2015 Jeep Wrangler Review
2015 Jeep Wrangler Review
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Used Wrangler for sale
Edmunds' Expert Review
by the Edmunds Experts
- All but unstoppable on the trail
- unmistakable styling
- two- and four-door variants
- extensive factory and aftermarket parts support
- fun to drive in its own special way.
- Long braking distances
- sloppy on-road handling
- noisy interior
- busy ride
- poor crash-test scores
- cumbersome soft top.
The 2015 Wrangler's standard stereo now has eight speakers, while the optional Alpine setup boasts nine. Also, Jeep now includes a standard Torx tool kit for removing the doors and roof. Lastly, packages and trim levels are shuffled. The Altitude and Rubicon Hard Rock editions debut, though the latter is essentially last year's Rubicon X with the addition of the premium audio system. The X moniker itself is reused for a new trim level that serves as a loaded-up Sahara.
An SUV unlike any other, the 2015 Jeep Wrangler offers exceptional off-road capability, though its lack of refinement makes it an acquired taste.
Cost to DriveCost to drive estimates for the 2015 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Sahara 4dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M) and comparison vehicles are based on 15,000 miles per year (with a mix of 55% city and 45% highway driving) and energy estimates of $3.76 per gallon for regular unleaded in Virginia.
Monthly estimates based on costs in Virginia
Wrangler Unlimited Sahara
Avg. Midsize SUV
With a heritage stretching back to World War II, the 2015 Jeep Wrangler is about as throwback a vehicle as you'll find in showrooms today. It has old-school solid axles at both ends and standard crank windows. It's noisy and rough-riding. The soft top is a puzzle to put up and take down and a magnet for potential thieves. Indeed, measured against virtually any other new SUV, the Wrangler is in many ways, well, terrible. For its legions of fans, however, that's part of what makes it so much fun.
It's accurate to say that these foibles are actually indicative of an incredibly honest, back-to-basics off-roader. Of course, the Wrangler also looks pretty cool and can dive headlong into places where few other vehicles dare tread. Plus, what other new car allows you to remove not only the roof, but the doors and windshield as well? The answer is, none.
Changes for the 2015 Wrangler are minimal, so much of your shopping time for a Wrangler will be spent just figuring out what configuration you want. Certainly, the four-door Wrangler Unlimited body style is the more practical choice, but the two-door's shorter wheelbase and overall length make it more nimble on tight trails. For both, the trail-ready Rubicon trim level is a highly popular choice as well. Even if you get just a no-frills Wrangler, though, there's a dizzying array of factory and/or aftermarket upgrades available to let you customize your ride in the years to come.
True rivals to the Wrangler are few. The 2015 Nissan Xterra marches on as the only significant alternative. It provides a more civilized on-road driving experience in exchange for less maximum trail-busting ability. The same was true for the Toyota FJ Cruiser, but Toyota has discontinued it after this model year. Perhaps as consolation, Toyota is offering off-road-oriented versions of its 2015 Toyota 4Runner and Tacoma pickup. But when it really comes down to getting a vehicle with legendary off-road ability and iconic style at minimal cost, there's still nothing like the Jeep Wrangler.
Performance & mpg
The 2015 Jeep Wrangler is motivated by a 3.6-liter V6 that produces 285 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. Four-wheel drive is standard and includes high- and low-range gearing. The Rubicon features uniquely short gearing and an upgraded transfer case with an extra-low crawl ratio. A six-speed manual transmission with hill start assist are standard, while a five-speed automatic with both hill start assist and hill descent control is optional. Towing performance is rather disappointing given this Jeep's rugged character -- the Wrangler Unlimited has a maximum capacity of 3,500 pounds, while the two-door Wrangler tops out at just 2,000 pounds.
In Edmunds performance testing, a two-door Wrangler with the manual zipped from zero to 60 mph in 6.9 seconds, a pretty healthy showing for an off-road vehicle. The heavier Wrangler Unlimited with the automatic transmission needed 8.8 seconds, however, which is nearly a second slower than an equivalent Nissan Xterra. EPA-estimated fuel economy for the two-door is 18 mpg combined (17 city/21 highway) regardless of transmission, while the Unlimited checks in at 18 mpg combined (16 city/21 highway) with the manual and 18 mpg combined (16 city/20 highway) with the automatic.
