2007 Jeep Wrangler Long-Term Road Test

2007 Jeep Wrangler: Electrical Gremlin

October 22, 2007

2007 Jeep Wrangler -- Brent Romans

While driving our Jeep Wrangler on the highway at about 70 mph last Friday night, there was a sudden drop in power. A red warning light lit up – I didn't recognize the symbol at the time – and the stability control system light began flashing. The engine didn't die, but there was obviously something wrong. Throttle response was sluggish and the engine was running rough...

I thought about pulling over immediately but decided to continue on about 8 miles. (Just to be safe, I keyed in the nearest Jeep dealership via the navigation system's "emergency" function.) After exiting the highway, I cracked the owner's manual to read about the mysterious red light. I learned that it was the Electronic Throttle Control (ETC) warning light. The manual reads: "If a problem is detected while the engine is running, the light will either stay on or flash depending on the nature of the problem."

The manual's recommended solution? "Cycle the ignition key when the vehicle is safely and completely stopped."

It worked. After "rebooting" the Jeep, the ETC and stability control lights didn't come back on, and the Wrangler's engine was back to normal.

So far, the problem hasn't reoccurred. (I took the above photo this morning for illustrative purposes.)

Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor @ 7818 miles

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