The Jeep Wrangler is right up there with the Mercedes-Benz G-Class and Land Rover Defender when it comes to vehicular icons, but unlike the others you don't have to be earning the big bucks to afford one.
With a starting price below $30,000, the Wrangler is the icon for the everyday man, and in its latest JL incarnation, introduced for 2018, the vehicle is both a viable daily driver and fully capable off-road.
For 2020, the big news is the arrival of a diesel powertrain. Limited to four-door models, the diesel is parent company Fiat Chrysler Automobiles' new 3.0-liter EcoDiesel V-6 rated at 260 horsepower and 442 pound-feet of torque. The powertrain is standard with Wrangler's 8-speed automatic which is designed to handle the increased torque output.
2020 Jeep Wrangler
Buyers can choose from Sport, Sport S, Sahara and Rubicon models, and all the previous powertrain options are still there, though some are model dependant. The standard option is the 3.6-liter V-6 good for 285 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque, and above this is a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4 with 270 hp and 295 lb-ft. Both powertrains can be fitted with a mild-hybrid system. It handles the engine’s stop-start function, adds power during high-load situations, and allows the engine to be completely turned off during stops, coasting or when the engine is decelerating, in order to curb fuel consumption.
Also helping the JL Wrangler's economy is aluminum in its construction, for example in the doors, hinges, hood, fenders and windshield frame; Jeep engineers shaved above 200 pounds compared to the previous JK series, which the automaker said improves economy by more than 10 percent. There's still a tough body-on-frame chassis, though, with front and rear five-link suspension system and solid axles.
Additional off-road goodies include the Command-Trac and Rock-Trac 4x4 systems, next-generation Dana axles, Selec-Trac full-time 2-speed transfer case, Tru-Lock electric front- and rear-axle lockers, Trac-Lok limited-slip differential and 33-inch off-road tires that help deliver 30-inch water fording.
2020 Jeep Wrangler
Other changes for 2020 include LED headlights and fog lights now added to the options list for the Sport model. The available Advanced Safety Group package has now also been expanded to include automatic high beams for vehicles equipped with the 8.4-inch Uconnect infotainment system with navigation.
Pricing information will be announced closer to the market launch later this year.
Below is the full 2020 Jeep Wrangler lineup:
2020 Jeep Wrangler Sport
2020 Jeep Wrangler Sport S
2020 Jeep Wrangler Sahara (four-door only)
2020 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon
For more on the Jeep Wrangler, read the in-depth reviews at The Car Connection.