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WranglerUnlimited Wrangler Rubicon Review
Posted by mike on 2007/6/26 8:53:14 (1803) reads

One of Chrysler Group's hometown newspaper's recently reviewed the hard-to-find 2007 Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon. Detroit News likes what it sees:

That said, the Wrangler Rubicon -- two-door or four -- is unquestionably the stoutest piece of off-road hardware you can buy off a showroom floor. True, it doesn't have quite the integrated design and packaging of the Nissan Xterra or Toyota FJ Cruiser; both those vehicles were clean-sheet projects, while the Wrangler has a lot of legacy to cope with. Call it literary tradition, if you like. The Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon is more civilized than ever, but it's still a noble savage.

Check out the entire review.

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Poster Thread
jason
Posted: 2007/6/26 13:24  Updated: 2007/6/26 13:24
Just can't stay away
Joined: 2005/6/30
From: glendale,az
Posts: 93
 Re: Unlimited Wrangler Rubicon Review
I feel the same way.eave the 3.8 in the 2dr and get a big 250hp 300 tq V6 in the 4dr. You must have patients my friend.........2010......

Poster Thread
MarkH
Posted: 2007/6/26 12:11  Updated: 2007/6/26 12:18
Home away from home
Joined: 2005/7/20
From: The Great White North
Posts: 494
 Re: Unlimited Wrangler Rubicon Review
... but the article goes on to say...
a 2007 Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon with a four-speed automatic transmission and all the rock-crawling extras (4,442 pounds), accelerated to 60 mph in a purple-faced 12 seconds and proceeded to run into an aerodynamic brick wall at about 85 mph.

Several of us who post frequently on this site (and I was probably the biggest opponent/whiner!) predicted the 3.8L-V6's meager increase in HP & reduction in lower end torque (vs. the 4.0L-I6) would be inadequate for the new heavier JKs, especially in the face of some competitors' MUCH more potent V6s (e.g., GM/Saturn, Suzuki, Ford, Toyota...) By my count, this is at least the10th major article that has proclaimed the JK as underpowered. Less power & grunt than a friggin' SUZUKI?! Jesus Christ!

I'm not looking for an I-told-ya-so; I'm looking for a change! So, is anyone else ready for JEEP to drop in the 4.0L-V6 or the revamped 4.7L-V8-H.O.? I am!

Poster Thread
tmedlock
Posted: 2007/6/26 15:47  Updated: 2007/6/26 15:47
Just can't stay away
Joined: 2007/1/11
From: New Hampshire
Posts: 83
 Re: Unlimited Wrangler Rubicon Review
I am basically a realist, so I have to ask: What possible reason would the manufacturer have to put in a better engine when they already have more orders then they can fill? PLEASE, give me a good reason. I would love to be able to see a ray of hope that I will be able to trade in my 2003 rubicon for a new one. I honestly feel that it is the best car I have ever owned. However, when the AC kicks in and I loose all abilty to accelerate I really crave for about 100 more horse power.

Poster Thread
jason
Posted: 2007/6/27 9:26  Updated: 2007/6/27 9:26
Just can't stay away
Joined: 2005/6/30
From: glendale,az
Posts: 93
 Re: Unlimited Wrangler Rubicon Review
Your 100% right, BUT the 3.8's life is over and it will be replaced by 2009

Jason

Poster Thread
MarkH
Posted: 2007/6/27 9:56  Updated: 2007/6/27 13:06
Home away from home
Joined: 2005/7/20
From: The Great White North
Posts: 494
 Re: Unlimited Wrangler Rubicon Review
tmedlock-
I read you, and I am a realist, too. First, let's backtrack... it seems DCX swapped to the 3.8L-V6 for a few reasons:

1) Reportedly, the 4.0L-I6 could no longer meet emisisions req'ts and the architecture (and tooling) was getting old.
2) The 3.8L-V6 minivan transplant was considered to be a good, dependable choice for an upgrade with slightly higher HP/ft-lbs numbers (but less lower end grunt...) and was expected to be "good enough" for the JKs... without having to spend a lot of $$$ on a completely new powertrain redesign, in addition to the $$$ for the redesign of the rest of the vehicle. And they thought we wouldn't notice or care. So far, the sales numbers prove their case.
3) Based on preliminary MPG numbers DCX was publishing on their corporate website, they initially expected MUCH improved mileage... but it seems as though the added weight of the JKs made that a wash... (Watch for those numbers to dip further when the new EPA rules come into effect!)

After all that, the JK sales have been exceptional. Bravo, DCX! But, rather than "bad" news, it may be good news for those of us who want more power/torque. With the profits from huge JK sales, there is sufficient (boardroom) justification to add variants & special editions to the successful JK platform, regardless how (poorly) the rest of the company may be doing. That is, the tendency is to "expand on the success" of a profitable platform. That's just how the auto industry thinks.

And it would also remedy all the bad reviews citing "lacking power/grunt".

So, as to the glimmer of hope we have... Remember when the PT Cruiser came out & the sales went through the roof? Consider how many variants have been added since! I'm expecting the same strategy for the JK platform.

So, it's very possible that --even PRIOR to the Phoenix V6 engines coming in a few years-- we may see the 4.0L-V6 aluminum block (Nitro R/T) in the JKs, as an option, and soon! We may also see the retro-Scrambler soon, which would be a nice surprise, especially with the 4.0L-V6.

Of course, I'd LIKE to see the 4.7L-V8-HO, but I know I'm dreaming there. (You can get one here, though: [url=http://www.burnsvilleoffroad.com/] at Burnsville Offroad!

Or, if you'd like to upgrade your existing 4.0L-I6, you can always transplant a Golen 4.6L stroker, or install a supercharger... but it'll cost ya...

Poster Thread
bkcurtis
Posted: 2007/7/6 21:07  Updated: 2007/7/6 21:07
Home away from home
Joined: 2005/10/8
From: NW Indiana, USA
Posts: 154
 Re: Unlimited Wrangler Rubicon Review
. . . but you left out of your comments that many professional reviewers of the new engine say it is adequate. What they do say is that the driver will have to adapt their driving skills/habits to the new engine.

Also, will that 4.0 V-6 provide the low end torque you are so adamant about?

Who cares about competitior's engines. If you are that concerned, than I would say you need to look into buying a Suzuki.
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