler JK we’ve come to love, but with healthy updates to both styling details and interior NVH.
“It’s definitely going to move the game along but you will absolutely know it’s a Wrangler – for sure! If we did anything that departed from the Wrangler formula I don’t think I’d be able to get out of the States,” said Manley, a native of Great Britain. It’s clear the next-generation Wrangler will have a familiar shape thanks to numerous spy shots of prototype vehicles seen scurrying around Detroit. However, improvements to the Wrangler’s everyday livability will be a welcomed addition. “You’ll be really surprised how far we’ve been able to move things in terms of capability, fuel economy, ride comfort, noise and all of those things, said Mike Manley. “I’m very pleased with where it is.”
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2016 Jeep Renegade Review
The Renegade makes perfect sense for Jeep at this juncture. Not only are compact SUVs and crossovers the current hot market, but the Wrangler has gotten huge in its iconic old age, and a large percentage of the Jeep true believers don’t take the compact Compass and Patriot seriously. With a powerful need to reinforce the Jeep badge, the company needs a vehicle that embodies its strengths.
In that mission, the Renegade is not subtle. In addition to resurrecting a nameplate from a 2008 concept truck and the Jeep CJ-7 before that, the smallest Jeep is a cheeky, boxy little thing that’s practically overflowing with classic Jeep styling hallmarks and designer Easter eggs. Though it’s a humble unibodied crossover, the Renegade sports off-road friendly dimensions and a Trailhawk model that, like its Cherokee Trailhawk counterpart, is capable of following its big brothers on the toughest Jeep Jamboree courses. The Renegade arrives with a healthy dose of attitude and real capability that set it apart from the rest of the rapidly growing compact-crossover herd.
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Jeep’s newest SUV might not seem conventional to the rough-and-tumble brand, but after spending a week behind its leather-wrapped wheel, the 2015 Renegade proved to be all the things that embody the Jeep persona. It’s small in size, is available with a manual transmission and 4WD, and comes packed with tons of personality and throwbacks to its heritage.
The Renegade is all new for 2015 and shares much of its greasy bits with the Fiat 500L. That includes everything from its architecture to its powertrain. Nevertheless, Chrysler engineers have somehow injected enough Jeep DNA into the Italian crossover, making it inherently different. Easter Eggs and specialty design cues make the Renegade one of the most unique vehicles on the market – not to mention a hit with the petrol heads and car nerds.
And popularity is what Jeep is striving for. The Renegade will be sold in more than 100 markets worldwide. To help broaden the appeal, engineers have included no less than six engine options and an unprecedented 16 powertrain combinations when 4WD and transmission choices are factored in. Sadly on two of those combinations are coming to the U.S. and are already familiar to FCA showrooms thanks to the Dodge Dart and Chrysler 200.
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The Jeep Wrangler has long been the king of off-roading machines. It’s two solid axles, manual transfer case, gracious ground clearance and never-ending supply of aftermarket parts have made the Wrangler the stuff of legend. What’s more, its removable doors and top put passengers closer to the elements and heightens the thrill of the trail.
Of course, for all good champions, a new challenger is never far behind. Enter the 2015 Toyota 4Runner TRD Pro. This is Toyota’s latest version of its (almost unchanged) 4Runner design. Thanks to some clever engineering in the Toyota Racing Development labs, the 4Runner now enjoys a truly hard-core off-road version that usurps even the venerable Trail Edition 4Runner.
Heavy duty Bilstein shocks with remote reservoirs, thick coil springs with a 1.5-inch suspension lift, upgraded wheels and tires, and a tank-like front skid plate make the TRD Pro a natural in the dirt. All the same off-road tech on the Trail Edition carries over to the TRD Pro as well. This includes the electronic locking rear differential, manual transfer case, and Toyota’s Multi-Terrain Select system.
Differentiating the TRD Pro series 4Runner from the standard models is a unique front grille with TOYOTA spelled out in block letters. Appropriate TRD Pro badging follows suit, attached on the C-pillars and bespoke TRD Pro wheels. Things inside aren’t much different than other 2015 4Runners, beside a TRD gear shifter and some branded floor mats.
So how does the 4Runner stack up against the stalwart Jeep Wrangler? Head on past the jump for the full rundown and videos.
Click past the jump for the full Wrangler vs. 4Runner battle
The Grand Cherokee SRT is Jeep’s real hero car, and the only one to compete effectively with the super-SUV benchmark from Porsche. The Jeep’s drastic SRT makeover is arguably the most effective across the Chrysler range by blending the huge Hemi V-8’s torque with the sure-footed and quite advanced Grand Cherokee platform.
A change across the board from “SRT8” to “SRT” for all the performance trims prepares the range for its next generation of super and turbocharged SRT models - with forced induction making the SRT6, SRT4 etc cylinder counts much less meaningful.
The SRT conversion makes the Grand Cherokee one of the most entertaining models out of Auburn Hills, with all the track attitude and road muscle of the Viper but far fewer tradeoffs in daily driving.
As almost a totally distinct model from the Grand Cherokee range, the SRT version is new for 2014 with the latest interior tech upgrades, a new eight-speed auto transmission, and the tasteful headlight LED accents that were new this year on the base models.
Combined with the menacing nose graphic of the Grand Cherokee SRT, the additional LED lights update the nose appearance nicely. A black lower bumper shroud makes the SRT seem mean even with the lights off, with its 20-inch wheels and giant tires looking very prominent from all angles.
The real news with this latest Jeep is new launch control programming for the cutting-edge autobox that should offer an even quicker sprint than the last model’s 5.1-second rush to 60 mph. Smoothness, economy, and tow ratings are also all up across the board, making this Grand Cherokee SRT quite an appealing prospect for hot-rod SUV shoppers.
Will the loss of the "8" on the badge hurt its street cred versus the Range Rover Sport? Is the price premium and five-seat layout a problem versus the Ford Explorer Sport?
Click past the jump for all the latest images and details of the 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT.
The recent Fiat-Chrysler partnership will bring about big changes in both of the companies’ line-up. And while Fiat is preparing to make a come back in the US market, Jeep is pretty busy preparing a new crossover that will be built on aFiat platform. Of course, since no auto brand is ever that good at keeping a secret, we have the first sketch of the future car thanks to an internal mistake. The video is about a Jeep intern that learns a bit about the company’s design process, and while working diligently on a little bit of homework, the intern gives us an opportunity to take a look into the future.
Unfortunately, this image is the only thing we have at the moment. The glance into the future came with no name or launch date. We figure, that if this "mistake" leads to some interest for the new crossover, then all of that will change in the near future. So, let’s give them what they want. What does everyone think of the sketch? Is this something that should or shouldn’t see the light of day. You know what to do; hit us up in the comments section below.