America’s Favorite SUV: The Jeep Wrangler

When Jeep introduced the Wrangler in 1986 it got immediately famous. The Wrangler was so practical and dependable that people especially in the USA and around the world started attributing an SUV with Jeep. So, when someone talked about a Jeep it meant that they were talking about an SUV no matter which manufacturer the SUV belonged to. With such fame, it comes as no surprise that the Jeep Wrangler’s glory is still rife. It has been more than 3 decades since the Wrangler has been in production and its unmistakable appearance still captures the attention of all those that lay their eyes on it.

Most Popular Vehicle

If you are an avid user of social media you might have noticed that Jeep is pretty popular on the internet. On the picture sharing app Instagram, for instance, the hashtags #Jeep and #Wrangler are used millions of times a year. In this modern age, this is a very big achievement as the larger your following on social media the bigger your brand will be able to grow.

Wrangler or (CJ) Civilian Jeep?

Interestingly, the Jeep Wrangler had a different name earlier on. Although the vehicle with the Wrangler nameplate has been in production since 1986, the actual vehicle has been in production long. The 4×4 SUV went by the name of Civilian Jeep or CJ. Jeep used to change the name of every vehicle with each passing model or year. So, what started from CJ-1, CJ-2 went through to CJ-8 and CJ-10. It seems the American automobile manufacturer got bored of similar names for its SUV’s and it started giving them cooler names and that’s how the Wrangler came into existence.

Size Matters A Lot

Initially, the Wrangler was designed to be a compact and practical off-road vehicle. Surprisingly, even though market trends have changed, Jeep continues to produce the Wrangler in almost the same dimensions as the first generation. Today, the SUV has a 95.4-inch wheelbase – that is a 15.4-inch amelioration from the first gen’s design, a 62-inch track compared to 47-inch track and a curb weight of 3,760 lbs. compared to 1,300 lbs. The biggest difference, however, is in terms of the engine size and capacity. The first-gen Jeep Wrangler had an engine that could only produce 82 lb-ft of torque. A pretty measly figure for an off-road capable SUV. The modern Jeep Wrangler is heavier overall but it has a powerful engine which is capable of producing up to 260 lb-ft of torque. If you weren’t feeling the power in the earlier generation Wranglers, you would surely feel the power in the new one.

Green for the Environment

Acquiescing to popular trends in the automobile market, Jeep thought about producing a Jeep Wrangler EV that would be an economical as well as an environmentally friendly alternative to the regular model.  The idea gained much traction in 2008 when the company thought about introducing a Wrangler EV under Chrysler’s ENVI division. However, the idea did not shoot up since Fiat took over Chrysler in 2009.

2-door VS 4-door

The Jeep Wrangler was initially designed to be a vehicle for the U.S military. That is a pretty well-known fact but little do people know that the final design of the vehicle came through only after Ford chipped in with their ideas. The Wrangler would have been a bug-like vehicle with round lights and around the front end but it was thanks to Ford that the slit-like grille was added and that signature look is what the Jeep vehicles are known for today. If Ford had not helped out, who knows what the modern Jeep Wrangler would have looked like? Furthermore, the Jeep Wrangler came out with a 2-door design. Jeep tried to expand their horizons by introducing a more passenger-friendly model with 4-doors. There was huge outrage regarding the decision since Jeep lovers believed the vehicle should stay in its original shape and look. Jeep went through with the 4-door idea and surprisingly it did become a hit. The 4×4 4-door Wrangler is nowadays one of the most demanded models in the market. It comes to show that no matter what Jeep makes, its lovers will still buy it out of pure love for the brand.



Digipower is featured in the February issue of SEMA NEWS
America’s Favorite SUV: The Jeep Wrangler

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