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Jeep JL Wrangler Opinions?

Old 11-01-2018, 02:57 PM
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Default Jeep JL Wrangler Opinions?

I've been driving Toyotas exclusively for almost 20 years. But I'm finding they don't currently make anything that fits my needs and interests me.

The other day I stopped in the Jeep dealership and test drove a 2018 Wrangler JL Unlimited Rubicon. 4 doors, 4x4 with lockers, manual trans, soft top, and leg/head room for me and my equally tall kids- on the surface it ticks all the boxes.

But I'm gun-shy about going back to Mopar. Been there, done that, none of them lasted like I expected which is what drove me to Toyota in the first place.

How are the JK (now cosmetically refreshed JL) jeeps holding up? Any known weak points or things to watch out for?
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Old 11-01-2018, 04:18 PM
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JL is not a refreshed JK. It's a new jeep. Doors aluminum, swing gate is magnesium. The JL has a current recall on welds breaking. But no matter how bad the Jeep is, it's still one of the best vehicles for resale so if you dont like it you can easily flip it for minimal loss.
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Old 11-01-2018, 05:09 PM
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I leased a 2016 75th anniversary. I can't wait until the lease is u in May. Have been endless problems, and awful quality. If it is the size of a baseball or smaller it has broken. Never again.

That said, the JL is a new model, not a facelift.
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Old 11-01-2018, 05:19 PM
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Ditch the manual unless you absolutely have to have it then get it regeared then. The 8 speed really changed the Jeep. Every manual I've driven struggles past 70 mph unless you really kick it down a few gears. Foot to the floor going down hill in 6th gear at 65 mph and it will barely wanna go any faster.
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Old 11-02-2018, 09:36 AM
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There is not much in common between the JK and JL Jeeps. I have a 2018 JL Rubicon 4dr and it's the best Jeep I've ever owned.
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Old 11-02-2018, 04:30 PM
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You're gonna hate that Wrangler. It won't take long to realize how crappy they are to drive on the road. As soon as the "jeep thing" novelty wears off, you'll be back in a Toyota.
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Old 11-02-2018, 04:44 PM
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Jeeps are great. Had a 2010 that we put about 225k miles on with nothing but maintenance. Just traded it in for a 14. Like mentioned earlier the new ones have some frame issues being fixed under a recall but all in they are a sound vehicle
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Old 11-02-2018, 07:39 PM
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Originally Posted by RockportFisher View Post
Like mentioned earlier the new ones have some frame issues being fixed under a recall but all in they are a sound vehicle
There is no way you can say the new JL is a sound vechile with only a few months on the road. Either way, it could be the biggest pile of crap but for some reason if it's a wrangler ppl will buy it and resale will always be good.

I agree with above statement. I had a 2016 JK for about a month. It was fun for about about 3 days. After that it became very apparent that is not a ride I would want for a daily driver. Noisy, underpowered, horrible ride...... worst part is having to wave at every damn jeep that went by.
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Old 11-02-2018, 08:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Salmonbum View Post
There is no way you can say the new JL is a sound vechile with only a few months on the road. Either way, it could be the biggest pile of crap but for some reason if it's a wrangler ppl will buy it and resale will always be good.

