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2014 Jeep Wrangler Sahara 2dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M)
2014 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon 4dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M)
I drove my 2014 Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon (automatic transmission, 3.73 gearing) for 2 years until a car crash (another driver's fault) took her from me. I loved the car so much I've ordered a 2016 Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon Hard Rock as a replacement.
This was two years and 55k miles of hard, varied, challenging driving. The Jeep took me on two long, 3000 mile roadtrips to national parks; it also served as my commute vehicle from Boulder to Denver and around Boulder (city driving) for that time.
First, a disclaimer: this review is about a loaded Rubicon. Some of the positives I mention will not relate to a base Sport or even a Sahara or a limited edition, but at the core (engine, transmission, basic off-road capability), all Wranglers have a lot in common.
Now, the positives (there are too many to list, but I'll cover my favorites).
(1 - Off-road ability) My Jeep saw two trips to Moab and countless trips to the Colorado trails. The mud-terrain tires, heavy Dana 44 axles with lockers, the sway bar electronic disconnect, and trip computer with navigation and tire pressure monitoring and etc. proved invaluable. Not only was I able to climb terrain my friends in Nissan XTerra Pro4Xs and Toyota FJ Cruisers could only dream of, I was able to do it EASILY and often quite slowly. Sometimes momentum is your friend in challenging or slippery conditions. While some cars had to floor it in 4-LOW to ascend a hill, I could do it at a leisurely crawl. Furthermore, when I bought the Jeep I was an offroad novice. This vehicle endured countless crunches (and I mean crunches) onto the skid plates and rock rails while I made rookie mistakes. And at the end of the day, I drove back out onto the two lane highway, shifted into 2WD, and drove away without a hitch. Most cars would have been rendered immobile by what I often subjected the Jeep to.
(2 - Luxury) Yes, luxury. A Wrangler is not, and hopefully will never be, a Mercedes-quality vehicle. But the Rubicon surrounds you with heated leather seats with "Rubicon" embroidery and contrast baseball stitching, illuminated footwells and cupholders, leather wrapped (yes, real leather) steering wheel and shift knobs (both the transmission and the 4WD knobs). My Rubicon also had a very good 7-speaker Alpine sound system with a subwoofer. New Rubicons have a 9 speaker, 500 watt Alpine system. The UConnect system has Garmin navigation and voice-controlled sound system (iPod, radio, etc.) and voice-controlled Bluetooth calling. Mine also had a TravelLink subscription which allowed you to check weather, ski conditions, movie times, etc. from the touch screen. Another qualification: my Rubi cost almost $50,000. With that kind of money, you could buy a much more luxurious Ford Explorer Limited or Honda Pilot Touring. The Wrangler is not plush. But it IS comfortable, and sitting in it makes you feel special, and isn't that all you can ask of a vehicle? To scope out the interior more, simply build the edition of your choice on CarGurus and look at pics of the interior - it speaks for itself.
(3 - a feeling of command and safety) The Wrangler's upright driving position, planted stance, and almost entirely vertical glass make the road easy to see, the vehicle easy to place on the road, and you confident that you're driving less of a passenger car and more of a tank. Especially with the hard top, you really do feel in command of the road and ready to meet anything the world or other drivers want to throw at you. That confidence simply isn't felt in a reclined, car-like CUV like a Honda CR-V or Toyota Rav4.
(4 - SAFETY!) As stated, I was involved in a car crash. I was going about 40 mph through a green light and another driver made a left turn into me going the opposite direction (she was going about 20 mph). It was a fast crash (60 mph) but not awful. Even still, head-on collisions are always scary and you want a car that can protect you. Both front airbags deployed and I got out of the vehicle without a scratch and feeling relatively fine. The other driver was stuck in her car and distressed. Speaking of the other car - it was totaled, the hood crushed and the front end pretty compacted. The Jeep looked almost fine aside from the bumper being dented in dramatically and damage to the grille. Ultmately, it was totaled anyway - it needed a new frame apparently (which I blame on a combination of the crash and aforementioned rock crunching, which I'm sure weakened the frame). Feel free to argue amongst yourselves what this means about crash durability of the Wrangler - I simply care that it protected me so well and had very little visible damage.
(5 - A few cons) Fuel economy decent but not great, lack of some luxury or convenience features you'd want for 50K. Other than that, its an absolutely incredible vehicle.
2014 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Sport 4dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M)
I have had numerous electrical problems with this Jeep and a oil leak. The oil leak was within the first 6 months of owing it and it took the dealership over a week to get the part in to have my Jeep repaired. Now as far as the electrical problems, that is a different story, the first problem was, when my tire light would come on my door light would also come and, and they dealer did not know how to fix it, still not fixed to date and my Jeep is 2-1/2 years old, then my buttons on steering wheel were very hard to push, and when I would turn blinker on my interior lights would blink with the blinker, and my lights on the shifter never would light up, at this same time I complained how when it barely rains my Heep slides going around curve very slowly if I apply my brakes, and of course the dealer did not know how to fix that either, but did have to replace my blinker arm, and this fixed the buttons hard to push on steering wheel and the flashing overhead lights when blinker was one. Now it is going back in shop because my esc light keeps coming on and my jeep makes a funny noise if I turn to the left with my brakes applied. It seems like it is always something with the electronics on this Jeep, I am so glad I bought the extended warranty or I would not be able to afford all these so called repairs. I gave up my 1997 Chevy z71 to try a Jeep. Not for sure if this was the best idea. I always heard that Jeeps were tough and you don't have very many problems, so that I was convinced of so I purchased mine. I do love the looks of the 4 door Jeep Wrangler.
