2015 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Review

Wrangler Unlimited

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2015 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Overview

Along with its legendary 2-door counterpart, the 4-door Jeep Wrangler Unlimited moves into the 2015 model year with some updates that further enhance the utilitarian SUV’s on-road refinement and off-road capability. While the Wrangler Unlimited will maintain much of its iconic look, with the 7-slot grille and familiar boxy body, Jeep has introduced a number of new features to enhance the Wrangler ownership experience. The Wrangler Unlimited sets itself off from its 2-door older brother by offering an extended wheelbase for more seating room, more cargo space, and, of course, those extra doors. There’s an Unlimited counterpart to every available Wrangler edition, from the base Unlimited Sport to the Willys Wheeler Edition, Freedom Edition, Sahara, Rubicon, Altitude, X, and the new Rubicon Hard Rock Edition.

Jeep claims the new top-of-the-line Rubicon Hard Rock to be the most capable Wrangler Unlimited in the lineup. To the Rubicon’s standard part-time 4-wheel-drive (4WD) system, 4.10 front- and rear-axle ratio, and Tru-Lok locking differential, the Rubicon Hard Rock adds BF Goodrich KM 255/75R17 tires mounted on 17-inch Rubicon aluminum wheels, a low-gloss black grille, black front and rear steel off-road bumpers, and removable bumper end caps to help reduce potential damage to the front bumper while climbing obstacles. On the interior, the new Unlimited Rubicon Hard Rock comes standard with a 9-speaker Premium Alpine audio system, black leather seats, and a unique gauge cluster that displays oil pressure, coolant temperatures, and individual tire pressures.

Needless to say, all versions of the Wrangler Unlimited have been designed by engineers with off-roading in the forefront of their minds. The 4WD system allows for some of the most extreme off-roading experiences possible, a renowned capability enhanced by its body-on-frame design, front and rear 5-link suspension system, live axles, electronic lockers, and an available 6-speed manual transmission (a rarity in the SUV world nowadays). These features, coupled with a 44.3-degree approach angle and a 40.4-degree departure angle, help the Wrangler Unlimited scale some of the toughest driving terrain out there.

All variants of the Wrangler Unlimited come with Chrysler’s 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 engine, delivering 258 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque. The engineers were sure to focus on low-end torque, which is critical to good off-road performance. Jeep also designed the oil pan to provide oil to the pump at any angle. And, in addition to that 6-speed manual, the Wrangler Unlimited is available with a 5-speed automatic transmission. The Unlimited’s mileage is identical to the 2-door Wrangler’s, at 17 mpg city/21 highway.

Of course, what really sets the Wrangler Unlimited apart from the Wrangler is its size. Backseat passengers will reap the benefits of the longer body by way of an extra couple of inches of legroom. With enough space for 5 adults, the Wrangler Unlimited is the only 4-door 4WD open-air vehicle on the market. That extra space also includes 46.4 cubic feet of cargo room, an increase from the traditional Wrangler’s 17.2 cubic feet.

Inside, you’ll find the Wrangler Unlimited to be a tad more comfortable than the vehicle’s rugged demeanor might have led you to expect. With automatic temperature controls, heated leather seats, a USB-connected media center, and a 115-volt AC outlet to power traditional 3-pronged electronics, you won’t feel like you’re compromising modern-day comfort for capability. Technology features also include a Uconnect connectivity system with voice recognition, Bluetooth streaming audio, navigation, and SiriusXM radio. If that sounds a little too cushy for you, don’t worry—the Wrangler Unlimited still has removable doors, exposed hinges, a fold-down windshield, and a removable top.

The Wrangler Unlimited's rugged approach to design still offers a sweeping array of safety and security features, despite your ability to remove a sizeable portion of its body. Standard electronic stability control, roll mitigation, hill-start assist, and brake-traction control improve handling both on and off the road. That being said, however, the 2015 Wrangler and Wrangler Unlimited have received moderate-to-poor ratings from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and received only 3 out of 5 stars in the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s rollover crash test.

But if you’re looking to purchase a Wrangler or Wrangler Unlimited, chances are you already knew there are safer vehicles out there. But that’s not the point. The Wrangler is an icon that has gone largely unchanged over the years, and though there are some who claim the Wrangler and Wrangler Unlimited are outdated, its fanbase is quite all right with the models’ retro and rugged feel. So if you’re looking for the reputation of a Wrangler, but have passengers and cargo as priorities, the Wrangler Unlimited should be the Jeep for you.

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    Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Questions


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