I agree with above statement. I had a 2016 JK for about a month. It was fun for about about 3 days. After that it became very apparent that is not a ride I would want for a daily driver. Noisy, underpowered, horrible ride...... worst part is having to wave at every damn jeep that went by.
There's nothing really "new" about the JL. At least powertrain and electronics wise. Its been updated with all the stuff other mopars have had for years. It's been rid of the last remnants of Mercedes garbage (namely the electronics architecture). 4 door automatic jk is not going to be fast. 2 door manual jk sport is deceptively quick. They'll run 14's with a good launch.
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Old 11-03-2018, 05:12 AM
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My wife has 7K miles on her 2018 Sahara JL Unlimited, purchased in April. No comparison to the JK’S in ride comfort and handling. She loves it and we have had Jeeps in the past and the difference is significant. Have to disagree with statements that not much is new. When we purchased there were JK’S and JL’S side by side on the lot, test drove both. The ride is significantly better in the JL. The 3.6L and 8 speed tranny is a sweet set up on the Jeep, 285HP and 265 lb ft torque, 0 to 60 in 8 seconds.
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Old 11-03-2018, 05:28 AM
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I been owner of jeeps since the 80s, The good ,bad ,ugly! The new JL is untested and yes there is the weld recall , as jeep makes itself more refined it losses its appeal to original owners , you dont state your use for the truck , off road or not , I can tell you the transmissions are showing up as having issues on alot of jeep forums , that said I use my2014 jk 2door as a daily driver and love its refined ride and features .... jeeps tend to have a group of loyal followers and some who get in and get out ,,,, the great thing is resale you can jump in find after a year or two you hate it and not lose $ , I do want to warn you stick vs auto on resale get auto, also look at sport vs rubicon , theres a host of aftermkt parts that can really make your truck unique vs the rubicon which is pricey and all the same .... for me not rubicon worth the cash sport all the way
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Old 11-03-2018, 06:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Elgreco809 View Post
There's nothing really "new" about the JL. At least powertrain and electronics wise. Its been updated with all the stuff other mopars have had for years. It's been rid of the last remnants of Mercedes garbage (namely the electronics architecture). 4 door automatic jk is not going to be fast. 2 door manual jk sport is deceptively quick. They'll run 14's with a good launch.
yes...... there is alot new. Even thou the motor and trans appear to be the same, there are still changes with them. Chain is, suspension, body, interior..... it's all new. It's my program along with JT. Have you been in the plant and seen they even completely changed the conveyor/paint lines? So not even is the JL itself new, so is assembly process. Do not compare it to JK except they look similar.
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Old 11-03-2018, 06:41 AM
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Regarding the "minor update" comment, it's minor update to me specifically with the model I'm looking at. Slightly longer wheelbase, minor refresh on the 3.6l, minor update to the 6 speed. The rest is body/interior. I work in auto manufacturing. This isnt a mid model refresh, but it's hardly the big transition like the CJ/YJ/TJ/JK changes were.

Manual is non-negotiable for me. I test drove the manual and it still had plenty in reserve cruising at 70. My usage will mostly local driving in FL (hence the soft top) with beach sand driving and mountain trails several times per year. It won't be a long distance dd. In the early 2000s my daily driver was a 1968 FJ40- the JL ride is plush in comparison.

The Rubicon I'm looking has none of the extras outside of the Rubicon package. Cloth seats, base electronics, etc. It's not the 50k plus Rubicon like so many of them are.

For my use I want the smaller rims and the lockers of the Rubicon package.

If Toyota would remake the FJ40 or even bring the 70 series into the US I wouldn't even be looking. But since there's the proverbial snowball's chance of that happening I'm considering giving Chrysler another shot.
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Old 11-03-2018, 07:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Salmonbum View Post
yes...... there is alot new. Even thou the motor and trans appear to be the same, there are still changes with them. Chain is, suspension, body, interior..... it's all new. It's my program along with JT. Have you been in the plant and seen they even completely changed the conveyor/paint lines? So not even is the JL itself new, so is assembly process. Do not compare it to JK except they look similar.
The engine is the same variable valve lift version of the 3.6 that was used in the wk2/wd since 2015 or 16. Hurricane is new. The 8hp50 is an updated version of the 8hp45 that has been used in v6 LX cars and a few others for years. The stelvio/giulia have been using the 8hp50 along with most models of BMW. It uses powernet bus system with a BCM instead of tipm. Powernet has been used since 2011 in the LX cars IIRC. JK and RT were/are the last of the mopars that use junk tipm's. It's all new for wrangler, yes. My point is other mopars have been using a lot of these components so they aren't fully unknown.
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Old 11-03-2018, 08:09 AM
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Originally Posted by mark101 View Post
I been owner of jeeps since the 80s, The good ,bad ,ugly! The new JL is untested and yes there is the weld recall , as jeep makes itself more refined it losses its appeal to original owners , you dont state your use for the truck , off road or not , I can tell you the transmissions are showing up as having issues on alot of jeep forums , that said I use my2014 jk 2door as a daily driver and love its refined ride and features .... jeeps tend to have a group of loyal followers and some who get in and get out ,,,, the great thing is resale you can jump in find after a year or two you hate it and not lose $ , I do want to warn you stick vs auto on resale get auto, also look at sport vs rubicon , theres a host of aftermkt parts that can really make your truck unique vs the rubicon which is pricey and all the same .... for me not rubicon worth the cash sport all the way
Sport vs Rubicon, on the JL the Rubicon has bigger brakes and wider, stronger axles, you also cannot get the LED light package on the sport, the headlights on the JL are larger than the standard 7" headlights the JK had so it will be a while before the aftermarket starts providing them if they even do. The JL sport is only available with one axle ratio where the JK with the tow package had 3.73s which were way better for daily use than the standard 3.21s, the JL sport only comes with 3.54s kind of a compromise, the JL Rubicon comes with 4.10s much better for every day use and especially true if you plan on putting on tires larger than stock.
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Old 11-03-2018, 09:02 AM
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I had a 2016 Fiat Wrangler before I moved to NE. It sucked almost as bad as the 1982 AMC version I had.
​​​​​​
Best thing is that for some bizarre reason, they do hold their value.
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Old 11-03-2018, 09:11 AM
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We’ve never had a Jeep before. Wife mentioned she wanted one as a 3rd vehicle. Went looking and had no clue they came out with the JL. Saw them on the lot and decided that’s the route we’re going. Ordered a 19 on sept 16. Should be built today or Monday. Already spent about 10k in accessories for it sitting in the shop ready to go. Going to Easter jeep safari in Moab in April. Should be fun. These drive like refined suv’s now and there’s no comparison to the jk

