Jeep Wrangler Unlimited News & Reviews

   2010 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon Road Test Review


Chrysler's Jeep division has tried a lot of ways to expand its market share, from moving into the full-size market with the admittedly
2010 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon
The Jeep Wrangler is one of the best known and most loved vehicle designs the world over. (Photo: Canadian Auto Press)
halfhearted Commander to making real strides into mainstream luxury with the Grand Cherokee.  Most recently, Jeep even went so far as to "dumb down" its Trail Rated brand image with a couple of car-based crossovers, the Compass and slightly more 4x4-friendly Patriot, but these fraternal twins really haven't done what Jeep hoped they would, increase sales substantially.  No, after all the creative approaches to the seven-slot grille, the Wrangler is still number one by such a wide margin it's ludicrous! 

Yes, Jeep should pay attention to this one and build more vehicles like the Wrangler.  Last month (March 2010) Jeep brand CEO Michael Manley told Automotive News that Jeep Wranglers are in "tremendous" demand, so much so that dealers are running out of the hardtop version, the top seller of this best-selling model.  But get this.  Out of the current seven-model offering, the last two on the list being <Read More>

   2009 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Sahara Road Test Review


I grew up with a father who loved the outdoors, and while we only had a 4x4 during a small portion of my boyhood, we
2009 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited
A great looking SUV, the latest Wrangler Unlimited is the perfect long distance travel companion. (Photo: Trevor Hofmann, Canadian Auto Press)
always took to the hills in whatever was available. Whether it was my Dad's '66 VW Beetle 1300, Mom's '61 Pontiac Strato Chief station wagon, or one of the old Fargo vans or cage-enclosed flatbed trucks from my father's workplace (with me riding in the back for hundreds of miles), or later on in his rear-drive Datsun pickup truck, the weekends were for camping or staying at our family cabin, and summer holidays weren't complete without extended trips into the bush.

We would have loved to have had Jeep's Wrangler Unlimited for these many forays into God's country, and my guess is that if one was available to us at the time my Dad would probably have bought it. After all, at $25,495 money isn't exactly the issue, and then factoring in the outrageously generous discounts that have been available to new car shoppers for the last few years, only more enticing now, sliding behind the wheel of a new Wrangler isn't so economically challenging.

And it's a pretty cool vehicle for the price. I mean, can you think of another new car, truck or SUV that offers as much style, substance and capability at just a hair over $25K? Didn't think so. Still, the Wrangler isn't for everyone. It's a rugged <Read More>

   2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee V6 Road Test Review


Since it was first introduced as a midsize SUV for the 1993 model year, the iconic Grand Cherokee has been a cornerstone of Jeep's
2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited
The new 2011 Grand Cherokee boosts Jeep into premium status. (Photo: Simon Hill, Canadian Auto Press)
lineup, and key to the company's financial health. So one can imagine Jeep and parent company Chrysler executives holding their collective breath whenever a redesigned Grand Cherokee hits the showrooms. The Grand Cherokee was last redesigned for the 2005 model year and the latest version, the all-new WK2, was introduced as a 2011 model. I recently tried out a Limited trim V6 version for a week, and came away impressed.

While the basic body shape remains unchanged, the new Grand Cherokee's styling is more unified and - dare we say it? - car-like than the previous generation model. There are fewer sharp edges, and instead all the parts flow into one another, with blacked-out B and C pillars creating a sleek side profile. The front end styling in particular has been cleaned up and simplified. Gone are the round, overlapped quad <Read More>

   Jeep pickup truck expected by 2012


One of the best ways for an auto manufacturer to make money is to build a vehicle off of a platform-architecture already in existence.
Jeep Wrangler pickup truck
What a great idea! Expand on the most popular Jeep platform! (Photo: Jeep)
Case in point is Jeep's Wrangler, which for years was only available as a two-door, but after coming to market in four-door Unlimited guise in 2007 became one of Chrysler group's best selling vehicles. Therefore, it only makes sense that the automaker would want to duplicate this pattern with something else on the Wrangler theme, hence a Wrangler Unlimited-based pickup truck appears to be well on the way.

From a recent closed-door dealer meeting in which Chrysler introduced their retailers to a number of new models and concepts, word has leaked out that a new Wrangler pickup will be here by 2012. The pickup that was shown is said to look a great deal like the Gladiator concept that debuted in 2005, which would bode well for marketplace success.

Basically the new truck will be a Jeep Unlimited up to the B-pillar, at which point the body <Read More>

   2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee V6 Overland Road Test Review


As Jeep introduces the next generation Grand Cherokee, they've focused on making the new model appealing to more people
2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee V6 Overland
New refined styling only hints at all the improvements within. (Photo: Canadian Auto Press)
looking for a large sport-ute, while maintaining Jeep's classic off-road capability.

It looks good, is slightly bigger than the previous generation and lets everyone know this isn't a compromise crossover vehicle that looks like an SUV but is really a car. It has all the capability that Jeep owners seek, whether they actually use it or not.

So if you feel like climbing a mountain without a road, this is the Ute for you.

For Jeep, this is an important vehicle, signaling that Jeep is still the brand it's always been in spite of all the financial travails and acquisition by Fiat during the horrors of the past two years. <Read More>

   2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland Road Test Review


The Jeep brand actually pioneered the domestic premium sport-utility vehicle segment with the introduction of the Jeep Grand Cherokee
2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland
Jeep has smoothed out the angles and refined the look of its near-premium Grand Cherokee. (Photo: Canadian Auto Press)
almost two decades ago. Initially, it was a two-box, cut above its lesser Jeep siblings. Now for the 2011 model year, the Grand Cherokee enters the marketplace with an all-new, sophisticated and some might even say, elegant persona. Each surface of this latest iteration Grand Cherokee is fresh and focuses on aerodynamic improvement with design fluidity, which also contributes to improved fuel efficiency. The drag coefficient is now 0.37 – an 8.5 percent improvement over the previous model's 0.404.

