Jeep Wrangler: New Heart, the Same Soul







Published by Gerald Ferreira Date: February 9, 2012
Categories: JEEP, Jeep Wrangler

Jeep® Wrangler: a New Heart, the Same Soul

  • New 3.6-litre V-6 powertrain provides more fuel efficiency, improved on-road driving dynamics and refinement, more power and more torque
  • Petrol powertrain now adds upgraded automatic transmission for refined shifting and greater performance
  • Dramatically improved on-road performance combines with even more off-road prowess
  • New powertrain combined with new-for-2011 interior equal a new Jeep Wrangler experience

Jeep Wrangler

Jeep® Wrangler – the most capable and iconic vehicle in the world – now becomes even more capable both on- and off-road, courtesy of an all-new, more fuel-efficient and more powerful 3.6-litre V-6 petrol engine and a five-speed automatic transmission – both of which it shares with the award-winning Jeep Grand Cherokee.

The all-new 3.6-litre Pentastar V-6 engine and automatic transmission enhance Jeep Wrangler’s on-road driving performance – delivering 43 percent more power, 10 percent more torque and reduced fuel consumption – while also taking the vehicle’s legendary offroad capability to a new level.

Chrysler Group’s 3.6-litre Pentastar engine – named to the prestigious U.S. automotive media outlet Ward’s “10 Best Engines” list – delivers 209 kW and 347 N•m of torque, along with greater fuel efficiency over the previous 3.8-litre V-6 engine.

Additionally, for refined shifting and greater performance, Jeep Wrangler petrol models migrate from a four-speed to a five-speed automatic transmission. The newest Wrangler also features the company’s first application of a manual transmission to the 3.6-litre Pentastar engine.

Jeep Wrangler South Africa

The Jeep Wrangler and Wrangler Unlimited will continue to be available in three models:

Sport, Sahara and Rubicon. Combined with an all-new interior for 2011, the newest Wrangler is virtually all-new over the past two years and will excite core Jeep followers while appealing to new customers.

Powertrain

Compact and lightweight, the all-aluminium 3.6-litre Pentastar V-6 engine is more than 40 kg lighter than the previous 3.8-litre V-6 engine that was constructed with a cast-iron block.

The 3.6-litre Pentastar engine is extremely quiet, constructed with a high-pressure, die-cast aluminium block fitted with cast-iron bore liners and aluminium cylinder heads. The engine also has been designed to meet all known future worldwide emission standards and is currently Euro 5 certified.

The all-new 3.6-litre Pentastar engine joins the new 2.8-litre turbo diesel engine. The diesel engine provides power of 147 kW, a 13 percent improvement over the prior 2.8-litre diesel engine. Torque for the engine comes in at 460 N•m with its five-speed automatic transmission.

Exhaust manifolds are deleted, with exhaust gases flowing through passages cast directly into the cylinder head of the 3.6-litre Pentastar engine. The new engine is extremely quiet and has set the standard of power, performance and interior quietness, as recently recognised by the editors of the U.S. automotive media outlet Ward’s, as one of the “10 Best Engines in 2011”.

The A580 automatic transmission benefits Jeep Wrangler as much as the new petrol engine, with more refined shifting and gear selection. By increasing the number of gears, the transmission allows the engine to operate in a more efficient RPM range, which helps increase fuel economy. More gears also enable the engine to remain in the torque curve, increasing acceleration.

Throughout the gear range, the five-speed automatic for Jeep Wrangler has been designed to provide smooth shifting throughout the RPM range. The transmission also has closer ratios that help improve shifting characteristics with smoother gear-to-gear changes.

The new Jeep Wrangler (two-door) boasts a 27 percent improvement in 0-100 km/h time, which is now 8.1 seconds. Also, a lower first-gear ratio in the new automatic transmission gives the Wrangler even better off-road capability via a lower overall crawl ratio.

Electronic Range Select is standard for all automatic-equipped Jeep Wrangler models.

Electronic stability control (ESC) also has been optimised to perform effortlessly with the new 3.6-litre Pentastar engine. With the proven NSG 370 six-speed manual transmission, a new clutch housing, flywheel and long-travel damper clutch has been specially engineered for the newest Jeep Wrangler.

The improvements are a result of the adaptation of the transmission to the 3.6-litre Pentastar engine.

Engineering

Jeep Wrangler delivers unmatched off-road capability with legendary four-wheel drive and is produced with more than seven decades of 4x4 engineering experience behind it. Wrangler continues to offer a body-on-frame design, front and rear five-link suspension system, live axles and electronic lockers.

Along with a new powertrain, Jeep engineers have thoroughly optimised ride and sound characteristics of the Wrangler’s body-on-frame design. New motor and transmission adaptations and revised suspension calibrations contribute to overall improvements that are immediately evident both on- and off-road.

Shocks have been returned for the newest Jeep Wrangler and are designed for optimum balance between advanced on-road handling and rugged off-road capability. All models are equipped with high-pressure monotube shocks and include Low Speed Tunable (LST) valve technology.

At low-speed suspension motions, LST provides firm control. As speed increases, valve stiffness decreases, preventing an overly stiff ride.

The interior sound quality is greatly improved through refinements in the powertrain mounting system, noise damping in the firewall and the inclusion of the first Jeep Wrangler engine cover to effectively isolate the cabin from noises emulating from the engine and road surfaces.