Brett
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Old 11-03-2018, 09:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Elgreco809 View Post
The engine is the same variable valve lift version of the 3.6 that was used in the wk2/wd since 2015 or 16. Hurricane is new. The 8hp50 is an updated version of the 8hp45 that has been used in v6 LX cars and a few others for years. The stelvio/giulia have been using the 8hp50 along with most models of BMW. It uses powernet bus system with a BCM instead of tipm. Powernet has been used since 2011 in the LX cars IIRC. JK and RT were/are the last of the mopars that use junk tipm's. It's all new for wrangler, yes. My point is other mopars have been using a lot of these components so they aren't fully unknown.
Yes I know all about the 8hp. I had about 5 vehicles since 2015 that had them. But even thou the 8hp has been around since 2002, it's still all new calibration for the JL. It's not going to be the same as the LX/LD/LC/DT/WK. They all have different calibration. I was in Pilot 3 yrs ago when they were testing JL drivetrain/chassis that was hidden with JK bodies. So even though the 3.6 and 8hp is existing, it's still new to the Jeep and its calibration, as well as it complete new body/chassis.

BTW.... at dealer as I type getting oil change on DS. JL Rubicon in floor is $56k..... wow.
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Old 11-03-2018, 10:17 AM
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you shouldnt compare a jeep to a SUV, its a truck.
I had jeeps for a long time, old crappy ones.
Got my wife a 17 sahara and I was little surprised at how it drives. Once people start messing with the stupid tires and lifted suspensions then they get sketchier
it has needed nothing, not a single thing. on a longer trip I got over 20mpg.

I always say though if you arent going to do "jeep" things the novelty will wear off- but at least you wont lose a lot of money when you sell they hold value.
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Old 11-03-2018, 11:23 AM
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this lets the Hemi, sound like a Hemi......


WK Hemi on Sore Thumb Beach Long Island NY


ZJ Grand and WK Grand following on Democrat Point, Fire Island NY....
I've owed Jeeps over 20 years starting with the '98 ZJ Grand which we still have (177,000 miles) and the '07 WK Hemi Grand (108,000 miles) and our son's '17 Wrangler Sport (16,000 miles). Each successive model has been better as far as reliability. We drove a new JL with the 6 spd to compare to the '17 JK which is also a 6 speed and the major difference is improvements in ride, handling and comfort and in addition the manual trans shifts better and the shifter does not bounce around over bumps like the JK's all do.
My favorite of all Jeeps are the Hemi powered Grands....comfortable, powerful and versatile. Great in snow (full time 4x4, mine has auto locking electronic diffs) can tow well for their size can be bought used for more reasonable prices than the Wranglers can.

The '17 with the 6 spd is surprisingly good on gas, much better than the other 2 are. Oil changes are very easy to do, cartridge filter right on top under the cover. Takes like 20 min.
I'm waiting to see the Wrangler Pick Up. That one I might buy when they are on the market for a while....
Jeep critics can complain but no one sells anything like it here. SUVs have become mall queens sadly. Pathfinder is a mini van in disguise and the 4 Runner may be headed that way too.
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