First thing is first i LOVE my jeep. If you dont like bumpy and loud buy a dumb cadillac if you want good gas mileage buy a stupid civic. But if you like wondering on and off road at anytime and having a blast while doing it. then look no further. the sound bar is awesome. ive only had mine stuck once that was in snow that had been plowed 2 days before and was up over my hood and i have a 3 inch suspension lift with 33" BFG A/T.. you can be driving on the street one minute and the next climbing the side of a mountain. no other vehicle can do what a jeep does. i guess you have to be a jeep person to be in love with a jeep as much as i am.
My first GP, a 2004 Jeep Wrangler SE 4 cylinder, 4WD, with soft top and hard doors, has been reliable, versatile, and just plain fun. It's a blast for all seasons ... goes anywhere in the snow (though ice is always tricky) ... doesn't leak in the heaviest of rain ... pulls my 16 ft. boat up a bumpy ramp with ease (especially using 1st gear in 4WD low )... and doesn't need air conditioning (just take the windows out on a hot day or lower the top). However, I do suggest that you keep both hands on the wheel in windy and rainy conditions because of the short wheelbase and wider tires. There's plenty of heat in winter and you can adjust the vents to cover your needs. It has comfortable seats too.
This jeep is awesome. My only complaints are that it is slow to pick up speed, limited cargo space, and interior could be designed more modernly perhaps with an aux input factory installed. It is fun and easy to drive. Handles well in the mud, snow, ice, rain, etc. The floors have plugs you can take out if you leave your top down and it gets rained in. Its super easy to clean the interior if it gets wet or muddy. So far, i've had to replace my timing belt and gas sensor. other than that, i havent had any problems out of mine.
I needed a 2nd vehicle that could get me off road for fishing. Something dependable and good on gas. I have a luxury SUV (gas guzzler), and I really did not want to take that fishing! I chose my 2004 TJ with 28,000 miles with brand new 31" tires, chrome 15" wheels, Soft top manual 5 speed. I can get to 75 MPH on the highway, but past 76 it starts to get a little rough! I am in 80-90 degree weather with no AC, but I take off the upper soft top doors, the side windows, and role the back windw and I get a cool breeze! AC not needed! For more power and better fuel mileage I am adding a cold air intake and replacing the exhaust system! This has become my daily driver and I love this thing!
You can take this vehicle anywhere, mountains, beach, the desert sands. But you need to be willing to purchase fuel more often than passenger cars, many trucks, and other SUV type vehicles because fuel economy is not it's strong point. Also, doing routine maintenance is much more important on one of these than most vehicles due to the blow - your - mind cost of making repairs. If you are not a person who religiously follows the suggested maintenance schedules, do not buy this vehicle. Having said that, I have to confess my next new vehicle will be the jeep wrangler unlimited willy addition.