On the outside, engine noise is barely perceptible at idle. With the new 3.6-litre Pentastar engine, all accessories are mounted directly to the engine with no accessory brackets. This helps ensure that all accessories, including the power steering pump, alternator and airconditioning compressor, are anchored firmly and less susceptible to vibration and noise.

Shocks have also been retuned and are designed for optimum balance between advanced on-road handling and rugged off-road capability.

The Jeep Wrangler is now available with more axle gear ratios, allowing customers to optimize fuel economy and/or vehicle capability. Wrangler is available with 3.21, 3.73 or 4.10 to 1 ratios depending on model.

Able to tackle the steepest grades and deepest ruts, the approach angle for Jeep Wrangler is 35 degrees. Breakover angle is 22 degrees (18 degrees for Unlimited) and departure angle is 28 degrees.

The capable driveline of the Jeep Wrangler Sport and Sahara models includes a Dana 30 front axle and Dana 44 rear axle. The Command-Trac® NV241 part-time, two-speed transfer case features a 2.72:1 low-range gear ratio.

The Jeep Wrangler Rubicon model features heavy-duty Dana 44 front and rear axles and the Rock-Trac® NV241 two-speed transfer case with a 4.0:1 low-range gear ratio. Rubicon also includes electric front and rear locking differentials and disconnecting front sway bar, taking Wrangler to the highest level of capability.

Design

In 2011, Jeep introduced an all-new interior to Wrangler that combines rich styling, versatility, comfort and improved feature use. Highlights include upgraded materials, automatic temperature controls, power mirrors and steering-wheel-mounted controls for vehicle systems. Larger rear windows are engineered for greater visibility, and a USB port connects to the media centre.

Jeep Wrangler’s signature features include classic round headlamps, seven-slot grille, trapezoid wheel flares, removable doors, exposed hinges, a fold-down windshield and innovative removable and convertible tops and half-doors that allow Wrangler to retain the brand’s iconic appearance and function. New Wrangler Sahara model now features a bodycolour hardtop option, offering a premium appearance.

With room for five adults, Jeep Wrangler Unlimited remains the only four-door 4x4 convertible on the market.

Safety and Security

Jeep Wrangler and Wrangler Unlimited offer an array of safety and security features.Standard electronic stability control, electronic roll mitigation, Trailer-sway Control, Hill-start Assist and brake traction control are among two dozen standard or optional systems.

Jeep safety systems are engineered to improve handling and accident avoidance while providing occupant protection, allowing Wrangler customers the ability to safely “go anywhere and do anything.”

Quality

The newest Jeep Wrangler underwent millions of durability testing kilometres during development in the company’s scientific labs, at its proving grounds and on public roads in various climates.

Jeep Wrangler’s 3.6-litre Pentastar V-6 engine recorded more than 19.3 million customerequivalent  kilometres on engine dynamometres prior to production. Testing was increased by 50 percent compared to previous Chrysler Group V-6 engines, to guarantee a long life against severe conditions and accommodate high-load applications such as trailer towing.

Reducing noise, vibration and harshness was a key objective for every engine component and was achieved using advanced computer-aided engineering techniques.

As Jeep Wrangler approached production, the company also tested day and night, on- and off-road, to put the equivalent of three years of wear and tear on the vehicles in approximately three months’ time.

This accelerated testing occurred on public roads, paved and unpaved, in an attempt to find and fix any issues before the first SUVs were delivered to customers. The test drivers checked all the functional aspects of the vehicle, such as heating and cooling, window operation, convertible and removable hardtop operation and navigation systems.

Manufacturing

Jeep Wrangler and Wrangler Unlimited are built in Chrysler Group’s Toledo Supplier Park in Toledo, Ohio (USA). The plant features the flexibility to integrate the all-new powertrain with the addition of new engine carriers and transmission lift equipment.

The 3.6-litre Pentastar V-6 engine is manufactured at the Trenton Engine Plant in Trenton, Michigan (USA). The five-speed automatic transmission is produced at the Indiana Transmission Plant II in Kokomo, Indiana (USA), and the six-speed manual transmission is produced in Gaggenau, Germany.

Jeep Wrangler Sahara model offers a body-colour hardtop and fender flares. A new paint process was developed to match the body colour to the sheet-moulded compound (SMC) hardtops, exceeding the corporate quality standards of paint adhesion and UV resistance in the harshest environments.

The body and top are painted separately with blended and matched paint to assure colour continuity.

Jeep Brand

Built on 70 years of legendary heritage, Jeep is the authentic SUV with class-leading capability, craftsmanship and versatility for people who seek extraordinary journeys. The Jeep brand delivers an open invitation to live life to the full by offering a full line of vehicles that continue to provide owners with a sense of security to handle any journey with confidence.

The Jeep vehicle lineup in South Africa consists of the: Cherokee, Compass, Grand Cherokee, Patriot, Wrangler and Wrangler Unlimited.

Jeep Wrangler prices:

  • Jeep Wrangler 3.6L V6 Sahara – R369 990
  • Jeep Wrangler 3.6L V6 Rubicon – R389 990
  • Jeep Wrangler Unlimited prices:
  • Jeep Wrangler Unlimited 3.6L V6 Sahara – R394 990
  • Jeep Wrangler Unlimited 3.6L V6 Rubicon – R414 990