The 2015 Jeep Wrangler comes standard with antilock disc brakes, traction and stability control, front airbags and hill start assist. Front side airbags are optional. In Edmunds brake testing, both the two- and four-door Wranglers came to a stop from 60 mph in about 140 feet, which is considerably longer than average.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) awarded the two-door 2015 Wrangler its highest possible rating of "Good" in the moderate-overlap frontal-offset impact test but a "Marginal" (second-worst) score in the small-overlap frontal-offset test. Lacking the optional side airbags, the tested vehicle was judged "Poor" (worst) in the side-impact test. Its seat and head restraint design was rated "Marginal" for whiplash protection in rear impacts.
The IIHS also tested a 2015 Wrangler Unlimited, rating it "Good" in the moderate-overlap frontal-offset test and "Marginal" for both side-impact and whiplash protection. Interestingly, the tested vehicle also lacked side airbags despite its slightly better side-impact rating, so there's no data available on Wrangler crashworthiness with side airbags installed.
If you want to dominate the off-road trails in your area, you've come to the right review. We specifically recommend either the Sport, X or the Rubicon for this purpose. Why? Because the Sport is cheap, leaving plenty of room in the budget for custom modifications via either Jeep's Mopar parts division or the thriving aftermarket scene. The X comes with added off-road hardware, including beefier tires and a limited-slip rear differential, while the Rubicon goes even farther in that direction and is perfect for shoppers in search of a complete trail rig right off the shelf.
As for the Sahara, you do get an upgraded suspension with it, but you're paying for the amenities and admittedly attractive body-colored paint treatment (optional on Rubicon) as much as the performance. Nonetheless, any Wrangler is a beast in the wild, with abilities that put other SUVs to shame. The Unlimited four-door may not be as nimble in tight spots as the two-door, but we're picking nits. Just avoid the standard 3.21 gearing if you can, especially if you plan to put on bigger tires; you're going to want the extra tire-spinning torque multiplication (and better crawl ratio) that the available 3.73 or Rubicon-only 4.10 gearing provides.
The Wrangler's V6 engine has enough grunt to make it seem reasonably quick around town, though the bricklike aerodynamics hamper higher-speed acceleration. Alas, on-road driving is also hampered by excessive noise levels, slow and vague steering and an unusual mix of both an unrefined ride quality and a lot of body roll and low grip when driving through turns. But these weaknesses turn into strengths when you get off the pavement, so it's all about your personal priorities. Like we said, just make sure you know what you're getting into before you sign up for the Wrangler experience.
The 2015 Wrangler's cabin actually has a modicum of style, particularly when the metal-look "bright interior accents" are specified. But at the end of the day, function triumphs over form. Although the upright dashboard provides clear gauges and sensibly laid-out controls, there's a distinct throwback feel when you're driving a Wrangler, evoking a bygone era when car interiors didn't resemble fighter-plane cockpits. Sure, you can have touchscreen navigation if you want it -- albeit Chrysler's older 6.5-inch unit, not the latest 8.4-inch model -- but otherwise, the Wrangler's about as basic as it gets. Honestly, anything more would seem a bit out of place. If you want the latest luxuries, maybe a Cherokee is more your speed.
Rear passengers will face some challenges in the two-door Wrangler. There's room for only two back there, first of all, and the low bench with limited knee and foot room can make longer trips unpleasant, especially for adults. Access is also awkward unless the top's off, in which case nimble riders can just clamber over the sides. The Unlimited's backseat offers room for three and conventional access via its extra set of doors, though it's still not particularly comfortable or spacious. There's not much cargo room behind the two-door Wrangler's rear seatbacks (just 12.8 cubic feet), but the four-door Unlimited offers a more useful 31.5 cubic feet, as well as a generous 70.6 cubic feet with those seatbacks folded versus 55.8 cubes in the two-door.
Putting the soft top up or down on any Jeep Wrangler takes patience, which makes the separate foldable sunroof panel an appealing option when the top's up and you're short on time. As with any soft-top convertible, security is also an issue, mitigated here somewhat by a locking glovebox and center console. The optional hardtop, which features removable T-top-style panels over the front seats, is a smart solution for those who don't intend to go completely roofless on a routine basis. Bear in mind, though, that the hardtop is heavy, so you'll need a friend to help whenever you want to remove it.
2015 Jeep Wrangler models
The 2015 Jeep Wrangler is a convertible SUV offered in two-door Wrangler and four-door Wrangler Unlimited versions. Each is available in Sport, Sahara or Rubicon main trim levels, with notable sub-trims including the Altitude, X, Freedom Edition, Willys Wheeler and the Rubicon Hard Rock.