The styling is now much more contemporary and displays a somewhat European flair, but without having forsaken Jeep's classic design cues such as the 7-slot grille, round headlights and trapezoidal wheel arches. The front end is more sculpted and shorter, creating a solid, athletic appearance. The lower front fascia features a large chromed fixture on the top two trim levels that showcases the available tow hooks. The round headlights are set in a <Read More>

   2010 Jeep Compass North Edition Road Test Review


It's Saturday and it's sunny. Hmmm, what to do? Well, if you were me you'd round up a group of friends and take to the dirt,
2010 Jeep Compass
The Compass might not be a "real" off-roader, but it goes farther than most people will ever want to take it. (Photo: Canadian Auto Press)
being that I had the 2010 Jeep Compass North Edition, and I did just that. One of my friends who joined us owns a Wrangler Sahara, so we labeled our excursion "Jeep Party Extraordinaire" and, needless to say, had an extraordinary time.
 
The sun was shining (my terrible tan lines will prove it), so we headed east out of Vancouver up to Harrison. There we found a nice, gritty logging road full of dirt, gravel, ascents and descents that lead us to amazing heights and views. This gave me the ability to put what the Jeep's Freedom-Drive I active full-time 4x4 with selectable 4WD LOCK Electronically Controlled Coupling system to the test. Although it's not a standard feature on the Compass North Edition, it's definitely worth the extra $2,200 on top of a very reasonable MSRP of $18,795. This system, as mentioned, is active all the time and is definitely a great tool for those who love the back country or want to learn to love the great <Read More>

   2010 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited Road Test Review


"It's a Jeep Thing... You Wouldn't Understand."

I
2010 Jeep Grand Cherokee
Still a good looking SUV despite its last year of production. (Photo: Jeep)
used to know what that meant.  I even had a license plate holder bearing the slogan on an old Wrangler I kept around.  We owners were smug about Jeep's vaunted off-road performance and, mostly, the brand's whole spare, rough-hewn, proletariat thing.  So what if you bounced around a bit, or that you bought seat pillows from Canadian Tire.  These were fun workhorses, not to be confused with anything else. 

And now... 

I'm not wholly sure what Jeep's image is, except that it appears to be more inclusive. 

Not that <Read More>

   


If you're a car enthusiast, few things are more entertaining than a bevy of cool concepts, and throughout the decades Chrysler
2010 Dodge Power Wagon Concept
Once cool looking truck, the Power Wagon Concept can live up to its Baja-beating styling. (Photo: Dodge)
group has served up some of the best anywhere. 

In a recent announcement, Chrysler's Mopar parts division will unveil four new concepts at the 44th Annual Easter Jeep Safari in Moab, Utah on March 27.  The lineup will include the Jeep Patriot Extreme, Jeep Wrangler J7, Jeep Wrangler Trail Boss, and Ram Power Wagon. 

Power Wagon?  Doesn't that model already exist?  Correct, it does and has been available since the 2010 Heavy Duty 2500/3500 launched last year, but the big four-door truck appears to be shortened to two-door configuration in this iteration and modified with cool matte black paint, covering the hood, roof, grille, lower fascia and rockers, plus the wheels, highlighted by twin neon green stripes that flow <Read More>

   2010 Jeep Patriot North Edition Road Test Review


When I look at the 2010 Jeep Patriot, it vaguely reminds me of a smaller and more refined version of the Cherokee SUV that I longed
2010 Jeep Patriot
The Patriot offers off-road capability and on-road agility in a fuel-efficient package, a nice combination. (Photo: Canadian Auto Press)
to own as a girl growing up.  Its boxy exterior and signature grille take me back to when I begged my mom to buy one of these off-roading wonders as a family car.  Even though it was pretty much out of the question, the combination of the Cherokee's gas-guzzling 4.0L engine and not-so-road friendly suspension were an even harder sell to a mom who just wanted a comfortable "city car."  I guess it's not really mother-like-daughter in this case. 
 
But if the Patriot was around 'back in the day,' I'm sure it wouldn't have been that hard of a sell.  After all, this Trail Rated yet road friendly vehicle can traverse in unpaved territories yet also drive smoothly on the city streets.  And because it is based on the same platform as the Compass, it offers a rather comfortable ride with available 4WD capabilities without breaking the bank when it comes to fueling. 
 
In order to not break the bank while fueling, the Patriot can be outfitted with the choice of two different engines.  There is the base 2.0L four-cylinder or a larger optional 2.4L DOHC, 16-valve, Dual VVT four that gets outfitted on the North Edition, my tester.  And of the two transmissions, this particular Patriot came with the optional automatic "shifting" CVT2 Continuously Variable Transmission with AutoStick manual mode, not the standard 5-speed manual.  The 2.4L engine coupled with the 4WD system and CVT gearbox uses an estimated 10.6L/100km in the city and 9.4L/100km on the highway; a rating that isn't too bad for a full-time 4WD vehicle of its size. 
 
When behind the wheel of the North Edition, the 172 horsepower and 165 lb-ft of torque created by the engine seemed quite <Read More>


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