Northstar Motor Group blogs about cars
New and Demo Jeep Wrangler: New Jeep Wrangler review
by Bob Aldons - Northstar Jeep
The last line of his review by Ewan Kennedy says it all: " This and the sheer pleasure in owning a Jeep Wrangler seem certain to see its sales climb significantly during 2012"
Ewan obviously isn't an urban cowboy - he appreciates the Jeep Wrangler for what it is - a tough go anywhere real four wheel drive, with capabilities more suited off road than on. let's face it, you don't buy a Jeep Wrangler to take the kids to school. That said, when you see a blinged Wrangler dropping the small people off to school, their has to be a bit of off road envy.
Nowadays, more and more Wranglers are sporting larger chrome wheels, outrageous colour schemes and inside, navigation, leather and a whole lot more to boot. Gone are the days of the 2 door utilitarian half door Jeeps. Instead customers are spending upwards of ten thousand dollars to personalize their weekend getaway vehicles. You've probably seen "It's a Jeep Thing - You Wouldn't Understand adorn the rear windscreens of Wranglers, Cherokee's and the like - if you don't get it, you won't get it. Don't Hold Back - visit http://www.northstarjeep.com.au for prices, specifications and offers on the new Jeep Wrangler and run out models.
By Ewan Kennedy - Carsguide
New Jeep looks the same as before - but there’s big news under that tough bonnet.
There’s something special about driving a Jeep Wrangler. The car that helped win a war has a rugged feel you don’t get in many so-called 4WDs anymore. All of which may sound like a criticism – but in fact we just love the way the American icon sounds and feels. Instead of being isolated from the action you’re sitting amongst everything that’s happening.
ENGINE AND MECHANICAL
Our test drive marks introduction of a new V6 petrol engine to the Jeep Wrangler range. A thoroughly modern design displacing 3.6 litres, this twin-cam unit develops up to 209 kW of power, with 347 Nm to torque. Most to the latter is available at only 1800 revs – giving it diesel-like grunt that’s perfect for off-road driving.
Jeep’s test figures say the new petrol power plant accelerates from rest to 100 km/h in almost 30 per cent less time than the old 3.8 petrol unit it replaces, yet uses significantly less fuel while providing the overtaking safety the acceleration provides.
The turbo-diesel 2.8-litre four-cylinder engine is still available and Jeep says it’s still likely to make up the bulk of sales of Jeep Wranglers – however, we feel the extra smoothness and responsiveness, not to mention the lack of that diesel fuel smell, will point more people in the direction of petrol than the sales guys anticipate.
A five-speed automatic transmission is likely to be the biggest seller and though it seems to be cheating in some ways to drive a tough 4WD with a self-shifter there’s no doubt it will be simpler to drive in the tough on-road conditions that are likely to be the fate of the typical Wrangler.
Visually the 2012 Jeep Wrangler and Wrangler Unlimited, the latter being the long-wheelbase four-door model, are as before. The seven-slot grille has become an iconic part of the Jeep – though it must be pointed out that the earliest models actually had nine slots – as has the flat bonnet with rounded side and the squared-off mudguards.
Jeep designers have tried playing games with the shape in the past, but the purists have jumped on them from a great height and the chances of them being silly again seem rather slim.
We took a brace of Jeeps over terrain that would have stopped many vehicles masquerading as 4WDs but which are aimed at creating the aforementioned isolation, not at enjoying the rugged Australian outback, beaches and forests.
We took our Jeeps along narrow ridges with steep drop-offs that could have killed us had we got it wrong then along beaches with howling winds that created dangerous waves, as well as softening up the sand. (The winds later blew down a high-tech tent apparently erected in a semi-sheltered area for us to lunch.) As well as through paddocks with kangaroo and wallaby bouncing in front of us, apparently with a death wish.
One thing we would like changed is the simple strap holding the doors open. We nearly had our knees smashed when the wind sweeping of the Southern Ocean tried to slam the doors shut. A more modern strut system to hold the door open would have prevented this – all complaints and explanations from Jeep lovers will be considered, but don’t be too harsh with your threats; particularly those who suggest we should be knee-capped…
The favourable increase in the value of the Australian dollar against the US greenback has resulted in Jeep being able to begin the price list at a very reasonable $32,000 (excluding government and dealer delivery charges). This and the sheer pleasure in owning a Jeep Wrangler seem certain to see its sales climb significantly during 2012.