2014 Jeep Wrangler Sport 2dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M)
So first, I have to warn others first, BUY A SPORT MODEL. Don't buy a Sahara, or a Rubicon if you are wanting to modify it heavily.
The Sahara has issues with electronics, and the Rubicon has constant issues with the motor in the Electronic sway-bar disconnect motor burning out, and electronics.
The sport model, however, has almost no issues.
Some things that me and other Jeep lovers have noticed about this Jeep that you may need to do/address:
1. JEEP WAVE! When you buy a jeep Wrangler, you will notice that a lot of other Jeep Wranglers will be waving to you. This is part of owning a jeep. You MUST return the wave. A head nod does not cut it. If you don't want to wave, don't buy a jeep! (Comes with the territory)
2. Remove the rear seat, it's a cheap way to double your cargo room. Plus, for me at least, it caused my jeep 2 door to do a rocking motion when going over bumps at high speeds. Removing the back seat allowed the rear to be a little stiffer, and remove the rocking motion.
3. Get a cargo cover. I personally have a Tuffy Security enclosure in mine.
4. DON'T LEAVE ANYTHING VISIBLE IN YOUR JEEP! Unless you want your top cut. (new cloth top costs almost $1000 dollars... even with a 2 door)
5. Don't expect this to be a quiet and easy ride. It's loud, noisy, whistles, and on the highway with a strong crosswind, it's difficult to control. But hey, It's a jeep! Every one has had the same issues. (THIS IS NOT LUXURY! IF YOU ARE BUYING A JEEP FOR LUXURY, BUY A MERCEDES, THIS IS NOT FOR YOU)
With all that, that's it! Welcome to Jeeping and loving a Jeep! Some people love it, some people hate it.
2014 Jeep Wrangler Sport 2dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M)
Before anyone reads this I want to let everyone know that I am a true Jeep lover. Anyone that knows me would swear to that fact. I had wanted a Jeep since I was nine years old. My next door neighbor had a 1943 fully restored WWII Willy's. Absolutely beautiful vehicle and amazing what it could do. I bought my first Jeep in 2012 when I turned 40 as I was not getting any younger. It was my first new car as I had always owned used vehicles prior to this. I was super excited and immediately fell in love with it. The doors could come off, the top could be pulled back, the four-wheeling it could handle! Truly the coolest vehicle on the road. Seriously, what other vehicle can do all that?
Sadly the honeymoon did not last long. It began with the leaks around the doors. Twelve times in the shop and they never fixed the problems. They even tried resetting the doors with no luck. Nothing worked. Wet carpet in a humid climate is not ideal at all. That's not even the worst of it. Mixed in with leaking doors, the mechanical issues soon began. Some may not believe me but I have the records to prove it. The throttle body went bad three times. The fuel injection system went bad twice. I had a cracked air intake manifold twice. A bad oil cooling system. You name, it went wrong. Too many electrical problems to even mention. The running joke in my neighborhood was that it in the shop more than it was on the road or that it had been built on the Monday after Super Bowl Sunday. Yes, it was a lemon & luckily they took it back before my lease was up but I was still out what I had paid in the year-in-a-half that I leased it. (That's why I have the records.)
Here is where it gets even worse. I figured that since I had a lemon my first time out, there was no way I could get another bad one. I mistakenly bought a 2014 and tricked it out. Another bad move on my part. I had the lift package put on it, rock rails, a wench, KC lights, bush-whacker fenders flairs, 35-inch tires with nice rims, a Gobi Rack, a snorkel package, you name it. Again, this Jeep was going to be perfect! A four-wheeling machine!!!! It was for a short while and then like the first one, the mechanical problems began and have not stopped. I didn't need to worry about the rain leaks that were happening as I had moved to Denver. Too dry to worry about that here as it would dry out in hours. What I did need to worry about however was that in a month and a half, it broke down on me five times. Two times where it needed towing as it shut down completely and I was stuck in the middle of the road! First I was told it was the oil-exchange system. Is there such a thing? Then it was a bent wire that shorted out. Then the oil started leaking like mad. I took it in three times to get that to stop. It is still leaking oil now. I went to two different dealerships to see if one was better than the other. Answer to that question - NOPE!!!! Now I have a loud chirping/squeaking noise underneath the vehicle that gets louder and louder with ever bump in the road. It is incredibly annoying. I have been told by the dealership that it is the lift package. It isn't. I have had three separate specialty shops look at it (one that specializes in lift packages on Jeeps) and none of them think that it is the lift package making the noise. They have nothing to gain by telling me this either as they will make no money off of me when they tell me this. The dealership tells me it is the lift package as that is not covered under the warranty and they don't have to pay for that repair. Speaking of warranty. What happens to my repair costs when that runs out? No thanks Chrysler!!!!
The point with all this is - DON'T buy a Jeep folks. I want to save you the hassle and frustrations that I have put up with now for nearly 4.5 years! Jeeps are incredible high on the "cool factor" scale. The way they look, what you can do with them, etc. When it comes to reliability however, this is a completely different story. In my near 24 years of driving, the two Jeeps I have owned are easily the two least reliable vehicles I have ever owned. Remember, I only had used vehicle prior to this and one of those vehicles was a 1971 VW Super Beetle!!! I want to love my Jeep but I need it to run. I need it to be reliable. I am truly disappointed by this and really wish it was not this way. I am disappointed that Chrysler has done little to nothing to help. I am done with Jeep until they get their product straight. I know I am not the only one that has had these issues either. The more people I talk to, the more I find have the same frustrations as me. For those of you who have reliable Jeeps, let me say that I am really jealous! I am also happy for you and I really hope that lasts. You are lucky. I am finding however that the lucky Jeep owners with few repairs and frustrations are becoming more and more rare. I hope Chrysler fixes things soon.