The Sport comes standard with 16-inch steel wheels, front and rear tow hooks, foglamps, a removable black soft top, manual accessories (windows, locks and mirrors), cruise control, a tilt-only steering wheel, a height-adjustable driver seat and an eight-speaker sound system with an auxiliary audio jack, a CD player and steering wheel controls. The Unlimited Sport gets four doors, a bigger gas tank, air-conditioning (optional on Wrangler Sport) and a 60/40-split-folding rear seat. The Power Convenience Group adds heated power mirrors, keyless entry, an auto-dimming rearview mirror and power locks and windows. Also optional are 17-inch alloy wheels, satellite radio and a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob.
The Sahara starts with the above items and adds 18-inch alloy wheels, a heavy-duty suspension with gas shocks, automatic headlamps, under-hood insulation, side steps, body-colored fender flares, tinted windows, a 115-volt power outlet, bright interior accents and coat hooks.
The top-of-the-line Rubicon derives its status from its robust off-road credentials. Starting with the Sport's standard equipment, the Rubicon adds special 17-inch wheels, 32-inch tires, a heavy-duty Dana 44 front axle (matching the standard-spec Dana 44 rear axle), a shorter 4.10 rear-axle ratio (standard with the manual transmission, optional with the automatic), an upgraded transfer case with a lower crawl ratio, electronic front and rear locking differentials, an electronically disconnecting front sway bar, rock rails, automatic headlamps and under-hood insulation. Inside, you get standard air-conditioning plus the leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, coat hooks, a 115-volt outlet, bright interior accents and satellite radio. The above-mentioned Power Convenience Group is an optional extra on the two-door Rubicon, but it's standard on the Rubicon Unlimited.
Note that although the 4.10 gearing is a Rubicon exclusive, the Sport and Sahara are eligible for an upgrade to a 3.73 ratio, which gets you much of the way there. The standard ratio is a modest 3.21.
Also optional on Sport and Sahara is a limited-slip rear differential, while the Sport and Rubicon can be equipped with half doors that include plastic side windows and manual locks. The Sahara and Rubicon are additionally eligible for leather upholstery, heated front seats, automatic climate control and a navigation system that includes a 6.5-inch touchscreen. A nine-speaker Alpine audio system is available across the lineup, as is the Connectivity Group, which adds Bluetooth, a USB port, voice controls, an upgraded trip computer and a tire pressure monitoring display, as well as the leather-wrapped wheel and shift knob on Sport and Sport Unlimited.
Optional on all the above trims is a three-piece removable hardtop with a rear defroster and wiper. You can buy it instead of, or in addition to, the standard soft top. The default color for the hardtop is black, but you can get it in body color on the Sahara and Rubicon. All trims can be paired with a premium version of the soft top that's made of nicer material.
As for the special-edition Wranglers, the Altitude has the same standard equipment as a Sahara but with unique 18-inch wheels, a color-matched hardtop, high-gloss black exterior accents, black headlight surrounds, heated front seats, the Connectivity group and black interior accents.
The X is essentially a Sahara loaded up with 17-inch alloy wheels with beefier off-road-oriented tires, a limited-slip rear differential, rock rails, black exterior trim (wheels, bumpers), a "power dome" hood, a color-matched hardtop, automatic climate control, leather/mesh upholstery, heated front seats, the Connectivity group and the Alpine audio system.
The Freedom Edition features body color fender flares, gray alloy wheels (17-inch), gray grille and bumper accents, unique graphics, leather/tech fabric upholstery, the Alpine audio system and upgraded interior trim.
The Willys Wheeler starts with the Sport's equipment and adds black 17-inch wheels, 3.73 gearing, the limited-slip differential, rock rails, gloss black exterior trim, "Willys" hood decals, tinted windows and the Connectivity Group. The Rubicon Hard Rock also gets 17-inch black wheels and gloss black exterior trim in addition to the regular Rubicon's standard kit, and it adds a domed hood, special bumpers, wider rock rails, black leather upholstery, heated front seats, a unique gauge cluster and the Alpine stereo.
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most helpful consumer reviews
5 out of 5 stars
More than we thought
Unlimited Sport 4dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M)
In December 2014 we bought the 2015 Jeep Wrangler Sport. It had 300 miles on it; they drove it up from Los Angeles to the Central Valley. My Husband is 6'3" and a big guy; this vehicle fits him comfortably. The following weekend we took it up to the snow; the 4-wheel drive was great and we had an awesome experience. The fact that you can go from Manual to Standard is a great feature! … We upgraded the bumpers and side rails, did some custom paint work in the interior and bought a bikini top. The freedom we feel driving it has made the monthly payment worth it. This Summer of 2015 we took it up to an annual Jeep run in the Sierra Mountains; with only our new fancy bumpers and side rails we took our Jeep up. We were completely shocked at what the Wrangler did. Trails and Mountains the Jeep climbed were shocking! This machine went right on up some scary mountains; we had great spotters but it still just amazed us on how awesome this vehicle is. They say; You're never done building a Jeep. Which is completely true! I like how the holes are pre-drilled for adding such things as bumpers, side rails, winches and such. It's truly is a Lego set. Cons: the backseat is not made for tall people, anyone over 5'8" has trouble getting in and out. The speakers between the front and back seat, up in the roof, don't give much head room for the people riding in the back. Inside of the vehicle is nosy with the hard top on. The braking does take a bit longer to stop. We've had this Jeep for a little over 5 years and we're still happy. The performance and enjoyment of owning a Jeep Wrangler has made our lives a little bit more adventurous. **Updated review on 7/7/2020**
4 out of 5 stars
If its for you its perfect
Sport 2dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M)
First of all, if you want great gas mileage it isnt for you. If you want to be able to drive in any condition and go anywhere it is. If you are thinking about a Jeep Wrangler, the first step is to not be stupid about it. If you have the money to go out and buy the higher versions of it then by all means go ahead and do so. For the rest of us here is my best advice for you, buy the … Sport model. Jeeps are the most modified vehicle on the road. Save 3-5K dollars at purchase and buy what you want for it aftermarket. Buy the Jeep with a hardtop, then search craigslist or ebay for a used soft top for it, you should be able to find one for around $500, and that will be around 2K less than the dealer will want for it. The rear seats in an Unlimited have a terrible angle on them, buy a set of spacers for under them for $50, best money spent. You'll love driving it, but its a taller vehicle, it can be a handle when the wind is really blowing especially on the highway and the soft top makes it a little worse. All jeeps are kind of noisier than a regular car, but that is because of the fun factor you will have when it is warmer and you have the top off. It's a unique vehicle that isn't for everyone but if you are adventurous and fun loving the Jeep is perfect.
5 out of 5 stars
Jeep Wranglers Wave at each Other on the Road
Sport 2dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M)
Like motorcyclists, Wrangler drivers give a wave to each other on the road. That made it easier for me to transition from my California, motorcycle-only driving to the East Coast where they have seasons and I need 4 wheels to travel. Pros: it's not just a car, it's a way of life Endless accessories are available, depending upon what you want to do Best resale value of any car. Look … online at a 5 year old Wrangler with 100,000 miles...it can still command a 20k dollar price, depending on options & condition. Mine is worth more now than when I bought it! Cons: endless accessories mean your build won't ever end while you own your rig Along with the high resale value comes the high cost. My nice young salesman literally laughed in my face when I told him the MSRP for a 2015 JKU as its called, that is the Wrangler Unlimited Sport, the lowest 4-door model. Any other words, Sahara, Rubicon, Willys model cost more. You can't get one less than 30,000, anywhere on earth. I see people pay 50,000. So I got the 30,000 after I found out MSRP is meaningless--it must not have an engine for the MSRP price, and that pisses me off badly. But it's like every car-buying experience except Saturn (we bought 2 before they killed Saturn for being customer-friendly by actually TELLING YOU THE PRICE. So I spent 2,000 on tires, wheels, and a 2" (minimum) lift kit and mine looked better than the Rubicon now (it's over 40k). Then I spent 1300 more and got a front bumper with a big "trail stinger" bar and a Superwinch 9500 synthetic, because if synthetic line ever breaks, it falls to the ground rather than cutting off a head, and the Dyneema cord is as strong as steel. Now my Wrangler is priceless, ready to pull you out of a ditch if you follow me!
5 out of 5 stars
10th Wrangler 8 new and 2 used
Willys Wheeler 2dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M)
Die hard Wrangler fan here. Just bought my 2015 Wrangler Willys 2 weeks ago. Mileage is not as good as my 2013 but it's because of the beefy tires and 3:73 gears. Had a NEW 97, 02, 04, 06, 08,10, 12, 13, and 15. Used 95. Hardtops are a pain in the butt without a lift in garage. 97 and 12 were favorites until this 15. It's awesome. If you're not a priss, you need to experience a Wrangler. … These vehicles run better in the snow (without the 4WD) than most vehicles do with the 4WD engaged. The soft tops keep you plenty warm in the winter. Only problem is the auto industry has had problems with the Takata air bag systems for 7 or 8 years. Jeep continues to put them in the Wranglers. Now there's a recall for metal shards shooting out of the passenger side bags. They can also go off in the heat and humidity. No wreck required. Never had a new vehicle over 2 yrs and 8 days. That was my 08 Wrangler (lease). I have had this one 4 years now. Never had any problems with this one. I have 58,000 so it's almost 15000 a year. Like it the best of my 10 Wranglers
Features & Specs
NHTSA Overall Rating
The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
- Frontal Barrier Crash RatingOverallNot RatedDriverNot RatedPassengerNot Rated
- Side Crash RatingOverallNot Rated
- Side Barrier RatingOverallNot RatedDriverNot RatedPassengerNot Rated
- Combined Side Barrier & Pole RatingsFront SeatNot RatedBack SeatNot Rated
- RolloverRollover3 / 5Dynamic Test ResultNo TipRisk Of Rollover27.9%
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
- Side Impact TestPoor
- Roof Strength TestNot Tested
- Rear Crash Protection / Head RestraintMarginal
- IIHS Small Overlap Front TestNot Tested
- Moderate Overlap Front TestGood
More about the 2015 Jeep Wrangler
Used 2015 Jeep Wrangler Overview
The Used 2015 Jeep Wrangler is offered in the following submodels: Wrangler SUV. Available styles include Unlimited Sahara 4dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M), Unlimited Rubicon 4dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M), Rubicon 2dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M), Sahara 2dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M), Unlimited Sport RHD 4dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 5A), Unlimited Sport 4dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M), Unlimited Altitude Edition 4dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M), Sport 2dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M), Altitude Edition 2dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M), Willys Wheeler 2dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M), Unlimited X 4dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M), Freedom Edition 2dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M), Unlimited Rubicon Hard Rock 4dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 5A), Unlimited Freedom Edition 4dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M), Unlimited Willys Wheeler 4dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M), Rubicon Hard Rock 2dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M), and X 2dr SUV 4WD (3.6L 6cyl 6M). Pre-owned Jeep Wrangler models are available with a 3.6 L-liter gas engine, with output up to 285 hp, depending on engine type. The Used 2015 Jeep Wrangler comes with four wheel drive. Available transmissions include: 6-speed manual. The Used 2015 Jeep Wrangler comes with a 3 yr./ 36000 mi. basic warranty, a 5 yr./ 100000 mi. roadside warranty, and a 5 yr./ 100000 mi. powertrain warranty.
What's a good price on a Used 2015 Jeep Wrangler?
Price comparisons for Used 2015 Jeep Wrangler trim styles:
- The Used 2015 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Sport is priced between $22,500 and$42,000 with odometer readings between 21467 and124275 miles.
- The Used 2015 Jeep Wrangler Sport is priced between $16,998 and$32,998 with odometer readings between 6479 and160622 miles.
- The Used 2015 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Sahara is priced between $25,543 and$35,999 with odometer readings between 33861 and108048 miles.
- The Used 2015 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon is priced between $28,496 and$38,590 with odometer readings between 42593 and123524 miles.
- The Used 2015 Jeep Wrangler Sahara is priced between $26,988 and$35,998 with odometer readings between 19120 and109664 miles.
- The Used 2015 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon Hard Rock is priced between $30,476 and$40,999 with odometer readings between 37512 and99224 miles.
- The Used 2015 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon is priced between $28,499 and$31,000 with odometer readings between 28661 and100369 miles.
- The Used 2015 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Altitude Edition is priced between $21,900 and$35,499 with odometer readings between 63289 and114003 miles.
- The Used 2015 Jeep Wrangler Freedom Edition is priced between $25,787 and$30,990 with odometer readings between 30533 and87684 miles.
- The Used 2015 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Freedom Edition is priced between $25,870 and$32,998 with odometer readings between 52031 and97950 miles.
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Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2015 Jeep Wrangler for sale near. There are currently 151 used and CPO 2015 Wranglers listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $16,998 and mileage as low as 6479 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2015 Jeep Wrangler.
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Should I lease or buy a 2015 Jeep Wrangler?
Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.